Among manufacturers of budget bikes, elliptical trainers, treadmills and other equipment for home fitness Proform is a renowned brand. However, the 440R is only one their rowing machine. With its price of $399 (as of the review date), it gets in the middle of price range list and takes top position in the list of budget rowers. The position has many competitors because from the rowers, which cost more than $400, customers expect better functioning and quality.
We must confess that it took rather long time to assemble the 440R. In other rowers similar details are pre-assembled, and this makes the process faster. The plus is that such assembling should be done only once.
Quality o f the construction is good and on the level with other models in the same price category. For this type of a rower the rowing position is convenient enough. Comfortable and big footrests match all sizes of feet while wide velcro straps don’t let your feet move and hold them tightly. The seat can seem a bit uncomfortable for big guys because it is rather small but well padded. It allows maximal rower weight up to 250lbs, and if you are about this weight, the seat can be not exactly what you want.
The thing, which takes points off from the model is the handle. It is not only too thin and without any curves, but it is difficult to grip. Designers of ProForm call it “ergonomic” but we could not find anything of “ergonomic” in it “design” and suspect that you should use gloves at the workout otherwise you will get blisters. The rower was much better if the designers developed a better handle.
The 440R possesses a rather smooth and not noisy motion with a small flywheel, which handles the resistance mechanism. In fact, smooth ride is provided by heavy flywheels, but for 440R the actions are rather quiet even with a smaller wheel. You can choose between eight levels of resistance if turn the red knob under the monitor. Levels of resistance should be adjusted manually because of an absence of any pre-set program. In case you need to get the model with pre-set program or heart rate training, the one will cost you two times more.
You can find suggestions at ProForm’s website to use the machine for training for strength, in this case, the handle becomes a pulley. In our opinion, it works much better as just a rower, and you’ll benefit from it more as from a rower.
ProForm 440R Review
For a non-expensive display it works ok. Its size is comfortable, and digits are easy to read. You get basic indices, which you need for the workouts such as strokes, strokes per minute, calories burnt, distance, which was rowed, and spent time.
Like in all basic displays the accuracy of the data is not perfect but it helps when you want to compare you results through time.
Each separate data set is displayed for six seconds with the handy scan mode and then moves to the next.
A casual rower whose workouts don’t take more than 4-5 hours in a week will find the ProForm 440R very helpful. If your task is to become proficient in rowing thanks to more training, we’d recommend you to spend a bit more but to get the machine, which could suit you better.
If to neglect the primitive handle, this rower is rather good and with its price of below $370 at Amazon, it is a low cost working horse.
A big easy readable LCD display
Monitor with a scan mode
Comfortable rowing position for a budget rower
Comfortable seat (could be a bit bigger)
Slim handle uncomfortable to grasp
Some can dislike that the seat is not enough big
Takes much space when folded
Looks old fashioned
Difficult to assemble
Magnetic resistance type
Maximal user weight is 250 lbs
Size 77″ long x 20.5″ wide x 38″ high
Weight of the machine is 68 lbs
Warranty for home usage:
Five years on frame
Ninety days on parts
Ninety days labor
- Reasonably comfortable seat (if a little small)
- Good rowing position for a budget rowing machine
- Large(ish) LCD screen is easy to read
- Display has scan mode
- Not the simplest machine to assemble
- Bulky when folded
- Some may find the seat small