Franchise players of the home gym: Elliptical machines

When it comes to setting up a home gym, different people have different go-to exercises. For many people, their “franchise player” is the elliptical machine. People looking for an excellent way to get a cardio workout should consider using this type of fitness equipment, which can provide a great workout without jarring your joints and bones.
For people who have soreness in their knees or ankles after a run, the elliptical could provide an excellent alternative. The elliptical uses continuous motion instead of the up-and-down movement of your feet slamming against the ground on each step. This elliptical motion is a lot better for your joints and bones.
While the focus is on the legs, the elliptical can provide a full-body exercise. By grabbing onto attached handles, your upper body will also get a workout. The full-body workout can allow a person to burn as many as 500 calories in a half hour.
Built in electronics allow you to customize an elliptical workout, ranging from cardio, to strength, to endurance.
The elliptical fitness market features many outstanding choices for someone who wants to add one of the highly popular machines to their home gym.
Four of the top brands are Octane, Life Fitness, AFG and LifeCore.
As with shopping for a treadmill, there are many elliptical options available even within a specific brand. Details such as differences in the frame size and electronic boards can alter the price significantly depending on what options are important to you.
Make sure to also compare warranties and service agreements and, of course, try out the model the way you’d use it in a store if at all possible. There can be a big difference between ellipticals in their track pattern and how sturdy they feel. With a good elliptical, you should be able to balance well enough on it to operate with no hands holding on.

At Home Fitness consultant Aaron Dorksen’s blog deals with a variety of fitness topics, ranging from workout tips, motivational ideas and feature stories on how exercise impacts people’s lives. E-mail him with comments, questions or ideas for future blogs at