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  • Price
  • Movement quality
  • Training space
  • Type of use
  • Intensity

Price

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Price range

£ to £ 317 11995

Movement quality

The movement quality of an elliptical cross trainer is decisive for a comfortable experience while exercising. Elliptical cross trainers of a high movement quality are more silent and run smoother, i.e.. Balance mass, transmission ratio, ball bearings as well as quality of material and workmanship are important features of the movement quality of an elliptical cross trainer.

Movement quality

Training space

Choose your elliptical cross trainer according to the given floor space.

Space requirement (length)

Type of use

The type of use includes intensity, duration, and frequency of use, i.e.. Solely elliptical cross trainers marked as professional are suitable for gyms. Those machines are also optimal for intensive home use, because they are best in quality of material and workmanship as well as stability, and durability.

Semi-professional elliptical cross trainers are suitable for ambitious home users. Due to their high loadability, easy operation, and joint-gentle movement, they are also used at hotels, clubs, company's facilities, and for therapy.

Range of application

Intensity

Some elliptical cross trainers of our range of products are especially designed for high loads. Elliptical cross trainers of a high loadability are also great for ambitious home use, because they are of a very high stability and high-quality workmanship.

Average training time a week

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Sport-Tiedje puts each fitness equipment through its paces. Then our team of sports scientists, serious athletes, and service technicians of many years of experience evaluate the products of different categories. Compare easily the products using the Sport-Tiedje test judgement and find your appropriate equipment.
The equipment of an elliptical cross trainer includes balance unit, brake system, training computer (display, programmes, etc.), and extras like transport wheels, book holders, etc.. A good equipment makes exercising more varied and more comfortable. Your workout becomes more effective with pulse measuring.
Innovation is a special criterion of the Sport-Tiedje elliptical cross trainer test rating. Here, we only rate equipment, which is characterized by technical innovations, which are really important for the further development of elliptical cross trainers. The higher the test rating of the elliptical cross trainer, the more advanced the development already is!
The balance unit consists of balance mass, pedal bearing, ball bearing, etc. and is very important for concentric run. Transmission ratio and stride length and stride width in combination with stride height contribute to a concentric run. When the elliptical cross trainer offers a good concentric run, exercising is very joint-gentle. Muscle activity is distinctively increased as well.
The stability of the crosstrainer is achieved by sturdy feet, high own weight, and a stable frame construction. A sturdy elliptical cross trainer is not only durable - it is stable even for challenging workout sessions and provides a higher weight load capacity.
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Elliptical cross trainer purchase guide

Due to the great demand of elliptical cross trainers, there is a multitude of suppliers in the intensely corted category of elliptical cross trainers. Providing a diversified offer on the one hand, the equipment is different regarding quality, reliability, functionality or user-friendliness on the other hand. We offer you all information worth knowing about elliptical cross trainers and their advantages for your training in our purchase guide for elliptical cross trainers. Here you get to know, among other things,

  • how to lose weight and to build muscles effectively and to improve your general fitness/cardio with an elliptical cross trainer
  • how to exercise correctly and in a varied way with an elliptical cross trainer
  • how to distinguish a high-quality elliptical cross trainer from an inferior one
  • which equipment an elliptical cross trainer is made of
  • which types of elliptical cross trainers are available - from a beginner machine to the professional elliptical cross trainer
  • what are the differences between elliptical cross trainers and other fitness equipment and many more ...


In short: We show you how to find the elliptical cross trainer, which fulfills your individual requirements perfectly.

1. Advantages of an elliptical cross trainer

Elliptical cross trainers (or just ellipticals) are a type of fitness equipment, by which the natural movement of walking, jogging or running - and seldomly of climbing stairs - is simulated. As the movement on rails is guided and the arms participate to a large extent in the movement, it is often compared to the one of cross-country skiing. The training is very joint-gentle, because the movement is guided and the feet are permanently on the treads. A firm treading, as i. e. when doing jogging, is avoided with the elliptical cross trainer.

In addition, elliptical cross trainers offer a sustainable cardiovascular training, which can be in the range of intensity of very easy to very intensive. The intensity depends upon the speed of the user and the set resistance. The chief work on an elliptical cross trainer is done by the big muscle groups in legs and bottom. Due to involving the arms via the pendulum bars, the muscles of the lower back and the abdominal muscles as well as the shoulder girdle can be involved as well. Thanks to this additional muscle work, the training with an elliptical cross trainer is also called a whole body training.

The movement with an elliptical cross trainer is not just very joint-gentle but also very good for losing weight thanks to the high percentage of muscles involved. Depending upon the intensity, you can burn up to 700 kcal in an hour of training with the elliptical cross trainer. And the training is also extremely simple, because the movement is given and it is adapted to the natural movement of the human being. That's why, elliptical cross trainers have developed to popular fitness machines for home use and at professional training facilities since their invention in the 90s.

2. Find the appropriate elliptical cross trainer

Important questions about different aspects come up when you search the optimal elliptical cross trainer, which fulfills the requirements of the user in quality, comfort, stability, and user-friendliness equally:

  • What do I have to consider when I purchase an elliptical cross trainer?
  • Can I lose weight with an elliptical cross trainer?
  • What do I exactly train with an elliptical cross trainer?
  • What are the differences and advantages compared to other fitness equipment?
  • What does an elliptical cross trainer, which suits my requirements, cost?
  • Can I also train on an elliptical cross trainer, when I have health restrictions?
  • Is it possible that my whole family trains with an elliptical cross trainer?
  • and many more.


We give you useful assistance and show you, what you should consider when you choose an elliptical cross trainer, which meets your requirements - appropriate to every fitness level and in consideration of different experiences. Benefit from a good first overview about the wide world of products of elliptical cross trainers with our recommendations for elliptical cross trainers.

Our recommendations for elliptical cross trainers for beginners

Just now when you start the training with an elliptical cross trainer, it does not necessarily need to be a high-end machine. There are many elliptical cross trainers for beginners at an affordable price category, which - however - do not offer the range of functions and the stability of high-quality elliptical cross trainers, but which are still very good for an effective and lasting training with an elliptical cross trainer.

Affordable elliptical cross trainers are not any cheap elliptical cross trainers

The price of an elliptical cross trainer is an important argument throughout the decision-making process for the equipment of your choice. It's a fact that good things do not necessarily need to be expensive and it's also a fact that supposedly cheap elliptical cross trainers would cost the most in a long term, when you lose the fun to use it due to the poor quality. However, you do not have to be an expert in order to find an elliptical cross trainer at a good price-performance ratio, which you can use for a long time and which protects your wallet additionally. Benefit here from our recommendations for elliptical cross trainers in order to get a short overview, which models make you well equipped for your start in the training with an elliptical cross trainer.

  • cardiostrong EX 40
    cardiostrong EX 40
    Kettler elliptical cross trainer CTR 4 (22 kg balance mass, very joint-gentle movement, very sturdy with good technology, successor of the successful model Kettler CTR3)
  • cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX 40 (smooth concentric run due to a balance mass of 28 kg, 19 motivating training programmes, comfortable treads, test winner of the ETM elliptical cross trainer test, overall evaluation: "very good", 08/2011)

Our recommendation for elliptical cross trainers for advanced users

For those users among you, who have already gained wide-range experiences in operating and training with an elliptical cross trainer and want to achieve higher performances or want to intensify their training, the following elliptical cross trainers are ideal:

  • Life Fitness elliptical cross trainer X1 Go (comfortable elliptical movement system, low pedal space for a realistic training experience, very sturdy frame design, modern, user-friendly training computer, and test winner in the category of elliptical cross trainers up to 2,000 Euros in the Fit for Fun 11/2013)
  • Taurus Fitness elliptical cross trainer X7.7 (balance mass of 14.5 kg in front, hence a very harmonic movement, good technical equipment, price-performance tip)
  • cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX80 (unique elliptical cross trainer of its price category with an adjustable stride length, improved successor of the model which was evaluated with "very good" (93.1%) in the ETM-Testmagazin (12/2014), 16 resistance levels and 19 programmes provide a varied training, four pulse-controlled programmes make the training very effective)
  • cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX60 (excellent movement quality thanks to two balance masses at minimum set-up dimensions, perfectly adaptable to the height thanks to multiple adjustable treads and arm bars, very deep step-through and cushioned pedals for a joint-gentle and comfortable training)

Purchase recommendation for elliptical cross trainers: Premium and commercial equipment

High-quality premium elliptical cross trainers are naturally at another price category than discounter models. In return, professional elliptical cross trainers provide more quality and stability. Equipment of the premium category offers stability even for intensive loads and can be much stronger loaded in principle. It applies to the maximum user weight as well as to the top speed and the duration and frequency of your training. When many persons want to train with the elliptical cross trainer or you use the equipment with sporty, ambitious objectives, then a high-quality elliptical cross trainer is the right choice.

High-quality elliptical cross trainers adapt to you

High-quality elliptical cross trainers often offer features, by which they can be adapted to your needs. It includes special user programmes or user memories for the quick access to the own data as well as special systems, by which the stride length can be adjusted. Hence, high-quality elliptical cross trainers are not just suitable for users of different heights but also in order to simulate different running styles effectively.

Premium elliptical cross trainer and commercial cross trainer

When a sports equipment is attributed to be of commercial quality, that means that the elliptical cross trainer can also be used at fitness gyms, it is not an excluding feature for home use. Premium or commercial elliptical cross trainers are also suitable for home use. It's especially for an intensive and frequent use that professional elliptical cross trainers are a first-class alternative. High-quality professional elliptical cross trainers of fitness gyms are also suitable for users with high ambitions, because they are designed for a more intensive use and a higher performance.

What is a high-quality elliptical cross trainer?

A high-quality elliptical cross trainer is a fitness machine, of which the overall framework is just right. It offers a comfortable movement and a high stability, it is of an excellent workmanship and uses first-class materials in order to guarantee a long-term use. In addition, high-quality elliptical cross trainers provide a gentle movement and keep up to your training progress thanks to their wide range of performance.

  • cardiostrong EX90 Plus
    cardiostrong EX90 Plus
    cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX80 (improved successor of the ETM-Testmagazin (12/2014) with "very good" (93.1%) evaluated model, revolutionary, space-efficient design, great course of motion, unique elliptical cross trainer of its price category with an adjustable stride length from 45 to 65 cm, practical training programmes, ergonomic pendulum arms)
  • cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90 (revolutionary, space-efficient design, electronically adjustable stride length, great course of motion, sturdy construction)
  • cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90 Plus (infinitely adjustable stride length, excellent stability, extraordinary training movement, futurist design, different grip positions thanks to the multi-handles, awarded with the ISPO Gold Award 2016/17, the Plus X-Award 2016/17 "Best Product" as well as the Plus X-Award 2016 in the categories high quality, operating function, design, and functionality)
  • Taurus commercial elliptical cross trainer 10.5 Pro (commercial quality: sturdy, varied, and very easy to use, touch screen display, generator driven - the price-performance tip among the top models of elliptical cross trainers!)


