Elliptical Trainer Hub – Big, Small, And Folding Machines

Elliptical Trainer Buying Guide

Woman training on elliptical machine

An elliptical trainer is a machine commonly used in the gym. In recent years it is regarded as the fastest growing fitness category. It offers low-impact cardio-workout aimed at stimulating running, but the machine works by decreasing the impact. It is made up of a combination of cross country, running, stair climbing, and skiing in the low impact workout category.

The elliptical trainer is made in a manner that the motion coming from it helps to protect your joints from damage, including the hip joint, knee joint, and other lower body damages. The machine makes workouts exciting and fun hence making it the best choice for the gym. Precor first introduced the device in the year 1995 alongside Elliptical Fitness Cross trainer. 

Purchasing a gym elliptical trainer can be challenging, given that multiple options are available. The machines range from the simple version, which is used for an aerobic workout, to the beefy models that can be used to provide high-intensity exercise. Therefore, before buying an elliptical trainer, you need to research the available options to find the one that meets your needs and expectations. 

Factors to Consider when Purchasing Your Elliptical Machine

1. Budget

Money is the determinant factor of which elliptic trainer you can buy. The prices differ depending on the category of the machine and its features. Prices usually range between $200 to $5000. You can find a cheap elliptic trainer in the stores, but it won’t last for long. Always prefer buying long-lasting and quality models even if they are expensive. 

Additionally, you need to consider your specific workout needs and body type. If you have a small body, you can purchase a short elliptic trainer, as it can be sufficient for you. Contrary if you have a big body then you will need to purchase a large machine. 

2. Ergonomics

The trainer is different from a treadmill that allows you to move freely, and it guides all your movements. You must consider how comfortable you will be when using the elliptical machine you will purchase. It should allow you to maintain an upright posture when you are holding its handles. Further, it should enable you to move the handgrips quickly. 

Also, it should allow you to move the elliptical path with ease. You should also consider the distance between the pedals. Ensure that the frame parts do not constrain the movement of your shoulders, arms, or knees. 

3. Workout Space

An elliptical trainer can take some space in your gym, so when buying, ensure that you have enough space for the machine. The machine can be between four and seven feet by length. In addition to that, you will need some extra space to move the pedals. Further, consider the height of your ceiling if you will put the machine in the basement. Ensure that the height allows you to exercise freely without hitting your head. 

4. Programs

Having a fixed and regular exercise program makes your workout varied and exciting, thereby getting to the machine more frequently. Ensure that the elliptical you purchase enables you to do your favorite workouts. The programs can be manual, hill climb, random, target heart rate, and long slow distance. You should ensure that the machine will allow you to set and install custom programs.

5. Technological Features 

Technological advancements are changing every phase of tools and equipment used by human beings. Gym equipment is becoming more connected to the internet like cloud computing aimed at tracking your workouts and access the library of your exercise programs. Consider purchasing a product that is technologically advanced, having features like browsers and wireless connectivity. This will help you monitor your exercise program easily.

6. Intensity of Exercise

Elliptical trainers have variable resistance. Ensure that the elliptical you purchase allows you to set the lowest resistance, like 75 percent of the highest setting. Through this feature, the elliptical trainer will give you room to grow and change resistance whenever you notice any incremental change. Check whether it has an adjustable incliner. 

7. Size

On average, the elliptical trainer should be 2.5 feet wide and 6 feet long , and the length should be between 50 and 84 inches. You should always take note that during operation, the pedals usually extend beyond the machine’s length. Your body also becomes elevated; therefore, make your space high. If you don’t have enough space for a full size machine, take a look at some folding options here: https://www.bodyscienceusa.com/best-folding-elliptical-trainer/

8. Delivery

Most stores offer after-sales-service, which includes free delivery. Most elliptical trainers are big and heavy and need to be delivered to your house. Before buying, ask whether delivery is part of the offer and that the service cost is not free. If you buy your elliptical trainer online, be sure to inquire about shipping and return fees. You should buy your elliptical from a company that offers delivery services. 

9. Warranty

Always when purchasing any type of electronic appliance, ask about the warranty. When buying an elliptical machine, ensure that it has a warranty of about three to seven years.

10. Return Policy

When buying an elliptical machine, inquire about the return policy to determine the amount charged to return the machine if it did not meet your needs. 

Elliptical Trainer Designs

There are three styles, and they include the following:

1. Rear-Drive Elliptical Machine

In this design, the small wheel housing is situated behind the pedals making this the most extended style. The machine has its pedals on track-and-roller, which allows the machine to incline easily. This design allows you to use a suspended arm system, and it offers the smoothest workout because of its comfortable design. 

2. Front-Drive Elliptical Machine

The design has a large wheel housing located at the front of the machine. This style of elliptical machines tends to be cheap; however, they can be noisy when in operation. It is easy and convenient to use. 

3. Center-Drive Elliptical Trainer

This design resembles the treadmill but has its pedals located at its track. The style allows for gentle workouts. Further, it is regarded as the most compact style; however, it is tedious to reach the pedal when using the machine.

Essential Features of Elliptical Machine

1. Adjustable Incline

This feature allows you to adjust the ramps of the machine, aiming to add exercise intensity. Some elliptical machines have manual while others have automatic adjustments of the incliner.

2. Natural Movement  

Before purchasing one, take your time to try multiple machines if they have natural movement. Take your time to exercise on it before buying it. The machine should allow you to move quickly without stress, and it should allow you to exercise in a neutral position. 

3. Adjustable Resistance

At least all elliptical machines provide adjustable resistance alongside other benefits to you. The adjustable resistance should be comfortable at the lowest setting, 75%, and allow noticeable changes at every level of adjustment. This feature will allow you to go as far as you endure. When buying the machine, take around 20 minutes to try out multiple devices and the reliability of their adjustable resistance.

4. Elliptical Motion

You should always consider if the machine allows for smooth elliptical motion. This motion offers a reasonable simulation to running and walking without any impact. The essential thing to check out is to feel the action. Buy a machine that allows you to exercise easily with significant elliptical movement in all directions. 

5. Length of Strides

Many machines have a varied range for strides. Others offer up to 14 inches, which would be short for you. In this case, consider buying an elliptic machine with a long stride, for instance, 21 inches. You can also choose to purchase a machine with adjustable strides as it will be easy for you to adjust to your preferred stride length. 

6. Motions

These trainers have to allow you to move forward and backward with ease. They have the ability also to move forward and back to challenge the workout. Ensure that a machine you buy allows for both forward and reverse motions to reduce injuries during your exercise time. 

7. The motion of the Upper Body

Other ellipticals are equipped with upper body levers that allow for upper body workouts. If you need to strengthen your upper body, buy a machine with upper body levers. However, when you such a machine, you must ensure that both upper and lower body motions are intuitive and comfortable. 

8. Electronic Features

Most machines are equipped with extra features to attract customers to buy. Such features include interactivity and display of calories burned over a specified period when buying an elliptical trainer ensure that you have the skills to use such feature. 

9. Quiet Use and Operation

When buying an elliptical machine, consider how smooth does it operate. Purchasing a cheap machine might lead to you buying a noisy machine. Always consider buying a smooth and quiet machine.