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Best Proform Elliptical Machines Reviewed

last updated: Feb 12, 2020

In this guide, we have listed some of the best Proform elliptical machines out there on the market. One of the downsides of training at home is that you don’t have the motivation from your fellow gym-goers, or from personal trainers. Proform elliptical machines are designed to get you excited and motivated for each and every workout.

Ellipticals are great because they give you the benefits of running without the pounding on your joints. Many of the Proform designs out there on the market come preloaded with workouts to help you work up to more challenging exercises as you build endurance and strength.

No home gym is complete without a good cardio machine, and ellipticals are one of the best tools to burn fat, build muscle, and protect your joints. Proform crafts well-made machines that are easy to use and effective.

In a Hurry? The test winner after 8 hrs of research

icon
ProForm Cardio HIIT
96/100 our score
Materials
95
Ease of Use
97
Features
98
Effectiveness
96
Size
94
ProForm Cardio HIIT
Why is it better?

Commercial grade steel

Built-in fan

EKG monitor

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
ProForm Cardio HIIT
Test Winner: ProForm Cardio HIIT
Amazon Link
Researched Sources
2
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
920
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
8
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
10
Products Evaluated
Sorting Options
Materials Ease of Use Features Effectiveness Size By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96
Materials
95 %
Ease of Use
97 %
Features
98 %
Effectiveness
96 %
Size
94 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$921.61
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.6
Materials
95 %
Ease of Use
97 %
Features
96 %
Effectiveness
93 %
Size
92 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$409.00
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.2
Materials
95 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Features
93 %
Effectiveness
91 %
Size
92 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.6
Materials
92 %
Ease of Use
87 %
Features
88 %
Effectiveness
91 %
Size
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$979.26
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86
Materials
85 %
Ease of Use
88 %
Features
86 %
Effectiveness
87 %
Size
84 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$999.99
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83.6
Materials
84 %
Ease of Use
82 %
Features
85 %
Effectiveness
86 %
Size
81 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$438.90
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
80.4
Materials
80 %
Ease of Use
82 %
Features
79 %
Effectiveness
78 %
Size
83 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$710.23
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
76.8
Materials
79 %
Ease of Use
80 %
Features
75 %
Effectiveness
74 %
Size
76 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$599.99
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
75
Materials
74 %
Ease of Use
72 %
Features
73 %
Effectiveness
76 %
Size
80 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$645.12
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
71
Materials
72 %
Ease of Use
70 %
Features
73 %
Effectiveness
71 %
Size
69 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (06.04.20)
Amazon Link
$500.00

10 Best Proform Elliptical Machines

1. ProForm Cardio HIIT

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
96
ProForm Cardio HIIT Elliptical Trainer
ProForm Cardio HIIT Elliptical Trainer 2
ProForm Cardio HIIT Elliptical Trainer Monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Ease of Use
97
Features
98
Effectiveness
96
Size
94
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$921.61
Pros:

Commercial grade steel

Built-in fan

EKG monitor

Cons:

Very heavy

Spotty heart monitor

If you just don’t have the time to fit in a ride, HIIT training is a great way to shed pounds quickly. HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training.

It’s a workout method where you quickly raise your heart rate with intense training and then allowing your heart to recover before turning up the intensity again.

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What makes this design stand out from the rest lies in the dashboard. It has a detailed LCD screen that comes programmed with 32 workout options designed for HIIT training. It also comes with a built-in EKG monitor to ensure that you hit your target heart rate for the perfect HIIT workout.

This design has a series of handlebars to change positions to activate different muscle groups in your body, as well as handlebars for an effective cooldown. It is made from commercial-grade steel construction and has a built-in fan right in the dashboard.

If you need something that can keep up with your heart-pounding workouts, this design is one of your best options. It can handle an impressive 350 pounds, and the sturdy steel frame comes with a lifetime warranty.

2. ProForm Hybrid Trainer

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.6
ProForm Hybrid Trainer
ProForm Hybrid Trainer 2
ProForm Hybrid Trainer Monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Ease of Use
97
Features
96
Effectiveness
93
Size
92
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$409.00
Pros:

Easy to move

Dual training modes

350-pound weight limit

Cons:

Limited display

A little noisy

Need something that is a little more versatile? Suffering from a workout-related injury is something that everyone has to deal with every once in a while. If you are recovering from a back or knee injury but still want to keep active, the Hybrid Trainer is a great tool to have in your gym.

