When purchasing exercise equipment, quality, durability and price are important considerations. Elliptical cross trainers offer something few other pieces of aerobic exercise equipment do---an impact-free, total body workout that is beneficial for obese exercisers. The best elliptical cross trainers for obese individuals are affordable, support a user weight of at least 300 lbs., are durable, sturdy and offer other ergonomic-friendly features, such as tilted foot pedals to reduce joint stress.
Awarded the "Best Value Elliptical Trainer 2010" according to AllEllipticals.com, the Sole E25 offers impressive features for the price. It comes with 16 levels of resistance and six pre-set workouts. An easy-to-read LCD display allows you to keep track of workout time, distance and calories burned. The foot pedals were designed by a sports trainer and physical therapist. The pedals are slightly angled (2 degrees) to reduce joint strain. Sole has an outstanding reputation for engineering and the dual wheel rollers provide an easy glide that gives the feel of an expensive club-quality model. The Sole E25 is iFit compatible and comes with a chest strap heart rate monitor. The 20-inch full stride is wide enough for taller exercisers and this machine supports a user weight of 325 lbs. You can purchase it online for $999 (2010 prices) with free shipping and no sales tax.
The Sole E35 is a sturdy and quiet elliptical trainer that excels in independent testing and the price starts at approximately $1,300 (April 2010). It has a 20-inch stride length--longer than many more costly models--and includes wireless heart-rate monitoring, multiple workout programs and resistance levels. This model offers high-end features, but it is one of the least expensive quality models. This machine also features a 2-degree inward slope of foot pedals, which reduces ankle and knee stress and can bear a large amount of weight without becoming jerky. Its motion stays smooth up to about 300 lbs. This machine offers more resistance levels than many models, 16 total. Its heart rate chest strap and wireless heart rate control workouts are features typically offered on higher-priced models.
Yowza Fitness Captiva
The "Best New Elliptical" for 2010 according to "Fitness Equipment Reviews," this high end model retails for $1999 with shipping. It features a new design called "Cardio Core Training." This crosstraining innovation works your core muscles (abs) through a tee-shape handlebar that sits over the console and swings left and right with the motion of the pedals, forcing your body to constantly twist, which emphasized the core, for a more effective total body workout. The three-speed fan pointed directly at your middle keeps exercisers cool and the "SureFit Pedals" pivot with the elliptical motion, reducing heal lift. The pedal sits on bushings, so like a treadmill, it absorbs shock from the impact of pressing down on the pedal for better comfort. This machine also features 12 variable elliptical stride lengths and 12 preset programs, which gives you the ability to work different lower body muscles and get a more effective cardiovascular workout. This elliptical includes polar heart rate control and supports a user weight of 400 lbs.