Elliptical Trainer

Types of Elliptical Machines: What Are They and What Makes Them Stand Out?

There are several methods to get your cardio, and running on an exercise machine instead of concrete might be considerably easier on your ankle joints.

An elliptical machine, recognized by its grips and pedals, is one piece of exercise equipment you should consider for your home gym.

Nowadays, you’ll discover a startling number of elliptical machines in various kinds and combinations when you walk into just about any gym in the country.

Find out more about the benefits and the different types of elliptical machines below. This article lets you decide which elliptical trainer is ideal for you.

What Are the Different Types of Elliptical Machines?

Everybody approaches fitness differently, so educate yourself on the many types of elliptical machines to choose which one is ideal for you.

1) Standard Elliptical Trainers

Standard Elliptical

The standard elliptical trainer is recognizable to the majority of people. You will stand on the foot pedals for this bike, which also has a handlebar up front that you may grab onto.

In contrast to other ellipticals, this elliptical trainer has a handlebar that does not move.

So while you circularly move the pedals, you will mostly target your lower body muscles, including your quads, glutes, and hamstrings.

The elliptical will help you achieve your fitness goals to tone up your muscles, reduce weight, or enhance your cardiovascular health.

The sizes will also differ because there are many different elliptical trainer manufacturers and models.

2) Elliptical Cross-Trainers

Elliptical Cross

Elliptical cross trainers offer a full-body workout by combining movements of the upper and lower bodies.

The moveable grips that train your arms and the pedals for your lower body found on most ellipticals distinguish this elliptical cross-trainer and work your full body.

While pedalling and training your lower body on an elliptical cross-trainer, you can target your elbows, shoulders, back, and chest by pushing and pulling with the handlebars.

Like ordinary ellipticals, a low-impact workout allows you to receive a great cardio workout without risking injury to your bones or shins.

A cross trainer of different sizes can give you wonderful exercise.

Most of these cross trainers also have features like cup holders and gadgets that let you listen to music or watch your favorite television show.

3) Elliptical Gliders

Elliptical Glider

An elliptical glider will offer your legs a terrific workout because you glide while using the entire machine, which is how it got its name.

Elliptical gliders have fixed handlebars that help you maintain balance while using your lower body to cycle.

An elliptical glider is similar to most ellipticals in other respects but is excellent for people who wish to tone their lower body.

Although elliptical glider characteristics differ between brands and models, the majority of them include the following:

  • Built-in pulse sensors that let you keep an eye on your heart rate all the time
  • Elliptical glider pedals that are extra-large, non-skid, and comfortable to use lessen leg stiffness and suffering.
  • Speed, distance, calories burned, and heart rate are all measured electronically.
  • The capacity to hold people weighing up to 300 lbs., occasionally more
  • Being able to transition seamlessly between a stroll and a brisk run without pausing or jarring muscles and joints
  • Procedures that are very user-friendly and can suit persons at all fitness levels
  • Modern engineering enables a silent and smooth movement
  • Adjustable incline and resistance

4) Recumbent Elliptical Trainers

Recumbent Elliptical

Not all elliptical machines require you to stand up to use them. With a recumbent elliptical trainer, you may exercise while sitting down.

The lengthier and less impactful pedaling motion on a recumbent bike distinguishes it from a recumbent elliptical.

On an elliptical machine, sitting down gives you more freedom to select lower or upper-body workouts. For elderly and disabled persons, it is more convenient.

You must select a recumbent elliptical machine to improve cardiovascular fitness and lose obstinate weight swiftly. The following list of these categories’ characteristics:

  • Adequate seating
  • Offer sitting and low-impact exercises
  • Adjustable handlebar

It’s also a good alternative for beginners just starting training or for older people trying to build up the strength to push themselves on a regular elliptical machine.

5) Center Drive Elliptical Trainers

Center Drive Elliptical

Compact center drive ellipticals are a relatively new type of equipment that is excellent for home use.

An elliptical cross-trainer with movable handlebars that simulate a walk or jog can also provide a total body workout similar to a central drive elliptical trainer.

The center drive ellipticals are the newest elliptical trainer machine design, albeit they are rarely used. Below are the details for various elliptical types.

  • Either horizontal or vertical movements
  • No wide pedal spacing options
  • Convenient for the hip joints
  • Crafted for more intense exercises

These elliptical machines have a more square-like design than a lengthy rectangle. But the footprint is lower compared to a front-drive or rear-drive elliptical machine.

