Ultimate Guide – Best Elliptical Trainers

Elliptical training is getting more popular in these modern times. It combines the best of cross country skiing, stair climbing and running in a variety rich, low impact workout. Elliptical training is highly effective and is suitable for anybody from beginners to elite athletes.

Many people rely on elliptical trainers to perform cardiovascular exercises. These motionless machines assist the users by simulating running, walking or climbing a staircase or a hill at various levels of intensity and resistance.

These machines also have wireless heart control equipment that allows users to use their heart rate to monitor their progress and speed. Elliptical machines are available in many gyms and homes. In order to use an elliptical, you just have to stand on the pedals and grab the handles. After that, move your legs forward and backward.

These machines are easy to use and offer an array of benefits. Elliptical machines are much lighter on the joints and still allow for a good workout.

The following are 10 of the best elliptical trainers that can enable you to achieve your workout goals. Please keep in mind, what we aim here is to list the best elliptical trainers for your money and for your home. So, we did not include the commercial elliptical trainer type which could cost you a fortune(except one product-and I love that machine:)).

10 Best Elliptical Trainer

Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer

The Stamina In-Motion Elliptical machine is an excellent machine for both office and home use. The machine features a compact and a sturdy design. It is a strong and durable option because of its solid steel construction. The machine has a lightweight design and can, therefore, be moved from one room to another with ease. This kind of trainer is available in three colors, which are green, orange and black.

The Stamina In-Motion Elliptical equipment offers a low impact cardio workout that is able to burn just almost the same number of calories that can be burned through jogging. This machine does not exert pressure on a user’s knees, back, ankles and hips. The machine can work one’s legs when sitting or standing. A person can meet his or her fitness goals even while doing other tasks.

The machine comes with an electronic motor, which helps track a person’s workout and display the duration. The feature also indicates the number of calories that one has burned. The machine also features variable resistance. It also has textured non-slip pedals, which ensure that your feet remain in place regardless of the pace or speed of your work out.


  • Awesome for use at work
  • Budget-friendly
  • Fits appropriately under a desk
  • Allows backward and frontal movement
  • Low-impact design, which protects knees, hips, ankles and back
  • Can be moved around with ease
  • Produces little noise when operating
  • Simple installation
  • Really fun
  • Resistance that is easy to adjust


  • It is small in size, which prevents it from flowing as smoothly as full-sized machine
  • No arm movement

Plasma Fit Elliptical Machine Trainer 2 in 1 Exercise Bike Total Cardio Fitness Home Gym with Heart Rate Monitor

This elliptical machine is a two-in-one work out equipment. This means that it allows a two way exercise. It can be utilized either in a standing or sitting situation. This machine guarantees a full body cardiovascular exercise, which puts one in the appropriate shape. Since this is a hybrid machine, it also acts as a workout bike. One can choose to sit and exercise and still obtain all the benefits that one gets from exercise bike. The sitting option is beneficial in that it helps reduce inferior body weight. On the other hand, the standing option assists in evening out the effects of a person’s entire body.


  • Recumbent bike seat
  • Changeable foot pedals
  • Opposite direction movement
  • Simple to assemble
  • Modifiable resistance
  • Compact size


  • Hand bars are challenging to use
  • Instruction manual is not reliable

Schwinn A40 Elliptical Machine

The Schwinn A40 Elliptical equipment is the best choice for individuals who are looking for a comfortable and user-friendly trainer. This machine can be used with ease and comes with other important features that make it a favorite among many.

The Schwinn A40 Elliptical machine is an improved version of A40, which was introduced in 2013. Its color has changed from silver to black, the stride has also been slightly increased from 17 to 17.5 but all the other features are the same. The build quality of this equipment is better as compared to budget elliptical machines. The machine is extremely steady because it comes with 6 levelers. The ergonomic handles of the machine are very comfortable. The trainer can be assembled with ease. By following the instructions properly and sorting the parts properly after removing them from the box, one can take an average of one hour to assemble the equipment. The manual says that the machine needs two people to assemble but it can also be assembled by one person successfully. The trainer comes with a two-year warranty on frame and six months on mechanical and electronics.