Plus, when you are back to feeling at your very best, it can also be used as a traditional elliptical.

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This design is able to be used in two ways. It comes equipped with a recumbent bike seat that allows you to use the pedals while supporting your back. This is a great tool when recovering from an injury, or if you just want to fit in an easy workout or cooldown. When you are ready to turn up the intensity, ditch the seat and use the pedals while standing up and using the handles.

It comes with a small LCD screen that is used to track RPM, distance traveled, calories burned, as well as your heart rate. It has an impressive 16 levels of resistance and uses magnetic force for a smooth ride.

What users love most about this design is its versatility. It’s the perfect training tool to have if you want to squeeze in a nice and easy workout, and it can also be used when you want to dial up the intensity.

3. ProForm 150I

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.2
ProForm 150I elliptical machine
ProForm 150I elliptical machine pedals
ProForm 150I elliptical machine monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
95
Ease of Use
90
Features
93
Effectiveness
91
Size
92
best offer for today
Amazon Link
Pros:

Slightly smaller

Easy to adjust

EKG heart monitor

Cons:

Difficult to assemble

Simplicity is the name of the game when it comes to this model. What users love most about this is that it is easy to use and incredibly effective. It is a little bit lighter than some of the more complicated designs, which means that it is easier to move around your home gym as needed.

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It has a simple user interface with a small LCD screen. Resistance is adjusted through the dashboard with just the press of a button. Long handles move with you and are coated with a soft EVA foam for a secure grip.

The flywheel is powered by inertia, which provides a smooth and quiet ride. Plus, it means that there are fewer internal components to break down and maintain. The oversized pedals are comfortable and are lipped at the ends to keep your feet in place. It also weighs a lot less than some of the bulkier designs, which means it’s easy to move around the gym.

If you are in the market for something that is simple and effective (as well as being kind to your bank account), this is an excellent option. It’s easy to use and adjust and has a footprint that is slightly smaller than other Proform models.

4. ProForm Endurance 920

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.6
ProForm Endurance 920
ProForm Endurance 920 2
ProForm Endurance 920 monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
92
Ease of Use
87
Features
88
Effectiveness
91
Size
90
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$979.26
Pros:

Inclined ramp

Cushioned pedals

Tablet compatible

Cons:

Rocks during workout

Difficult to assemble

What makes this design stand out from the rest is all of the little details added for a comfortable ride. As the description implies, this design is made for endurance. If you love to queue up a long podcast and strap in for a good workout, this is the option that works best for those types of workouts.

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Unlike some of the other models out there on the market, this design has cushioned pedals. This means that long rides are even more forgiving to your feet, knees, and joints. It also has versatile padded handlebars and moves with you to burn even more calories.

It has a detailed dashboard that allows you to make adjustments without skipping a beat. This dashboard is equipped with a color LCD screen that details calories burned, distance traveled, RPM, heart rate, and time traveled. It has a dock and connection for a tablet to fire up your favorite workout. Plus, it even has a fan to help keep you cool.

If you love long rides and want something with little details to help make your workout more pleasant, this is an excellent option. With an impressive 24 resistance levels and a ramp that inclines up to 20 degrees, you are sure to get a workout that is actually enjoyable!

5. ProForm Pro 9.9

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86
ProForm Pro 9.9 elliptical machine
ProForm Pro 9.9 pedals
ProForm Pro 9.9 monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
85
Ease of Use
88
Features
86
Effectiveness
87
Size
84
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$999.99
Pros:

Built-in fan

Adjustable incline

EKG monitor

Cons:

Very heavy

High resistance

This model is that it is built like a tank. It has a sturdy construction that feels just as solid as commercial-grade machines at the gym. It is constructed from quality materials that won’t wobble and can keep up with even your most grueling workouts. It boasts a simple screen that is easy to use as well as adjust.

Read more

The dashboard on this Proform elliptical machine model is a little more simplified from other options out there. The dashboard details distance traveled resistance, RPM, calories burned, incline, and heart rate. It also has a built-in fan designed to keep you cool and refreshed.

This machine is constructed from commercial-gauge solid steel that is able to accommodate an impressive 350 pounds. It has 21 different levels of resistance, and users are even able to adjust the pitch of the incline with just a press of a button. The LCD screen displays the pitch of the incline to keep tabs on your progress.