No matter, which elliptical cross trainer you buy - our staff is happy to give advice about questions regarding the topic fitness by phone under the service hotline 0049 4621 4210 0, by email on info@sport-tiedje.de or at one of our stores.

3. Test winner of elliptical cross trainers

When selecting the appropriate elliptical cross trainer, the consideration of test reports, customers' opinions, and test ratings are a good support to find the equipment, which you can rely on and with which you want to train and which you want to buy finally. In this overview, we present you a selection of the best elliptical cross trainers on the market, which are tested by renowned journals, test institutes, and institutions and are award winning. The tests listed here were done on the basis of different methods. While the ETM-Testmagazin, i. e., has a deep and closer look at the equipment in particular, Fit for Fun compares several machines within a test category.

An overview about the test winners of all fitness equipment categories can be found in our Fitness equipment test. Here we inform you regularly about current tests regarding elliptical cross trainers, treadmills, exercise bikes, and more.

The cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90 Plus - Test winner thanks to innovation, quality, and excellent movement

The EX90 Plus is one of the most high-quality elliptical cross trainers of our range, what is underlined by several awards and best test results of renowned institutes.

2015/16: ISPO Award, Plus X-Award, elliptical cross trainer test of the test journal ETM (08/2015): The cardiostrong EX90 Plus scores a strike

In the number 08/2015, the ETM Testmagazin tested elliptical cross trainers from 2,500 to 3,500 € in detail and attested the cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90 Plus „excellent training ergonomics with individual stride adjustment“. Besides its high-quality workmanship, among other things, its user-specific programme as well as the excellent course of motion were emphasized.
ETM Testsiegel EX90 Plus
ETM Test seal EX90 Plus

At the fitness trade fair ISPO in Munich, the cardiostrong EX90 Plus was honoured with the ISPO Gold Award 2016/17. For the expert jury, the EX90 Plus is a high-quality, innovative home fitness elliptical cross trainer, which can also be used semi-professionally due to its quality and design and which convinces by its noiseless mechanics. Due to its extremely space-efficient design, it can be placed in every apartment. Its unique infinitely variable adjustment of the stride length allows a universal use.


The cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90 Plus even scored a strike at the biggest innovation price in the world, the Plus X-Award (04/2016). At this prestigious awarding, the EX90 Plus secured the much sought-after Plus X-Award in four categories, namely functionality, design, operating comfort, and high quality.

Find the complete test report here

12/2015: Fit for Fun elliptical cross trainer test

In the number 12/2015, the Fit for Fun published extracts of the big fitness equipment test of the field biomechanics in sports of the TU Munich. Some machines stood out especially in the test. The Life Fitness elliptical cross trainer X1 Go became the test winner and the Fit for Fun judged as follows:

The X1 Go is test winner and impresses by the excellent motion quality and ergonomics; It's only regarding the equipment and assembly that little deductions are given in the B-grade

It's the cardiostrong EX90, which mainly convinced technically. The conclusion of the editing:

With adjustable stride length and a very smooth motion, the most stable and most well-thought out elliptical cross trainer of the test; it also convinces by the smart control

In the price-performance ratio, the cardiostrong EX40 elliptical cross trainer has very good results, but it also collects points in other features like the Fit for Fun judges:

A strong allrounder and price-performance winner, which received the best grade of the jury regarding load control and programmes and also has good results in ergonomics

Find the complete fitness equipment test of the field for biomechanics in sports of the TU Munich on: FG Biomechanics in sport tests fitness equipment for leisure sportsmen.
Elliptical cross trainers in the fitness equipment test of the Fit for Fun 12/2015Top reasons (direct equipment comparison)
1. Life Fitness elliptical cross trainer X1 GO console
Crosstrainer Testsieger Life Fitness X1 Go
Display: +++++
Equipment resistance: +++++
Ergonomics / Course of motion: +++++
Programmes / Features: +++++
Safety: +++++
Integrated heart rate measuring: +++++
Muscle load: ++++
2. cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90
cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90
Display: +++++
Equipment resistance: +++
Ergonomics / Course of motion: ++++
Programmes / Features: +++++
Safety: ++++
Integrated heart rate measuring: +
Muscle load: ++++
3. Kettler elliptical cross trainer CTR3 (successor model: Kettler elliptical cross trainer CTR4)
In the test: Kettler elliptical cross trainer CTR3
Display: ++++
Equipment resistance: ++++
Ergonomics / Course of motion: ++++
Programmes / Features: ++++
Safety: +++
Integrated heart rate measuring: ++++
Muscle load: ++++
4. cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX40
Price-performance winner in the elliptical cross trainer test: cardiostrong EX40
Display: ++
Equipment resistance: ++++
Ergonomics / Course of motion: ++++
Programmes / Features: ++
Safety: +++
Integrated heart rate measuring: ++
Muscle load: +++
5. Taurus elliptical cross trainer X7.1
In the elliptical cross trainer text: Taurus X7.1
Display: +++
Equipment resistance: ++
Ergonomics / Course of motion: +++
Programmes / Features: +++
Safety: ++
Integrated heart rate measuring: +
Muscle load: +++

12/2014: Elliptical cross trainer test of the Testmagazin ETM

In a large-scale online test, the ETM-Magazin put several elliptical cross trainers through their paces in December 2014. The cardiostrong elliptical cross trainers EX80 and the Taurus X7.1, i. e., were examined carefully.
Elliptical cross trainer test up to 2,000 Euro

The cardiostrong EX80 was awarded with the predicate "very good" in the elliptical cross trainer test. It was especially emphasized that it it the unique elliptical cross trainer of the test, which is equipped with an individual stride length adjustment and is in the price category below 2,000 Euros. It says in the elliptical cross trainer test report that the stride length represents one of the most important criteria which you have to consider when you purchase an elliptical cross trainer. Furthermore, the great training variety, the innovative technology, and the very high training comfort were commended. The cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX80 is the perfect partner for everyone, who wants to enjoy a diversified, comfortable, and regular training!

Read the complete test report here!

Taurus X7.1 in the elliptical cross trainer test

In the ETM elliptical cross trainer test, the Taurus X7.1 received the predicate "good" and just barely missed the best grade. The Taurus X7.1 was tested in the category elliptical cross trainer up to 1,000 Euros and is especially suitable for leisure sportsmen and beginners, who want to do a joint-gentle training at home. It was especially emphasized that the tested elliptical cross trainer provides a wide range of different requirements as well as different purposes of training. As the training programmes can be adjusted in difficulty as well, an individual training of every training level is possible.

Read the complete test report here!

11/2013: Elliptical cross trainer test of the fitness trade journal Fit-for-Fun

In the number of November 2013, the Fit-for-Fun tested three elliptical cross trainers in two categories each. The test categories were elliptical cross trainers of the price category up to 800 Euros and elliptical cross trainer up to 2,000 Euros. Just fitness equipment for the home training was evaluated. The elliptical cross trainers were evaluated according to six criteria and the price-performance ratio was included as well. The evaluation criteria of elliptical cross trainers were: operation, range of resistance, ergonomics and course of motion, the load control as well as the programmes.
Elliptical cross trainer test winner up to 800 Euros Kettler CTR3

The elliptical cross trainer Kettler CTR3 is test winner of the price category up to 800 Euros. The Kettler CTR3 received the highest grade for the criterion range of resistance and even competes with many commercial elliptical cross trainers. The range of load is from 25 to 400 Watt. Furthermore, the Kettler fitness machine convinced by its precise load control. The pulse can be measured with hand sensors of the Kettler CTR3, an earclip or a separately available chest strap.

Here you find wide-range information about the Kettler elliptical cross trainer CTR4, the successor of the Kettler elliptical cross trainer CTR3.

Life Fitness elliptical cross trainer X1 Track

The test winner of elliptical cross trainers in the category up to 2,000 Euros is the X1 Go of Life Fitness. The elliptical cross trainer offers the stability of a commercial machine. Moreover, it collected best grades in several categories. The testers of the elliptical cross trainers were especially impressed by the profesionally designed console. The elliptical cross trainer also convinced in the test by equipment and pulse measuring. A chest strap is included in delivery, in addition, the X1 Go is equipped with a floor height levelling, transport wheels, an energy save mode as well as a cup holder and a book holder.

The test winner of elliptical cross trainers is available at Sport-Tiedje with English or German console! Here you find profound information about the Life Fitness elliptical cross trainer X1 Go.

08/2011: Elliptical cross trainer test of the ETM-Magazin

The ETM-Testmagazin tested several elliptical cross trainers in its number 08/2011. 11 machines of well-known manufacturers were especially tested on the basis of "workmanship" and "training quality". Find the complete ETM elliptical cross trainer test here.

First place: The cardiostrong EX40 became test winner of elliptical cross trainers with 95.3%. The high-quality workmanship and the safe use were especially emphasized.

Test institutes and test journals in an overview

Beispiel: Testsiegel Fit for Fun
Example: Test seal Fit For Fun
Fit for Fun – The fitness and lifestyle journal with an edition of more than 140,000 copies and a range of more than 1.3 million readers is one of the most popular and most successful journals in this category. Besides the thematic focus on fitness, nutrition, and lifestyle, the journal reports about the latest sports-medical developments and knowledge regularly and has become one of the opinion leaders of sports and fitness due to its expertise since the publication in 1994.


Fit for Fun is regularly supported by the renowned Technische Universitaet Munich (TUM, TU Munich) in examination and evaluation of its tests of elliptical cross trainers. Not least because of this reason, elliptical cross trainers, which are awarded by the Fit for Fun, stand for high quality, reliability, a good price-performance ratio, ergonomics or user-friendliness.


Beispiel: Testsiegel ETM
Example: Test seal ETM
ETM – Testmagazin – The independent lifestyle and test journal ETM offers its readers profound tests and reports on a regular basis about products of leisure time, technics, household, and so on. Due to the excellent technical competence, ETM is an often used guide and guideline for purchase decisions of its readership. ETM informs its readers of all ages about latest trends and gives valuable consumer tips.


Beispiel: Testsiegel ISPO-Award
Example: Test seal ISPO-Award
ISPO-Award – Every year, the International Trade Fair for Sports Equipment and Sports wear (ISPO) honours the most extraordinary sports equipment with the ISPO AWARD. An expert jury of independent fitness pros and industry experts evaluates several hundred applications according to clearly defined criteria. On the basis of this selection of high-class fitness equipment, it results in an excellent reference for retailers as well as in a helpful orientation for end consumers and fitness pros for purchasing fitness equipment.


Beispiel: Testsiegel Plus X-Award
Example: Test seal Plus X-Award
Plus X-Award – Among other things, fitness products are awarded with the PlusX-Award, which feature a high level of innovative technologies, matchless design, high ergonomics, and functionality, high-quality material as well as a user-oriented usability. Being represented by international and independent experts and industry experts, the Plus X expert jury awards the Plus X-Award, the worldwide largest innovation price nowadays.