The center-drive elliptical machine is smaller than a front-drive or rear-drive elliptical trainer.

You may exercise with little impact and comfort on a center-drive elliptical machine thanks to the narrow pedal spacing.

6) Front Drive Elliptical Trainers

Front Drive Elliptical

The front-drive elliptical trainer machine has a stylish and practical design.

The pedal resistance mechanism is at the front, underneath their consoles, as opposed to the back; thus, it requires less space.

The front drive ellipticals’ more vertical range of action is comparable to a stair climber.

The apparatus, often called a shuffle trainer, is a terrific choice for people searching for a home gym option closer to the ground. Below are the details for these kinds of elliptical machines.

  • Backward and forth, bouncing.
  • Usually leans forward
  • Some come with Bluetooth connectivity and exercise routines
  • Give the impression of climbing steps or a hill

7) Rear Drive Elliptical Trainers

Rear Drive Elliptical

The flywheel (or drive system) is located in the back of the elliptical trainer, allowing for a longer stride in front of the machine with the foot pedals in the middle.

Rear-drive elliptical trainers often have fewer parts than those with a front or center drive, which implies less upkeep and replacement parts.

Although the rear drive ellipticals occupy more room and are typically more expensive than conventional elliptical trainer drives, they are frequently quieter.

Due to their larger size, the rear drive ellipticals are more frequently encountered in commercial gyms than private ones. Below are the details of several sorts of elliptical trainers:

  • The flywheel is situated back from the users.
  • Compared to other trainers, the pedal motion is more circular.
  • Up and down-bounce.
  • Allow people to stand straight or a little more upright
  • Permit you to go for long walks and runs.

8) Compact/Foldable Ellipticals

Compact/Foldable Ellipticals

Compact ellipticals are ideal for people with limited space or who do not want their workout equipment to be seen by guests at home.

A foldable elliptical machine provides a superb cardio workout with little to no strain on your joints and a quick, easy way to take it apart and store it when not in use.

The main benefits of investing in one of these exercise machines are the fantastic workout it provides while being low-impact and the convenience of storing it anywhere.

Another benefit of a compact elliptical is that, despite its potential smallness, it can still support users weighing up to 200 lbs., making it ideal for persons who are fairly overweight.

Foldable elliptical machines exist in various shapes, sizes, and features, not to mention various patterns, styles, and comforts.

How to Choose the Best Elliptical Machine

Choose the Best Elliptical Machine

With all this knowledge at your disposal, you may ask yourself, “What kind of elliptical machine should I buy?”

We’ve produced a list of items to consider below before buying an elliptical machine.

  • The Flywheel Weight: The flywheel is the drive mechanism that initiates your steps and regulates your resistance level. Generally speaking, your machine is more durable the heavier the flywheel. Your flywheel won’t endure if it weighs only about 15-20 pounds and is low quality. Find an elliptical weighing at least 25 pounds for the best and most reliable experience.
  • Stride Lengths: Another important aspect of ellipticals is stride length; an excessively short or long stride will be uncomfortable over time. Search for a machine that goes above your stride while running and walking. The average stride length is 40 cm; if you are taller than 1.90 m, we suggest looking for a model with a stride length of at least 50 cm.
  • Mechanical Or Magnetic Resistance?: Elliptical machines can provide various resistance levels using metal chains, belts, or magnets. Belts and magnets provide smoother, quieter motions, while metal chains are heavier and noisier. In comparison to chains and belts, magnets require less maintenance.
  • Watt Levels: While utilizing an elliptical, Watts measure your walking efficiency and degree of resistance. Because most range between 350 and 400 watts, it can indicate the machine’s quality. Although there may be more or less, this is frequently the average.
  • The Console: With Or Without Bluetooth?: Ellipticals with Bluetooth connections allow you to play music through speakers, sync your statistics with various fitness applications, and boost interaction with your machine. To determine if a particular model has Bluetooth and what functions are offered, carefully read the product description.
  • Max User Weight: Every machine has a maximum weight under which it will operate without breaking or endangering somebody. Consider your weight limit and the weight limits of any potential users before choosing an elliptical machine because less expensive versions will have lower weight limits than medium- to high-end models.
  • Warranty: The length of a warranty is a reliable sign of a product’s quality and the manufacturer’s confidence in it. Find ones with a least five years, but strive for a lifetime, as most elliptical warranties run from 90 days to a lifetime. Please carefully read the warranty description and mark it on your calendar to ensure that parts and functions are covered. Most brands also divide the warranty into many categories, such as parts, labor, and motor; pay attention to the lengths of these, as they will vary.
  • Noise Levels: Consider the elliptical’s operating noise level before purchasing if you intend to use it as your home gym. Before purchasing, consider the drive type and decibel level and carefully read customer feedback.
  • Special Features: Modern ellipticals can include various extra features to make working out more enjoyable. Added characteristics include:
    • Monitor your heart rate
    • Console screen
    • Workout routines
    • Fitness monitors
    • Device support
    • Bottle holder for water
    • Speakers
  • Price: Establishing a budget before purchasing equipment for your home gym is crucial. In the fitness industry, you normally get what you pay for, but you can locate discounts and coupons to assist you in getting a fair bargain. Do your homework and comparison shop to get the most value for your money.

