Peloton Row: Fitness company to launch its first rowing machine – USA TODAY

After spending years urging customers to bike and run, Peloton now wants you to row.
The fitness maker said Tuesday it will launch its first-ever rowing machine, Peloton Row, as it navigates a challenging period spurred by consumers’ renewed interest in returning to the gym.
The Row offers the same perks as its line of at-home bikes and treadmills, with a touchscreen providing access to countless rowing workouts.
“It’s about this engaging, efficient workout in a really convenient place that we kind of make joyful, and we bring alive with remarkable instructors and the value of the community,” Tom Cortese, Peloton co-founder and chief product officer, told USA TODAY during an interview.
Peloton said preorders are available Tuesday, starting at $3,195. The rowing machine will launch this December. Customers must also purchase a monthly All-Access membership for $44 to get the appropriate workouts.
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The Row will feature a form assist as well as form ratings to measure how users progress and improve. There’s also a 24-inch HD screen that swivels to shift between the rowing machine and floor workouts, as well as new content and instructors for rowing exercises.
Peloton surged in popularity during the height of the pandemic, as many fitness buffs unable to go to gyms due to restrictions bought equipment to use at home.
That included Peloton, which saw sales growth double in 2020 as more consumers hopped on at-home bikes and treadmills.
As pandemic restrictions disappear, more people are heading back to the gym, which means fewer people buying fitness gear for the home. One of Peloton’s big missteps was believing that higher demand for its products would stick around longer, pushing them to crank out more equipment, said Evercore ISI analyst Shweta Khajuria.
“Anybody who wanted to buy Peloton equipment had probably already bought one, and they had this massive inventory issue,” said Khajuria.
Last month, Peloton said it was cutting jobs and significantly reducing the number of its North American stores.
Meanwhile, Peloton has taken several steps to get more of its fitness equipment into consumers’ homes. Last month, the company said it would start selling its gear and apparel on Amazon. Last week, Peloton said it was expanding its Peloton One rental program nationally. The service allows customers to acquire a bike and membership for classes for a monthly fee. They can cancel at any time and return the equipment if they choose.
Also working in Peloton’s favor are “industry high” retention rates for its subscription services. “You don’t see a consumer product that has such great levels of retention rates,” said Khajuria.
When asked about shifts in consumer behavior back to the gym, Cortese noted Peloton was “massively growing” in the years leading up to the pandemic.
“We were leading into the pandemic, taking share of wallet and share of time from the gyms, from other streaming platforms, and we still believe that continues to be our opportunity because we offer such a we offer such a compelling workout experience,” said Cortese.
Contributing: The Associated Press
Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.

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