With incidents of diabetes and heart disease on the rise, many people are looking to become much more active. As a result, gym memberships are oftentimes the go-to when it comes to burning calories, especially at the beginning of the year. Unfortunately, over time, gym memberships can be expensive, so why not purchase a product that will let you exercise at home?
One of the best exercise machines available today is the elliptical trainer. With an elliptical, you can engage in a cardio-friendly, easy on the joints exercise that is also easy to do. Purchasing one of these products doesn’t have to break the bank, and in this guide, we’re going to cover 10 products that are all less than $500.
Best Ellipticals Under $500 – Comparison Table
- Exerpeutic 1000XL
- EFITMENT - E005
- Exerpeutic Aero Air Elliptical
- Body Rider BRD2000
- Gazelle Edge
- Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E902
- Cubii Pro Under Desk Elliptical
- ProGear 360
- Best Choice Products Elliptical Bike
- JFIT Under Desk & Stand Up Mini Elliptical
- 23 x 46 x 11 inches
- 23.5 x 50 x 62 inches
- 19.09 x 33.07 x 46.06 inches
- 28.5 x 48 x 59.5 inches
- 28 x 43 x 53.75 inches
- 6.69 x 11.02 x 22.44 inches
- 23 x 11 x 9 inches
- 50 x 26 x 15 inches
- 40 x 20 x 57 inches
- 27 x 15 x 9 inches
- Max user weight
- 300 pounds
- 220 pounds
- 220 pounds
- 250 pounds
- 250 pounds
- 220 pounds
- 225 pounds
- 250 pounds
- 250 pounds
Elliptical Trainers Under $500 – Reviews
1) Exerpeutic 1000XL Heavy Duty Magnetic Ellipticals – The Best Elliptical for Home
This product, which is manufactured by Exerpeutic, is a product that uses an electronic magnetic resistance system. These systems are considered the smoothest and most ergonomic resistance systems on the market. As a result, the 1000XL has eight levels of magnetic resistance for your workout.
Unfortunately, the assembly of this product can take up to three hours, and the instructions aren’t the clearest. Also, if you’re expecting a longer stride, this product isn’t for you.
One of the best features of this elliptical trainer is its 300-pound weight capacity; as a result, it’s a very versatile machine. The LCD computer is also fully featured and can measure distance, your calories burned, your speed, and time.
2) EFITMENT – E005 Compact Magnetic Elliptical Machine – Best Elliptical for Mobility
When you’re working with space that’s at a premium, you don’t necessarily want a full-sized standard elliptical. When this is the case, this product from Efitment is more than adequate because it has a very small footprint. Despite this small sizing, it’s very mobile and offers a total body workout.
Unfortunately, this product can only accommodate users that are under 220 pounds. This is because of its compact design but can be an inconvenience for larger users. Additionally, the design makes this product feel a little flimsy.
Despite the fact that the product is designed to be compact, it does have a digital display that will show you your workout metrics. Additionally, you can adjust the resistance during your workout via a dial.
3) Exerpeutic Aero Air Elliptical – Best Elliptical Trainer under $100
This product is another compact elliptical trainer that is designed to take up minimal space in your home. This product comes with dual-action workout arms that help make your workout a full-body one. When it’s time to change the tension, you just need to turn a dial.
Unfortunately, this product has a tendency to shake a bit during use. Additionally, the elliptical can be a bit flimsy in some sections.
When you need to track your workout statistics, this product has an LCD display that shows distance traveled, elapsed time, and speed. Additionally, in addition to the fact that the product is designed to be compact, you can also take it almost anywhere inside your home via its wheels.
4) Body Rider BRD2000 Elliptical Trainer and Exercise Bike – Best Elliptical Bike Combo
Not only does this exercise machine work as an elliptical trainer, but it also has the ability to be fully converted into an exercise bike. This convertibility allows for you to experience a range of potential exercises, and the internal flywheel allows for a very smooth usage.
This product, while versatile, isn’t as sturdy as it can be. In fact, it only can accommodate about 250 pounds of weight. Also, it’s a bit difficult to assemble without a second person.
The electronic onboard console tracks calories, speed, and distance with relative accuracy. Additionally, the fact that the product converts into an exercise bike means that you’ll find that the elliptical provides some good exercise versatility.
