NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review

by Gary Patterson | Last Updated: May 15, 2021

NordicTrack is an American fitness company that was founded by Edward Pauls in 1975 and later acquired by Icon Health & Fitness in 1998.

NordicTrack manufactures exercise equipment, including treadmills, bicycles, ellipticals, rowers, and strength training machines. NordicTrack offers exclusive personal training that you can acquire from home. Through their iFit subscription, you can access fitness tracking apps and personal training programs to step up your workout regimen.

NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review 

This NordicTrack RW500 review found that the company was initially founded in Minnesota, while their headquarters are currently located in Utah. NordicTrack is a top-selling brand worldwide, most known for its classic skier machine, which is now dwindling in popularity. The brand’s current most popular product is the incline trainer, a specialty treadmill established by NordicTrack in 2009. 

NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review

NordicTrack has been featured in Top Fitness Magazine, Gear Junkie, Gear Patrol, and Rowing Reviews for their outstanding rowing machines. With innovative qualities such as dual resistance, high-definition touch screens, adjustable footrests, and endless training possibilities, their rowers are built to help you take things to the next level

The NordicTrack RW500 Rower is a rowing machine that provides an efficient form of exercise that’ll give you a full-body workout. The adjustable magnetic resistance with 26 levels gives you the option of achieving a high-intensity workout. This magnetic rower is ideal if you’re working with a small space and need to store it afterward. When you’ve finished with your training, storage is made easy with the foldable design of this workout equipment.

This NordicTrack RW500 review will fill you in on the product’s quality, design, additional features, and overall value to help you decide if this rowing machine is worth the buy. Before getting further into this NordicTrack RW500 review, let’s look over some pros and cons of the company.



Technical Specifications

Here is a list of some technical specifications that the NordicTrack RW500 Rower features:

Resistance Type

The NordicTrack RW500 Rower uses two forms of resistance, Silent Magnetic Resistance and Adjustable Air. The 26 resistance levels use magnets to create tension, making for a smooth and robust workout. By adjusting the air, you can amp up the intensity of your workout. This rower gives you the best of both worlds when it comes to resistance.

NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review

The benefit of magnetic resistance is that it helps with weight loss, using effective long, firm strokes that will enhance your stride and work your muscles. Magnetic resistance is also silent, requires very little maintenance, and usually comes with workouts programmed in the rower monitor, like the RW500

The RW500 also features inertia-enhanced flywheel, which is designed to enhance your performance by delivering a fluid motion that feels natural and effective for your body.


The NordicTrack RW500 Rower retails for $999 at the time of this NordicTrack RW500 review. Compared to other rowing machines on the market, this is a pretty high price. There are more affordable options out there, but it really depends on what you’re looking for. 

This rower has an overall rating of stars on the company’s website, proving customer satisfaction. You can purchase the NordicTrack RW500 Rower on the brand’s website, Some other retailers that sell this rowing machine are Amazon and Best Buy.

NordicTrack offers a standard payment method through manual credit or debit; they don’t use third-party payment apps such as PayPal and Amazon Pay. There also aren’t any payment plans available at the time of this NordicTrack RW500 review.

Shipping & Assembly

You are required to pay a shipping fee of $199 on NordicTrack rowers. Non-UPS shipments will require a signature for delivery. The company uses shipping, which will take approximately 10 to 14 business days to deliver. When you first place your order, there will be a processing time of 1 to 3 business days before your item ships. At the time of this NordicTrack RW500 review, the company doesn’t ship internationally from their US website. There are separate NordicTrack websites for different parts of the world, such as Canada and the UK

This NordicTrack RW500 review discovered that due to COVID-19 restrictions, only curbside and threshold delivery are available. You’ll be allowed the option to choose your preferred shipping method during the checkout process. Once you’ve placed your order, you can click here to track your package.