  • Long stride
  • Light weight but sturdy
  • Very quite
  • Interesting programs


  • It is impossible to read the display in dark
  • Poor warranty period
  • Does not have wireless chest strip

NordicTrack E 7.0 Z Elliptical Trainer

This elliptical trainer was introduced in the year 2015 and has been an excellent machine ever since. It is constructed in a similar manner to the NordicTrack C 7.5, but it has fewer onboard programs, a manual incline and does not feature the iFit module. Nonetheless, its console is compatible with iFit modules. The elliptical trainer is not marketed as a commercial model, but its frame construction is similar to the light commercial model. It has a heavy steel frame that weighs about 200 pounds. This weight adds stability to the machine.

The rear and font bases of this elliptical machine rest on stabilizers that are rubberized. The stabilizers also adjust in order to level the machine. This machine lacks a folding fame. However, it is not difficult to relocate the machine for the front base has a set of transport wheels. There is a handle at the rear base, which makes it easy to lift the machine from behind and lean it on the front wheels.

The parts of this elliptical machine are made of steel and they feature a black coating that is corrosion resistant apart from the gliding rails of the pedals that have a chrome finish. The covers of the flywheel and motor along with various other covers are constructed with heavy duty plastic.

The console of the NordicTrack E 7.0 Z offers twenty onboard games, is iFit capable and has goal settings. This elliptical trainer is ideal for users of all levels. It provides users with an opportunity to engage in light to intense cardiovascular workouts, build stamina and strength, interval workouts and lose weight. When using this machine, a person can burn up to seven hundred calories per hour if he or she engages in a more demanding workout.


  • Sturdy construction and heavy frame.
  • Aesthetic design
  • Fixed handlebars that have pulse sensors
  • Transport wheels included
  • Narrow Q-Factor to eliminate additional stress on the knees
  • iFit capable
  • Minimal maintenance needed
  • Easy to assemble
  • Twenty in-built programs
  • Goal settings for distance, calories and time
  • Quiet and smooth drive
  • Excellent warranty plan


  • iFit model is not included
  • Console is not able to read pulse through an HR chest strap
  • When a tablet is placed on the lower media support, it may conceal the control unit display.

Sole Fitness E35 Elliptical Machine

The Sole Fitness E35 is a great fit for beginners and intermediate trainees. This machine has a sound system that is compatible with MP3 players, Bluetooth connection that can help you track exercise data and synchronize it with mobile fitness applications and a tablet computer holder. The key specifications of this elliptical machine include a natural 20” stride with reverse/forward motions, and a front drive design with a twenty five pound wheel. Its ramp is power adjustable ramp with thirty levels for muscle toning.

Multi-position grips on the moving handlebars of this cross trainer support upper workout variety. Just like other Sole’s machines, this product has excellent ergonomics. Examples include 2-degree inward slope, a choice of 3 pedal angles, which support different gaits and pedal cushioning. This machine is also compact in size and has integrated transport wheels as well as whisper quiet magnetic resistance. It is therefore ideal for use in home gyms. The workout data for ten training programs is indicated on a 7.5 inch LCD screen and it may be indicated on your own mobile device. You can select from heart programs, manual mode, muscle training and weight loss workouts.


  • It is ideal for low impact cardio training.
  • It provides a good range of resistance due to its 25 pound drive.
  • 16 challenge levels match the needs of beginners all the way to intermediate level trainers.
  • Has a power incline with thirty levels for the lower body.
  • Has multi-grip handlebars for upper body exercises.
  • Has great ergonomics
  • Enhanced with a tablet holder and wires data syncing.


  • Has a maximum 20 inc stride
  • It is not foldable

Exerpeutic Aero Air Elliptical

There is only one reason that we included this product in our list. This is one of the most affordable elliptical trainers in the world. Even though it is one of the products we never suggest you buy, when you check popular websites, you will see that it is one of the most selling elliptical trainers. Little ironic.Anyways..

It is a compact fitness machine that is lightweight and takes up minimal space. It weighs 55 pounds, which is 75 percent lighter than the weight of standard elliptical trainers. This weight is achieved due to the utilization of plastic components instead of metal parts. When compared to other elliptical trainers, the entire machine is also stripped down. For instance, its flywheel is relatively light, the console is basic and the stride is short. It can withstand up to 220 pounds, but 150 pounds is the better limit. This elliptical machine has moving armbars and is tailored to work the muscles of the entire body with 8 resistance settings.


