The Bowflex PR1000 is a good choice for casual exercisers who want an inexpensive and compact home gym. This gym sets itself apart by folding when not in use, a handy feature for those whose square footage is limited. It eschews weight plates in favor of resistance rods, and users can perform approximately 30 exercises with an advertised weight of 210 pounds, including chest, shoulder, back, arm, abdominal and leg exercises. The PR1000 comes with a one-year frame warranty, while the rods are covered for five years (other parts are only covered for 60 days).
Some users say the rods feel lighter than advertised, and they take some getting used to -- unlike weight plates, the resistance is not consistent throughout the entire range of motion. However, most reviewers are pleased with the workout and recommend it for beginners or casual exercisers.
User reviews are the best source of information on the Bowflex PR1000 home gym. Amazon.com, Buzzillions.com and Walmart.com all have a good selection of owner-written reviews that discuss both positive and negative aspects of the Bowflex gym. Professional reviews for home gyms are few and far between, but there is some reasonably balanced discussion on sites like Fitness-Equipment-Source.com, TheHomeGymCritic.com and About.com. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)
The Bowflex PR1000 receives more than 100 reviews at Amazon.com, where it maintains a positive 4.5-star rating (out of 5). Users say the gym is sturdy and a good value, and assembly isn't very complicated. A few critics say the rods feel lighter than their advertised weight.
Review: Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of April 2012
Buzzillions.com compiles owner-written reviews from various online retailers. About 70 reviews are posted on the site, and the Bowflex PR1000 has a 4.6-star rating (out of 5). Users say the Bowflex gym is durable, quiet and easy to use, but some fault the gym for being too heavy.
Review: Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym, Contributors to Buzzillions.com, As of April 2012
The Bowflex PR1000 also has a 4.5-star rating at Walmart.com after more than 30 reviews. Nearly all of the reviewers would recommend the gym to a friend. Most users here are pleased with the workout variety.
Review: Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym, Contributors to Walmart.com, As of April 2012
There are nearly 20 reviews for the Bowflex PR1000 at Sears.com, where the gym maintains a perfect 5-star rating. All of the reviewers would recommend it. Assembly is relatively easy, they say, and most agree this is a good home gym for beginners.
Review: Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym, Contributors to Sears.com, As of April 2012
Fred Waters, a former fitness industry executive, says the Bowflex PR1000 is a "decent, affordable fitness machine." He thinks it's a good choice for those on a budget, but he cautions that you can't add resistance as you can with some Bowflex home gyms.
Review: Bowflex PR1000 Home Gym Review & Rating, Fred Waters, Not Dated
The author of TheHomeGymCritic.com says the Bowflex PR1000 is a sturdy and compact option for casual exercisers. However, he doesn't recommend it for serious bodybuilders.
Review: Bowflex PR1000 Review, "Wes", Not Dated
Paul Rogers, the weight-training guide at About.com, picks the Bowflex PR1000 as one of the top seven home gyms. He thinks it's a good deal for the price, but only for beginners or casual exercisers. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)
Review: Top 7 Home Gyms and Multi Gyms, Paul Rogers, April 18, 2011