10 Best ellipticals under $500 & $1000
Elliptical is one of the best exercising equipment for people who love to do cardio, jogging, climbing and running exercises, and also rehabilitation exercises indoors.
The other significant benefit (most seem to ignore) in using an elliptical is that you are going to avoid getting yourself injured since the exercising movement is controlled by the elliptical unlike most of exercising equipment where the risk of injury is higher.
Nowadays, ellipticals under $500 and $1000 are well equipped and worth the investment since the newly designed ones are full of options and will suit your individual needs. However, remember that the quality and the durability of an elliptical will not be the same if you are comparing a $500 to $1000 elliptical.
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That's why, you need to do your homework and make sure that the elliptical that you are getting is the one that has all options and features that you want before purchasing it, and most importantly their durability and manufacturer's warranty.
That's why in this Best elliptical under $500 and $1000 article, I will be comparing all different types of ellipticals and their prices, so you have a very good idea of which one is the right one for you.
Before I start comparing ellipticals and other exercising equipment, I usually like to talk about the pros and cons so you can decide whether this exercising machine is the right one for you.
Here is a quick overview:
Best elliptical under $500 & $1000- pros and cons
Pros of using an elliptical
1- Reducing stress and strain on joints and muscles. One of the best things about using an elliptical is that your joints and muscles are protected at all times and not stressed because of the low impact mechanism that all elliptical machines use. The joints that get affected the most from running or any other high impact exercises are the knees, hips and the lower back.
2- Whole body workout. Elliptical simultaneously works for so many different muscle groups all at the same time. You are not only working your heart and legs, but in fact, you are working your:
and your biceps
As you can see that you are getting a full workout and unlike what some people seem to think that elliptical is limited.
3- Variety in exercising programs. The other advantage of using an elliptical is the fact that they have a built-in exercising programs that mimic climbing and interval training. You can actually do more exercises without leaving your elliptical.
4- Improve your balance and mobility. Muscle imbalance is very common, and most of us have muscles and stronger or weaker than others, which is normal. However, you can strengthen your weaker muscles by improving your balance and mobility, and that's what an elliptical can significantly help you with.
5- Low maintenance and high durability. Because of less moving parts, you can easily maintain an elliptical when compared to a treadmill or other exercising equipment.
6- Great for rehabilitation. If you are nursing an injury and looking for ways to speed up your rehabilitation, then ellipticals are known to be very effective for that.
Cons of using an elliptical
1- It's not for everyone. If you are used to running or using a treadmill where you have more freedom of motion, then you might not like the more constricting elliptical movement.
2- Pedals. Most people complain about the size of the pedals. If you are buying an elliptical that has a narrow footstep where there's not enough space for your feet to move, then you might have a problem.
What should you look for in an elliptical
3- Depending on your budget, every elliptical will come with different set of features. That's why it's important to look at every feature that an elliptical comes with and then you need to decide what features you are willing to sacrifice to meet your price range.
The most important features in an elliptical are:
1- Elliptical styles:
Front drive. These ellipticals tend to be the most affordable and they have a different design to other types of ellipticals, where they have a large wheel located at the front of the elliptical.
Centre drive. As the name implies, the wheels are located at the center of the elliptical which is similar in design to a treadmill. Centre drive ellipticals are the most compact, and they usually have smooth strides and tend to be less noisy than a front drive.
Rear drive. Design-wise, they tend to be longer than the other styles, and they have the quietest and the smoothest strides since the wheels are located at the back. These ellipticals tend to be the most expensive.
2- Ellipticals features:
Quiet and smooth motion. Some ellipticals are very smooth and quiet when you are pedaling, and some are not. Most people would obviously prefer to have the quiet ones, but again it's a personal preference and something you should think about before buying one.
Stride size. This probably is the most crucial feature in any elliptical. The stride length will make your workout more enjoyable since you will have more space for your feet to move around on the pedal. The stride size and length differ from one elliptical to another, and this is something you should seriously consider. Some will come with a 14 inch and go up to 21 inches in length. And you might get an elliptical that has an adjustable stride, and that's an excellent idea if different people will be using the same elliptical.
Adjustable resistance. The good news is that most (if not all) elliptical offer this feature. Adjustable resistance will help you improve your fitness gradually as you move up the resistance levels.
Heart rate monitor. This is another a must-have feature where you will be able to monitor your heart rate during your workout, so you can challenge yourself and also keeps you safe.
Warm-up and cool down. Some ellipticals have this feature where they can help you warm-up and cool down, which is really important for avoiding injuries.
Best ellipticals under $500
The Efitment elliptical is a very popular machine and most people who own it seem to be very happy with its performance and durability even though it's not a known brand name.
