Do Elliptical Machines Give You a Good Workout? How Good?
This entry was posted on November 7, 2019.
Since they became widely available in the ‘90s, elliptical exercise equipment has only grown in popularity in Louisiana the longer they’re on the market.
They must work at least somewhat, or people wouldn’t be continuing to invest in them.
So what’s the deal? How good of a workout can you get on an elliptical?
Cardio on an Elliptical Exercise Machine
For standard cardio training, an elliptical offers a low impact alternative to the treadmill or jogging that more closely simulates all the muscle groups involved in walking or running than using a spin cycle.
This makes it a reasonable alternative to treadmills as far as cardio goes but each of the two has interesting trade-offs when compared to the other.
Treadmills are not only good for just a cardio workout along with working the leg muscles. Running on a treadmill actually engages some of your body’s core to help keep you balanced while running.
This core engagement is significantly better than what is offered by an elliptical exercise machine but it is also best done while not holding onto the machine for support and balance making it more dangerous of cardio exercise.
HIIT and Ellipticals
Meanwhile, ellipticals and their low joint impact turn out to be fantastic machines for HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) where the person exercising focuses on doing their workout in short intense bursts that get their heart rate up and taking little breaks between these reps to make a hardcore calorie-burning exercise.
The elliptical is also great for people suffering from chronic joint pain as a less painful way of getting their cardiovascular exercise.
The elliptical also has a training edge over the treadmill by having some techniques to your foot positioning that makes them excellent for targeted leg exercises that can sculpt your glutes and calves.
But to evolve even further on some advantages of the elliptical are the relatively new lateral trainers.
They employ the same principle of controlled guided movement but instead of simulating human running, the motions that a lateral trainer brings you through are designed to engage every muscle in your legs for a maximum full leg workout.
They take some getting used to and may not be everyone’s favorite HIIT exercise machine when compared to the elliptical, but even without HIIT training these lateral trainers are great at getting your heart rate up on their own, in fact studies found heart rates to increase 20% faster for trainers using the lateral trainer instead of an elliptical.
This increase in heart rate is entirely due to how many muscles get involved and worked out by the lateral trainer.
These full leg-sculpting advantages come along with an elliptical low joint impact benefits.
Best Elliptical Exercise Equipment
If you’re looking for the best elliptical exercise machine you can get for working out at home, then I have to recommend the OCTANE XR6I Smart Elliptical.
It’s designed with all the modern cardio machine features to give you all the high tech edges you could ever want and also includes a seated position making it excellent for working out while watching television or a movie, and this machine is still a great workout.
The seated design isn’t the only way to go with an elliptical, but this machine is particularly nice in that it is a lot like a spin bike that is better at targeting specific muscle groups in your legs making it a wonderful fusion of the two machines, and sometimes a fusion is exactly what you need to save space depending on the room limitations of your home gym.
If you’re more interested in the full leg muscle engagement of the previously mentioned Lateral Trainers, then the Helix H1000 Touch Lateral Trainer is the perfect unit to get into.
It’s proudly touted as the world’s first lateral trainer and will be the machine that all other lateral trainers will be based on.
A big reason to take a lateral trainer over a treadmill or an elliptical other than its workout advantages is that it also features a relatively small machine profile when compared to the other two machines making it a perfect wall lining machine while a treadmill or elliptical can easily be quite floor-space intensive.