NordicTrack usually offers a White-Glove Assembly system, but due to COVID-19, this service is on hold until further notice. Regardless, your item will come equipped with detailed instructions to help you assemble it on your own. Assembly time usually takes between 60 to 90 minutes. You can also find instructions and videos on NordicTrack’s “Performance Specs” page.


Once you’ve assembled your NordicTrack RW500, you can proceed to set up your iFit subscription that comes with your purchase free for one year. Here’s what you’ll have to do:

  1. Download the iFit app
  2. Create an account or log in
  3. New users must create a profile
  4. Connect your app to your 10″ Portal 10i™ tablet

You can also use the iFit app without connecting it to your RW500 rower.

Design and Features

The dimensions of the NordicTrack RW500 Rower are 86.5″ L x 22.0″ W x 42.8″ H; it’s both space-saving and convenient. To add to the appeal, you can also fold this rower for easy storage. The compact design makes it easy to store this rowing machine in a smaller space and features transportation wheels to help roll it to wherever you desire.

Build Quality

Since this rowing machine features transport wheels and a folding mechanism, it’s super convenient to move around your house. The base of this rowing machine is a steel frame and has a steel sliding rail, resulting in a sturdy piece of machinery. The weight of this rower is just around 116 lbs, which is less than other rowing machines on the market. This NordicTrack RW500 review can confirm that the build quality of this magnetic rowing machine is well-made and durable.

NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review


Uncomfortable workouts are not the move. It’s important to choose equipment that you’ll want to use so it won’t just sit in the corner of the room. The RW500 Rower has your back, featuring a molded ergonomic seat, soft-touch ergonomic handles, quick-adjust pivoting foot pedals, and adjustable nylon pedal straps for ideal comfort when working out. This rower also features 30 preset workout apps for easier access to workouts. 


The weight and height capacity of this rowing machine might be limiting for some users. To make sure this rower suits you, be sure to measure yourself accordingly before purchasing. 

This NordicTrack RW500 review found that this rowing machine has a weight limit of 250 lbs and is suitable for both men and women. There’s also a height limit of 78 inches. This rower also features 26 digital resistance levels, ideal for users of all physical fitness levels.


The monitor featured on the NordicTrack RW500 Rower is an LCD 10″ Portal 10i™ tablet that can help you follow along with workouts and easily track your progress. The built-in tablet provides high-quality studio workouts, full-body workout options, and workout stats, including intensity, heart rate, and strokes per minute. You can easily participate in personal training from home with these advanced features.

NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review

The rowing machine also comes with awesome technology, including a 5″ backlit display, adjustable console, two 2″ digitally amplified speakers, and an auxiliary music port. You can totally boost your workout to the next level with these added qualities.

In addition to these features, the RW500 syncs your iFit subscription to the tablet, allowing you to use it to its advantage. NordicTrack offers over 12,000 workouts, coaching control, trainers, stat tracking, multiple profiles, and other membership perks. There are so many possibilities, making every workout feel brand new and exciting.


NordicTrack offers a free 1-year subscription to iFit, which is a $396 value on its own. iFit is an interactive fitness platform that provides workouts from around the world, as well as personal trainers and studio classes that you can access with your built-in 10″ Portal 10i™ tablet. The options for iFit memberships are:

You can always cancel your iFit subscription if it doesn’t suit your needs any longer. In order to prevent your membership from automatically renewing, be sure to opt out before the next renewal date. This NordicTrack RW500 review found that you can even use your iFit subscription without the rower.


NordicTrack RW500 Rower Review

The NordicTrack RW500 Rower is ideal for home workouts. The storage process is easy enough for one person to maneuver, thanks to its foldable structure and easy transport wheels. The product dimensions are 86.5″ L x 22.0″ W x 42.8″ H

This space-saving design is perfect if you’re looking for a mobile exercise machine that doesn’t require a room for itself. You can store this wherever you can fit it, perhaps in a closet, storage room, or even the corner of a room.