  • It is a highly affordable elliptical machine.
  • Portability


  • There is a higher risk of getting injured when using this machine. Injury can occur if the machine breaks suddenly
  • Poor quality control
  • It is not easy to reach customer service

Nautilus E614 Elliptical

The Nautilus E614 has a 20-inch stride length and twenty two different workout programs. It is therefore ideal for the entire family. However, this elliptical only contains two user profiles. Therefore, it is more suitable for couples or for families with kids who are not old enough to use gym quality equipment. This machine has acoustic chambered speakers that deliver big, clean sound. The grip heart rate offers fairly accurate readings that will keep you safe and healthy as you use the machine. The Nautilus E614 does not have a wide variety of customizable options and a full color console. However, it is durable and reliable.


  • Affordable price range
  • Timeless durability
  • Has 22 workout programs
  • Has a DualTrack display that allows for results tracking


  • It can be daunting to assemble
  • No Bluetooth capability
  • Some users have had difficulties with stabilizing the system and have ended up sustaining minor injuries.

NordicTrack C 7.5 Elliptical

This elliptical trainer is affordable, reliable and comfortable. NordicTrack is known for its solid designs and high-quality trainers. The flywheel of the C7.5 weighs 20 pounds and the weight capacity of the machine is 325 pounds. These are both decent specifications when you consider that it is an entry level model. It has a stride of 20 inches.

The adjustable features of this elliptical trainer are few but it is possible to adjust the incline levels with a zero to twenty-degree power adjustable ramp. You can also choose from twenty-two resistance levels. If you change up the resistance and incline, you can optimize the outcome of your workout, burn calories and tone your muscles for a low impact, entire body workout.

The console has a backlit display screen of five inches with a wide viewing angle, an Autobreeze workout fan that automatically adjusts speed depending on how intensely you exercise and an integrated shelf to place your devices. It is also possible to manually adjust the Autobreeze workout fan.

The audio features of this elliptical include two 2-inch speakers that are built in the console and iPod compatibility. When it comes to the program options, this elliptical machine has twenty-six built in workout apps ranging from fat loss to interval training programs. If you want to utilize one of the programs that are based on heart rate, you can monitor your heart rate to get accurate results because there are 2 integrated electrocardiogram pulse grip sensors that send the readouts to the console directly. The console can work your iFit program through your device if you have subscribed to the iFit program. NordicTrack provides two years coverage on parts, a lifetime warranty on the machine’s frame and one-year coverage on labor.


  • Affordable
  • Reliable
  • Offers a number of ways to vary the intensity of workouts.
  • Users can choose from 22 resistance levels.
  • Has 26 built in workout programs.


  • It is a pretty basic model that lacks an advanced console or multiple customizable features.
  • You get basics, meaning that you sacrifice entertainment options
  • Has a smaller 5 inch display.
  • Inability to monitor the heart rate wirelessly.

ProForm Hybrid Trainer

The Proform hybrid elliptical machine is a new model. It has a 13 pound flywheel. This model is more attractive and has a more functional console area. It also has a sleek and a ventilated back seat. This machine comes with sixteen resistance levels; sixteen built in work programs that you can choose from and a fifteen inch elliptical stride, which cannot be adjusted. The console comes with a basic LCD display screen. It also has a new watts power meter, which enables you to know your pacing and it is possible to make adjustments. This console is also iFit Bluetooth smart enabled and has a wide integrated tabled holder as well as iPod compatibility. The machine also comes with multiple adjustable features including oversized, adjustable pedals, adjustable console and seat. It is protected by a five year frame warranty and a ninety day warranty on parts and labor.