If you want something that feels like the machines at the gym, this is one of your best options. It is important to note, however, that this unit is incredibly heavy. Once you set it up in your home gym, it will be a little difficult to move it when needed.

6. ProForm 295 CSE

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83.6
ProForm 295 CSE
ProForm 295 CSE monitor 1
ProForm 295 CSE monitor 2
Amazon Link
Materials
84
Ease of Use
82
Features
85
Effectiveness
86
Size
81
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$438.90
Pros:

Lightweight

Easy to use

EKG monitor

Cons:

Limited resistance

Wobbly

Working with little room in your home gym? This model has a much smaller footprint than many of the other models out there on the market. This simple design may not take up as much room, but it still has all of the features you need to fit in a really great workout at home. Plus, it’s one of the most affordable Proform options.

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Simplicity is key when it comes to this model. It has a simple and small dashboard that only displays the information that is important when riding. The screen displays distance traveled, calories burned, RPM, and your heart rate by toggling through the menu. Users can also adjust the resistance simply by pressing a button.

If you want a dashboard with a little more detail, this unit is compatible with most smartphones and tablets. It has a dock on the front that holds your tablet in place so you can binge Netflix while working out! Plus, it is much lighter than other designs out there on the market, which makes it a little bit easier to move when needed.

If you are in the market for something that is slim and simple, this pick is one of your best options. It has the quality you expect from Proform, but it is a lot lighter and smaller for tighter spaces. It is important to note, however, this unit only has a weight limit of 250 pounds.

7. ProForm HIIT Trainer Lite

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
80.4
ProForm HIIT Trainer Lite
ProForm HIIT Trainer Lite pedals
ProForm HIIT Trainer Lite monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
80
Ease of Use
82
Features
79
Effectiveness
78
Size
83
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$710.23
Pros:

Small footprint

Easy to adjust

Cons:

Limited dashboard

This design is much like the standard HIIT Trainer that graced the top of our list, but it is abbreviated to save you some money as well as space. It differs in the footprint in your home gym, and it is also short a few of the high-end features as well. However, if you want to squeeze in a brutal HIIT workout, this design hits the mark.

Read more

Unlike the standard HIIT Trainer, the Lite has a very simple display screen that only shows you the information that you need. This screen details your heart rate, distance traveled, calories burned, and time working out. It also allows you to easily adjust the resistance with just the press of a button.

The frame is much smaller than many of the other designs in the Proform line. It is much taller and narrow, which means that it won’t take up a lot of space in your home gym. Plus, it comes in at a price point that makes it one of the more affordable options offered.

What we loved most about the HIIT Trainer Lite is that it gives you the killer HIIT workout without the added bulk or price tag. The dashboard may be a little limited, but you can still plug in your smartphone or tablet to play and control through the dashboard.

8. ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
76.8
ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro
ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro 2
ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro Monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
79
Ease of Use
80
Features
75
Effectiveness
74
Size
76
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$599.99
Pros:

Comfortable seat

Easy to adjust

Grippy pedals

Cons:

Noisy

The Pro version of the Hybrid Trainer adds a few extra features that make it worth a look. While the price point is a little less than ideal when compared to the standard option, the Pro adds features that make for a more comfortable ride.

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The very first thing that we noticed is that the construction of the seat is just a little different. This seat is padded to be much more comfortable and forgiving to your back over the standard design. If you need something that gives your backs and hips a break from time to time, this option may be your best best.

The dashboard sports a few more features, but it is still pretty limited. The small LCD display shows you your distance traveled, RPM, calories burned, and your heart rate. Users can easily adjust the resistance with just the press of a button. When your back is ready, simply push the seat back and stand up like a traditional elliptical.

If you need a machine that helps burn calories but is also kind to your back when you hit it a little too hard on the weights, this is an excellent choice. It has a comfortable and padded seat that helps you fit in a great workout but also works as a standard model as well.

9. ProForm Smart Strider

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
75
ProForm Smart Strider
ProForm Smart Strider 2
ProForm Smart Strider monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
74
Ease of Use
72
Features
73
Effectiveness
76
Size
80
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$645.12
Pros:

Foldable

Small footprint

Sleek style

Cons:

Bluetooth only speakers

The very first thing that we noticed about the Smart Strider is that it is foldable! If you are working with very limited space in your home gym, this option is worth checking out. Foldable options often mean limited when it comes to features, but that’s not true with this model.