5) Gazelle Edge – Good Choice for Quick Workouts
The Gazelle Edge is one of the more unique elliptical trainers on the market because it looks so different. This is due to its completely flywheel-less design that allows a very large range of movement so that you can receive a total body workout.
Due to its unique design, there’s not much in the way of resistance adjustments; the product is designed to provide exercise via its large range of motion.
One of the best features of this product is its ability to be completely folded down so that you can place it under a bed or dresser. This makes the Edge an excellent product for anyone that has a smaller amount of space.
6) Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E902 Air Walk Trainer Elliptical Machine – Fold Up Elliptical Machine
With a 30-inch stride length, this product, which comes from Sunny Health, is a good choice for anyone that wants a smooth functioning elliptical trainer. Despite the lack of a flywheel, this product has a very smooth functioning that is also very silent.
If you aren’t maintaining some of the components of this product, it may start to squeak. Also, components like the footrest have a tendency to loosen over time.
This is a compact product that takes up some very little space due to its folding system. While it doesn’t fold down extremely compactly, when it does fold down it’s hard to notice in a corner.
7) Cubii Pro Under Desk Elliptical – Perfect for Long Workdays
If you work at a desk for more than a few hours a day, then you should take the time to exercise at least once an hour. The Cubii Pro, which fits under a desk, is a great option for this since it allows you to do some exercise while you draft emails or write content.
With this product, you don’t get a large range of motion, which means that you won’t get the same type of exercise that you’d get from a standard elliptical. Also, unfortunately, the charging function seems to degrade over time.
The Cubii is designed to be a device that you can use in modern offices; as a result, it has Bluetooth functionality and phone or tablet charging. The product also has a very ergonomic design that makes it very easy to use throughout your workday.
8) ProGear 360 Dual Action Stride Air Walker LS Elliptical – The Best Elliptical Under $200
This elliptical trainer provides so large of a range of motion that it’s called “air walker.” As a result, you’ll be able to exercise quickly, easily, and burn fat effectively. In fact, the elliptical provides a full 180-degree range of motion when you exercise on it.
When you’re exercising on this product, if you’re moving vigorously, it may move somewhat, especially if you’re on smooth flooring. Also, the end caps on the elliptical have a tendency to break over time.
This product I excellent because of its integrated dual-action workout arms; with these, you’ll have a full-body workout. The stride length is also fairly extensive; the ProGear 360 provides a 36-inch stride length.
9) Best Choice Products Elliptical Bike – Good One for Beginners
As the second product in this guide that converts from a bike to an elliptical, this two-in-one is a great option due to its smooth-running flywheel. While it doesn’t fold down, it does have a relatively compact design.
While the seat does adjust upwards and downwards, it doesn’t move forward and backward, which means that it won’t be as comfortable for some. Also, there’s a tendency for the pedals to not grip enough, so you might experience some slippage.
This elliptical trainer has a very quiet running flywheel that runs very smoothly as you workout. In addition to this, since it’s constructed of steel, it will last you for years of daily use. For those that like to track workout statistics, this trainer also has a fairly robust LCD display as well.
10) JFIT Under Desk & Stand Up Mini Elliptical – Best Portable Elliptical Trainer
This product, by JFIT, is an under-desk elliptical that can also be used standing. This adds a lot of versatility to the product, and since it has a very quiet operation, you won’t disturb your coworkers. This product even has an adjustable resistance level.
When you want to check your progress, you have to look at the body of the elliptical trainer, which can be inconvenient due to the fact that it’s so low to the ground. Over time, it can also start to squeak.
This product is very comfortable and easy to use under a desk. Also, this is a relatively lightweight elliptical trainer that can be quickly moved when you need to take it to another location.
Best Ellipticals Under $500 – Buyer’s Guide
When you’re purchasing a brand new elliptical for your home, the sizing will definitely be a crucial decision that you’ll need to consider. Simply put, not everyone has the same amount of space, so finding an elliptical that fits in your home’s spaces is important. Fortunately, with all of the products on the market, you can usually find an elliptical that should fit even if your space is on the smaller side. Here are your sizing options:
- Full-Sized: If you have a sizeable space for your new elliptical, such as an exercise or game room-sized area, these full-sized elliptical options are a good choice. Since they don’t fold, these elliptical machines will typically accommodate a user with a higher weight, be much sturdier for years of exercising, and will have more space for features like exercise displays and even onboard screens.