  • Runs quietly due to the silent magnetic resistance training technology
  • Cushioned upper arm grips
  • Oversized foot pedals
  • Adjustable pedals, console and seat
  • Affordable


  • Lacks a build-in cooling fan
  • Fairly small screen
  • Users need to subscribe to iFit program
  • Lacks some basic amenities

Precor AMT 835 Commercial Series Adaptive Motion Trainer with Open Stride Technology

This is a low impact trainee that offers an all in one design and has the new Open Stride feature. It is among the best valued elliptical machines in the AMT line (AMT 885, AMT 835, AMT 833 and AMT 813). This model has 3 sets of handlebars and a free suspension design that may mimic the full stride of an elliptical machine or that a shorter stride elliptical machine. It is ideal for walking or for climbing hills based on the height. The Open Stride feature enables users to adjust the height of the stride from 6.8 to 10 inches. They can also adjust the stride length from 0 to 36 inches. Users can also select from twenty levels of resistance. Due to thee design features, it is easy to utilize the Precor AMT 835 elliptical trainer as a stair climber, treadmill or elliptical trainer. This trainer also has a P30 Console with Quick Start and Motion Controls. This console includes more than twenty electronic workout readouts, an electronic keypad, six built in workout programs, mobile device charging USB and a reading rack. This machine also has a large LED display screen that is easy to read. Precor provides a warranty of two years on parts, seven years on the frame and one year on labor.


  • The Open Stride feature enables users to adjust the stride height and length.
  • Features the new P30 console that has motion controls and a large LED display.


  • This elliptical machine is pricey in spite of its unique design.
  • Has the same console as the 833 model.
  • Its maximum weight capacity is below average at 350 pounds.

Our Pick – NordicTrack C 7.5 Elliptical

The NordicTrack C 7.5 Elliptical Trainer has many of the key features that will help you to attain your fitness goals. What we like most about this elliptical machine is that it comes at a relatively low price. It is the most cost effective model in the series. We also recommend this elliptical machine because of its power adjustable incline of 0 to 20 degrees, which enables users to target certain muscle groups like the hamstrings or glutes. The NordicTrack C 7.5 also has twenty two levels of resistance that makes it easy to increase the intensity of workouts in order to burn more calories. The other appealing features of this elliptical machine are the softtouch upper body grips and multi positional handlebars that help reduce the strain on the arms when a person is working out at higher intensity levels. This machine is also easy to assemble by following several steps. You can set it up within a short time. The compact design of the elliptical trainer with transport wheels also makes it easy to use it at home, particularly when space is a concern.

Benefits of Elliptical

Increasing aerobic capacity – Aerobic capacity is an essential aspect of fitness. If your aerobic capacity is high, you can perform activities for lengthy periods without getting out of breath. An elliptical can increase your aerobic capacity by increasing the heart rate and making you sweat. Using an elliptical machine for twenty to thirty minutes, three or more days per week is adequate to increase your aerobic capacity.

Non-impact exercise – Many people suffer from joint and bone conditions like arthritis, ligament tears and osteoporosis. If you suffer from such ailments, elliptical training can be beneficial for you because it does not place much impact on the joints. Your feet will stay still on the gliding platforms. Since there is no impact on the joints, the elliptical machine is a safer exercise option for many individuals, including seniors, those who have varicose veins, the obese and those rehabbing from knee surgery.

Works out the whole body – When running either on a treadmill or outside, you work the leg muscles and burn calories. However, when you use an elliptical trainer, you have an opportunity to work both the lower and upper body simultaneously. Elliptical machines work the arms, back, chest, shoulders and legs. When using an elliptical, you can work out the whole body in as little as twenty minutes.

Effective lower body exercise – Elliptical machines work out many leg muscles. This is one of the areas that many people want to target. To work your leg muscles effectively, place your hands on the middle handrails and move the pedals using your legs only. You can add variation to this exercise by reversing the direction of the pedals in order to work your legs in a more intensive manner.

Burning many calories – When using an elliptical trainer, you can burn as much as 400 calories in just thirty minutes of exercising, depending on your weight. You can burn more than 400 calories if you are heavy. The intensity of your workouts also has an impact on the number of calories you can burn.

Improving mobility and balance – Elliptical machines improve mobility and balance. They also help users to regain motion in the hips in a gradual manner, particularly after an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) surgery. Various hospitals encourage patients who have undergone ACL surgery to use elliptical machines. You can adjust your exercise intensity easily based on your level of ACL injury.

Use minimal space – If you are worried that you do not have adequate space in your home or apartment to place an elliptical machine, you will be glad to know that some of these machines are designed to easily fit in the corner of a room. Some of them are also designed to fit under a desk.

