Proform 440r Rower Review

Best suited for beginners, the proform 440r rower is a budget-friendly, lightweight magnetic rowing machine. It is designed with versatility in mind.

It combines a traditional compact rowing machine with a low pulley station. One of the amazing features you don’t find on many indoor rowers.

It offers an all-around strength and cardio workout. For professional and more advanced workouts they provide more resistance levels in Proform 750r rower.

If you fancy your workout sessions to include cycling, you may want to check out their hybrid Proform Dual Trainer Bike\Rower.  But for now, let us now check out the proform 440r rower review for the in-depth perspective. 

                                   Proform 440r Rower Parts Identification



From being just an ordinary exercise maker, Proform became a well-known brand. It has built a good reputation in budget-friendly fitness products. Proform has never failed to amaze users with their feature-rich machines. 

Offering the finest product quality with affordable prices and designed machines to give maximum results. Their machines work as they should with a reasonable and affordable price tag. 

Benefits of a Rowing Machine

  • Sufficiently burn out your calories. 
  • Increase your stamina.
  • Improvement of your overall cardiovascular health.
  • Full-body workout in your home. 
  • Exercise in which you can target as many muscle groups as you can.
  • High intensity but low impact workouts. 
  • No caring about joint issues and serious injury risks.
  • Utilize your legs, core, and back. 
  • Engage the posterior chain of your body. 
  • Tons of postural benefits.
  • Active meditation to reduce stress. 
  • Can nurse your injury.  

If you have noticed growing crowds around your local gym’s rowing machines, lately. Well, then hurry up and get a rowing machine. A rower is, if not the only but surely the best answer to all of your prayers.  

Things to look for before Shopping a Rower

Rowers, having modes of resistance, foldable frame, noise level, and comfortable seats are the first choice. Adjustable foot straps, a dashboard displaying stats, and positioning of screens if you are a tech geek. 

And some new exciting smart features like streaming capabilities, Wi-Fi connection, and third-party apps sync feature. These are the significant things you need to consider when shopping for a rowing machine.  

Proform 440r Rower

The predecessor to the more sophisticated 550R, sister to the advanced 770r, Proform 440r rower is robust. Yet lightweight magnetic rowing machine, decently built, notably smooth for an entry-level machine. 

It is quiet and easy to fold if space is an issue. It allows an extensive upper body workout, provides total body engagement with the low pulley station. It is the most affordable rower to date. 

Once you spend $400 bucks on a fitness machine, expectations start to rise.  440r is the top end of the budget models and below the middle of the range machines.

So before buying it let us check out if this is what you really need.

How does Proform 440r rower work?

The Pulley station of the rower uses a light flywheel for the resistance. With 8 resistance levels, a control knob adjusts the tension. Hence this builds strength over time the same conventional way in the gym. 

How to Adjust the Resistance?

The proform 440r user manual states, to vary the intensity of your exercise, you can adjust the resistance. To increase the resistance, turn the resistance control clockwise. To decrease the resistance, turn the resistance control counterclockwise. 

IMPORTANT: Stop turning it when turning becomes difficult if you want to avoid damaging the resistance control 

How to Do Curl Exercise With Rower?

Stand on the footplates, facing the rower. Hold the row bar with an underhand or overhand grip. Next, raise the row bar until your hands are level with your shoulders. 

Keep your back straight and keep your elbows at your sides. Then, lower your hands to the starting position. Repeat the exercise as many times as you want.


The most vital feature when looking for a rower is its mode of resistance. Each resistance type would provide you with a different rowing experience. Plus the unique characteristics tied to them. Such as noise level, price, size, and storage capabilities. 

Generally, rowing machines come with four types of resistance modes. They include magnetic, air, hydraulic piston, and water resistance mode. Each type has its own benefits and disadvantages tied to them.

Proform 440r rower comes with magnetic resistance mode. It uses a magnetic brake system to create resistance. It produces no friction at all, thus virtually silent. 

If compared with an Air rower, the magnetic rower is much quieter. On the negative side, the rowing motion isn’t as smooth or realistic as an air rower.

Magnetic resistance is weaker as compared to Air resistance. Plus, you have to adjust its level manually as there is no pre-set program to control it. Still, magnetic resistance is the preferred choice. For People who perform indoor exercise sessions. 

