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Last Updated: February 1, 2023
Concept2 creates functional, durable, cardio equipment. The brand makes equipment designed for all users and for certain uses. Their rowers are for indoor rowing, the BikeErg is for indoor cycling, and the SkiErg is for indoor Nordic Skiing. What makes these three types of machines very similar is their flywheel. It’s found on every piece of equipment and uses air resistance to create tension. Our team has tested the RowErg and BikeErg, so now it’s time to check out the SkiErg. In this review of the SkiErg, I’ll go over everything you need to know.
Why You Should Trust Our Review Of The Concept2 SkiErg
As I said, we’ve reviewed the RowErg and BikeErg and compiled full written and video reviews. For this review of the SkiErg, we relied heavily on our experience using those machines. Unfortunately, we don’t have the Concept2 SkiErg in our studio to test yet, but because we are very familiar with Concept2’s other equipment, we’re able to get a good assessment of how the SkiErg works and performs. We’ve been testing equipment for years, so we know what to look out for in product descriptions and specs, in order to help you determine if a machine will work for you.
- Standing design that mimics Nordic Skiing
- Battery-powered PM5 Monitor
- Metrics displayed: pace, stroke rate, distance, watts, speed, and calories
- Built-in workout programs and settings
- Bluetooth connectivity to apps like ErgData
- Footprint Wall Mounted: 16” L x 85” H x 19” W (at bottom) x 20.5” W (at top)
- Footprint With Floor Stand: 50” L x 23.5” W x 85” H
- SkiErg Weight: 46 lbs
- Floor Stand Weight: 35 lbs
- Frame: Powder-Coated Aluminum
- High Strength Drive Cords
- Strapless Handles
- Flywheel Fan
- Damper With 10 Levels
- Warranty: 5 years for the frame, and 2 years for moving parts
In-Depth Review of Concept2 SkiErg
The PM5 Monitor tracks your metrics like speed, distance, pace, stroke rate, watts, and calories. In addition to general metrics tracking, you can see more of a breakdown of your metrics, your force curve (the power throw your strokes), a bar chart of your watt output, as well as program specific paces to keep up with the monitor.
As soon as the flywheel starts moving, your metrics are tracked and displayed on the screen. The PM5 Monitor is said to be extremely accurate and consistent. This means that you can compete with other SkiErg owners online. This monitor has Bluetooth connectivity to work with apps like ErgData for more metrics tracking. There is also a Concept2 Logbook online to save your stats and the ErgRace App for competing.
You have the ability to program set goals based on your time, distance, and calories. There are games you can play while using the SkiErg, too.
In our experience using the PM5 Monitor, it has more than meets the eye and it definitely offers plenty of workout options.
The PM5 Monitor is found on Concept2’s RowErgs, BikeErg, and SkiErg. Among other rowers and bikes, the PM5 has been proven to be very functional and not your average battery-powered console.
Once you pull one of the handles, the monitor will turn on. It is backlit which is great if you have lower overhead lighting. The buttons are easy for navigating the LCD screen. It is easy to change the display and metrics displayed with the buttons below the console. The side buttons let you choose if you want to connect to a device or select a programmed workout.
It’s unclear if the monitor can be adjusted like on the BikeErg and RowErg. The console does come with a phone/tablet holder to place your device on top of the console. As far as storage for other items like your water bottle, there isn’t a set place on the machine. You’ll have to set your water on the floor or on a table nearby.
The Concept2 SkiErg is designed to mimic Cross-Country skiing. This machine is a great way to stay in shape in the off-season. The SkiErg is also an excellent piece of cardio equipment in general. The motion works your full body with primary activation in your upper body, core, and anterior chain.
Just about anyone can use the SkiErg as there isn’t a weight limit. It can be used standing as well as sitting and kneeling. Users have been known to use the SkiErg in wheelchairs, too.
