HouseFit Skyline Nature Rower

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Skyline Nature

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350 lbs4.7 galWaterTime,

If you’re looking for an affordable water resistance rower with a wooden frame similar to the WaterRower models, the HouseFit Skyline Nature is definitely one of them. Its resistance system is pretty much similar to the WaterRower models, plus, its frame is foldable. It’s a machine made for home use, but definitely has the durability and construction of at least a light-commercial model.

Key Features and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 84L x 19.5W x 19.5H inches (213L x 50W x 50H cm)
  • Supported weight: 350 lbs (159 kg)
  • Frame: Wood
  • Footrests: Adjustable
  • Resistance type: Water
  • Exercise meter: Time, distance, strokes, calories, pulse, interval programs, Bluetooth,
  • Extras: Device holder

Frame construction

The HouseFit Skyline Nature rower features a sturdy frame made of oiled beech wood. It’s a fairly large machine especially lengthwise. Its footprint is approx. 84″L x 19.5″W (213 x 50 cm) and it is also recommended to allow at least two feet of clearance at the rear and on each side of the machine for easy access and correct usage.

The machine features a dual rail system for improved stability. Its rails are pretty long so it should be able to accommodate users up to 6’7″ (200 cm). Also, its maximum user weight limit is 350 lbs (159 kg).

However, as opposed to most other rowers with a wooden frame, like the Mr. Captain Red Walnut, for example, this HouseFit rower is foldable. It folds in two from its mid-section offering better storage possibilities. With the frame folded, its footprint becomes approx. 24″L x 19.5″W (61 x 50 cm), while its height reaches approx. 40″ (101 cm). The water can remain in the tank when the rower is stored in its folded position.

The exact weight of the machine is not specified, but as a general idea, the tank has a capacity of approx. 4.7 gallons (18 liters). Therefore, with the tank filled to the top, it probably weighs over 90 lbs (41 kg). However, the machine is not too difficult to move once it is assembled. Its front and rear bases integrate two large silicone wheels each.

Seat and other parts

The HouseFit Skyline Nature water resistance rower is equipped with a seat designed for optimal comfort. Its top integrates a layer of padding. It is contoured in order to provide a better positioning for the user and prevent sliding off.

The base frame of the seat is made from the same type of beech wood as the rest of the frame. It integrates four sets of wheels. Two sets slide on top of the machine’s rails; the other two slide on the inner sides of the rails to improve stability. The wheels integrate sealed bearings to provide a smooth motion. They are rubberized on the outside to reduce noise.

The top of the rower’s seat is only approx. 10″ (25 cm) above floor level. Although this shouldn’t be a problem for most users, persons with certain disabilities may find it a bit difficult to position themselves on the seat. So far, HouseFit does not provide hi-rise attachments for this rowing machine like WaterRower does for most of its models (i. e. WaterRower Club Hi-Rise).

The HouseFit Skyline Nature rower is equipped with two adjustable footrests. They’re made of durable and flexible nylon material and should be able to accommodate footwear of all sizes. They also have straps and heel guards so you can perfectly secure your feet on them if necessary.

The footrests’ angle is non-adjustable. They are attached to a fixed board that is part of the front section of the frame. Their angle is approx. 45°-50°, for an optimal foot positioning.

The machine’s pulling handle consists of a short straight bar with oval grips. It features PVC foam sleeves for improved comfort. It attaches to a heavy-duty nylon strap which connects to the inner drive mechanism of the machine.

Resistance system

The Skyline Nature rower is equipped with a water resistance system featuring a large water tank made of durable polycarbonate material. As we’ve mentioned above, the tank has a maximum fill of 4.7 gallons (18 liters). It is a single chamber tank; it does not have a mechanical water level adjustment system like the First Degree Fitness Viking II, for example. Thus, in order to adjust the water level in the tank, you have to add or remove water manually with the provided funnel and pump.

