If you’re looking for a great cardio workout that doesn’t put too much stress on your joints, elliptical training is a great option.
Elliptical machines provide a smooth, low-impact workout that can help you burn calories and improve your cardiovascular health. In this article, we’ll discuss the benefits of elliptical training and give you some tips for getting the most out of your elliptical workouts.
What is an Elliptical Machine?
An elliptical machine is a piece of cardio equipment that simulates the natural motion of walking or running. Elliptical machines have pedals that you stand on and handlebars that you hold onto while you move your legs in a circular motion. This type of exercise is often referred to as “elliptical training” or “training on elliptical.”
Elliptical machines are also sometimes referred to as cross trainers and they are common cardio machines found in almost all gyms. The price of a home elliptical machine can range anywhere from $200 all the way upwards of $10000, depending on the features and quality.
Elliptical Training Benefits
Along with the standard benefits of cardio, here are some of the many benefits of training with an elliptical machine:
1. Elliptical training for weight loss or toning
Whether you’re trying to lose weight or tone your muscles, elliptical training can help. If you’re looking to lose weight, you can burn a lot of calories by doing an elliptical workout at a high intensity. And if you’re looking to tone your muscles, you can use the elliptical to target specific muscle groups.
According to the MDApp elliptical calorie counter, the following amount of calories are burned during a moderate elliptical training session for different workout times and body weights:
|Bodyweight||5 min||10 min||15 min||30 min||45 min||60 min|
|100 lbs (45kg)||19||39||58||117||175||233|
|125 lbs (57kg)||24||49||73||146||219||292|
|150 lbs (68kg)||29||58||88||175||263||350|
|175 lbs (79kg)||34||68||102||204||306||408|
|200 lbs (91kg)||39||78||117||233||350||467|
|225 lbs (102kg)||44||88||131||263||394||525|
|250 lbs (113kg)||49||97||146||292||438||583|
|275 lbs (125kg)||53||107||160||321||481||642|
|300 lbs (136kg)||58||117||175||350||525||700|
Data source: MDApp elliptical calorie counter.
As you can see in the table above, elliptical training is clearly a great method to lose weight and a great cardio workout to add to your routine if you’re an experienced runner or a beginner.
To see a more comprehensive comparison of which cardio exercises are the best for losing weight, take a look at our best cardio for weight loss guide.
2. Elliptical Machines are good for the joints
One of the great things about elliptical training is that it’s low impact on your joints, unlike running or other high-impact cardio activities. This is because elliptical machines offer a smooth gliding motion rather than a harsh thump on the ground or a treadmill when running. This makes it a great option for people who are looking for a workout that is easy on their bodies.
3. Elliptical training is great for beginners
Another benefit of elliptical training is that it can be adapted to any fitness level. If you’re just starting out, or never used an elliptical machine or performed a cross-trainer workout before, you can use the machine at a low intensity to get your body used to the motion. As you get more fit, you can increase the intensity of your workout to challenge your body even more.
As you can see, there are many benefits to elliptical training. Whether you’re looking to improve your cardiovascular health, lose weight, or tone your muscles, elliptical training is a great option.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Elliptical Workouts
Now that we’ve discussed some of the benefits of elliptical training, let’s talk about how you can get the most out of your workouts. Here are a few tips:
- Warm up before you start your elliptical workout. A good warm-up will help get your muscles ready for the workout and prevent injury.
- Start at a low intensity and gradually increase the intensity as you go. This will help you avoid burnout and ensure that you get a good workout.
- If you’re looking to lose weight, make sure you’re doing an elliptical workout at a high intensity. This will help you burn more calories and lose weight more effectively.
- Target specific muscle groups by using the different handlebar positions on the elliptical. This will help you tone your muscles and get stronger.
- Cool down after your workout and stretch your muscles or use a muscle stimulator for enhanced recovery. This will help your body recover and prevent injury.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions about elliptical training:
Is elliptical training better than running/treadmills?
There is no definitive answer to this question. It depends on your goals and preferences. If you’re looking for a low-impact workout, then elliptical training is a great option. But if you’re training for a specific event, like a marathon, then running is probably a better option.
How often should I do elliptical workouts?
How often you should do elliptical workouts depends on your goals. If you’re trying to lose weight, you should aim for at least three elliptical workouts per week. All of your cardio workouts don’t have to be with an elliptical, you could mix it up with running or even brisk walking.
Can I use an elliptical machine if I have joint problems?
Yes, elliptical training is a great option for people with joint problems because it’s a low impact workout due to the gliding nature of the movement. However, you should consult with your doctor before starting any new exercise program if you have any concerns.
One study showed that there is no significant difference in the stress on the joints between walking and exercising using an elliptical machine. This isn’t surprising as both walking and elliptical training follow a similar movement pattern and contain no hard impacts to stress the joints.
Are elliptical workouts good for seniors?
Yes, elliptical workouts are a great option for seniors because they’re low impact on the joints and can be adapted to any fitness level.
They’re also a great piece of fitness equipment to have at home if you don’t want to bother signing up for a gym membership and going to a gym.
Are elliptical machines good for burning calories?
Yes, as you can see from our comparison table above, elliptical workouts are great for burning calories because elliptical training involves full-body movement meaning most muscles in your body are going to be firing and keeping your momentum going.
Can I do a HIIT workout on an elliptical machine?
Short answer: You absolutely can! Most elliptical machines have an ‘interval’ setting which enables you to configure a custom elliptical HIIT workout. Your workout will include intervals of pedalling as fast as you can followed by recovery phases.
Elliptical training is a great way to get a cardio workout without putting too much stress on your joints. If you’re looking for a workout that is easy on your body, elliptical training is a great option. Elliptical machines are common cardio machines found in almost all gyms. So why not give one a go?
Editor-In-Chief at Recovatech. Dr. Ben has been a Doctor of Chiropractic for over 10 years, specializing in structural and neurological imbalances with an emphasis in functional movement patterns, exercise performance, and muscle recovery. He has been the team chiropractor for professional baseball and soccer organizations, as well as collegiate athletes. In his personal life, he’s always been driven when it comes to athletics and personal performance. His mornings start by lifting something heavy and end spending time with family.