Thus, because of its no noise at all characteristic as in magnetic mode, it is quieter during use. It is with no background noise from a fan spinning. It provides consistent resistance regardless of how fast or hard you pull. 

By turning the large knob of the console, the 440r rower comes with 8 resistance levels. Not for the experience level users as the resistance is too light. 

8 levels of resistance do not give you a ton of control over your intensity. So with the 8 levels, it is as we said earlier, best suited to beginners. 


The frame can be a significant point determining the quality of a rower. You will be risking your safety if the frame of the rower turns out to be wobbling. Or it may be moving when you exercise. 

The frame should not tremble and must be solidly built. Probably every frame would look robust and durable if inspected visually. But looks can deceive you. The best standard to check frames is to check their user weight capacity. 

A higher weight capacity rower indicates stronger and more heavy-duty frames. Considering the weight capacity of other rowers, it has a weight capacity of only 250lb. And it is pretty disappointing. 

It simply means people with more weight and height would not be able to use 440r. Or at least won’t be able to use it comfortably. 

Fact that it is a versatile design, the 440r can be used in two different ways. First as a typical rower and second it can also be used as a stand-up strength trainer. 

Do you want to do exercises like bicep curls and upright rows? Stand above the console and do it. But you can do that with pretty much every rower nowadays. So it is not really something special. 

Proform 440r rower users are also not happy about its uncomfortable handle. It has no shape at all; too slim and a straight-bar kind of handle. This handle has really let down the comfort of using this 440r model. 

The well-padded seat is small. For the larger rowers, it would be uncomfortable. The large, pivoting footrests accommodate shoes of all sizes. To give you more stability and let you extend your ankles, they are built with adjustable nylon foot straps. 

If you are a larger and heavy-weight user, Proform 440r rower may disappoint you. 


Tech lovers need to check out more expensive rowers with huge touch displays.  Being a budget-friendly rowing machine 440r rower is more than good enough.

Models in the Proform 440r rower’s price range usually come with a tiny LCD screen. Just for monitoring and displaying workout metrics. Such as calories, strokes, and strokes per minute, time, and distance rowed. 

Another rower in the same price range offers advanced features like built-in workout programs. 440r does not have the feature of monitoring heart rate and has no built-in workout programs. 

But you won’t have any problem reading the outputs with the 440r monitor. For a period of 6 seconds, the useful data scan will display each data set. It has a basic monitor but is user-friendly and does its job well. 

Features of Console

  • Strokes/Min: This shows the number of rowing strokes you are completing per minute.
  • Calories: This mode shows the approximate number of calories you have burned during your workout.
  • Total Strokes: This mode shows the total number of rowing strokes. That you have completed since the console was the last reset. To reset the console, remove the batteries from the console and then reinsert them.
  • Time: This mode shows the elapsed time.
  • Scan: This mode shows the time, strokes, total strokes, calories, and strokes per minute modes. For a few seconds each, in a repeating cycle.
  • Strokes: This mode shows the number of rowing strokes you have completed during your workout.


Many parts could have been pre-assembled to make things easier. The 440R does not come with a straightforward assembly process and takes a lot of fixing. However, the proform 440r user manual has included illustrations. 

Still many users have shared sentiments regarding the 440r assembly. Even the instruction manual of 440r is easy. It stills takes more steps than there should be for a simple rowing machine like proform 440r. 

You should expect an hour when putting up proform 440r rower together for the first time. 

Space Saving

Being an easily stored rowing machine, the Proform 440r rower is ideal for small spaces. You can easily fold it up and walk away in seconds, just like that. 

It folds in one easy step. Also, it can be very simply moved on its front wheels inside any confined area. 

Proform 440r Battery Replacement

One of the most asked questions related to the rower machine is about its battery replacement. The same is the case about proform 440r rower battery replacement. 

The console requires four AA batteries. Alkaline batteries are recommended officially by Proform in their Proform 440r user manual. They have also provided every tiny bit of detail about proform 440r parts, assembly, warnings, and precautions to take. 

They have given a clear warning about inserting batteries. It should be done only when the console is warm enough to the room temperature. Otherwise, the console and other electronic parts could be damaged.


