If you want a rower that doesn’t take up your entire living room, the Lifecore R88 is a smart choice. Its compact, folding design saves on space, but the R88 never sacrifices on performance or convenient features.
There’s a lot to like about this machine, and while it’s not perfect, its quiet operation and compact design make it a great option for users of all fitness levels.
Features at a Glance
- Combination magnetic and air resistance
- Folding design
- Eight resistance levels
- Racing and recovery programs
- LCD console
- Maximum 300-pound user weight
- Cooling air vent
The R88 is a compact, especially compared to water rowers that tend to have large footprints. And when folded up, you’ll barely even notice that it’s in the room. In fact, the folded space requirements are just 16” x 24”.
Part of the reason why this machine can have such a small profile is because it uses a combination of magnetic and air resistance. This combination resistance allows for a smaller flywheel – and quiet operation.
The large LCD console allows for easy viewing of important workout stats, like distance, strokes per minute, watts, time, distance, total strokes and pulse. No pulse sensors are included, but you do have the option of connecting a chest strap to monitor your heart rate. However, make sure you have the chest strap fitted correctly or it may give inaccurate readings, click here to see how to wear one.
One thing we do have to say about the console is that while the product description says it’s blue back-lit, it really isn’t (you can clearly see that in the product photos). So, if you’re rowing in low-light conditions, it may be a bit hard to read the LCD display. This really shouldn’t be an issue as most people don’t row in the dark anyway.
The R88 has eight resistance levels, which can be adjusted with the push of a button on the console. Racing and recovery programs are built in, but you can also use a manual program. The large range of resistance levels accommodates users of all fitness levels, whether you’re just recovering from an injury or an avid fitness guru.
The seat is comfortable and sturdy – not too hard, not too soft. And the aluminum frame has solid steel support, so this is a machine that will last. The ergonomically-designed handles prevent wrist and hand pain, which can sometimes be a problem with other models.
The 300-pound weight limit is a nice added bonus that makes this machine more accessible to heavier users looking to lose weight and improve their fitness level.
We also love that this machine has an adjustable cooling air vent, which helps you stay cool during your workout.
- Easy to use
- Compact design
- Great for users of all levels – even those with injuries or arthritis
- Variable resistance to build strength and muscle
- Quiet operation
- Cooling air vents make workouts a little more comfortable
- Durable design
- Seat and handles are ergonomically designed
- LCD display can be hard to read in low light conditions
As we mentioned previously, the LCD display can be difficult to see in the dark. The product description says the display is blue back-lit, but it’s not.
Overall, the Lifecore R88 is a great machine for users of all fitness levels and sizes. It’s compact enough to fit in the corner, and it’s easy to use while giving you a challenging workout.
If you would like spend a little less than it is worth reading our ProForm 550R Review.