Rowing machines are a great source of exercise, but it can be hard to stay motivated when using one at home by yourself. Hydrow is intended to address this problem, as it allows users to take part in training sessions hosted by national-level rowers, live-streamed right from the water.
Utilizing Hydrow's 22-inch 1080p touchscreen display (which is connected to the internet via Wi-Fi), users can tune in to the training sessions right as they're happening on Massachusetts' Charles River or Intracoastal Waterway, or they can choose from a library of previously-recorded sessions at any time. They can also row along with a first-person-view video that allows them to pretend they're out on the river, or select a customizable workout ranging from five to 60 minutes in length.
It's additionally possible to compete against users in other locations through a leaderboard, and to team-row with them using the screen's mic and 2-megapixel camera. Third-party heart rate monitors are accommodated via Bluetooth and ANT+ connectivity.
The rowing machine itself has an aluminum and steel frame with a polymer body, a 10-roller gliding seat, and features a microprocessor-controlled electromagnetic resistance system that automatically adjusts itself 100 times a second throughout each stroke – it is claimed to be very quiet.
Hydrow tips the scales at about 130 lb (59 kg) and can handle users weighing up to 375 lb (170 kg).
If you're interested, it's currently the subject of an Indiegogo campaign. A pledge of US$1,299 will get you one, when and if they reach production, with shipping expected to start next May. The planned retail price is $2,655, plus a monthly membership fee of $38 will be required. You can see the system in use, in the video below.
And if cycling is more your thing, you might instead be interested in the successfully-Kickstarted Peleton stationary bike, which links users to live-streamed spin classes.
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