Award-winning quality: The cardiostrong elliptical cross trainer EX90 Plus
cardiostrong EX90 Plus The winner of the ISPO Gold Award 2016/17, the Plus X-Award 2016/17 "Best Product"
as well as of the Plus X-Award 2016 in the categories high quality, design, operating function, and functionality.

Sport-Tiedje test rating

Sport-Tiedje puts every fitness equipment through its paces. Then our team of sports scientists, competitive athletes, and service technicians evaluates the product on the basis of different categories. Using the Sport-Tiedje test rating, you can easily compare the products. This is another indicator we offer you for your selection of an elliptical cross trainer. We divided our test rating of elliptical cross trainer in four categories:

Equipment

The equipment of an elliptical cross trainer includes the flywheel unit, the brake system, the training computer (display, programmes, etc.), and extras like transport wheels, holders, etc.. A good equipment makes the training more varied and more comfortable. Your training becomes more effective with pulse measuring and watt control.

Innovation

Innovation is a special criterion of the Sport-Tiedje test rating of elliptical cross trainers. Here, we only evaluate machines, which feature technical innovations, which are really important for the further development of elliptical cross trainers. The better the test rating of the elliptical cross trainer, the more progressive is the machine.

Concentric run

The resistance system, the transmission ratio, and the stride length and width in combination with the stride height contribute to the concentric run. If the elliptical cross trainer is equipped with a good concentric run, the training is very joint-gentle. The muscle activity is also distinctively increased.

Our Sport-Tiedje test ratings regarding the concentric run of elliptical cross trainers inform about the actual operational behaviour, notwithstanding the given weight of the balance mass. This test rating offers you an excellent indication, when you want to get information about the operational behaviour before you buy an elliptical cross trainer.

Stability

The stability of an elliptical cross trainer is achieved by sturdy feet, a high own weight, and a stable frame construction. A stable elliptical cross trainer is not just durable - it is stable even during challenging training sessions and provides a higher weight loadability.

4. Technology and equipment of an elliptical cross trainer

In this section, you get to know more about the technical features of an elliptical cross trainer and which qualitative and functional characteristics should be considered before the purchase is done. In addition, our expert tips serve as competent recommendations and helpful tips for a better judging of an elliptical cross trainer in order to support you in your search for an appropriate machine.
Darstellung: Schrittlänge
Figure: Stride length

The stride length of an elliptical cross trainer

The stride length of an elliptical cross trainer indicates, how long the steps are set by the elliptical cross trainer. Due to their longer legs, tall persons have a bigger stride length than small persons. The first question, you should ask, is regarding the users. Who does intend to use the elliptical cross trainer and what's the height of the tallest user? The taller the users, the longer the stride length should be. The rule of thumb is: When the tallest user measures more than 175 cm, the stride length should be at least 50 cm. In principle: a higher stride length is often felt to be more comfortable by most users.

Expert tip regarding the stride length of an elliptical cross trainer

Henok
Pay attention to an elliptical cross trainer with adjustable stride length. It offers several advantages. On the one hand, several persons of different heights can comfortably use the elliptical cross trainer. On the other hand, the training with a stride length adjustment offers more diversion, different running styles can be simulated. It's the same for an elliptical cross trainer like for running: When you run, your steps are longer than when you go jogging leisurely. A short stride length is more similar to the movement on a stepper or to climbing stairs, a long stride length is more similar to jogging or cross-country skiing. The stride length adjustment can be manually or electronically done. In the meantime, there are even elliptical cross trainers with an infinitely variable adjustability available.

Stride width and pedal space of an elliptical cross trainer

Darstellung: Pedalabstand
Figure: Pedal space
The feet of a human being are close to each other doing normal walking. Hence, the feet should also be close to each other on an elliptical cross trainer doing a comfortable training, which feels naturally. The measure of the stride width is also called Q-factor or tread space. Elliptical cross trainers with a small pedal space offer a much higher quality of motion, because the motion feels to be more natural. When the space between the treads is very high, it might happen that the feet move in an unfavourable position. It might cause an disadvantageous position of the hip joint. The movement is tiring and unpleasant in the long term. It's best to make sure that the pedal space is below 13 cm, hence as low as possible. Elliptical cross trainers with a pedal space of less than 5 cm offer an almost perfect movement, which is very close to natural movement patterns. Due to the construction, it is most often the bigger (longer) equipment, which offers a smaller pedal space.

Brake systems of an elliptical cross trainer

The brake system is an essential criterion when deciding which elliptical cross trainer you want to purchase. Amont the category of elliptical cross trainers, it is differentiated between the description upright bike and exercise bike. While you can get displayed your performance in watt and also control it with an elliptical cross trainer exercise bike, the upright bikes of elliptical cross trainers are missing this feature. In this context, different brake systems as well as the operating modes of an elliptical cross trainer also play an important role.

The elliptical cross trainer exercise bike is mostly magnetically braked by means of a permanent magnet or by means of an electric coil and the brake force is set by the motor of the machine. For an elliptical cross trainer upright bike, this is manually done via the regulation of a control knob. Though there are also elliptical cross trainers exercise bikes on the market, which can be adjusted via the motor, however, these do not offer a watt display. The advantage of a watt display is a health-oriented and precisely controllable workout. The training can be adapted to the needs of the user more precisely due to a respective watt setting and a precise determination of the preferred pedalling in watt. In this context, it is also known as speed independent or watt controlled elliptical cross trainers. A pre-setting of the wattage is not possible for elliptical cross trainers, where the watt display is speed dependent. That's why these models are not used for therapeutical purpose, where it is often demanded to keep or to not exceed a certain fitness level for health reasons.

Magnetic brake system

The brake force of an elliptical cross trainer with a manually adjustable magnetic brake is operated via a mechanical control knob. Here, the balance mass is braked by means of a magnetic field of a permanent magnet. The control of the brake force respectively the electronic motor of a motor-adjustable magnetic brake system is done via a computer-controlled impulse or the manual key operation of the user. In order to bear the title exercise bike, an elliptical cross trainer has to fulfill certain requirements of the German industry norm (DIN) and of the European norm (EU) for home use (H) class A for exercise bikes (A) (DIN EU 957-1/5 HA). On the one hand, it has to include a watt display, and on the other hand, it cannot exceed the allowed deviation of the displayed performance towards the actual performance by up to 50W +/-5% and from 50W +/-10%.

Induction brake system

When the elliptical cross trainer is equipped with an induction brake system, the balance mass is braked by a magnetic field as well. In contrast to the magnetic brake system, a magnetic field is generated via a current flow by means of an electric coil, the so called eddy current brake. Here, the resistance can be adjusted up and down by changing the electric voltage of the coil. The rule is: The more voltage is generated, the bigger gets the magnetic field. This brake system measures the brake force in real, the wattage is displayed and the precise and speed-independent performance control is made possible. In order to be described as exercise bike on the market, the fulfillment of the requirements of the DIN EU 957-1/5 HA is necessary as well.

Generator brake system

Generator brake systems builds on the induction brake system. Their advantage is that - like a dynamo - the energy for the operation is generated by the user; thus the machine does not require any power supply for the operation. To all those, who want to place their elliptical cross trainer independent of a power source in the room, we recommend to buy a model driven by a generator brake system.

Expert tip for brake systems of an elliptical cross trainer

Henok
An elliptical cross trainer should be equipped with a magnetic brake system or an induction brake system, because these systems work frictionless. An electronic resistance dosage is to be favoured in contrast to a manually adjustable brake system. Training programmes with automatic resistance change can only be done with an electronic brake system or the induction brake system.

Flywheel and balance mass

The balance mass is the flywheel, which you drive by your movement and which affects the brake system. It generates the training resistance. In fact, the weight of the balance mass is not that important. We are often asked for the balance mass of an elliptical cross trainer, because formerly it was known: The heavier the balance mass, the better is the movement with the elliptical cross trainer. Due to a technical development of the joints and brake systems, this value is no longer decisive. Thus, many machine manufacturers do no longer indicated the weight of the balance mass.

Often it is disregarded that the movement quality also depends upon other criteria like the transmission ratio, the used brake system, a small pedal space, and the stability of the machine - criteria, which we would like to present you in this purchase guide for elliptical cross trainers.

Expert tip for the balance mass of elliptical cross trainers

Henok
As said before, the weight of the balance mass of an elliptical cross trainer has lost its relevance in the evaluation nowadays, it had been found out during a test of the institute for biomechanics in sports of the TU Munich (11/2015) that elliptical cross trainers, whose balance mass is above the treads, offer a higher calories consumption and provide quicker success for losing weight.

Design of an elliptical cross trainer

Besides some special models, there are two designs of an elliptical cross trainer in general: those, where the balance mass or flywheel is mounted at the back and those, where the balance mass can be found in front. You also call it rear-drive machines with a rear balance mass and front-drive models with a balance mass in front.

Balance mass at the back

Heckantrieb
Balance mass at the back
Elliptical cross trainers with a balance mass at the back often have a bigger pedal space but are shorter. Furthermore, the movement can be "higher", which allows the demand of a wide range of muscles. While the first elliptical cross trainer still provided the balance mass at the rear part of the machine and it was meant to be the standard for many years, nowadays, there are more and more models, which focus on a balance mass in the front part of the elliptical cross trainer.

Balance mass in front

Frontantrieb
Balance mass in front
The tread bars of these machines slide over a rail. Elliptical cross trainers of this category are mainly a bit bigger and mostly have a flatter and longer movement, which is also expressed in a flatter, elliptic movement pattern and a more comfortable running experience during the training. This type of elliptical cross trainers often realizes a longer stride width as well. That's the same for a smaller stride width, however, it does not result from the design but from the length of the machine. Small stride widths can also be realized for rear-driven elliptical cross trainers, when a certain design and size of the machine are given.

In addition, there are models, whose balance mass is mounted at a higher position. These are the youngest design among elliptical cross trainers. Here, the treads are free-swinging. The joint constructions are more complex. The balance mass is in front. Moreover, in general, the frame construction of these machines is a bit wider and shorter lengthes in the course of motion can be achieved.

Size of an elliptical cross trainer

It's the same for elliptical cross trainers like for buying furniture: Measure first. We indicate the set-up dimensions of the elliptical cross trainer on our product pages. In principle, elliptical cross trainers vary in their dimensions and can be of different size depending upon the manufacturer. The average value is a length of 180 cm respectively a width of 90 cm. In general, you should always still have some space to all sides, because the machine has mobile parts. The maximum pedal height is also very important. The training zone does not end at the pedal arms, but at the top of your head. Our tip: Add about 30 cm to your height - that's how high the ceiling of your set-up place should be at least. If you wish to place a protective mat under your elliptical cross trainer, it should be wider than the elliptical cross trainer, so the machine does not protrude beyond the mat.