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While it has a small LCD screen that details your progress, the dashboard is filled with a myriad of features. Users are able to set the resistance and even set resistant programs from the sleek and simple dashboard. It also has a nook and plug that is compatible with most smartphones.

The design of this option is something worth noting. It is constructed from commercial-gauge steel that has a smooth and curvy design unlike any of the other products in the Proform line. Plus, when you need to clear up some space, the dashboard folds up into the magnetic flywheel.

For those in the market for something that has all of the features you need from an effective elliptical but doesn’t take up as much room, this is an excellent choice. It is incredibly easy to use, has powerful resistance levels, and is compatible with your smartphone.

10. ProForm Endurance 520 E

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
71
ProForm Endurance 520 E
ProForm Endurance 520 E 2
ProForm Endurance 520 E monitor
Amazon Link
Materials
72
Ease of Use
70
Features
73
Effectiveness
71
Size
69
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$500.00
Pros:

Comfortable

Easy to use

Incline ramp

Cons:

Noisy

Tough resistance

If you like the idea of an elliptical that is designed for long-distance workouts but don’t need all of the extra bells and whistles of the higher-end model, the Endurance 520 E may be your best bet. This is an older model of the Endurance 920, which means it comes in at a much more affordable cost.

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What makes this design perfect for long distances is that the pedals and handlebars provide extra padding. This padding adds another level of support to your knees and joints and makes long rides a little more comfortable. It boasts an inertia powered flywheel for a quiet ride as well.

The dashboard is more simplified when compared to the Endurance 920, but it still displays the same amount of information. The small backlit display shows you your speed, distance traveled, calories burned, heart rate, and time. Users can also adjust the tension on the flywheel by simply pressing a button on the dashboard.

For those in the market for something that is easy to use and comfortable for long-distance travel, this is a great option. It comes with a lifetime warranty on the frame, and it is capable of holding up to 300 pounds.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Materials

Using quality and commercial grade materials ensures a long and happy life for both you and your machine.

We wanted to get into a little bit of detail about the materials Proform uses to craft their machines. High-quality materials hold up well over time, and also provide for comfortable rides.

Frame: All of the frames in the Proform line are constructed from commercial-gauge steel. It sounds quite impressive, but what exactly is this type of steel? Commercial-gauge basically boils down to the type of steel that is used to make buildings.

What makes this quality of steel important when it comes to cardio equipment is that it won’t wobble on you. When you workout at the gym, those machines feel solid as a rock. Proform uses the same quality of materials so you can get that sturdy feel at home.

It is important to note, however, that this quality steel is incredibly heavy. If you are someone that loves to move around equipment in the gym often, moving Proform equipment might be its own workout!

Handlebars: You may think that the pedals are the most important part of an elliptical machine, but the handlebars are important as well. A surefire grip is important if you find that your quads are toast and you need a little help propping yourself upright.

This line of equipment uses soft and sturdy EVA foam for their handlebars. This foam works to wick away sweat from your hands to prevent slipping. It is also incredibly soft and forms to the shape of your hands as you use them.

Pedals: The great thing about this line of equipment is that all of the pedals are oversized. The reason this is such a great feature is that it gives you a little bit of room to adjust where you stand. It also means you won’t have to worry about your feet being too big!

Each set of pedals has a lip that runs along the front end that prevents your foot from slipping off of the front or the sides as you get into your groove. Some designs, such as the Endurance models, even offer padding pedals that are ideal for long distances.

Ease of Use

No one likes to spend an afternoon trying to figure out how to set up equipment. Time wasted during setup could be better used putting miles behind you!

After scouring through hundreds of user reviews across the entire line of products, there were very few users that felt that these products were difficult to set up.

The interface on all models of dashboards is intuitive and easy to use. For some, you may not even need to crack the user manual to get started!

One of the most important tools found in most models is the ease to change the resistance. With some equipment, changing the resistance means popping off of the elliptical machine and turning a dial to manually tighten the flywheel.

On every single model in this line of machines, the resistance is able to be tightened or released simply with the press of the button found on the dashboard. Resistance in most models goes up to 20. Many users find that even baseline resistance is a little too tough. This means you may never get to the points where even the highest resistance isn’t enough.