- Compact: compact ellipticals won’t fold down but usually have a very small footprint and may even have wheels so that you can wheel them to where they take up the least amount of space. These can be useful, especially if you just need the product out of the way.
- Folding: When you’re working with limited space and still want an elliptical experience, then a folding product is an option that you should consider. One of these products can fold in two ways: upright or downwards. When the product folds upright, it will have a relatively small vertical orientation that will allow it to be quickly stored in a closet or in a corner. When it’s foldable downwards, you can store it under a bed or in a corner where it won’t take up much space.
- Under-Desk: Not only are these options excellent for space, but they also present a health benefit for those that are stuck behind a desk all day. Under-desk models, as you might expect, go under a desk and are designed specifically to be used as you work. With these types, you won’t have a huge range of motion, but you will be able to keep your legs moving, which is a great way to fight deep vein thrombosis (DVT). These are also very small, so when you’re not using them, they can be placed in a corner or in a closet.
What are other important features to consider?
While just using an elliptical can really provide some top-notch health benefits, it’s a good idea to find one with a highly variable level of resistance. At the base, you should be able to use your elliptical with relative ease so that you can get some light exercise in, but you should also be able to increase this resistance so that you can have a more intense workout when you want it.
Also, when the intensity is highly variable, you can increase the resistance gradually throughout the workout and also decrease it as you’re coming to a close in your regimen. This means that you’ll be able to easily warm up to a tougher resistance level, and then enter a nice cooldown cycle as well. For some of these products, you can actually have the process be automated, and for some machines, you’ll have to adjust it manually.
The Complexity of the Console
It’s amazing how many features a modern elliptical can bring to a daily exercise regimen, and one that affects your exercise session the most is the display. Modern ellipticals can have some fairly high-tech display consoles that will let you display your miles traveled, your heart rate, and your current level of intensity. There are even models out there with television displays so that you can watch your favorite show as you exercise or attach your iOS or Android smartphone so that you can check out your favorite Youtube channels.
Of course, under-desk variations won’t have a console, but even these can have high-tech features that will let you know your intensity and miles traveled. Some under-desk models are even Bluetooth-enabled so that you can get an idea about RPM, strides, calories, and time.
The Right Ergonomic Design
As with just about any piece of exercise equipment, an ergonomic design is absolutely crucial. Ellipticals are slightly different from other exercise devices like treadmills; an elliptical has a relatively confined style of movement. If your elliptical has a fairly stiff feeling, then you shouldn’t use it during your regimen.
When you are exercising, you should always be able to maintain an upright posture that allows you to comfortably have access to the moving handles of the machine. Any awkward positioning can cause you to experience discomfort and can even lead to injury. Optimally, the pedals should be aligned so that they are fairly close to one another and the frame of the elliptical should never interfere with your natural movements.
A Flywheel that’s on the Heavier Side
When you’re purchasing an elliptical with a flywheel, always make sure that the flywheel is somewhat heavy – typically one that is over 25 pounds is ideal. When your flywheel is heavier, this means that the movement of the elliptical itself will be much smoother, which is better for the exercise.
Adequate Stride Length
It’s a general rule in exercising with an elliptical that the longer the stride length, the better, especially if you’re on the taller side. Longer stride length makes the exercise much more comfortable and will make you feel like you are exercising in a much more natural way. Some of the best elliptical trainers on the market actually have an adjustable stride length so that you can find the stride that’s most comfortable for your session.
A good elliptical trainer can be a boon to your lifestyle that will see you lose weight, gain confidence, and have more body strength. The products that we’ve covered in this guide are all excellent choices that will fit your lifestyle. We’ve covered products that can fold, fit under your desk, and standard products that have lots of features, so you’ll be able to find a product specifically for you and your home.
As the technology of the elliptical trainer progresses, we’re starting to see new features like integration with our ever-connected world such as the products that have Bluetooth functionality and models that even employ screens so that you can watch your favorite shows as you exercise. There are even models that are designed to be taken with you so that you can keep up your regimens on-the-go.
See more: Best Manual Treadmill for Weight Loss