When purchasing a rowing machine from NordicTrack, you’ll be expected to pay $199 for shipping. As for warranty, you’ll have a 10-year frame, 2-year parts, motor and electronics, and 1-year labor warranty.

To register your warranty, you’ll need to acquire the following information to activate your warranty:

  1. Model number
  2. Version number
  3. Serial number
  4. Location of purchase 
  5. Purchase date
  6. Purchase price

If you’re interested in returning your NordicTrack RW500 Rower, the company will accept returns within 30 days of receiving your order. With that being said, please keep the following in mind:

To get started with a return, click here.

Final Thoughts

Based on the price, features, quality, and usability of this product, we think the NordicTrack RW500 Rower is of premium quality. Although it is a more expensive option, it has a lot to offer. From the LCD built-in tablet to the free 1-year iFit subscription, plus its easy storage design, this rowing machine has many remarkable attributes.

Since founded in 1975, this NordicTrack RW500 review deems NordicTrack a reputable brand with years of credible expertise in the fitness industry. Based on several customer reviews, NordicTrack has a fantastic variety of workout videos to enjoy, delivering an excellent workout experience. Customers are pleased with the interactive training aspect, reliability of the brand, and overall quality.

As for affordability, more budget-friendly rowing machines on the market range under $900, whereas NordicTrack entry-level exercise machines, such as bikes and rowers, start at $799. Customers have reported that although the equipment is expensive, they’re happy they decided to invest. For most, NordicTrack exercise machines serve their utmost purpose, leaving customers satisfied.

The cons that this NordicTrack RW500 review discovered include high shipping costs and restocking fees. The return charge of $250 is not ideal, but at the same time, it’s understandable considering the weight of the product. When purchasing this equipment, you’re going to want to be sure of your decision to avoid any additional hassle and fees.

The warranty that NordicTrack provides with this rower is excellent and will have you feeling reassured in your purchase, but it’s worth it to note that some customers have had complaints. Some people experienced difficulty trying to get a hold of customer service, preventing their issues from being solved efficiently.

NordicTrack has an overall rating of 3.5 stars on the brand’s website, with a total of 1,081 reviews. On Best Buy, the NordicTrack RW500 rower has 47 reviews and a 4.1-star rating. Our final thoughts on this rower is that it’s worth a try considering it has tons of adjustable options to suit your specific needs, as well as advanced technology features that can elevate your workout. Rowing is an efficient form of exercise and this silent machine has many different resistance levels as well as a tracking system that can help you perform to the best of your ability


Where can I purchase the NordicTrack RW500 Rower?

The NordicTrack RW500 Rower is not currently featured on, but you can purchase it on their Canadian website,, if you’re located in Canada. Additional retailers include Best Buy and Amazon.

Is there a NordicTrack RW500 Rower discount?

At the time of this NordicTrack RW500 review, there are no discounts on this specific rower. The rower is priced at $999 and includes a free 1-year iFit membership subscription, originally a $396 value.

Does the NordicTrack RW500 Rower fold?

Yes, the NordicTrack RW500 Rower features a folding mechanism and has transportation wheels, making the storage process extremely easy. 

Can you lose belly fat on a rowing machine?

Of course, you can most definitely lose belly fat on a rowing machine. Though it might not target the stomach directly, rowing is a great activity to pursue if you’re looking to burn calories efficiently. When your heart rate is elevated, and you’re burning enough calories, you will shed fat all over your body.

Is rowing better for you than running?

Rowing has been proven to work more muscle groups than running, which is notable considering muscle activation helps decipher the effectiveness of a workout. Rowing supposedly activates nine muscle groups and activates 85% of your body’s overall muscle. To work your musculature and tone your body, yes, rowing is better for you than running.

How to contact NordicTrack?

To contact NordicTrack, you can live chat with the team here or call them at 1-888-308-9616. Their customer service team will answer your calls between 6 am to 10 pm MST between Monday to Saturday.