One important thing to note is that most Proform elliptical machines require a subscription to an app to utilize all of the features. If you opt not to sign up for the monthly subscription, it doesn’t mean that you cannot use the machine. It simply means that you won’t have access to all of the advanced features.

Features

Everyone loves a machine with innovative features to help you push past your personal best.

Working out alone can be tough, especially when there isn’t anyone around to hold you accountable when all you want to do is jump off the machine. That’s why selecting products with a lot of extra features is a great way to keep you going for longer periods. Below, some of our favorite features.

Heart Rate Monitor: The key to burning calories is to get your heart rate up into that sweet spot. Once you hit your target heart rate, you need to keep it there for the duration of the workout to burn the most calories and give your heart a workout as well.

By building an EKG monitor into the handlebars, these machines can detect exactly where your heart rate lies in the middle of your work. When you grip the handlebar with the silver plate, your heart rate displays on the screen in front of you. If it is too low, it means you need to crank up the intensity!

Smartphone Compatibility: Running or biking outside is exciting because nature is always changing. The same cannot be said for the paint cans lining your basement walls. Working out in the same stagnant space can really zap the joy from your soul. That’s why we loved that these machines are compatible with your smartphones or tablets.

Simply connect your devices via Bluetooth to the machine, and place it into the holder that is typically situated above the informational dashboard. Then, you binge your favorite show instead of staring at a stagnant wall of paint cans and Christmas decorations.

Intuitive Dashboard: What good is a dashboard if you don’t know how to navigate through the menus? What we liked about the Proform line is that all of the dashboards are incredibly easy to use, and you don’t need to toggle through menus to find the information that you need.

Even on the basic models with very small screens, all of the information that you need is all right there in one place. Many of the models in this line even come with a built-in fan that you can turn on to circulate airflow in your hot and stuffy gym in your garage or basement!

Effectiveness

While all ellipticals target generally the same muscle groups, various models in the Proform line are designed for very different purposes.

Below, we wanted to get into a little bit of detail of the different models so you can decide what style is right for your needs.

HIIT: The HIIT models are designed for those that don’t have a lot of time to fit in a workout. HIIT training burns a ton of calories in the shortest timeline possible. These models are specially designed for those that need to raise their heart rate quickly.

Features such as detailed EKG monitors in the dashboard and various modes of resistance is what makes these designs stand out from the pack.

Endurance: The Endurance models are designed for those that like to turn on their favorite podcast and ride for the rest of the evening. There are specific key features in this model that adds a level of comfort and stability that are not found in other options.

Padded pedals, for instance, are something only found in Endurance models. This feature helps your feet and joints from getting too fatigued on long journeys to help get you in the zone.

Hybrid: If you fluctuate between weight lifting and cardio work, you know that sometimes your body is just not up to the task of jumping on a machine. After a killer lifting week at the bench, you might want to give your back a break. The Hybrid model is designed to offer a seat to those with aching backs.

Sitting in a recumbent seat while pedaling still provides a good cardio workout to elevate your heart rate, but it doesn’t cause any strain on your back, knees, or joints.

When you feel back at 100 percent, pop the seat backward, grab the handlebars and go for a ride while standing upright.

Size

Space is a very important commodity. With a seemingly endless wishlist of machines to put into your sacred workout area, space to put them may become a problem before you run out of money! Selecting a small elliptical machine that works for your space is important.

The side of the various designs in the Proform line doesn’t vary a lot, but there are some options that may be ideal for very small spaces. The Smart Strider, for instance, is designed for those with not a lot of room in mind. The entire device is able to be folded and propped up against a wall when you need a little bit of space for deadlifts.

When it comes to space, another thing that is worth mentioning is the weight of each machine. All of the machines in this line weigh over 100 pounds, but some are much heavier than others. If you love moving around your gym equipment every so often, you may want to opt for the lighter machines in this line.

The good news is that these machines take up less space than your standard treadmills. Plus, they are considered to be a lot slimmer than treadmills as well.

Expert Interviews & Opinions

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expert tips icon
iFit

Proform elliptical machines are compatible with an app called iFit. This app provides users with personal trainers and fitness programs available 24/7. It also adjusts the pitch and resistance of your device depending on the workout you select.

This app is offered at a monthly rate for a rate that runs about the same rate as an affordable gym membership!

Happy Joints

When running on hard surfaces such as sidewalks or even treadmills, your joints really take a beating.

