These days, most individuals set up a home gym or enroll in a gym to stay fit and healthy. The world is obsessed with fitness and health. When that’s the case, isn’t it natural that kids would also be interested in exercising and staying healthy?
After all, these children take up their parents as role models, and hence, when mom and dad strive hard to stay in shape and form, it is natural that kids try the various equipment at the gym or at home.
This being said, an elliptical is a low-impact machine that offers a full-body workout involving the arms, shoulders, legs, and back.
This machine looks like pedaling on a bicycle, and it naturally attracts a kid’s attention who tries using the machine every time the mom or dad uses it.
But is it good to allow offspring to work out a couple of times a week? What would be the right age for kids to start using the machine?
What’s the Minimum Age for Kids to Use an Elliptical Machine?
Kids, though small, have flexible hearts that can adapt to any physical variations imposed on the body. Hence, if you have been avoiding your children, fearing insufficient cardiopulmonary function, your reasoning is wrong.
A child’s heart rate increases more rapidly than adults and can self-regulate rapidly when the fitness session is over.
The lungs are also more elastic than adults and are also not limiting.
But, if the child is suffering from asthma, breathing-related problems, or when the climatic conditions in your place are extreme (too cold or hot), it is always better to consult the family physician and get an opinion before doing anything.
Right from the age of 6, the muscles in a child grow similar to that of adults. The muscles and joints are resilient, and training regularly gradually helps the body develop and grow optimally.
So, what’s preventing us from keeping our children from using an elliptical?
The kid’s motivation levels determine whether or not the child is ready to use the elliptical machine.
While the home gym setup and the machine seem alluring initially, over time, the same activity might seem boring and monotonous for the little ones.
It is mainly because we use an elliptical alone in a room with no people around to keep encouraging. There is no competitive spirit. We don’t seem challenged to beat others with different speeds and resistance levels.
Hence, in comparison to other sports activities, which involve playing with other kids, meeting people, and having fun, working out using an exercise machine seems dull.
So, before forming any routine for the kid, try and observe whether the child would be sufficiently motivated to use the elliptical regularly following a definite workout program.
But never allow them to cycle at intense speed and resistance levels. Otherwise, the whole fun element involved in the training routine is killed.
Have a Thorough Knowledge of the User Manual Before Allowing Your Kid to Use the Elliptical Trainer
Once the question “Can I use the elliptical” pops out of your kid’s mouth, the very first action, as a responsible parent, must involve going through the user manual to find any information about kids using the trainer, and if so, the minimum age required to make use of the machine.
Most ellipticals have a minimum age requirement of 12 years, and if that’s the case, please don’t use the models overstepping the rules.
Either wait until the child turns 12 or find some other model that could be suitable for your kid’s age.
Getting Started on the Elliptical Trainer
Even though the trainer might allow kids to exercise and the child might be interested in working out on the elliptical, it is recommended that the training routine starts gradually and slowly.
Set the machine at the least speed and resistance levels possible, limiting it to short sessions.
Start with one to two sessions per week and progress gradually to lengthier and more intense workout routines as the kid gains stamina and momentum.
How Long is Good Enough?
If the kid is aged between 6 and 8 years, start with a 5-10 minute session. is recommended
If the kid is between 8 and 10 years of age, starting the session with a 10-15 minute duration or beyond (15-20 minutes) is advisable.
Try varying the exercise routines to break any monotony and include elements of motivation such as small but smart challenges, playing songs, and the presence of games, videos, and more to keep the fitness session interesting.
The Types of Ellipticals That Children Can use
If the child feels comfortable working out on a standard elliptical, don’t prohibit the kid from doing so as there is no problem using the machine as long as the child feels comfortable using it.
But, many kinds of ellipticals are specifically designed to suit kids’ needs.
For instance, the Kids Elliptical Trainer (Elementary Size) by KidsFit is a kid-only trainer with most features available in the standard machines, such as full-body workout options, no-impact training, ability to track heart rate, speed, time, and distance, and upper and lower gliders.
The machine can bear up to a maximum user weight of 250 lbs, has a variable stride length of 12-14 inches, and a dimension of 50″ x 24″ x 58″.
Kids who measure between 42 and 59 inches can use this machine. Any child over nine years of age is suitable for using this elliptical, which costs around $2500-$3000.
So, we can observe that while kids can use certain elliptical models, not all of them are suitable for use by children.
But, kids can even use the elliptical machines used by adults if the user manual permits this. For this, read about the minimum age required for using the elliptical machine.
It is recommended that an adult stays near the kid to ensure that he/she is comfortable using the machine.
Start the sessions slowly, maintaining lower speed and resistance levels, and keep the sessions short, for not more than 15-20 minutes initially.