Ability to multitask – An elliptical machine allows you to watch television or read while exercising. You only need to set your preferences on the elliptical depending on your daily routine. The machine will do its job while you do yours. The best elliptical machines usually have speakers that allow users to play music or audio files as they work out.

Ability to engage in weightbearing exercise – When exercising on an elliptical machine, you work against gravity as the movements of your knees, hip joints and ankles complement the movements of the machine. By performing weight bearing exercises, you will strengthen your bones and prevent osteoporosis.

Easy and cost-effective maintenance – An elliptical machine offers a good balance between maintenance and cost. It has less moving parts and its minimal impact movements make it harder for the machine to break down and age quickly. This machine will therefore last for many years.

Buying Criteria

The following are some of the things you should consider when buying an elliptical machine.

Your goals –It is advisable to consider your goals as well as those of other potential exercisers in your home prior to starting your search. In most families, more than one person will use the machine. A runner will find a non impact movement more beneficial because it will complement his or her running. On the other hand, an elderly person will appreciate using a machine that has fluidity and ease of motion.

Perform research online – In order to find a machine that fits your interests, you should start your search online. Find out the brands that have top ratings through product review and rating websites among others. Visiting the manufacturers’ Facebook pages and websites to find out more about the people using the machines from the manufacturers in question is important. The best brands of electrical machines are used in health clubs and gyms.

Look for the best place to purchase the machine – After finding a number of firms and models that you are pleased with, search for the best place to purchase them. Most elliptical machines can be bought online through different shopping sites or manufacturers’ websites. They can also be purchased through retail stores. In order to purchase a high quality machine at a retail store, you should purchase through specialty fitness retailers and avoid discount stores.

Consider the level of services you want – Considering the level of service that you want when purchasing an elliptical machine is important. You can find a machine that offers the highest level of service from a specialty fitness retailer. Although you can save money when you opt to purchase online, you need to do a lot of research about the kind of machine you want beforehand and how to assemble the equipment once you get it.

Consider authorized specialty fitness retailers – Considering authorized specialty fitness retailers is beneficial. It is advisable to create a list of local retailers who deal with fitness equipment and the kind of brands they carry. The majority of dealers sell certain brands exclusively, which makes it crucial to perform your research some time before the day you intend to buy the equipment. The majority of specialty fitness dealers have educated staff members, high quality equipment and they are capable of assembling and servicing your products effectively. Some provide their clients with financing options. Some of these dealers also have good relationships with personal trainers who can assist you to start your exercise program with ease.

Test the machine – If you opt to purchase the machine online, it is advisable to look for a way to test the machine through a gym, spa, hotel or a friend. Competent manufacturers usually sell commercial products and it is therefore possible to find out the way their machines work somewhere else. You should be ready to try out the machine in the way in which you will be using it. Almost all machines seem and feel adequate if tested for five minutes. However, you will only notice major differences in comfort and quality when you start putting the machine through its paces, utilizing different programs or when exercising in both forward and backward motions. In order to ensure successful try out, you should put on comfortable exercise clothes and jogging or walking shoes.

Features To Look For When Buying Best Elliptical Trainer

Adjustable incline – This is a feature that distinguishes a cross trainer from other machines. Adjusting inclines vary the focus on muscle groups and provide a great method to add variety to the routine. This feature is worth looking for because the added variety can minimize boredom, improve motivation and prevent you from reaching an exercise plateau.

Smooth elliptical motion – The elliptical motion offers the closest simulation to running and walking available without the impact. A crucial factor to consider here is how the motion feels. Some equipment has a kick in its motion whereby the heels come up off the platform. If you do not want to feel a bounce or kick in your motion, it is wise to look for equipment that offers a true elliptical movement pattern for forward and backward directions.

Natural movement – When trying an elliptical, it is important to ask yourself how the movement feels. Does the machine feel smooth? In order to answer these questions, you should try various types of machines. Spend more than twenty minutes doing your exercises on a unit. You should look out for signs of unusual stress on the hips or knees. You should also be in a position to exercise in a neutral position without bending over or reaching the handrails.

Dependent upper body motion – Some machines come with upper body levers, which add upper body elements. With upper body movement, you can accomplish a number of upper body strengthening.