Whether you are a novice or a trained athlete, ellipticals are a great way to raise your heart rate without angering your joints.

Silently Burn Calories

One thing users love most about ellipticals is that they are virtually silent when compared to treadmills.

If you love getting up early in the morning for a quick workout, these machines ensure that no one else in the house will wake up when you fire up your elliptical.

Other Factors to Consider

Bottom Line

The best Proform elliptical machines are crafted from commercial-gauge steel that is packed with tons of innovative features to keep your workouts exciting and engaging. These machines don’t have the annoying wobble that often comes with home machines, and with proper preventative maintenance, it will be the last elliptical you ever need to purchase.

What we loved most about this line is that they have unique features that get you excited about working out! Almost all machines are compatible with smartphones or tablets so you can download specific apps to workout to. Or, you can just binge your favorite show.

Whether you opt for a simple design or a Pro machine with tons of features, the quality of materials used is sure to keep up with even your most brutal workouts.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Do they really burn as many calories as a treadmill?

a:

Some may tell you the best cardio workout can only be found on the treadmill - but that couldn’t be further from the truth! There are some health experts that say athletes can actually get a better workout from ellipticals than from treadmills.

The reason for this uptick in calories burned lies in the handlebars. When you pedal an elliptical, your lower body completes all of the same motions as if you were actually running. When you use the handlebars, you activate muscles in your upper body as well, therefore burning more calories than a treadmill.

q: What are some of the benefits of using this style of a machine?

a:

An elliptical works by mirroring the same motions as you do when you run down the sidewalk. However, there is one big difference between a treadmill and an elliptical: you don’t shock your joints by pounding into a hard surface.

When you execute your full gait on a treadmill, a shockwave of impact affects your knees, hips, and lower back. The more you pound your joints, the higher the risk that they may become inflamed.

The motion on an elliptical is one constant steady motion, almost like swimming. There is no impact on your joints as you move.

q: Is the heart rate monitor accurate?

a:

One of the biggest complaints we read about fitness equipment is that the heart rate monitor is rarely accurate. Many users find that when they check their heart rate back to back, the numbers spike when the pace is still the same. So, why do they seem so faulty?

The first reason may be due to the way that you hold the monitor. The monitors on your machine are typically placed on the handlebars in the form of a silver plate. By placing your hands on the plate, it measures your heart rate. One reason the number may seem off is that you are holding the bar too tightly or too loose.

Be sure that you hold the bar with a neutral grip, and don’t change your grip from reading to reading.

Another reason they may seem faulty boils down to inexpensive materials. If you opt for a more affordable model, the tech applied to all of the extra features may not be up to snuff. If hitting your target heart rate is your number one priority, investing in a heart rate monitor or fitness watch is your best option.

q: Why is my unit so squeaky?

a:

Many users complain that their unit is incredibly squeaky right out of the box. If you notice an annoying squeak and you just can’t seem to drown out with music, there are a few steps that you can take to remedy this situation.

The most common reason this happens is that all of the bolts inside the unit just aren’t tight enough. Whip out your trusty toolbox and take a minute to make sure that every bolt and screw is super firm and tight.

Another reason it may squeak is due to a lack of lubrication. Spraying all of the internal components down with good lubrication may clear up that terrible and annoying squeak!

q: What is the proper way to use the pedals?

a:

There are a few things to keep in mind while using these machines. First of all, do not lock your knees while on this device. This means that when you are ready to dismount, slow you pedaling down until you come to a stop. Once you have stopped, safely dismount the machine.

While in use, it may seem natural to drive with the front of your foot. Do not do this! When you drive with the front of your foot, you put more weight and pressure on the front of your knees. The goal here is to mimic the natural stride and gait of running while eliminating the impact from the ground.

Another important tip to consider is that you should always keep your back upright. When you start to fatigue, you may feel compelled to slough forward. When you lean forward, you put increased pressure on your lower back which can lead to muscle strain.

q: Do I have to use the handlebars?

a:

There is no rule that dictates that the handlebars have to be used. Working the pedals builds muscles in your legs, glutes, and lower back. Plus, it elevates your heart rates to help burn calories.

However, you can turn a lower body exercise into a full-body workout simply by utilizing the handles. Pumping your arms with the handlebars doesn’t just work your arms, but it also engages your shoulder, core, and upper back as well!