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ProForm 440R Rower

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ProForm 440R
proform 440r magnetic rower
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250 lbs68 lbsMagnetic,
8 levels
Frame: 5 years
Parts: 90 days
Labor: 90 days

If you’re looking for an entry-level, affordable rower, The ProForm 440R is definitely one to put on your list. It’s a magnetic resistance rowing machine, pretty similar to the Velocity CHR-2001, but it actually costs quite a bit less. In fact, since this rower has been around for a while, its price has been consistently reduced.

Technical Details and Specifications

  • Assembled dimensions: 76.6L x 20.5W x 22H inches (194.5L x 52W x 56H cm)
  • Product weight: 68 lbs (31 kg)
  • Supported weight: 250 lbs (113.3 kg)
  • Frame: Aluminium and steel
  • Footrests: Pivoting, with straps
  • Resistance type: Manual magnetic, 8 levels
  • Performance monitor: Basic
  • Warranty: Frame 5 years / Parts 90 days / Labor 90 days

Frame construction

The ProForm 440R rower uses a combination of aluminum and steel parts for its frame construction. The gliding rail of the seat is made of aluminum, while the front part of the frame, which holds the “insides” of the machine, is made of steel. The protective cover of themagnetic rowing machine proform 440r - folded frame internal parts consists of durable polyurethane. There are several polyurethane parts in the machine’s construction, such as the front and rear base covers.

This rower doesn’t have an extremely long footprint, such as the Concept2 models, for example. It’s 76.6″ (194.5 cm) long, and 20.5″ (52 cm) wide, and when fully assembled and in use position, its maximum height at the front is 22″ (56 cm). On the other hand, this rowing machine features a folding frame design. The gliding rail can be lifted up, in order to provide better storage possibilities. When folded up, the machine’s footprint is approx. 32″ (81 cm) in depth, and 20.5″ (52 cm) wide, while the folded up rail will reach a height of approx. 39″ (99 cm).

The frame folds pretty simply. There’s a pin that locks it in place. You remove the pin, lift / lower the rail, and re-instert the pin in its place to re-lock it in the desired position.

The rower rests on a single, non-adjustable metallic foot at the rear, and on a stabilizer base, with adjustable feet at the front. The front stabilizer base also integrates caster wheels, in order to facilitate the moving of the machine. The assembled rower is not very heavy, though. At 68 lbs (31 kg) relocating it or folding it for storage shouldn’t be a problem for most users.

The front base of the frame features elements that other rowers don’t have, actually offering stand-up workout routines. These are two steel footplates with rubberized bases that also rest on the floor. You’re supposed to stand on these footplates, at the front of the rower, and with an overhand or underhand grip, to pull the bungee cord up to the level of your shoulders. This simple feature actually diversifies the workouts that can be carried out with this machine, quite a bit.

Seat and other parts

One of the strengths of this machine is given by its seat. Although it’s not an oversized seat, it does supply just enough contact surface for any user up to 250 lbs (113 kg), the maximum user limit for the machine. The best part about it is that it incorporates a thick layer of cushioning, providing the maximum comfort that you can actually get from the seat of a rowing machine.proform 440r rower seat

The seat glides on four high-grade rollers with sealed bearings, for prolonged life.

The gliding rail is long enough for users up to 6’2″ – 6’3″ (188 – 191 cm), depending on their inseam. Taller users may not benefit from a complete leg extension.

The seat rail is not 100% horizontal. Just as for the Kettler Favorit rower, the rail is set at an angle of approx. 5°, from front to rear. This puts more focus on your leg muscles during the extension motion, also providing a quicker recovery motion.

The rower has quite a low step up height. The seat stands at approx. 7″ (17 cm) above floor level, at its highest point. Therefore, users with impaired movement or various disabilities may find it difficult to stand up after finishing their workout. So, in this case, a rower with a higher elevation from the ground may be more appropriate. A good example for this price range, would be the Stamina ATS 1405.

The ProForm 440R rower features pivoting footrests. This means their angle can be adjusted, in order to adapt perfectly to your needs. This particular feature is actually a plus, as some users may not feel comfortable with a fixed angle for their feet as they row. Also, since the footrests pivot, workouts can be diversified. For example, during the leg extension motion, you can also stretch your feet forward, pivoting the footrests a bit, in order to put more emphasis on your calves.

Footrests also feature adjustable straps, to secure feet in place if it’s required.

