What is Elliptical Trainer – How to use Elliptical Trainer

Elliptical trainer is just like any ordinary stationary bike used to exercise. But it does not have a seat that’s why exercising is carried out in an upright position. In elliptical trainers pedals are attached in such a way that the exerciser moves it in an elliptical manner which then minimizes the strain on the body joints especially that of knees as compared to ordinary bikes. Elliptical trainers are used as climbing, walking, or running. It lowers the risk of serious injuries as it causes lesser pressure on the joints. Thus elliptical trainers are very user friendly. The elliptical trainers are in use since 1990 and they were first invented by Precor.

Why elliptical trainers are preferred:

Mostly, elliptical trainers are used to work on the exerciser’s upper and lower body parts which makes it dual action workout machine. Moreover, elliptical trainers known for their minimal impact on joints because of which it is frequently used. They are a great example of a weight bearing exercise which can be used even by the people with injuries. They can be used both as self-powered by users as well as can be plugged in by the users for adjusting the motion.

Elliptical Trainer

Basic types of elliptical users:

The most common type of elliptical trainers present in the market are categorized on the basis of location of the drive or the motor present in the elliptical trainers. There are basically three types of elliptical trainers.

  1. The foremost is the rear drive type
  2. The other is front-drive type (it is the second generation elliptical trainer  design)
  3. The modern elliptical design being used these days is the center drive type.

There are many other features of elliptical trainers on the basis of which it is classified. Some of them have varying pedal movements or adjustable ramp. The trainers can be automatic or else it can be used manually. This feature allows user to adjust the workout according to its needs.  Some of the elliptical trainer include preset programs which automatically changes its resistance level during workout.

How to use elliptical trainers:

The elliptical trainers have always been the most popular fitness equipment both in gyms as well as homes. This item includes exercises similar to stair stepper, bicycle riding, climbing and the ski machine. Elliptical machines makes your legs move in an oval pattern while your arms moves in back and forth motion which aids a full body workout. This low-impact machine is quite easy to use.

Make a plan before you kick start:

Before starting any work you need to prepare yourself mentally and physically for that specific task. Same is the case before hitting for any workout. First, you need to ask yourself that are you ready for your workout and also set targets before stepping on the exercise machines that what you want to achieve today.

Secondly, you just don’t need to dial on it. You must feel like working out. Only then you are actually working out or burning any fat.  Starting work outs without any set goals is one of the foremost mistake usually beginners make.

Set your position:

You need to be in correct posture before starting your workout. Stand straight on the machine and do not bend in forward or backward position. Also avoid gripping the handles too tightly.

Get on the elliptical machine:

Step onto the machine facing towards the console. However you need to be careful, grip the handles and then step onto the pedals. Do not panic as nothing happens until you start exercising.

Start exercising:

Once you are all set to go. Turn on the elliptical machine and start exercising by pedaling to and fro and moving handles forward and backward.

Set our target:

Some machines already have preset workouts. Select one according to your needs and follow the given instructions. You can also manually workout according to your will.

Forward pedaling:

It is recommended to pedal in forward motion for the beginners as it is easier to deal as compared to backward pedaling. To begin with forward pedaling, you need to bend your knees a bit and keep them in the similar position throughout the workout. Locking your knees straight will put strain on your knees and will make you uncomfortable as well.

Resistance adjustments: 

You can adjust the resistance level from the display during your workout according to your requirements.

Stepping off your elliptical machine:

Before getting off of your elliptical trainer, ensure that the machine has been fully stopped.

What to avoid using elliptical machines:

1. Do not slouch

Due to the presence of handrails on the elliptical machine, it appears to be quite tempting. However, slouching only makes the workout easier but does not burn any fat.

 2. Do not stick to single routine.

Our body is adaptive, it adapts according to the surroundings. Performing the same workout every time shows its effects at first but later it eventually loses its effectiveness

Some good additional techniques:

  • Always start your workout with warming up yourself.
  • This machine is designed basically for those whom suffering with joint problems.
  • It is a low impact exercising machine thus if you need higher impact workout, you will need to add up some additional weight bearing exercises to your workouts for better results.
  • The elliptical machines don’t work on balance much thus if you are willing to improve your fitness, you will need to add some more functional fitness workouts.


I hope this article is informative as well as provides you with all that you need to know. No doubt, the elliptical trainers are of great use especially for those which have some kind of injury. Its low impact workout which varies based on the intensity and the resistance set by the fitness freak.

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