Factor stability

Another aspect, which is very important regarding the size of the elliptical cross trainer, is the requirement of its stability, i. e. due to the weight of the user and the intensity or frequency of the training. The heavier a user is, the more sturdy and more stable the construction of an elliptical cross trainer should be - so that a good and safe course of motion is guaranteed. Pay also attention to the indication of the maximum weight load. The larger the range and intensity of the training, the more high-quality the elliptical cross trainer should be with regards to workmanship and material equipment - so that it can withstand the requirements of the training reliably and in the long term.

Last but not least, the noise of an elliptical cross trainer also depends upon the quality of the machine in construction and stability. In general, elliptical cross trainers are low-noise exercise bikes, however, there are often inconvenient noise generations for machines of the lower price range, which are caused by an insufficient workmanship, among other things.

Sport-Tiedje Testurteil: Stabilität
Sport-Tiedje test rating: Stability
By means of our Sport-Tiedje test rating, you will find the stable elliptical cross trainer you are looking for. Pay attention to a star rating as high as possible in the category "stability". It's especially regarding very affordable elliptical cross trainers, where the frame is often the weak point.


Training computer and multi-media

Elliptical cross trainers are equipped with a training computer, which provide a different range of functions depending upon price category and manufacturer. The standard benefits of a training computer of an elliptical cross trainer include adjustable resistance levels, training programmes as well as indications of training time, covered distance or speed, among other things. The standard repertoire of better elliptical cross trainers includes digital and multi-media connection possibilities with smartphones, tablets or fitness trackers, in order to document and analyse your training performance, for instance.

Diversion and entertainment are given by the interactive training software for simulating virtual training tracks around the world. Thus, i. e., you can connect your elliptical cross trainer with your tv, where a video of the track along the Swiss Alps is played, for instance. Video and elliptical cross trainer interact with each other, because the playing speed of the video adapts to your training pace or the training load varies automatically due to the height profile. In addition, special fitness Apps allow to create your training playfully by competing against your friends virtually by doing training duels on the elliptical cross trainer.

In addition, special fitness Apps allow to create your training playfully by competing against your friends virtually by doing training duels on the elliptical cross trainer.

Train more comfortably with accessory of elliptical cross trainers

Many elliptical cross trainers are equipped with little extras, which make the training much more comfortable. When you know that you want to train for a longer time, a cup holder for your drinking bottle is a great extra. Thus, you do not have to get off when you are thirsty. On a holder below the display, for instance, you can place your mobile phone, a book for reading or your tablet in order to browse in the Internet while exercising. Absorbed treads, so called cushion pads, are very comfortable for the feet and offer you an even more comfortable training with your elliptical cross trainer. By means of transport wheels, your fitness machine can be easily moved after the training without much effort.

5. Elliptical cross trainer training

As many muscle groups are demanded on an elliptical cross trainer, the training is very good, when you want to reduce your bodyweight or want to strengthen your muscles lastingly. Both is especially favoured on the elliptical cross trainer, because amost all muscle groups are demanded, which results in a high calories consumption. In this chapter, we represent you how and on which body zones the training on an elliptical cross trainer effects, with which exercises you come closer to your training targets, and what you should mind doing an elliptical cross trainer training.

Whole body training on an elliptical cross trainer

Ganzkörpertraining
Whole body training
Elliptical cross trainers combine the advantages of jogging and climbing stairs without impact forces, which come up in the moment when the floor is touched. Hence, the training is much more gentle. Due to the arm bars, which allow the use of the upper body, you train your whole body on an elliptical cross trainer in contrast to jogging. Due to the arm use, up to 85 % of the muscles of your body participate in the movement - a real whole body training with an elliptical cross trainer! Depending upon the training intensity, you can also use the elliptical cross trainer for muscle building or muscle tightening.

Which muscles are trained on an elliptical cross trainer?

Which muscles are trained with elliptical cross trainers depends upon whether the arms are used during the movement. In the following, we give you a detailed overview about the effects of an elliptical cross trainer training on the involved muscle groups.
Elliptical cross trainer muscle legs
Training: Beinmuskulatur
Training: leg muscles
The front thigh muscles (M. quadriceps femoris) ensures that the pedals of the elliptical cross trainer are pushed down and the legs are stretched in the knee joint. Elliptical cross trainer models with an adjustable platform allow the user to influence the percentage of the rear thigh muscles (M. biceps femoris) in the movement individually. The steeper the platform, the more the muscles of the thigh are demanded. The remaining leg muscles like foot muscles, calf muscles (M. triceps surae), and shinbone muscles (M. tibialis) benefit from the up and down movement of the elliptical cross trainer.
Elliptical cross trainer muscles trunk and abdomen
Training: Rumpf und Bauch
Training: trunk and abdomen
The abdominal muscles and the lower back muscles (Mm. abdominis; M. erector spinae) are responsible to stabilize the body in all positions. Like the link of a chain, the body's core (the trunk) has to be stable to allow the power transmission of the upper to the lower body. While you train on an elliptical cross trainer, your back muscles and your abdominal muscles are always tensed and are trained.
Elliptical cross trainer muscles buttocks and gluteal
Training: Po und Gesäß
Training: buttocks and gluteal muscles
The buttock muscles (Mm. glutaei) are responsible to stretch the hip with every step on the elliptical cross trainer. In addition, the gluteal muscles stabilise the pelvis. The steeper the machine is adjusted, the stronger is the training effect on gluteal muscles on an elliptical cross trainer. When you use the uphill function of your elliptical cross trainer, you train your buttock muscles even more intensively.
Elliptical cross trainer muscles upper body
Training: Oberkörper
Training: upper body training
As you can determine the intensity individually, by which you use your upper body on an elliptical cross trainer throughout the training, it is possible to vary the training effect for muscles of shoulders and arms, of the chest and of the back. The rear upper arm muscles (M. triceps brachii) as well as the chest muscles (Mm. pectoralis) are trained by pushing the arm bars forwards. Your back muscles (M. latissimus dorsi; M. trapezius) and the front upper arm muscles (M. biceps brachii) are strengthened by pulling the arm bars.
Trained muscles in an overview:
  • front and rear thigh
  • inner and outer sides of thigh (adductors and abductors)
  • foot muscles
  • calves
  • shinbone muscles
  • abdominal muscles
  • back
  • buttock and gluteal muscles
  • shoulders
  • upper arms and forearms
  • chest muscles

Losing weight with an elliptical cross trainer

Due to the high percentage of the working muscles, it's not only the muscles which are trained with an elliptical cross trainer. The machine is also suitable for different other training targets.

As a big part of the body's own muscles is moving on an elliptical cross trainer, it is the optimal fitness machine, when you want to lose weight. As arms and legs are moved, your whole body is demanded. When many muscle groups work, you burn a lot of calories. The metabolism is stimulated by the training. Due to the caused so-called "after-burn effect", you even burn calories several hours after the training with an elliptical cross trainer.

Calories consumption elliptical cross trainer

When you want to lose weight by exercising with an elliptical cross trainer, a low training intensity is already sufficient. The training duration is the decisive criterion. An average of about 700 calories can be burnt at a moderate training on the elliptical cross trainer of 60 minutes. In the following overview, you see the calories consumption on an elliptical cross trainer compared to different other types of cardio sports. The calories consumption on an elliptical cross trainer is sufficient in order to reduce your bodyweight effectively. Furthermore, the training on an elliptical cross trainer offers different advantages, as for instance the low stress on the joints compared to walking.

Calories consumption with an elliptical cross trainer compared to other types of sports

  • Exercise bike (100 W) 399 kcal
  • Jogging (moderate) 508 kcal
  • Rowing (100 W) 511 kcal
  • Swimming (free style) 517 kcal
  • Elliptical cross trainer (moderate) 689 kcal

Average calories consumption in 60 minutes. Please pay attention to the fact that the given consumption data are only average values.

You can influence the calories consumption on the elliptical cross trainer by the intensity, at which you train. When you move arms and legs actively and the upper body is actively involved in the movement, your elliptical cross trainer will quickly become a fat burning machine. Hence, use your upper body consciously and give your metabolism an additional impetus.

Calculate the calories consumption

Calculate

Result:

Calories consumption with an elliptical cross trainer via the training duration     kcal
Basal metabolic rate     kcal
Daily requirement     kcal

Our calculator of the calories requirement uses formulas, which include the results of scientific studies. The calories consumption differs from person to person and depends upon many factors. Our calculator considers: gender, height, bodyweight, age as well as activity in job and daily life.
In addition, our calculator considers that the body with overweight consists of too much fat tissue and too little muscle mass. As the fat tissue consumes less energy than muscles, the calories consumption is lowered mathematically with an BMI over 30kg/m². Here, we use the scientifically determined, so-called "Broca Index Adaptation".

Health calculator

By means of formulas, the optimal heart rate for determining the training intensity can be calculated in few steps. After entering gender, age, resting pulse, and training target, the automated calculation of your training heart rate is done. Of course, the values should always be treated with caution. Not all human beings are equal and formulas always only orient towards average values of the society. Always try to keep an eye on the signs of your body and do not exclusively follow a pulse monitor or heart rate control. Your body will tell you, when it feels overstrained.

Calculate here your personal BMI, basal metabolic rate, calories consumption or optimal training pulse. The Sport-Tiedje health calculator gives you a realistic evaluation of your health and fitness. Either measuring the waist size, BMI calculator, calories calculator or training pulse determination, the regular entering of individual data supports you optimally in pursuing your training targets and controlling your training progress.
The Sport-Tiedje health calculator informs about:
Body Mass Index (BMI)
Waist-to-Hip-Ratio (WHR)
Basal metabolic rate (BMR)
Sports-type specific calories consumption
Training pulse elliptical cross trainer

Body Mass Index (BMI)

The Body Mass Index is a widespread number for evaluating the bodyweight. It supports the realistic evaluation of bodyweight depending upon the height. The BMI serves as rough guide respectively orientation, because it does not consider the age and the body composition.

 

And that's how your personal Body-Mass-Index is calculated:

BMI = bodyweight (in kg) / height; (in m²)


 

Your personal data

Gender: Man Woman
Weight: kg
Height: cm


BMI evaluation according to values of the Deutschen Gesellschaft für Ernährung e.V (German association for nutrition e.V.)

  BMI female BMI male
Underweight below 19 below 20
Normal weight 19-24 20-25
Overweight 24-30 25-30
Adipositas¹ 30-40 30-40
strong adipositas größer 40 größer 40

 ¹Adipositas = obesity


Note: The BMI does not indicate how high the body fat percentage is.

 

Please pay attention to the fact that the health calculator is only a "generally applicable formula" and individual, personalised differences cannot be taken into consideration.

Waist-to-Hip-Ratio (WHR)

The waist-to-hip-ratio indicates the ratio of waist size to hip size. The waist size is measured at the height of the navel and the hip size is measured in the zone of the biggest hip width above the buttocks. The hip-waist-ratio informs about the individual body fat distribution and the risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus or hypertension. In addition, it completes the informative value of the BMI. Fat deposits in the abdomen (apple shape) are considered to be more health-risky than fat deposits in hips and thigh (pear shape).