Proform 440r battery replacement pictorial diagram No: 15 (as per official user manual)

According to the proform 440r user manual, you need to carefully pry the Console (66) out of the Shields (44, 69). Be careful not to pull on the wire attached to the Console. 

Next, remove the screw (which is not shown in the above picture) and the battery cover. Insert batteries into the battery compartment. Make sure to orient the batteries (shown by the given pictorial diagram (15)) above inside the battery compartment. 

Then, reattach the battery cover with the screw. Press the Console into the Shields.


The Proform 440R is protected with a 5-Year Frame Warranty and 90-Day Parts & Labor Warranty. Their guarantees are very short on labor and parts.

Proform 440r Specs Overview Table

BrandProform 440r 
Resistance ModeMagnetic
Max User Weight Capacity250lb
Machine Weight68lbs
FlywheelInertia-enhanced flywheel
SeatAdjustable ergonomic molded seat
PedalsPivoting pedal with adjustable foot strap
FrameOversized Aluminum Frame
Materialaluminum seat rail
DimensionsHeight: 20.5 inchesWidth: 38.3 inchesLength: 76.6 inches
Warranty5 years frame90 days for both the rower parts and labor

What do we love About the Proform 440R Rower?

  • Easy to read display.
  • Display Scan Mode.
  • Low pulley station.
  • Dual-purpose can be used two ways, as a rower and as a stand-up trainer as well.
  • Magnetic resistance provides for zero noise and a very quiet workout.
  • Folds in one easy step and can be very simply moved on its front wheels.
  • Low Seat Height.
  • Smooth motion when rowing. 

What We Don’t Like About the Proform 440R Rower?

  • Smaller weight capacity of only 250lb.
  • No heart rate monitoring.
  • Thin and not easy to grasp uncomfortable handles.
  • No pre-set workout programs.
  • For some, the seat may be small.
  • Bulky when folded.
  • Seems a bit outdated.
  • Harder to assemble, and of course, time-consuming.
  • Quality issues were reported on a few machines.
  • No advanced functions at all.

Comparison Table: Proform 440r rower Vs Proform 550r rower

ModelProform 440r RowerProform 550r Rower
Resistance ModeMagneticSoft Touch Ergonomic Handle
Max User Weight Capacity250lb250 pounds.
Machine Weight68lbs103 lbs
FlywheelInertia-enhanced flywheelInertia enhanced flywheel
HandleSoft Touch Ergonomic Non-slip handles
SeatAdjustable ergonomic molded seatErgonomic Cushioned Seat
PedalsPivoting pedal with adjustable foot strapPivoting Pedals with Adjustable Straps
FrameOversized Aluminum FrameOversized steel seat rail
Materialaluminum seat railSteel frame, aluminum seat rail
DimensionsHeight: 20.5 inchesWidth: 38.3 inchesLength: 76.6 inches84.5″ L  x 22″ W x 25.5″ H
ColorBlack painted rail, silver flywheel, and red stands
Warranty5 years frame90 days for both the rower parts and labor5-Year Frame Warranty and 90-Day Parts & Labor
Price$400-$600Roughly $1000

Final Thoughts 

Proform 440r rower has its fair share of flaws. Such as 8 levels of magnetic resistance mode which is not capable of providing a lot of tension. Its frame is not suitable for larger rowers. 

Lots of user complaints were reported about its low-quality handle and strap. For $400 bucks, proform 440r is pretty expensive. If comparing what other rowers are offering in the same price range. 

But still, for intermediate and first-time rower users, it is a suitable and fine choice. 


Question: Why choose the proform 440r magnetic rower?

Answer: Magnetic resistance mode uses a magnetic brake system to create resistance. Proform 440r Produce no friction at all, thus without any noise virtually silent. 

The magnet moves closer or farther away to create more or less resistance, as a metal flywheel spins. 

Question: Is magnetic better than air?

Answer: A magnetic rower is much quieter. But on the negative side, the rowing motion isn’t as smooth or realistic as an air rower. 

Its rowing motion is weaker as compared to Air resistance mode. And then you have to adjust its level manually. Because there is no pre-set program to control it.  

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