Adjustable resistance – Good elliptical machines have a wide range of resistance that can be adjusted electronically. You should purchase a machine that makes resistance changes intuitive and simple.

Forward and reverse motions – The ability to reverse or move forward adds challenge and variety to the workout. It also minimizes the risk of repetitive use injuries common with some stair climber and treadmill users.

Quiet operation – You should look for a machine that offers quiet operation and feels smooth.

Heart rate interactivity – You should look for an elliptical machine that has heart rate control programs that will adjust your workout variables while at the same time measuring your heart rate to ensure that you remain within this range. All you need to do is enter your desired heart rate and the machine will respond accordingly all through the workout process.

Safety features – It is advisable to look for various safety features that will secure your machine even when it is not in use. Examples are locking features to keep the equipment from being started or the pedals from moving.

Maintenance – Look for a maintenance-free machine, which is properly designed and takes normal wear and tear into account.

Warranty – You should consider purchasing an elliptical machine that comes with a warranty. Most high quality machines provide a lifetime warranty. It is advisable to look for a machine that has a warranty of more than one year for labor and a minimum of one to three years coverage on parts.

Types Of Elliptical Trainers

Elliptical Trainers

They are lower-body only cardio machines that have foot pedals that one stands on and stationary handlebar where one holds. The machines are used by standing on the pedals and pushing on them resulting to circular, elliptical movements. To exercise on an elliptical trainer, you need to extend the knee and hip in order to work the glutes, hamstrings and quads.

Elliptical Cross-Trainers

These are cardio machines that work the lower and upper body. They have similar pedal platforms with elliptical trainers. They also move in similar elliptical pattern. Cross-trainers have moving arms, which work the upper body as one pushes on the pedals. When working on this machine, you need to push and pull on the metal arms in an alternating pattern to the feet. Apart from targeting the legs through hip and knee extension, the workout also targets your elbows and shoulders. In order to work out the upper body, you can pull back or retract and protract the collarbones and shoulder blades using an elliptical cross trainer.

Elliptical Gliders

They highly reassemble an elliptical trainer. The pedals of elliptical gliders move up and down slightly at a backward angle. Unlike the elliptical trainers and cross-trainers, elliptical gliders do not circle. Nevertheless, they work the legs through hip and knee extension. It is possible to pedal both backward and forward on the elliptical gliders just like with other elliptical machines. Resistance from the machines is only caused by forward movement.

Front Positioning

The cheapest machine of the three is a machine that has a drive to the front end. Such a machine has more moving parts and it therefore requires more maintenance as compared to other kinds of machines. This kind of machine also produces slightly more noise, which can make your workouts more unpleasant. This machine also has a forward lean to it, which means that your body will not be in an upright position as you exercise. Although this is not a problem to many people, some individuals may find it more uncomfortable to perform the exercises in this position.

Rear Positioning

Elliptical machines with rear mechanism were the first type of machines to be released in the market. Having been in the market for the longest time, they have a longer track record in terms of necessities and maintenance. Unlike the front drive models, rear drive models do not have many moving parts meaning that they have fewer tasks to be done on them. In addition, the majority of people like using them because they allow a person’s body to remain in a more comfortable and upright position. The rear drive model does not produce a lot of noise and therefore a person using it enjoys a pleasant moment. Note that this kind of drive is much more expensive as compared to front-drive model.

Center Positioning

The center drive model is the newest variation of elliptical machines. It is the most durable machine and it is usually among the most expensive machines to purchase. This kind of machine comes with a lot of bonuses which enables you to have great experiences as you reach your fitness goals. In general, unlike the rear and front drive machines, this machine is more compact, which makes it more useful for individuals who do not have a lot of space. It also does not produce noise.

Final Words

All the elliptical machines on this list will provide you with a great and unique experience. The most significant factor to consider when searching for an elliptical machine for home use are if it is low impact, comfortable to use and will allow you to perform challenging exercises. It is also important to consider if the elliptical machine is well built and durable. By choosing such an elliptical trainer, you do not have to replace it soon. Using an elliptical trainer will help you to enhance your muscular and cardiovascular strength. By buying an elliptical trainer for home use, you can achieve your fitness goals without having to spend a lot of money on gym fees.