On its own, the Concept2 SkiErg is pretty light. It is made out of aluminum, like the RowErgs and SkiErg. By itself, the SkiErg weighs 46 lbs. If you use it with the floor stand, then it is heavier. The floor stand is 35 lbs on its own.
Even though we haven’t tested the SkiErg yet, we expect it to be just as solid and durable as other Concept2 equipment. It has been used in competitions like the CrossFit Games, so it’s been proven to withstand heavy use. The SkiErg can be found in home gyms and public gyms, so we expect its quality to be superb.
Due to the fact that the SkiErg is about 7 feet high, you need to make sure you have a high enough ceiling to use it. Your ceiling should be at least slightly taller than the machine, if not taller for assembly.
On the plus side, the SkiErg is always ready for you to hop on and start working out, but this means that it isn’t storable. In order to use the SkiErg it must be either mounted to the wall or used with the floor mount.
To properly mount it to a wall, Concept2 recommends attaching the SkiErg to 16” wooden wall studs. It will need to be drilled into the wall at the top with the wall mount as well as at the bottom of the wall at the bottom of the machine.
The floor stand is a wooden base that has transportation wheels and a U-bar that connects from the SkiErg to the base. The wheels extend behind the SkiErg, while the wooden stand extends out in front of it. When using the SkiErg, you stand on the wooden base in front of the machine. The bottom of the SkiErg fastens into the wooden base. The U-bar looks like handles on either side of the machine that attaches to the floor stand, however, it just provides extra stability to the SkiErg.
The floor stand and U-bar are only about 23.5” wide so there isn’t too much room width-wise. If you plan on using the SkiErg while sitting, either mount option should work. For the floor stand you will need a narrower place to sit like on a weight bench. If you’re in a wheelchair, it might not fit on the SkiErg when it’s on the floor stand, though.
The floor stand is sold separately and makes the SkiErg require a little more floor space than when it’s wall-mounted. It’s important to give yourself enough room to stand and move in front of the SkiErg if you mount it to your wall.
Our team is very familiar with the SkiErg’s flywheel. It is the same as the RowErg and BikeErg. This flywheel is a fan with fan blades on the inside. There are vents on the outside that let air into the fan for the blades to move against. This creates tension to pull against.
What makes the equipment from Concept2 so effective for conditioning is the fact that all of the machines give more resistance the harder you work. So, the harder and faster you pull the handles on the SkiErg the more resistance you’ll feel. You can’t outmuscle and outwork this machine.
Like the Concept2 RowErg and SkiErg, there is a damper on this flywheel. The damper has 10 different settings. Setting 1 allows the least amount of air into the flywheel, and 10 allows the most amount of air. Because of this, setting 1 feels easier, and setting 10 feels harder. You’ll also be able to control the resistance with your intensity, as I mentioned.
Because the SkiErg has a fan attached and uses wind resistance, it will make some noise. If you are in a shared space or live in an apartment, it probably won’t be the best option. In homes where noise isn’t an issue and garage gyms, the SkiErg should work well.
Handles and Drive Cords
The SkiErg handles are bright green, so they stand out. They appear to be firm and are said to not absorb sweat. They don’t have straps to fit around your wrists like ski poles. This means that you can simply grab them and start skiing.
Being about 5’1” (with shoes on), the height of the handles has me a little nervous that shorter folks like myself will have trouble reaching them. Considering the machine is about 7 feet tall and the handles are attached at the top, I would most likely not be able to reach them without getting a stool, bench, or hopping. While I’m not opposed to looking like a fool and often do, especially when I struggle to reach tall things, others might not want to.
Fortunately, Concept2 sells handle hooks and cord extensions to reach the handles while sitting. These are also helpful for shorter users out there, like me.
Each handle is connected to a drive cord. The drive cords are lightweight and said to be stronger than steel, as well as “responsive and smooth”. They allow for double and single-arm pulling.
Concept2 includes a 5-year warranty for the frame and a 2-year warranty for parts when you purchase the SkiErg. This is the same as the BikeErg and RowErgs.