The main resistance-generating element is the 16-blade impeller inside the water tank. The impeller is attached to the rower’s pulley system. Thus, when you pull the handle, it spins in the water inside the tank generating resistance.

Since it’s a water resistance rower, the HouseFit Skyline Nature offers a dynamic response during usage. In other words, if you pull the handle faster, the resistance also increases. This is an effect similar to rowing a real boat through water which most magnetic rowers cannot replicate. Also, the higher the water level in the tank, the greater is the overall resistance provided by the machine.

The rower is fairly quiet during usage. However, the spinning of the impeller in the water can be heard. The noise level is far from being annoying and pretty low. As a general idea, it shouldn’t cover the sound of a TV on low volume and won’t be heard from a different room.

Fitness monitor

It’s important to mention that the first version of the Skyline Nature rower came with a fitness monitor without Bluetooth and fewer functions. However, the newer versions include a Bluetooth-capable monitor. HouseFit will actually replace your non-Bluetooth monitor with a newer version for free, except for the freight charges.

The Bluetooth monitor version is pretty similar to the one included with the Mr. Captain Red Walnut rower. It features an LCD display that tracks time, strokes, SPM, calories, distance, and pulse. The pulse reading function requires a wireless HR chest strap which is not included.

The monitor unit has three workout modes – Manual, Interval Custom, and Target. The Interval Mode gives you the possibility to create a custom workout interval with rest/work periods. The Target mode allows you to select targets for various metrics, such as time, strokes, calories, etc. When a target is selected, the unit will countdown from it until it reaches zero, indicating when you have completed your set up goal. And finally, the Manual mode allows you to just row, and the monitor will indicate your SPM, strokes, time elapsed, etc.

Via the Bluetooth connection, you can sync the rowing monitor to your smartphone or tablet through the FitShow app. The app offers standard workout programs and allows you to track your progress online.

Last but not least, the monitor unit features a device holder. This consists of a small shelf at the base of the unit which can support your tablet or smartphone. It is battery-powered and the batteries are included.

Assembly and Maintenance

The machine’s front unit with the water tank comes pre-assembled. You only have to connect the two rails together and then to attach them to the front part of the machine, install the seat, put batteries into the fitness monitor, and add water to the tank. This shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes of your time. All the necessary tools are included and the manual provides step-by-step assembly instructions.

For maintenance, it is recommended to keep the machine clean, especially the rails to prevent any damage to the seat’s wheels. The box includes a bottle of chlorine pills to treat the water inside the tank. Other than this, you only need to periodically inspect the machine to make sure that all its parts still function properly and all the screws still hold tight in their places.

The Pros

  • Sturdy frame – can support users up to 350 lbs;
  • Aesthetic design made of beech wood;
  • Folding design;
  • Easy to handle and transport;
  • Rubberized stabilizers for extra floor protection;
  • Water-resistance system, providing the most natural rowing feel that you can get;
  • Padded and contoured seat;
  • Adjustable footrests;
  • Multi-window performance monitor included;
  • Three workout modes on the fitness monitor (manual, target, and interval);
  • Bluetooth connectivity and compatibility with the FitShow App (for iOS and Android);
  • Smooth and quiet operation;
  • All the necessary tools are included;
  • Water pump included;
  • Tools for assembly are included;
  • Water purification pills (1 bottle) included;
  • Phone holder integrated into the exercise meter;
  • Little maintenance required;
  • Easy to assemble.

The Cons

  • No backlight on the fitness monitor;
  • The HR chest strap for pulse reading is not included.


The HouseFit Skyline Nature is a water resistance rower made for home use. It features a beech wood frame with a large polycarbonate water tank, a dual rail system that can accommodate users up to 6’7″ (200 cm), and a fitness monitor that tracks all the important workout metrics. It is a great fitness machine for a full-body cardio workout, stamina, development, and muscle toning. And finally, it is considerably more affordable than a premium wooden rower offering excellent value for the price.

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