 

 

 

 

 

 

      Waist

 

      Hip



Your personal data

Gender: Man Woman
Waist size: cm
Hip size: cm



Classification of adipositas according to the waist-to-hip-ratio

  abdominal adipositas intermediary type peripheral adipositas
Men > 0,95 0,8 - 0,94 < 0,8
Women > 0,8 0,7 - 0,79 < 0,7

 

  • Abdominal adipositas = "apple shape" (hip size < waist size)
  • Peripheral adipositas = "pear shape" (hip size > waist size)

 

Classification of the risk of adipositas associated, metabolic diseases by means of the waist size

  increased distinctively increased
Men ≥ 94 cm ≥ 102 cm
Women ≥ 80 cm ≥ 88 cm

 

Get active and start with a well-balanced, regular fitness training! The combination of a healthy nutrition and a moderate strength and cardio training will help you to reduce your waist and hip size.

 

Please pay attention to the fact that the health calculator is only a "generally applicable formula" and individual, personalised differences cannot be taken into consideration.

Basal metabolic rate (BMR)

The basal metabolic rate represents the calories consumption a day, which a person needs at full rest to live. It describes the amount of energy, which is required to maintain all physical functions.

 

 

Your personal data

Gender: Mann Frau
Height: cm
Age: years
Weight: kg


The basal metabolic rate and hence the calories consumption is increased by physical activities and sports:


physical activity

no activity
exclusively sitting/lying
sitting, hardly any physical activity
sitting, occasionally walking/standing
mainly standing/walking
physically demanding activity



The law of the caloric equation
Energy intake = energy consumption → bodyweight constant
Energy intake > energy consumption → bodyweight →
Energy intake < energy consumption → bodyweight ↓

 

In order to avoid an increase in weight, the calories intake should not be higher than the basal metabolic rate. A weight loss is achieved by a calories intake below the basal metabolic rate plus additional, physical activities.

 

Please pay attention to the fact that the health calculator is only a "generally applicable formula" and individual, personalised differences cannot be taken into consideration.

Sports-type specific calories consumption

A weight loss is achieved by a calories intake below the basal metabolic rate plus additional, physical activities.

Depending upon the weight, the body burns different amounts of calories also depending upon the physical activities / type of sports. Choose in the following the sports type, which is relevant for you, and you get your approximate calories consumption depending upon your entered weight and the training time.

 

Your personal data

Weight: kg
Choose the type of sports:
Training time:




BMR

 

Please pay attention to the fact that the health calculator is only a "generally applicable formula" and individual, personalised differences cannot be taken into consideration.

Training pulse elliptical cross trainer

Depending upon the training target, it is important to train in different heart rate zones. Hence, a lower intensity should be chosen for basic cardio training or for reduction of weight than for a sports-type specific additional training.



Your personal data

Gender: Man Woman
Age: years
Resting pulse:
Training target:

BMI

 

 

 

The optimal training pulse for training with the elliptical cross trainer corresponds to the pulse of jogging. The whole body training in upright position and the possibility to influence the training by resistance, if required incline and individual variation of speed and active arm movement, is very close to a jogging training. However, while in nature or on the treadmill an immense impact affects the joints due to this jogging movement, this is compensated by an elliptical cross trainer with an almost floating movement.

 

 

Please pay attention to the fact that the health calculator is only a "generally applicable formula" and that individual, personalised differences cannot be taken into consideration.

Elliptical cross trainer for treating and preventing discomforts

A very big advantage of a training with an elliptical cross trainer is the extremely joint-gentle course of motion, which you can make with it. Shock and incorrect loading of the body is omitted, the spine, knees, and co. are not stressed unnecessarily. It makes the elliptical cross trainer an optimal training partner especially for persons with joint discomforts or overweight - for a better fitness and more health. A joint-gentle elliptical cross trainer can also help treating the widespread disease back pain.

The elliptical cross trainer is also ideal for preventing pains, i. e., in the lumbar vertebrae zone. These are often caused by a lack of movement, as it is very common among many persons, who do a permanent activity in sitting position. For all those who love doing strength training, the elliptical cross trainer is another excellent possibility to warm up before the training or to finish the workout perfectly and with a lasting effect during the cool-down phase.

Elliptical cross trainer during pregnancy

Even for women, who want to continue doing sports during their pregnancy, the elliptical cross trainer offers a gentle training. Go walking or cycling is felt to be uncomfortable by women at an advanced stage of pregnancy, because the stress on the joints is increased while jogging due to the additional weight or the growing abdomen risks to be pushed by the legs while cycling. While exercising with the elliptical cross trainer you have to pay attention to the training intensity, that it is not too high respectively that it is adapted to the stage of the pregnancy. At best, expectant mothers consult their physician before and during the training in order to find their ideal training programme.

Training programmes of an elliptical cross trainer

In order to avoid rising boredom and recurring monotony during the training, you should pay attention to sufficient training programmes. That's motivating and provides a lot of diversion. In addition, there are elliptical cross trainers with USB and headphones connections, so that you can listen to your favourite music while exercising. A pc interface is already part of the entertainment equipment of modern elliptical cross trainers as well.

Track your performance and your progress with a watt control

As already described in "Brake systems of an elliptical cross trainer“, the wattage of a fitness machine indicates the intensity or load of a training. When you want to do a medically prescribed training, you should pay attention to a training computer, which is equipped with a watt controlled programme respectively that you buy an elliptical cross trainer exercise bike, which offers you the possibility of setting a constant wattage. Doing a watt controlled training, a performance is pre-set, which is kept to automatically. When you want to pedal quicker, for instance, the brake force is lowered here. During a therapeutical training, it prevents an overload. Doing a normal home training, the own performance can be displayed with the watt setting and progress in performance is much more precisely to understand. After some training sessions you will already recognise that you can increase the performance and you recover quicker from higher loads.

Heart rate and interval programmes

When you have training targets like fat burning or a cardio increase, the elliptical cross trainer should offer the possibility of a heart rate control. Doing a heart rate training at the appropriate intensity, certain targets can be achieved. Moreover, we want to recommend you to choose an elliptical cross trainer with interval programmes. Doing interval programmes, phases of high load and of regeneration alternate. Scientific studies have shown that the fitness can be quicker increased with this training. You improve your fitness with these programmes quicker and lose weight more effectively - for performance-oriented sportsmen it is an important feature for their workout.

Measure your heart rate during the training with an elliptical cross trainer in order to control the effects of your cardio training easier. There are several methods of pulse measuring, of which we want to emphasize the hand pulse measuring and the pulse measuring with a chest strap. These measuring methods provide precise values and can be used as guidelines for your training with an elliptical cross trainer.

Heart rate control - important or not?

Brustgurt: Herzfrequenzmessung
Chest strap: Heart rate measuring
The pulse measuring is used to do a heart rate controlled training. Fitness equipment, which provides a heart rate control, can adapt the training resistance automatically, so that you always train in the desired intensity zone. Hence, you pursue your targets effectively with every minute of your training.

Due to their high efficiency, heart rate controlled training programmes are a real added value for the user. Our purchase tip for elliptical cross trainers: Buy an elliptical cross trainer with several heart rate controlled training programmes. Then the training makes even more fun, because you achieve your training targets quicker and with a more lasting effect.

Tip: If there are problems when you take your pulse, moisture your hands before the training with salt water to improve the conductivity. Alternatively, we offer in our shop contact gels as well to improve the transmission of chest straps.

Effective elliptical cross trainer exercises

Übungsvarianten
The training with an elliptical cross trainer means more than moving on rails. By doing different exercises with an elliptical cross trainer, you can make your training more diversified. A diversified training helps you to keep the motivation at a constant level. Searching for a fitness equipment, which trains the cardiovascular system and strengthens the muscles, an elliptical cross trainer is often the first choice. Doing the following exercises, you can work out your fitness specifically, burn many calories, and strengthen the muscles in arms, shoulders, back, calves, abdomen, thighs, and buttocks.

Interval training

Interval training is provably one of the most effective ways to improve the cardiovascular fitness. It is meant for alternating between phases of high intensity and phases of low intensity. For instance, an intensive phase of a minute, at which you almost reach your performance limit, can be followed by a recovery phase at a low pace of two to three minutes. Thereby your body learns to recover quicker. The ability to recover is one of the best indicators for a good fitness. Over time you will increase your fitness level and extend the pace phases by and by and reduce the recovery phases.

Variation of running styles

There are several possibilities to vary the technology of an elliptical cross trainer. You can, i. e., do different running styles with your equipment. Movement patterns, which are similar to going, walking or jogging, are possible with an elliptical cross trainer. At a low pace, with or without the use of arms, the movement is similar to going. A more intensive rolling over via the bottom of a foot provides a movement similar to walking. In combination with the use of arms, it is quickly similar to Nordic-Walking. By a stronger rolling over via the tiptoes, you can even do a movement which is similar to cross-country skiing. When you take off the hands from the holding rods and use the elliptical cross trainer hands-free, the movement done is most similar to jogging.

Elliptical cross trainer backwards

Another exercise or techniques variation with an elliptical cross trainer is the movement in opposite direction, backwards so to say. When you want to do an intensive training of your thigh and wish to improve your flexibility and balance at the same time, the backwards walk is an effective exercise. You can also bring diversion to your training by changing the intensity of the use of the upper body during this exercise. Pay careful attention to your muscle activity. It feels different to the forward movement, but should not be uncomfortable for you. In order to increase the intensity and demand, you can kneel down slightly while doing the exercise. The upper body is kept upright and ideally at the same height.

Adjust the stride length

Some models of elliptical cross trainers offer the possibility to adjust the stride length. The stride length of very comfortable elliptical cross trainers is even electronically adjustable, while you exercise on it. Adjusting the stride length supports the doing of different running techniques and can have a high effect on your training. Shorter steps with a relatively bigger stride height rather simulate climbing stairs and demand the gluteal muscles specifically. Adjusting a long stride length, you can simulate jogging and cross-country skiing movements and improve your cardio precisely.

Trunk strength training / Core training

By training the trunk muscles (core) – abdominal muscles, lower back, and other supporting muscle parts of the core - a much better posture can be achieved and back pains can be prevented. It's not only planks or sit-ups which are suitable for core training - the elliptical cross trainer also provides a great core training in combination with an effective cardio training. Here, you can let hang your arms and do not have to hold the arm bars. It demands your core muscles to rebuild the balance which is also strengthened here.

