Air walkers closely resemble elliptical trainers. The air walker simulates a walking or jogging motion with pedals that travel in a smooth, arched path. Unlike elliptical trainers, which often have many different resistance levels and incline settings, air walkers typically function at one standard setting. Though these machines offer fewer opportunities for you to customize your workout, they offer a variety of benefits.
Air walkers can help you reach the weekly exercise totals recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. According to the CDC, adults should get a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of intense aerobic exercise weekly. Regular physical activity has many health benefits. According to MayoClinic.com, regular aerobic exercise that elevates your heart rate can lower your cholesterol, reduce your risk of obesity-related diseases, help you manage your weight, boost your energy, improve your mood and promote deeper sleep. One hour of low-impact aerobic exercise on a machine like an air walker can burn about 365 calories for a 160-lb. person, 455 calories for a 200-lb. person and 545 calories for a 240-lb. person, according to MayoClinic.com.
Air walkers target muscles in your arms as well as your legs. Most air walkers have ski poles that you can push or pull with your arms as you exercise. When you maintain an upright posture on the machine, your abdominal muscles work as stabilizing muscles and get a moderate workout as well.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends that people with osteoporosis or other limiting physical conditions perform low-impact, weight-bearing exercises to build stronger bones. Air walking offers a low-impact alternative to other forms of weight-bearing aerobic exercise such as walking or jogging. On an air walker, your feet never leave the pedals, meaning they don’t have to pound against the ground or a hard surface. The smooth motion of an air walker puts less strain on your joints than higher-impact forms of exercise.
Most air walker models fold up, allowing you to store them in a closet, under a bed or in a tight space. This easier storage makes the air walker much more convenient for home use than the bulkier elliptical trainer or treadmill. Air walkers typically cost less than other home cardio equipment as well.