Last but not least, the pulling bar of the machine is pretty simple. It’s a straight bar, but its fully covered with soft padding, to supply a better, and more comfortable grip.

Resistance system

The ProForm 440R rowing machine features a manual magnetic resistance system. It involves a small flywheel and a C-type magnetic pad connected to the tension knob via a wire. As you turn the knob, the magnetic brake pad will move closer or farther from the flywheel, thus causing drag and adjusting tension.

Evidently the resistance and drive systems of the machine also include several pulleys and a bungee cord. The role of the bungee cord is to retract the pulling cord on the return of the stroke. It has basically has no role the generated resistance. Resistance is created by the magnetic and the flywheel.

There are two important aspects regarding the resistance system on this machine. First of all, in order to enable the pulling cord to completely retract into the machine, and supply resistance for the complete range of motion, the bungee cord under the seat rail may require extra looping onto the rear pulley. The manual offers instructions for this. Second of all, this ProForm model is a cardio rower, not a rowing machine for strength training. In other words, the maximum resistance supplied may be considered to low by users with a higher level of fitness. However, if you aim for an aerobic training, the resistance should actually suffice.

The resistance system supplies 8 distinctive levels of tension.


The console equipped on this machine is a rather basic one. The first aspect to be clarified about it is that it has no role in the resistance adjustment of the machine. As we’ve mentioned above, the resistance on this rower is controlled by a turn-knob. There are no keys for console on proform 440r rowing machineresistance adjustment on the console.

The display indicates several values, including: strokes per minute, total strokes, calories, and time. It also has a Scan function, which displays each one of the values on screen for several seconds, then moving to the next, and so on. But you can choose not to use the Scan function, and select only one of the values to be indicated on screen.

The console uses two AA batteries, which are not included. It features only one button (Mode). To turn it on, simply press the button, or begin rowing. It also turns on when it detects flywheel movement. If the console does not detect movement for a few seconds it will automatically pause. Also, after several minutes of no activity on the rower, it will automatically shut down to save battery life. When it shuts down, the calories, strokes and time spent for the current workout will be reset. However, it remembers the total strokes, value which can only be reset by removing and reinserting the batteries.

Assembly and Maintenance

The assembly of this rower is pretty straightforward. On top of that, the supplied hard copy of the manual provides explicit, step-by-step guidance for it. The whole process shouldn’t take more than 45 minutes.

The resistance system of the rower is already assembled and enclosed by the covers. You basically need to connect the gliding rail to the front part of the frame, add the rear and front bases, the footrests and front footplates, and finally connect the bungee cord.
To put batteries into the console, you have to carefully pry it out from the drive casing, and remove the screw of the battery cover. For this, you will be needing a Phillips screwdriver, which is not supplied with the machine. Other tools required for assembly are supplied though.

Just as for any rower, maintenance requires keeping the gliding rail of the seat free of any dirt or particles that may cause damage to the rollers or the rail itself. Also, in case the rollers of the seat, or the footrests develop any squeaking, some greasing may be required. Manual has this covered too.

Finally, in order to benefit from the full waranty for this product, it’s important to register it with

The Pros

  • Sturdy and stable construction;
  • Folding frame;
  • Elegant design;
  • Multiple workout possibilities – you can also undergo stand-up workout routines on this machine;
  • Cushioned seat;
  • Pivoting footrests, with straps;
  • 8 levels of magnetic resistance;
  • Fitness meter included;
  • Smooth and quiet operation, great for apartment use;
  • Easy to assemble;
  • Easy to handle and relocate;
  • Little maintenance required;
  • Decent warranty plan.440r proform

The Cons

  • Maximum resistance is pretty soft, which actually makes this rower an entry level one;
  • Pulling cord will wear out after a while, and you may need to order another one;
  • Extra care required when replacing batteries, in order to avoid any damage to the wiring of the console.

Bottom Line

The ProForm 440R rower is an entry level cardio training machine. It’s not made for strength training, or professional rowing. But on the other hand, it can supply an excellent aerobic training, helping you keep a healthy cardiovascular system, and of course, burn some calories every day. Due to its light resistance, it’s a more appropriate choice for elderly users, or users who require recovery training. As opposed to other rowing machines, this ProForm also promotes stand-up workout routines, focusing on upper arms and back. It does come with a fitness meter which helps you keep track of your progress during the workout, and also plays a motivational role. And finally, it comes with a decent price / quality ratio.

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