What Are the Benefits of Using an Elliptical Trainer?

Benifits Using Elliptical

Although cardiovascular exercise is one of the most crucial elements of an exercise program, many people don’t find running appealing.

An elliptical machine is a substitute for the cardio that you have. Why an elliptical trainer over other cardio equipment? For a comparison, you can check out the differences between an elliptical and an arc trainer.

In addition, an elliptical machine can simultaneously build your upper and lower bodies. Below are more benefits of using an elliptical machine.

1) Improve Cardio and Stamina

Regular elliptical use can increase your stamina and aerobic capacity, giving you more energy throughout the day to do your daily tasks at home and work.

2) Burn a Ton of Body Fat and Calories

You may burn many more calories and lose weight by doing a full-body workout that can also be cardio.

Select a stride for walking, running, or climbing stairs to tailor your elliptical workout.

3) Lessen the Demand on Your Joints

Using an elliptical does not force you to place undue strain on your joints, unlike running on paved surfaces or a treadmill.

For individuals who are elderly or have joint problems or injuries, it is a great alternative because of this.

4) Combined Workout for the Upper and Lower Body

You may burn more calories and tone your entire body evenly by simultaneously working your lower and upper body.

With simultaneous upper- and lower-body workouts, you can spend less time at the gym and more time alone.

5) Increase Mobility and Balance

You must carefully balance your entire body while pedaling and moving your arms on an elliptical machine.

Your balance and mobility will improve as you perform this faster and faster while still feeling supported by the machine.

6) Improve Muscle Strength & Skeletal Health

With the right resistance and slope settings, utilizing an elliptical can give you the best of both worlds if you prefer cardio to lift weights but still want to tone your muscles.

Your blood flow will rise due to elliptical exercise, which has been shown to improve bone density and musculoskeletal health.

The Importance of the Different Types of Elliptical Trainers

Any home gym must contain an elliptical machine, and you can choose from various designs.

The perfect elliptical machine for a home gym might be the first step towards investing in yourself.

Everyone should include cardio in their exercise routine; an elliptical machine can be a better fit if running bores you.

You can check out the top elliptical machines to buy if you’re interested!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are a few of the most often-asked questions about different types of elliptical machines, along with some related inquiries in case you don’t find the answers you’re looking for.

What Is the Best Elliptical for Beginners?

Decathlon’s basic EL100 Essential Elliptical is ideal for beginners because all you have to focus on during your workout is striding.

It is reasonably priced, so you don’t have to spend much before knowing if you like it.

For more expensive ellipticals, check out the best ellipticals under $1000!

What Happens if I Do Elliptical Trainers Every Day?

The elliptical machine can help you burn a lot of calories while enhancing your stamina, improving your balance, and strengthening your heart, lungs, and muscles.

It’s a fantastic choice if you have joint problems or wish to improve or keep up your fitness level after an injury.


Elliptical machines of all varieties can be an expensive addition to your home or office gym.

Which elliptical trainer is best? Find a good elliptical machine for you by carefully weighing the types of elliptical machines and using the advice we’ve provided above.

As you can see, different types of elliptical machines are available, each with unique advantages and disadvantages.

You should weigh each option and decide which will best meet your goals based on the available area, the workouts you want to undertake, and your money.

Fortunately, all these machines can provide you with a great workout, so whichever you choose, you’ll come out on top!