Pulse training with the elliptical cross trainer

Pulstraining
Pulse training
There are several possibilities to control the training intensity of fitness equipment. The lightest and most effective training with an elliptical cross trainer works with pulse measuring. The heart rate is an excellent indicator for the load of your body. The stronger the muscles are loaded, the more oxygen they require. In order to transport the oxygen through the body, the heart beat is accelerated. The stronger you train with an elliptical cross trainer, the higher is your heart rate. And the stronger you train, the more calories you burn as well. Though it does not mean that you should start at 100% being untrained. 50% of the maximum heart rate (HRmax) are sufficient at the beginning.
The HRmax - the basis for effective cardio training with an elliptical cross trainer
The HRmax is the number of beats per minute, which can be achieved at the highest possible physical effort. Of course, it differs from person to person, however, quite correct orientation values can be indicated. The rule of thumb for men is:

For men, the rule of thumb is:

HRmax = 220 - age

For women, the HRmax is a bit higher on an average:

HRmax = 226 - age

You can also use our heart rate calculator for determining your maximum heart rate. By the way, here we use a newer, more precise formula to make your pulse controlled workout more effective with an elliptical cross trainer. The HRmax is mainly important, because it serves as initial point of different training heart rates.

Training pulse

Calculate

Your maximum heart rate is:  

Your optimal training pulse is:   bis  

Cardiovascular training:
50 - 60% of the maximum heart rate

Strengthening the cardiovascular system. This heart rate zone is ideal for beginners.

Fat burning training:
60 - 70% of the maximum heart rate

In this zone, the body burns the most calories of fat proportionally. The cardiovascular system is trained and the fitness is improved.

Fitness training (aerobic zone):
70 - 80% of the maximum heart rate

In this zone, the breathing and circulation are improved. Optimal for a cardio increase.

Performance training (anaerobic zone):
80 - 90% of the maximum heart rate

In the anaerobic zone, the body cannot cover the oxygen requirement. Competitive sportsmen train here short-term to achieve a maximum increase in performance.

Maximum trainig (red zone):
90 - 100% of the maximum heart rate

Risk for leisure sportsmen. Approaching the maximum heart rate is a risk for the heart.



The training heart rates are pulse zones, within which you achieve your training targets more effectively on an elliptical cross trainer. Hence, you will improve your maximum performance (speed) effectively at an almost maximum heart rate - and improve your aerobic fitness (cardio) at 75 %. The following chart gives you an overview how to achieve your training targets effectively with pulse measuring on the elliptical cross trainer.
Very light 50 - 60% Health zone Supporting the health
Light 60 - 70% Fat burning zone Activation of the fat metabolism, improvement of the basic cardio
Moderate 70 - 80% Aerobic training / fitness zone Improvement of the aerobic fitness, increase in cardio fitness
Intensive 80 - 90% Anaerobic training / anaerobic zone Improvement of the lactate tolerance, training for the maximum increase in performance
Maximum 90 - 100% Maximum training / competition zone Improvement of the maximum performance and speed

Get more effectively to the fat burning zone with pulse measuring on the elliptical cross trainer
Here, we want to clear up again the misunderstanding: The fat burning zone does not automatically mean that more fat mass is burnt than for doing a more intensive session of the same duration. Training in the fat burning zone, that means at 60-70% of the HRmax, mainly serves a more effective supply of energy during the training with an elliptical cross trainer. The muscles learn to use more fatty acids for energy generation and hence to protect the limited glycogen store. Thus, performances can be longer maintained. Fat burning zones to and fro: 60 minutes of effective training with an elliptical cross trainer burn more calories than 30 minutes of effective training with an elliptical cross trainer.

Training plans for healthy losing weight and aerobic increase in performance

We have prepared two exemplary training plans for you for effective heart rate training with an elliptical cross trainer. Here you do not only get recommendations how to do a very effective workout with an elliptical cross trainer. You can also note your training progress. The first heart rate programme with an elliptical cross trainer is designed for beginners and all those, who want to lose weight in a healthy and gentle way. The second programme is already a bit more demanding with longer sessions. Besides effective weight loss on an elliptical cross trainer, it is mainly designed for an increase in the aerobic fitness. It's the same for both training programmes: When you feel unwell, stop it. When you feel bored, vary it a bit. Boredom is one of the most common reasons for the loss of motivation during the training. Spread the minutes differently or integrate a minute of full speed, for instance. Download training plans

Training tips for the elliptical cross trainer

Even when the training with an elliptical cross trainer is simple and easy due to its several benefits, it is still important to consider some aspects. Finding the appropriate elliptical cross trainer is one thing. Using it effectively and with a lasting effect is another thing. Here we explain you how to train correctly with an elliptical cross trainer and show you the most frequent mistakes and traps.

Start slowly with the training

One of the most common tips for training beginners: start slowly and do not set the highest goals at the beginning. A training, which is too frequently and too intensively done at the beginning, causes quickly an overload. As trivial as the tip might seam, it is that important if you want to have a lasting fun and motivation doing your training. It's progress and not perfection, what is a good measure. Two sessions a week are already sufficient for training newcomers or returnees. Extend your training times by and by and set milestones. Change the intensities. It helps you to achieve better cardio values and a longer motivation slowly.

The correct hand position on the elliptical cross trainer

The movement of the arms is one of the big advantages of doing elliptical cross training. In order to get the maximum out of the training and thus also to train the back muscles optimally, the correct posture of the hands is important: If you hold the bars too loosely, a part of the movement is done with the wrists. The wrists should contribute to the correct movement only to a minimum. Always grasp the handlebars with the hole hand. Let your hand and forearm build a line. The movements should be done in the shoulders and the crook of the arm. On the other side, many users tend to use their arms very actively and with a lot of pressure. Later on, it might be an interesting option for an effective training with an elliptical cross trainer. For instance, when you want to focus your workout more on your upper body. It's mainly important for beginners to do the movement correctly on the elliptical cross trainer while exercising. The muscles, tendons, and joints can take their time to get used to the exercises.
korrekte Handstellung
correct hand position,
Hand and forearm form a line
falsche Handstellung
wrong hand position, grip is too loose

Stand correctly on the elliptical cross trainer

When you train, your upper body should be upright. Stand as natural as possible. Do not make a hollow back and do not bend the hips. A mistake, which is often done here, is stretching out the buttocks too much. Never stretch the legs completely throughout the training, but let them always be slightly bent. At the beginning, pay consciously attention to a correct training position, then you will get used to it in a short time.

The optimal foot position on the elliptical cross trainer

An important argument for purchasing and for the correct training with an elliptical cross trainer is the low Q-factor - that means a low space between the treads. This allows a low inner space between your feet while exercising with the elliptical cross trainer and the natural movement pattern is well simulated. Your foot space is between approximately 5 and 20 cm. Use it for the training with an elliptical cross trainer. Place your feet in front and at the back. That's the best foot position to train correctly on an elliptical cross trainer. It is also important that you try to remain with the whole foot on the tread. An elliptical cross trainer is that gentle for body and joints, among other things, because the feet are always in touch with the floor. If your heel is a bit lifted, that's absolutely normal. Things like this always depend a bit on the incline of the treads while doing the workout with an elliptical cross trainer. In any case, avoid to stand solely on the front ball of the foot or the tiptoes while doing the workout with an elliptical cross trainer. However, even if an appropriate training with an elliptical cross trainer is adapted to the natural human movements, it is not jogging or even running.

Take these advices to heart, when you want to train on an elliptical cross trainer. Otherwise, you will quickly get used to an unpleasant, unnatural posture, which causes poor postures or even paining joints in the worst case.

Concentration on the training

Most elliptical cross trainers of the present generation make it possible to read while exercising and bring more diversion to your training. It's especially recommended to beginners to concentrate fully on the training at first. On the one hand it is the correct posture on the elliptical cross trainer, however it can also be the correct intensity, the position of the hands and so on. Once you are used to the correct movement on the elliptical cross trainer and internalised the correct posture, the risk is much smaller to get a stiff neck while reading and doing your elliptical cross training. However, when you are sure that you want to read a lot while doing your training with an elliptical cross trainer, you should pay attention to a book holder that is mounted high enough and that you can look at your book or tablet in a comfortable angle.

Change of direction when feet get numb

Even if you do your training correctly on an elliptical cross trainer, it might happen that your feet feel a bit numb as if they would fall asleep. In order to counteract, you should reduce the training intensity first. Furthermore, you should just try to reverse the direction of movement. Moving the pedals in another direction will support the blood circulation!

Home training with the elliptical cross trainer

Image-Bild
Many users ask themselves whether they want to train on an elliptical cross trainer at home or at a gym. In the following, we have compiled the most important arguments, why home training with an elliptical cross trainer is a great alternative to a workout at a public facility.
Indoor equipment avoids excuses
Using indoor equipment for cardio training, like an elliptical cross trainer, unsafe ways or a lack of time do no longer put spokes in your wheel of fitness plans. You train flexibly at home. The drive and travel costs to the fitness gym omit and you are no longer bound to opening hours. Furthermore, many users enjoy the anonymity at home without the look of other person. You do not have to wait for a free machine.
At home, you train independently on the elliptical cross trainer
An important argument for a training with an elliptical cross trainer at home is your fitness as well as your independence. Fitness training at home makes you independent of wind, weather or time. You can start training at night at three o'clock, when you want to do it. You are independent of opening hours of fitness gyms or public transport. The time-consuming search for a parking space before and after the training at the gym omits as well. Thus, a training with an elliptical cross trainer at home is ideal for an independent and modern lifestyle.
The training with an elliptical cross trainer at home is individual
Image-Bild
In general, fitness equipment at gyms does not offer the individual comfort like doing your training at home. With your own elliptical cross trainer, you can set individual user profiles and expect a more precise performance diagnostics by entering, i. e., your age or your weight. Furthermore, you can create your own user programmes and your own training plan, depending upon the elliptical cross trainer. These memory functions are often not offered by commercial equipment.

6. Care and maintenance tips

It is recommended to maintain and care your elliptical cross trainer in regular intervals so you will enjoy using it in the long term. Signs of wear emerge quicker when the elliptical cross trainer is often used, when you miss, i. e., to maintain the rail units, to check the brake units and the belt or to clean the machine from sweat after the training. Interfering noises like squeaking can emerge as well, when, i. e., a screw is loose or dust particles settle in the casing of the elliptical cross trainer over time. In our video guide "Correct maintenance of elliptical cross trainers" (German), we give you detailed information how to maintain your elliptical cross trainer optimally and which maintenance products help you.
That's how you maintain your elliptical cross trainer correctly

In six steps to the optimal care of your elliptical cross trainer

  • When an open system is given, where wheels and rails of the elliptical cross trainer are exposed, keep those regularly clean
  • Treat the wheels with silicone spray additionally in order to prevent noises
  • Tighten all screws in regular intervals, particularly, when the handles are screwed, because shear forces occur, which might loosen the screws
  • You should also treat the hinges and joints with silicone spray, in case these start to run unevenely or cause noises
  • Use the levelling feet of the elliptical cross trainer for a safe stability if it should start wobbling
  • Clean hand pulse sensors, display, and handlebars of the elliptical cross trainer with a towel from sweat after the training

7. Accessory for elliptical cross trainers

Using high-quality accessory for elliptical cross trainers, you get many possibilities to complete your training with the elliptical cross trainer on multiple levels or to optimise the use of the machine also regarding maintenance, comfort, and care. You do not have to limit your fitness and cardio training to the elliptical cross trainer but you can complete it by appropriate additional equipment, i. e., by strength exercises in order to give your training a wider range. In the following list, we present you different accessories for the elliptical cross trainer.

