Elliptical Machine Buying Guide
Elliptical Trainers 101
Types of Elliptical Trainers
Rear-Drive Elliptical Machine
Front-Drive Elliptical Machine
Centre-Drive Elliptical Machine
Full-Body Elliptical Machines
Elliptical Machine Safety Tip
Elliptical Machine Features
Stride Length +
Your stride length on an elliptical trainer is the distance between the toe of your front foot and heel of your back foot when you're in full stride. Adjust the stride length of your elliptical machine to suit your height and reduce the likelihood of injury. For front-drive elliptical machines, subtract two inches from the measurement to account for the flatter pedal motion.
Adjustable Incline +
Many elliptical machines allow you to increase or decrease the incline of the pedals. The greater the incline, the more intense the workout. Adjust the incline gradually to avoid muscle strain and overexertion.
Smooth Motion +
The pedals of elliptical machines are designed to move in a fluid motion to minimize stress on joints and muscles. When shopping for an elliptical machine, test the pedals to ensure their up-and-down action is smooth and fluid. Avoid machines with a jerky or stuttered pedal movement.
Many newer elliptical machines have been developed to deliver quieter performance. Make sure the machine you buy doesn’t squeak or make unnecessary noise during operation.
Adjustable Resistance +
This feature allows you to adjust the amount of resistance against the pedals. The greater the resistance, the more you need to exert yourself during your workout. This allows you to begin your workout with a lower resistance as your muscles warm up. After a few minutes you can begin increasing the resistance to increase the intensity of your workout.
Many elliptical machines allow you to program routines with alternating periods of high and low resistance, as well as warm up and cool down periods at the beginning and end of your workout.
Console Information +
Elliptical machine consoles should be easy to read with controls that are simple to operate. Some machines have built-in heart monitors, so you can keep close track of how your workout is affecting your body. This is particularly useful for people with heart conditions.
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Elliptical Machine Maintenance Tips:
• Clean and lubricate the flywheel at least once a week
• Clean the control console after use
• Listen for rattles and squeaks to detect parts that are loose or needing lubrication
• Tighten and lubricate parts as necessary
Elliptical vs Treadmill