A Complete Guide to Exercise with Elliptical Machines

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Elliptical Machines
Elliptical Exercise Machines

Elliptical machines are the most common machines in a gym. They make workout effective and they are ideal for low impact exercises. If you intend to buy one for your family or gym use, there are several features and factors you need to consider. Some of the most crucial considerations include the following:

Simple Guide to Exercise with Elliptical Machines

Your Budget

Majority of people look into money as the greatest factor in purchasing any machine used in a home gym. Elliptical machines vary in cost, from $200 to $5000, depending on your pocket and purpose for purchasing. You may also get elliptical machines at low prices on discount which will work just okay. 

However, they don’t last long compared to those of higher quality. You also need to consider your workout needs as well as the type of body you have. If you are small-bodied and need to use your elliptical machine weekly, a small machine is good enough. Consequently, if you are of huge build and/or you need the machine for your HIIT training, you need to purchase a sturdy machine that is up to that standard.

Workout Space

Elliptical machines are always large and can occupy a large space. You need to consider this before purchasing ensuring that you have enough space for it. You should expect that an elliptical machine may be between 4 and 7 feet long, making sure to leave a space for the pedals during the workout. 

For some elliptical machines, there is need for more space as they can extend in about a foot behind the flame, while still accounting for around 25 inches of space all round. Another thing that you need to consider is the height of your ceiling. You don’t want to hit the ceiling with your head every time you go for a workout.

Elliptical Styles

There are three primary designs in elliptical machines, each having their own advantages and disadvantages.

Front-Drive: basically, they have a huge wheel housing at the rear part of the machine. They seem to be the most affordable as they are a primary design, but they can produce lots of noise and vibrations.

Center-Drive: The design is same as that of a treadmill, harboring pedals in place of the track. These give a preferably gentle workout. They are of the most compact design.

Rear-Drive: it contains a smaller wheel housing (smaller than that of a front-drive) behind pedals, giving it the longest design. The pedals may be placed in a track-and-roller allowing the machine to incline. Others use a hanging arm system offering a very smooth workout.

Key Features

Stride Length: most elliptical machines can only provide a 14-inch stride which is not long enough for a person of average size. Consider purchasing one with about 20-inch stride instead. For multiple usage, adjustable stride is very important. 

Smooth Motion: ensure that the pedals of the elliptical have a smooth and quiet movement. 

Upper Body Comfort: make sure that the grip on the handles of the elliptical machine is comfortable though you don’t need them.

The Quiet Factor: make sure that the elliptical machine is quiet enough to be used even early in the morning without disturbing the comfort of your neighbors.

Adjustable Resistance: some elliptical machines have adjustable resistance, and a wide range will have maximum benefit.


To ensure that your workout will be safe and effective, purchase an elliptical machine that will give warm-up and cool-down periods. For a family with children, an elliptical machine can be seen as a nice toy. So, it’s good to have an elliptical machine with a pin lock to ensure that pedals don’t move when an adult is not around.

Bonus Features

Getting an elliptical machine that will provide a water bottle and a tablet holder can be very fun and entertaining. A heart rate monitor can be a useful feature. An advanced interactive version will automatically adjust to your level. Other machines will connect to the Wi-Fi, fitness apps and software and many more fancy features. This will attract high costs.

Final Words

Purchasing the best elliptical machine will highly depend on the amount of money you intend to spend, the motive of buying the machine, home space for the machine and safety measures. The better the machine, the costly it is. Just ensure you purchase the machine that will cater for your workout needs and the comfort you deserve.