General accessory for elliptical cross trainers


Fitness Tracker

Zubehör: Fitnesstracker
Fitness tracker
Fitness Trackers make your training with the elliptical cross trainer even more transparent, because your activity values like steps, pulse measuring, burnt calories or covered distance are measured. Modern Fitness Trackers offer the possibility of smartphone communication, by which you transmit your data of performance via Bluetooth, Apps, etc. to your smartphone or to a fitness App and are provided and saved for further analysis. Besides many other practical functions, many Fitness Trackers of this generation offer a social media connectivity, i. e., in order to share training data and progress with other people.


Maintenance products
Zubehör: Silikonspray
Silicone spray

A regular use of maintenance products prevents your elliptical cross trainer effectively from wear and operating noises and its lifespan is increased - and you can enjoy a comfortable training in the long term. Silicone spray, for instance, is optimal to maintain mobile parts of your elliptical cross trainer. Contact gel for your chest strap allows a better and more precise and more reliable heart rate measuring.


Fascia rollers
Zubehör: Faszienrolle
Fascia roller

Fascia rollers serve to reduce tensions and adhesions of the connective tissue specifically with self massage and to loosen muscles and the connective tissue. The training with fascia rollers also supports the regeneration and provides a better blood circulation. Injuries can be prevented better by a regular fascia training. In addition, muscles and body zones, which are difficult to reach and which often suffer from poor postures in daily life, are strengthened specifically.


Push-up grips

Zubehör: Liegestützgriffe
Push-up grips
Being a part of Functional Training, you can train the muscles of your upper body effectively with push-ups, because you only use your own bodyweight to do the exercises. Thanks to push-up grips, the movement of push-ups is more joint-gentle and more effective. If a session with the elliptical cross trainer is not enough for you for strengthening your upper body muscles, push-up grips are the optimal training addition.


Equipment-specific accessory for elliptical cross trainers


Chest straps

Zubehör: Brustgurt
Chest strap
Using a chest strap or heart rate strap, you can measure your heart rate ECG-precisely and reliably while doing your training with the elliptical cross trainer. Modern chest straps are compatible with smartphones, on which training data can be transmitted by means of a Bluetooth function. In so far the range of functions and performance includes it, you can display and analyse your heart rate with a training App. Users, who wish to measure their heart rate without the integrated pulse sensors of an elliptical cross trainer and want to move their hands and arms freely while exercising, find the chest straps to be a useful accessory of an elliptical cross trainer.


Floor mats
Zubehör: Bodenmatte
Floor mat

By using a floor mat, which you put under your elliptical cross trainer, the emerging training noises can be absorbed effectively. It is particularly helpful for users, which might have to consider a possible noise sensitivity of neighbours or roommates. Furthermore, the floor mat protects the floor from pressure marks, scratches, and sweat. Depending upon the material, the mats are also suitable for gymnastics exercises of different kind.


Training software
Zubehör: Trainingssoftware
Training software


Hard- and software also offer attractive possibilities to make your training with an elliptical cross trainer more entertaining and more diversified. Interactive fitness programmes, by which training tracks all over the world are simulated on the tv and whose track route determines the training resistance, are popular features for an elliptical cross trainer close to reality at home.


Holders
Zubehör: Halterungen
Holders


Using a holder, you can place your book, journal, tablet or mobile on your elliptical cross trainer and reach it easily - read comfortably, listen to music or watch a film while doing your training.

8. Brands of elliptical cross trainers

In our range, you find high-quality elliptical cross trainers for every fitness level and training target. In the following overview, we give you a little selection of renowned brands, whose elliptical cross trainers are among the most innovative and best on the market.

Life Fitness

Life Fitness
Life Fitness elliptical cross trainers have saved one of the first ranks of the ranking of the most high-quality and most innovative elliptical cross trainers since many years. These do not only convince by an excellent workmanship and durability, but also by a high functionality, silent courses of motion, and a modern design.


Kettler

Kettler
The elliptical cross trainers of Kettler provide an experience of more than 65 years in the production of upright bikes. Including models for the ideal start to equipment for ambitious and experienced users, the traditional company develops elliptic cross trainers, which correspond optimally to the needs of the customer and which convince by quality and training diversion.

cardiostrong

cardiostrong
An elliptical cross trainer of cardiostrong is the ideal machine for persons, who want to train their muscles joint-gently and in the long term, who want to lose weight, and want to increase their general physical well-being. An elliptical cross trainer of cardiostrong fulfills all requirements of quality, comfort, ergonomics, and safety for a special training experience at home.

Taurus

Taurus
Taurus strictly orients towards the requirements of sportsmen of every fitness level regarding the development of its elliptical cross trainers. In order to meet those to the full extent, Taurus focusses on a close exchange with experts of the fitness industry and sports science regarding the design of its elliptical cross trainers. The result: high-quality elliptical cross trainers for beginners, advanced users, and pros.

Horizon Fitness

Horizon Fitness
Elliptical cross trainers of Horizon Fitness are a constant in cardio and fitness due to their excellent and user-friendly construction. They offer a very authentic training experience and have convinced by their performance worldwide several gyms, rehab centers, therapy practices, and private users.

Octane Fitness

Octane Fitness
Elliptical cross trainers of Octane Fitness are among the most innovative ones on the market. Besides outstanding elliptical courses of motion, these convince by an extraordinary design as well as an absolutely high comfort for a very joint-gentle training with the elliptical cross trainer.

9. Which elliptical cross trainer is the right one for me?

Be advised personally by our experts!

Henok
We hope we supported you with our information and tips to go for the appropriate elliptical cross trainer. However, if you still have questions, just be advised by our competent service team by phone, by email or with our Live-Chat today!

When you want to test an elliptical cross trainer or want to try any other fitness equipment, you are welcome to visit one of our stores. Here, our experts are also available for you with their knowledge all about the topics fitness and sports - for a free consultation.


10. FAQ

Important questions about purchasing the appropriate elliptical cross trainer in a summary:
  • ? Can I lose weight with an elliptical cross trainer?
    Up to 700 burnt kcal per hour at a moderate training make it clear: for all those who want to lose weight effectively and want to train joint-gently and holistically, the elliptical cross trainer is the ideal training equipment. The interaction of cardio and strength training results in a sustainable stimulation of fat burning and metabolism. However, it does not guarantee a long-term success in loss of weight. Diversion, the physical well-being, and fun while exercising are essential factors to keep the motivation of the training high and to withstand occasional phases of convenience or lack of drive in an unscathed way. Using respective training programmes, as i. e. interval and heart rate training, you can customise your activity on the elliptical cross trainer to your needs and create those efficiently.

    As ideal an elliptical cross trainer is for losing weight, it cannot perform miracles, when your training does not comply to a healthy and conscious nutrition. Furthermore, it is important to set realistic training goals and to create the fitness programme well-balanced. Those who want too much too quickly, will often lose the motivation after an initial euphoria, when the scales and desired weight do not correspond due to exaggerated expectations. And if the feeling of monotony should come up despite all benefits of the training with an elliptical cross trainer, TV, Internet, and co. are a good possibility to provide more entertainment during the training. When you buy an elliptical cross trainer, it's especially when you love to read a lot during the training, you should make sure that the elliptical cross trainer is equipped with a sufficiently high book holder in order to keep the head in a comfortable position.

    In combination with a healthy nutrition and a well-balanced training plan, a good elliptical cross trainer is an excellent fitness equipment to loose weight with fun and a lasting effect - due to its comfortable movement patterns, its high efficiency as well as the wide range of function regarding training programes and training diversion.
  • ? What is better, treadmill or elliptical cross trainer?
    An essential difference between an elliptical cross trainer and a treadmill is the load of the joints. An elliptical cross trainer is very gentle to the joints, because the feet are permanently on the pedals and the movements are pre-set during the training. Shock loads on the joints are distinctively reduced, incorrect movement patterns are better prevented. The load is higher on the treadmill, because here the weight of the user affects stronger the body and joints. Thus, mainly for persons facing joint problems or overweight, the elliptical cross trainer is the better choice. In addition, the whole body is trained here and a holistic workout is made possible. On a treadmill, mainly the lower body part is demanded. Regarding calories consumption, elliptical cross trainers and treadmills are quite similar. Doing a moderate training, between 600 and 700 kcal can already be burnt in an hour. Compared to an elliptical cross trainer, a treadmill is louder when used, what is caused by its motor noises and the stepping on the belt by the user. This should be taken into consideration when a decision is made either for an elliptical cross trainer or a treadmill - when the workout should be as noiseless as possible.

    Some persons find the treadmill training too monotonous in the long term, others may miss a free and authentic running movement doing a training with an elliptical cross trainer. The decision, whether you take an elliptical cross trainer or a treadmill, should not only depend upon your personal flavour and your preferred movement pattern. Both has a big influence on the fun to train and hence also on your motivation and success.
  • ? Can I still train with an elliptical cross trainer, when I have healthy and physical limitations?
    In principle: The training with an elliptical cross trainer is very joint-gentle, because the joints do not have to absorb any shocks and knees or spine are not unnecessarily stressed. Pay attention to big, harmonic ranges of movement, a biomechanically optimised machine design, adjustable treads, and a deep step-through, when movement limitations are given. The training can be precisely controlled with watt controlled elliptical cross trainers. Here, a certain wattage is pre-defined, which is not exceeded during the training in order to train health-oriented and according to the indications of the physician. Hence, the training can be adapted more precisely to the needs or limitations of the user. If cardiovascular impairements are given, you should use an elliptical cross trainer with telemetric heart rate measuring, because otherwise it might not be possible to train according to the indications of your physician.
    We recommend you to consult your physician before you start the training. The physician can explain and make aware of possible risks and your personal loadability.

    An elliptical cross trainer is also a good training partner for treating and preventing back pain or discomfort in the lumbar vertebrae. It's also valid for pregnant women, for whom an elliptical cross trainer might be an optimal alternative to jogging. It is mainly not recommended for women at an advanced stage of pregnancy to do a training like jogging that has a high load on the joints. Doing cycling, the legs often push uncomfortably against the stomach of the pregnant woman. These negative side effects do not exist doing a training with an elliptical cross trainer. However, here you should also make sure that the training intensity is adapted to the pregnancy and that you consult your physician before and during the training.
  • ? How much space does an elliptical cross trainer require?
    Dimensions and size of an elliptical cross trainer vary depending upon model and manufacturer. From compact machines like the Bowflex Max Trainer M5 with set-up dimensions of 117 cm in length and 64 cm in width up to models with a bulky design like the Life Fitness X1 Go with a length of 206 cm and a width of 76 cm, there is a wide range of elliptical cross trainers for different needs. As a guide: The average values for the length of an elliptical cross trainer are 180 cm respectively for the width are 90 cm. In principle, you should always plan some additional space to all sides, because the range of the equipment can become bigger due to the mobility of its components. In addition, some models are equipped with practical folding mechanisms, by which the range of the equipment is distinctively reduced when it is stored.

