A Look at the Elliptical Machine

by : James Knight

The elliptical machine (also known as the cross trainer) has grown in popularity in the fitness community. They're found in almost every fitness room across the globe, and it's not a secret as to why. Elliptical trainers are a great addition to a gym, or home, because of their unique designs, comfort, and the exercise they deliver. Most elliptical trainer users are very pleased with the workouts that they get by using the machines.

The Design:

At first glance, most people describe an elliptical machine as a bike/stair-climber mix. Their designs make working out seem effortless, yet still give way to great results. Most elliptical trainers are designed to let the person on them have full control over the speed, while the machine can control the tension of the pedals.

The Pedals:

The pedals are set on a track that allows them to move in an oval, reducing the jarring and joint strain often associated with treadmills, or stair-climbers. This track, in some elliptical machine designs, can be raised and lowered depending on the intensity of the workout. Traditionally, however, only the tension is heightened, making the legs work harder, however keeping the joints safe.

The Control Panel:

There are some elliptical machines that do not have a control panel, but most high quality cross trainers do. This is where the length of the workout, intensity, and personal information of the person is inputted. Some elliptical trainers actually have preprogramed workouts for those seeking to build up stamina, lose weight, build cardiovascular strength, or wish to customize a program.

The Cost:

Although buying your own elliptical trainer would cost a pretty penny, there are many who do, and find a lot of enjoyment out of owning their own cross trainer. You can find inexpensive elliptical trainers for $200 or lower. Though, if you're looking for a heavier, higher quality option, you might want to look at purchasing a top brand. These cost much more, ranging anywhere from 2,000 dollars to close to 5,000 dollars a piece.

So as you can see with this very basic information, the elliptical machine is in a completely different league than a treadmill, bike, or stair-climber. Cross trainers are gaining a great amount of popularity due to their sleek and quiet design, low joint impact, and fair prices. They will continue to rise.

If you're still unsure whether or not an elliptical trainer is right for you or not, you could always go to a gym or fitness center and give on a test drive. It's a safe bet that if you give it a fair try, you will not be disappointed, or choose to exercise with anything else.