Are Elliptical Trainers Good for Arthritic Knees?

Are Elliptical Trainers Good for Arthritic Knees?

Treadmills and elliptical trainers are two of the most popular cardio workout machines out there. With the increasing need for elliptical trainer benefits in the modern world, these two machines are vital for gym and home workout sessions. 

However, selecting which of these two is the best, especially when you have arthritic knees can be tricky. 

Both machines simulate natural running motion or walking, but there are advantages and disadvantages of each device. 

The ideal option is to test each of the machines and see how your body will respond. Osteoarthritis, commonly abbreviated as OA, affects around 27 million Americans. 

The Health Benefits of Elliptical Trainers

Research has proven that moderate exercise, such as jogging, walking, and elliptical training, provides many benefits for OA patients without causing disease progression or worsening the symptoms. 

Health experts state that adults with Osteoarthritis get significant improvements in physical function, mental health, pain, and quality of life when they engage in a low-impact cardio workout.

 Also, individuals who perform light exercises frequently have healthier knee cartilages compared to those who do not. Below are some of the reasons why elliptical trainers in Kenner are suitable for arthritic knees. 

Elliptical trainers are the perfect method of cross-training or low-impact training. With modern technology, there are numerous selections of elliptical workouts to choose from. Elliptical workouts protect the knees from the stressful impact caused by other leg exercises. 

They also help protect the back and hips. Health experts recommend them as best alternatives to jogging, running or treadmill as they have reduced impact on the knees and other weight-bearing joints. 

Due to their closed chain movement, the feet are connected to the pedals, just like in cycling, making it less stressful on the knees. Elliptical trainers also require less stabilization around the joints offering a minimum impact. In addition, the resistance in an elliptical trainer can be increased substantially to engage the leg muscles more.

 In treadmills, only the incline and speed can be increased. 

Additional elliptical trainer benefits include the fact that you can strengthen other muscles responsible for keeping the knees healthy. 

According to experts, low cardio exercises such as elliptical trainers, increase blood flow to the knee cartilage strengthening the surrounding muscles. 

This improves the health of the knee joints, especially if one is suffering from arthritic knees. Besides, elliptical machines are responsible for strengthening the hamstrings, quads, and ankles. 

All of these areas contribute to the health of the knees. The exercise also improves body balance and keeps one in alignment. 

Elliptical workouts also help people recover from injury

Elliptical workouts help in easing back into exercise after an injury so long you have been cleared by a physical therapist or doctor.  They also help in removing boredom and preventing injuries like mild meniscus tear and fractures. 

Elliptical machines, when used correctly, can help people recovering from knee injuries depending on the stage of recovery and the individual. It is imperative to find a setting that is ideal for your joints and leg muscles without causing inflammation and pain in the knees. 

Elliptical machines such as the OCTANE XT4700 Elliptical and the Horizon ELITE E9 elliptical are equipped with adjustable upper body poles or handles just like the ski poles. These extensions assist in exercising the arms as well. 

With their reverse pedaling, you can also work your hamstring and calf more than in the forward movement. 

Tips for Using an Elliptical Trainer


An extended period of sitting or laying stiffens the joints and simple stretches or laps around the gym or block are advised. Do not jump right into an elliptical right after work as it can cause injuries.

Wear the correct footwear

Having the right shoe, such as sneakers with an orthotic insert or firm arch support, can help keep the knees and hips in the correct alignment.

Checking your posture

When you start to fatigue, do not be tempted to slouch over. Always keep the shoulders back and the body straight.

Make use of the handlebars

Using the handles can assist in balancing and offloading the lower extremity when painful. However, avoid excessive stress on the wrists, hands, and the upper body.

Start slow and listen to your body

Exercises can be your enemy if you push yourself too fast or hard. Before starting a new exercise, consult an expert and always start slow as the body adjusts. Many injuries have resulted from pushing the body beyond the limit. 

An elliptical trainer is, therefore, the best cardio fitness equipment option for individuals with OA of the knee, when used correctly. You can purchase your preferred type from the Fitness Expo stores in Kenner and workout at home.