What are the benefits of an elliptical machine workout?

Heather Campbell
 min read

What are the benefits of an elliptical machine workout? There must be profound reasons why this fitness machine is so popular, right?

what are the benefits of an elliptical machine workoutYou’re not alone if you find yourself waiting in line to use your health club’s elliptical machine during peak training hours.

The elliptical device is often one of the most popular cardio devices at the gym.

It’s also a top choice among at-home exercise devices. Tip: Discover the best heavy-duty ellipticals for plus-size people here.

So, what is it about this low-impact device that makes it so popular?

What are the benefits of an elliptical machine workout? Introduction

Check out the following 10 advantages of an elliptical device workout and find out for yourself!

Focuses on the lower body

You can change the intensity of your elliptical workout by adjusting the resistance and incline.

This allows you to target different muscles in your lower body, such as:

  • quads
  • calves
  • hamstrings
  • glutes

By increasing the slope, you may feel the back of your lower body more.

At the same time, you may feel your quads working harder if you lower the resistance on the foot pedals.

And since the foot pedals also move backward, you can change the direction of your motion and focus more on your glutes and hamstrings.

Enhances your balance

A bodyweight workout can help strengthen your bones and improve your balance.

You’ll need to balance your body by standing up straight and letting go of the handlebars.

This targets your core muscles and works on your balance.

Just make sure that the resistance and incline are set at manageable levels so you can use the elliptical device safely without the risk of losing balance and falling.

Easy to use

Among the many advantages of an elliptical is its simplicity to use. In other words, it doesn’t take long to learn how to use it.

This fitness device is relatively simple to figure out.

However, you still might want to ask a personal trainer for help if you have never used an elliptical before.

A personal trainer can give you tips on how to use it correctly and the type of workout that might be best for your fitness goals.

When you’re first getting started on an elliptical, you might want to start with only using the foot pedals.

Then, once you’re used to the motion of the device, you can start using the handlebars as well.

These handlebars allow the user to have a full-body workout that also triggers the core, arms, and shoulders.

Remark: Pay attention to how much space you need for an elliptical before you start spending your hard-earned money.

An elliptical workout burns plenty of calories

Dive on the elliptical if you’re looking for a way to burn tons of calories in a short period.

This cardio device can burn roughly 260 to 385 calories in half an hour, depending on how much you weigh.

The lower end of this range represents people weighing 130 pounds, while the upper end is for someone weighing 195 pounds.

It’s well-proven that the best way to lose weight is by burning more calories than you consume.

So to help your calorie burn, consider raising the intensity of your elliptical workouts.

The elliptical workout also burns body fat

You already know that the amount of calories you burn per hour on an elliptical is high.

But did you already know that it’s higher than the average of other cardio machines?

So basically, an elliptical can help you burn more calories in a shorter period.

As a direct result, it can also help you burn more body fat than other cardio devices like, for example, the stationary bike.

If you focus on the period of your workout, this is specifically true.

If you want to take full advantage of the fat-burning effects, try to focus on the intensity and duration of your exercises.

While both medium and high-intensity exercises help with weight loss, high-intensity intervals allow you to achieve more in a much shorter amount of time.

It’s worth considering adding interval training to your elliptical exercises with a 2 to 1 ratio.

For example, 45 seconds of high strength training followed by 22,5 seconds of recovery, or 80 seconds of high-intensity work followed by 40 seconds of recovering.

But do not stop moving your legs during the recovery periods! Instead, continue to move the pedals but at a slower rate.

It can help to keep you physically fit after injury

Suppose you’re recovering from an injury and can’t do your regular exercises.

In that case, training on an elliptical can be a great way to build or keep your fitness.

Since it offers a low-impact workout, the elliptical puts less stress on your joints than high-impact workouts like running, jogging, or jumping.

Exercising on an elliptical after an injury might help you regain your entire range of motion.

It can also help improve your muscles and joints by taking the tension off the injured location.

Offers a range of options: What are the benefits of an elliptical machine workout?

Elliptical devices usually offer a variety of preprogrammed exercise regimens that, for example:

  • imitate hill climbing
  • interval training
  • other personalized options

This last example allows you to get the type of training routine you want.

Avoids high stress on your joints

The elliptical is still one of the most fundamental cardio devices, especially since it’s been on the market for so long already.

So when the elliptical was finally on the market,

runners with throbbing joints and overuse injuries delighted at the thought of being able to train while relieving the pressure of their joints.

When you do high-impact cardio exercises, many parts of your body are badly affected, for example, your:

  • knees
  • ankles
  • hips
  • all other joints

All of these can take a beating when running or doing other high-impact cardio exercises.

Since your feet never go off the pedals of an elliptical, this device provides a low-impact cardio exercise.

In other words, an elliptical allows you to train your muscles without the wear and tear that results from a high-impact workout.

Improves your endurance and cardio capacity

Aerobic exercise, also known as cardio, is essential for a well-balanced exercise regimen.

When doing aerobic exercise, your heart and lungs need to work harder to supply your muscles with more blood and oxygen.

The elliptical device allows you to get an excellent aerobic workout, which can:

  • strengthen your heart, lungs, and muscles
  • help build your endurance and stamina

You can do both high-strength period training and steady-state cardio workouts on an elliptical device.

Works as both a lower and upper body exercise

An elliptical device with handles is one of the few cardio machines that can provide you both an upper and lower body exercise.

By dividing your weight evenly, you maximize the benefits of an elliptical on your upper body.

In other words: pump your arms just as fast as you’re moving your legs.

When done correctly, the elliptical can target the following muscles:

  • glutes
  • hamstrings
  • quads
  • chest
  • back
  • biceps
  • triceps
  • core muscles

How much time should I spend on the elliptical? What are the benefits of an elliptical machine workout?

The amount of time you should spend on the elliptical depends on your goals.

In general, you need to go for a minimum of 180 minutes of cardio workout per week, with the upper end being 330 minutes.

If you don’t have 30 minutes to spare, then spend 20 minutes on a higher intensity level.

Working out at a larger intensity is a time-efficient way to improve your cardiovascular health and increase your calorie burn.

Can the elliptical help to get rid of belly fat?

Elliptical devices are created for cardiovascular or aerobic workouts.

Many people use the elliptical to increase their heart rate, burn calories, and lose body fat.

Can you lose belly fat with an elliptical?

While aerobic exercise can help reach your weight loss goals, it’s not a fantastic treatment for stomach fat.

But combining workout and a low calorie, high protein diet as part of a general weight loss program is the best way to lose overall fat.

What are the benefits of an elliptical machine workout? Conclusion

Including the elliptical device into your fitness routine can help you:

  • improve your heart, lungs, and muscles
  • increase your endurance
  • improve your balance
  • burn a lot of calories

It’s also a perfect alternative if you have joint problems. Or even if you want to build or maintain your fitness after an injury.

This low-impact device is an excellent option for most fitness levels.

Still, it is essential to combine other workouts in your routine too.

For example, this is the case if you want to strengthen your legs and build a higher bone density.

There is no such thing as the best exercise to reach every goal.

The elliptical machine is a fantastic choice for almost anybody, and its benefits outweigh its weaknesses.

About Heather Campbell

As a dietitian, my field of specialization is science-based nutritional advice but more importantly, it is my goal to share capturing and inspiring stories, examples and solutions which can help plus-size individuals overcome their specific difficulties. Read More