    Besides the actual height on an elliptical cross trainer, the maximum pedal height, the highest point in the movement of the pedals, is important, when you look for the appropriate machine for your facilities. In order to have sufficient space to the ceiling of the set-up place as well, you should add about 30 cm to the height, which results, when you stand on the elliptical cross trainer with maximum pedal height. The ceiling of your set-up place should be at least of this height in order to allow you sufficient space for the training with the elliptical cross trainer. We have indicated the set-up dimensions of the elliptical cross trainer on the respective product pages.
  • ? What does a good elliptical cross trainer cost?
    In our range, we offer elliptical cross trainers of different price categories and for every budget. Answering the question, what does a good elliptical cross trainer cost or how much money you have to invest in a good elliptical cross trainer, does not only depend upon the questions which training targets you have, which physical condition you have or which range of functions you are looking for. In general: with an increasing demand, i. e., in quality, comfort, functionality or design, the price category goes up, where you find the elliptical cross trainer, which fulfills your requirements. In our purchase guide for elliptical cross trainers, you find a selection of equipment, which we recommend corresponding to your wealth of experience, budget or training target as well.
  • ? How do I maintain an elliptical cross trainer?
    Elliptical cross trainer, treadmill or exercise bike: Without the necessary maintenance, signs of wear can occur over time. Thus, you should clean and maintain your fitness equipment regularly, when you use it regularly. Don't worry: it won't take you more than five minutes! In order to maintain your elliptical cross trainer and to "keep it in shape" as long as possible, some few steps and affordable aids are sufficient.

    A lot is already done, when you clean the handlebars, pulse sensors and the display of your elliptical cross trainer from sweat with a towel after the training. Occasionally, you should also check the screws. These might get loose over time, but are easily tightened. When your elliptical cross trainer has an open system, where rails and wheels are exposed, you should clean those regularly as well. A very practical aid is silicone spray to maintain your elliptical cross trainer. If hinges, joints or wheels start to run unevenly or to squeak, the treatment with silicone spray is often the appropriate method. Also important: the elliptical cross trainer should stand stable and should not wobble. When it still happens, you can do respective corrections with the levelling feet of your elliptical cross trainer.
  • ? What is the difference between a cross trainer and an elliptical?
    Regarding this question, the opinions of suppliers and fitness experts often differ a lot. Some of them use both terms synonymously, others consider them to be two machines of different functions and quality. Here, the features of difference, among other things, are the course of motion as well as the position of the flywheel. Accordingly, the flywheel of an elliptical is mounted in front. It is also often referred to as the front-driven equipment (front wheeler). A central feature of the elliptical is its eponymous, elliptical course of motion of the foot pedals. Machines, which are rear-driven - the flywheel is at the back (back wheeler), are often called a cross trainer generally. Due to crossing arms and legs, the upper and lower part of the body are equally demanded. The movement of the pedals also follows an elliptical pattern.

    Another reason for differentiating cross trainers and ellipticals is based upon historical linguistics. American manufacturers rather use the description "elliptical trainer", which is often translated in German as elliptical by many local suppliers. Often ellipticals described fitness machines, which were offered as cross trainers at other manufacturers - without differing technically.

    Often, a general quality evaluation of the elliptical cross trainer is bound to the questions cross or elliptical trainer. In our opinion, a differentiation of cross and elliptical trainer is misleading. Due to the big common features in function and mechanism of the machines, we of Sport-Tiedje use both terms synonymously. A real difference among cross and elliptical trainers is between the front-driven and rear-driven machines. Front-driven machines offer a flatter and longer elliptical movement, in general; it mostly provides a more comfortable running experience. In addition, a smaller pedal space is made possible due to the design. Hence, i. e., walking or jogging very close to reality can be simulated. Compared to it, the movement on a rear-driven machine is much shorter and more vertical, more like going upwards, which trains different muscles. Furthermore, the pedal space is often bigger.

    We mainly use the term elliptical cross trainer in our range, because it is more common in the European linguistic area. However, either cross trainer X or elliptical Y, front or back wheeler - both machines offer you a joint-gentle, holistic training for upper and lower body, by which you improve your fitness and health in the long term. When choosing your favourite machine, you should mainly pay attention to ergonomics and quality of movement instead of being solely influenced by the term cross trainer or elliptical.
  • ? Can I train pulse-controlled with an elliptical cross trainer?
    It's an effective method to orient your cardio training towards the own pulse in order to control the training precisly and to adapt it to the own fitness level. Either losing weight effectively with pulse training or to improve your fitness with a lasting effect - an elliptical cross trainer with functions for heart rate training is the ideal fitness equipment. It adapts the training resistance automatically, when you train above or below your set heart rate zone so that you always exercise in the desired intensity zone. Hence, you counteract effectively a possible overload or underload. It is mainly an excellent possibility for beginners or unexperienced users to evaluate better the own body and its fitness and to approach carefully to the next training level. Even advanced users and pros can really burn off energy and can get prepared for a marathon, triathlon, etc. in a joint-gentle way and precisely via the controlled pulse training.

    The majority of elliptical cross trainers is equipped with integrated hand pulse sensors, which are mounted in the grip zone of the pedal arms, but mainly under the display on the immobile handles. These are grasped/hold throughout the training and the heart rate is measured by means of electrodes.

    Furthermore, a chest strap offers a good possibilitiy to determine the pulse throughout the training with an elliptical cross trainer and to adapt the training intensity accordingly. It is worn a bit under the chest, the sensor is placed in the middle or slightly towards the heart. Here it has to be paid attention to the compatibility of the chest strap and the elliptical cross trainer - so that the data can be transmitted between both machine and device.

    Hand pulse sensors of an elliptical cross trainer already provide very reliable measured values. That's mainly valid for elliptical cross trainers of the middle or higher price category. In general, chest straps work more precisely and are an ideal addition to the integrated pulse measuring of an elliptical cross trainer. Another advantage of chest straps is the permanent pulse measuring. When the sensors are mounted on the immobile handles of the elliptical cross trainer, as it is often the fact, you need to take off your hands of the pedal arms for the pulse measuring. Hence, the elliptical cross training of a simultaneous arm and leg movement is stopped for a short time. Some users take it as a bit impractical mainly during intensive phases. On the other hand, the one or the other user doesn't feel comfortable enough to wear a chest strap while exercising. Either, because the chest strap slips, because of a rough feeling on the skin or because it is noticed in general.

    Either you do your heart rate training by means of hand pulse sensors or chest strap, it's also a matter of taste last but not least. The recommendation, which we give our customers, is to buy an elliptical cross trainer with several heart rate controlled training programms, which make the training very efficient and sustainable as well as very diversified and entertaining.
  • ? Which muscles do I train with an elliptical cross trainer?
    Another important advantage of the training with an elliptical cross trainer is the holistic demand of the body. Either abdominals, legs, buttocks or arms, shoulder, and back - with an elliptical cross trainer, you get your personal fitness coach for a 360 degree workout at home. Being a holistic solution, the elliptical cross trainer is not just very practical, but also extremely effective thanks to its strength-cardio-mix. The demand of almost all muscle groups results in a high calories consumption during the training as well as several hours afterwards (after-burn effect).

    The following zones and its muscle groups are used while exercising with an elliptical cross trainer:

    Legs - due to the up and down movement of an elliptical cross trainer, the muscles of feet, calves, and shinbone work out really efficiently. The main work is mainly done by the front thigh, the rear thigh as well as the adductors and abductors (inner and outer sides of the thigh). Increase the training effect on the legs with an increased incline, which is adjustable on modern elliptical cross trainers.

    Trunk and abdomen - Abdominal and back muscles are also continuously tensed during the workout with an elliptical cross trainer and provide the required tension of trunk or core in order to keep your body in an ergonomic position.

    Buttocks and gluteal muscle - The buttocks and gluteal muscles ensure that your hip is stretched and the pelvis is stabilised during the training with an elliptical cross trainer. Here you can also achieve a bigger effect for the gluteal muscles by means of an increased incline. Using the uphill function of an elliptical cross trainer, the buttocks muscles can be demanded more intensively.

    Upper body – By using the arm bars respectively the permanent pushing and pulling of those, you involve arms, shoulders, chest, and back effectively in your workout. The higher the training resistance, the higher gets the effect on the muscle zones.

    We recommend to vary the training resistance regularly, i. e., within the scope of an interval training, so that your body does not get used to the load too quickly. You can also easily set your training focus individually with an elliptical cross trainer, by doing the movements mainly with the arms or without the arms and only move the pedals with the strength of your legs.
  • ? What should I pay attention to doing a training with an elliptical cross trainer?
    At first, it has to be stated that the training with an elliptical cross trainer is very joint-gentle and easy. The load on the joints is reduced to a minimum thanks to the ergonomic design of an elliptical cross trainer. That's the same for the risk of incorrect training, because the movements of pedals and arm bars is guided respectively given. Nevertheless, you should pay attention to certain aspects to do your training with an elliptical cross trainer optimally.

    A classic mistake, which beginners often do during the beginning of their training, is to want too much too quickly. Out of hubris, a quick overload is caused, and overload results in a declining training motivation. Set small goals and increase gradually at the beginning of your training with an elliptical cross trainer in order to avoid the transformation of training euphoria to training frustration. It sounds trivial, but it is an essential recipe for long-lasting fun with your fitness equipment. We recommend two training sessions a week between 15 to 30 minutes at a low to moderate intensity for beginners or returners. Set stage goals, i. e., by increasing the intensity first and then the frequency.

    Another important factor when using an elliptical cross trainer is the correct position of the hands while exercising. Always hold the handlebars of the elliptical cross trainer with the whole hand. Forearm and hand form a line optimally. It prevents that parts of the course of motion are done with the wrists.

    Pay also attention to an upright position of your upper body while exercising and stand as natural as possible. Avoid a hollow back or bending the hips. Your buttocks should not protrude too much and the legs should never be stretched completely. You will quickly get used to the correct training position on the elliptical cross trainer with a little practice. In order to give your training even more diversion, you can listen to music, browse in the Internet on your tablet or watch a film while exercising. However, we recommend beginners to concentrate fully on the training and the correct training position at first until the movement and the posture are internalised.

11. Authors

Jane

Jane Diering
Qualified sports scientist
Henok

Henok Steen
Category Manager, Sports and fitness merchant
Simon

Simon Eberhardt-Alten
Master's degree in sports science and Medical physiology (secondary subject)
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