7 Benefits Of Using An Elliptical Machine

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Most people know exercising can be healthy. At the same time, you may want to know about the specific benefits of using an elliptical machine.

These benefits range from relatively unique aspects of the elliptical machine to more general positive effects that deserve a mention because of how important they are.

1. Ellipticals can improve your cardiovascular health

Using an elliptical machine will typically be the most challenging for your cardiovascular system. This system includes your heart, lungs, and blood vessels.

When moving more intensely to move the handles and pedals of the elliptical machine, your cardiovascular system will have to work harder to move substances around your body.

By making your workout intense enough but not too intense, you can actually strengthen this system.

Being able to do this is a great benefit of elliptical machines since having a strong cardiovascular system tends to reduce your risk of negative conditions in this area (1, 2, 3).

Additionally, having better cardiovascular health will make daily activities like climbing stairs and walking around easier.

2. Elliptical machines work your muscles

Elliptical machines typically offer cardiovascular workouts. This means your cardiovascular which includes your heart, lungs, and blood vessels will generally have the hardest time.

In turn, elliptical machines will typically not be challenging enough to cause too much, if any, muscle growth.

That being said, even if that is the case, working your muscles can still offer benefits. Before going into these, some of the main muscles worked with elliptical machines include:

  • Glutes (butt)
  • Hamstrings (back thighs)
  • Quadriceps (front thighs)
  • Chest
  • Latissimus dorsi (middle/upper back)
  • Trapezius (upper back)
  • Biceps
  • Triceps
  • To some extent core muscles like your abs, obliques, and erector spinae

Working these muscles can improve your endurance in these areas, slow down degradation, and keep the muscles healthier.

To make this happen to a larger extent, you can turn up the resistance setting of the elliptical machine and potentially even wear a weighted vest (if the elliptical weight capacity is high enough).

That being said, the elliptical is still mainly a cardiovascular exercise machine. If you are serious about getting muscle-related benefits, you likely want to turn to resistance training exercises;

3. Elliptical machines offer a full-body warm-up

As you can see from all the muscles above, elliptical machines work both your lower and upper body to nice extents.

On top of the health-related muscle benefits above, working your muscles with elliptical machines can also serve as a warm-up for weight lifting workouts.

In turn, warming up can help improve your performance and reduce your injury risk in these resistance training workouts.

4. Elliptical machines can help you lose weight

If you want to achieve weight loss, you need to make it so your body uses up more energy than is coming in from the things you eat.

Elliptical machines can help with weight loss since using them requires more energy from your body than more standard activities.

Exactly how many calories the elliptical machine burns depends on a variety of details that are hard to measure. That being said, you can still get some rough estimations.

The average person will burn around 266 to 457+ calories while using an elliptical machine for 30 minutes.

Even though these numbers are not perfect, they do give you somewhat of an idea it will take to lose weight with this gym machine.

Keep in mind that your habits in other areas like your diet will still influence whether elliptical machines help you lose (belly) fat, no fat at less, or something in between.

5. Elliptical machines offer a low-impact workout

Something like running can be better than ellipticals for goals like burning calories. However, this type of workout is also a lot more challenging on your body.

In turn, running and other high-impact could lead to injuries. Especially for people who are new to exercise and/or have a few pounds to lose.

That being said, one of the benefits of elliptical machines is that they offer low-impact workouts.

In simpler words, your body will not really experience a lot of shocks.

Low-impact workout equipment options like elliptical machines can feel more pleasant and reduce your injury risk.

One thing to note is that fewer shocks also mean less strengthening potential. People who are more experienced with exercising could find this a benefit of high-impact workouts.

6. Elliptical machines are easy to use

Some ways of moving more like certain specific kettlebell exercises or something like roller skating come with a steep learning curve.

This can be a downside in the sense that it takes longer to be able to get the full health benefits of the workouts.

Additionally, some people prefer something simple for their exercise sessions.

In that case, elliptical trainers could be a good choice.

You simply have to step on the pedals, hold the handles, and start moving. There is not something you can do wrong since the movements go through a fixed range of motion.

One thing you do want to keep in mind is that you want to select a resistance (or built-in workout program) that is challenging enough but not too hard either.

7. Ellipticals can add variety to your cardio workouts

One reason people find it challenging to stick to their workout routines is that they get bored doing the same exercises over and over.

If this applies to you too, trying different cardio machines than usual, for example an elliptical machine, could be enough to make your workouts at least somewhat more interesting.

You want to keep this benefit in mind because enjoying your workouts can really make it easier to exercise consistently.

It is also worth mentioning that there are many elliptical machine alternatives too. If you have a gym subscription, you could make a routine where you switch between these machines.

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Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.