Elliptical trainers are the fastest growing and now the best selling category of cardiovascular fitness equipment today. Known to burn a high rate of calories without all the joint stress associated with other forms of exercise, ellipticals have proven to provide results for both weight loss and toning.
owning one machine where you will get a high intensity cardiovascular workout, burning calories at an unprecedented rate, and simultaneously offering a core body strength training and toning workout at the same time.
An elliptical trainer gives users a great cardio workout without the joint stress caused by pounding away on a treadmill. The best ellipticals are sturdy and stable, durable and easy to use. Good customer service is also a plus, since these tend to be pricey machines. However, if you use it, you’ll save money on gym costs. To help you find the right machine, we have written this elliptical trainer buying guide.
Definition: What is an Elliptical Trainer?
An elliptical trainer is a low-impact exercise machine that simulates walking or jogging. It gets its name from the elliptical motion that the pedals follow when in use.now elliptical machines are a mainstay in cardiovascular equipment.
Elliptical Trainers is one of the fastest growing fitness categories. Elliptical training combines the best of stair climbing, cross country skiing and running in a low impact, variety rich workout. It is a highly effective cross training activity that is viable for anyone from beginning exercisers to elite athletes.
Whether you’re looking for a low-impact workout or wanting to diversify your exercise routine, an elliptical could be the perfect machine for you. Ellipticals have seen a huge surge in popularity in recent years for their low impact, ease of use and space-saving design.
The motion of an elliptical trainer reduces stress on your legs by mimicking the natural path of your ankle, knee and hip joints. Because your feet remain on the pedals at all times, there is zero impact, making the elliptical a great option for those with sensitive joints or those who might be rehabilitating after knee injuries, or even newcomers starting a fitness program for the first time.
An elliptical also offers a full-body workout including quadriceps, chest, back, hamstrings, glutes, triceps and biceps. You burn more fat while getting full lower- and upper-body workouts that keep your metabolic heart rate up and continue to burn calories long after your workout is finished.
Ellipticals are reasonably sized machines that don’t require a huge workout space, and require little maintenance for fewer machine parts. Consider an elliptical if you’re looking for a fast, easy and space-saving fitness
Elliptical trainers are one of the most popular machines in the gym. They provide a low-impact cardio workout that protects your joints and is a favorite activity for people who want a good cardio workout without a lot of pounding on the joints.
Two primary styles :rear-drive and front-drive.
Neither has been proven definitively superior, although some users say they feel front-drive elliptical trainers give them a slight forward lean, while rear-drive elliptical trainers let them remain more upright. Rear-drive elliptical trainers are more common in commercial settings, while front-drive elliptical trainers are most common in the home exercise equipment market. However, both drive types appear in both markets, along with a very few compact center-drive elliptical trainers. Center-drive designs position individual drive systems to either side of your feet, providing a relatively tiny footprint but twice as many moving parts to possibly break.
Things Should Consider
Elliptical trainers range from $200 to $5000 depending on your budget and needs. If you are seriously looking to make an elliptical purchase in the near future, here are major criteria you should consider:
Users: Who will be using the elliptical?
Who will use it? If more than one person is going to use the elliptical trainer, everybody should try it out. If the users are of very different sizes, you may need an elliptical trainer with an adjustable stride length to accommodate them all on one machine.
Will it just be you? Your family? The number of users and frequency of use are very important considerations when you look at the durability, frame and warranty of a prospective elliptical.
Before you purchase an elliptical trainer, be sure to consider all of those in your household who will be using the machine. What is the weight of each user? What are the fitness goals of everyone who plans to exercise on the elliptical trainer?
The maximum user weight capacity set by the manufacturers of elliptical trainers is intended as a guideline to help you determine which models will provide safe and trouble-free workouts for all users in your home.
How often will I use the elliptical trainer?
If you’re committed to long, frequent workout sessions, you’ll want to invest in a machine with a solid build and durable parts.
Does it fit me?
If you’re especially tall or short, look for an elliptical with a longer or shorter stride length. That said, the only way to know how well any stride length suits you is to get on the machine and exercise for a few minutes. Is the motion comfortable? Do you have plenty of room for your limbs (knees and elbows especially) within the elliptical trainer’s frame? If not, look elsewhere. Comfort is key.
Where will you use the elliptical? Do you have a dedicated home gym space or will you need to move the elliptical around? Does it fit your available space?
Most of the ellipticals are about 79 inches long by 30 inches wide by 63 inches tall, and many front-drive elliptical trainers require additional clearance to the rear when in use. Don’t forget to measure your ceiling height, too; most ellipticals will add an extra 1.5 feet to your own height.
Since you’ll be more elevated than you would on a treadmill, make sure you have a space with a sufficiently high ceiling. And you’ll need adequate space to get on and off safely.
Budget:how much should you expect to spend on an elliptical trainer?
How much can you spend? This is the most basic and important way to narrow down your search. You can generally find high quality ellipticals at lower- to mid-range price points that give you affordable quality at every level, with added features and benefits the higher the price point.
A good elliptical is sturdy, easy to use, and aligns with your natural running motion.Pricier ellipticals tended to be larger and sturdier, and their parts come with longer warranties. The top-rated model is solidly built, comes with a chest-strap heart-rate monitor, has 20 resistance levels, has a lifetime warranty on its frame, and earned top scores for heart rate features, ease of use, and user safety.
Moderate exercisers might be able to get by with a decent low-end model. More intense athletes, on the other hand, really need a heavier, more durable machine. Keep in mind that the more you can spend on an elliptical trainer, the higher the quality you will get. Generally, you’re better off spending a little more money to get a better quality machine.
For a more reliable elliptical trainer, expect to spend at least $1,000. Cheaper models are often noisy and wobbly. After all, the less expensive the elliptical trainer, the cheaper the components used to put it together. Chances are great that these lower-end models may require more maintenance, and their life spans will be rather short.
What is your motivation for purchasing an elliptical?
Do you want to lose weight? Tone muscle? Is this part of a physical rehabilitation program? How frequently will your goals require you to use the machine? Determining what you want to achieve will tell you which features and type of elliptical to look for.
Do I want movable handlebars?
Although movable handlebars provide a moderate upper-body cardio workout, many exercisers prefer holding onto the stationary handlebars instead. If you’re in the latter group, you can sometimes save money by opting for an elliptical trainer that comes without moving handlebars.
Look for one that provides two to three years of coverage on major moving parts and a year on labor. Our suggest that an extended warranty probably isn’t worth it.
Overall, the best elliptical trainers will excel in four categories: Smooth, stable and quiet performance; easy-to-use features and controls; durable, long-term performance; and a good warranty, backed by responsive, helpful customer service. Brand name only matters insofar as it affects your odds of receiving good customer service, although Precor — which pioneered the first elliptical trainers — retains a near-unbeatable reputation for solid, durable machines (and prices to match).
I hope this document is of help to those who are in the process of researching and buying an elliptical machine online.