For the price, you are getting a very good small size elliptical that operates on a rear-drive and best of all it's very smooth and quiet. It has LCD monitor that shows time, speed, distance, calories burned, pulse rate and scan. PLUS, it has pulse rate grips to monitor your heart rate during your workout.
It mimics running forwards and backward to target more muscles for a full-body workout.
It also gives you 8 levels of magnetic resistance, which lets you increase or decrease difficulty levels with a touch of a finger depending on your fitness needs and goals. The other thing that's kinda unique to this elliptical is how light it is (75lb), and you can easily move it around since it has wheels where all you need to do is tilt and roll it (it's that easy). It's probably the perfect size for small spaces and apartments.
It holds up to 220lb in weight which is not bad for its size, but still, it's a drawback for people who weight over 220lb. The other drawback is the stride size which is 13 inches, and that's probably one of the smallest strides on the market.
The other thing to remember is that it doesn't come preset programs, where you are able to follow pre-programmed workout that comes with the elliptical.
Don't forget that this machine requires assembly, which wasn't bad and might take you a while to put it together, my advice is to follow the instructions that come with it, it will make your life much easier.
If you are looking for an affordable and yet very well designed elliptical that can do what most expensive ellipticals do, then you won't be disappointed.
Schwinn A40 elliptical is another elliptical that punches above its weight given the price and features that comes with it. It's very quiet and sturdy piece of equipment and offers outstanding features considering the price tag.
It gives you 6 pre-programmed workouts and 1 quick start program, where the Efitment didn't offer. I'm a big believer in preset programs because they save you time and effort trying to figure out how to monitor your progress. It stores your progress and results so you can go back and see where you left off last time and how you can improve going forward.
Just like the Efitment elliptical, it comes with 8 resistance levels to challenge and improve your fitness as you progress and has a reasonably big LCD monitor that shows your speed, time, RPM, distance, calories, results, and heart rate and runs forwards and backward to offer you more challenging workouts.
It has a 17.5-inch stride that gives you more space for comfort and feet adjustment which is really important for having the right body shape when you are working out to avoid injuries down the line.
It holds up to 275lb in weight, and probably you can go up to 300lb since this machine is very stable and well built. For a piece of mind, Schwinn elliptical comes with a 3-year warranty on frame, 1 year on mechanical and electronic parts, and you can purchase an extended warranty through Amazon.
This one also requires assembly, which will take 1-2 hours to assemble. When fully assembled, it's relatively easy to move around since it has 2 wheels at the front.
There's no doubt that this elliptical checks all the boxes and for the price tag, you are getting well built exercising equipment that should last for a long time with proper care.
3- Fitness Reality E5500XL Magnetic Elliptical Trainer
The E5500XL elliptical has a way more preset workouts and resistance levels that with no doubt will help you achieve your fitness goals. It provides 24 resistance levels and 21 preset programs that will push you to the limit.
It gives you 3 workout settings: distance, time and calories burned so you can select your preferred settings. This is a really cool feature since we all have our own preferred way of monitoring and measuring our progress by either calorie, distance or etc. which can push us harder to challenge/ improve our fitness.
It comes with backlit LCD monitor that's very simple and easy to understand and operate, so you don't waste time trying to figure out what button to press.
The other thing that I really liked is weight capacity which is 300lb. At this weight capacity, this machine will appeal to a broader audience where usually you will need a more pricier elliptical to accommodate bigger people.
I have to say that assembling this elliptical was a bit challenging, but it's usually the case with most sizeable exercising equipment.
The downside to this machine is that some people did experience difficulty trying to get the monitor working correctly and that the only thing I can think of where this machine might give you a bit of a headache otherwise, it's an affordable and robust machine that well worth the investment.
4- Body Xtreme Fitness 6-in-1 Elliptical Trainer
Body Xtreme 6 in 1 elliptical is newly designed fitness equipment that covers 6 different exercising machines in one. You are getting:
1- An elliptical
2- Exercise bike
3- Home gym
4- Ab twister
5- Free Weights
6- Resistance bands
What you are getting is a compact home gym and not only an elliptical at a very affordable price. You are still getting all the features that you usually get in an elliptical, like:
1- Pulse sensor to monitor your heart rate, and
2- Monitor to track Pulse, Speed, Distance, Resistance Level and calories burned
3- Adjustable seat to accommodate people of different sizes
4- Press-up bars for push-ups
This elliptical is considered a rear-drive and holds up to 220lb in weight and I have not heard of anyone complaining about its stability, as it's very stable and well built for the price that you are paying. To make sure it doesn't wobble (if this is the case for you), you can either place it on a hard floor or on an exercising mat.
Assembling this machine shouldn't be problematic and shouldn't take you long before you are done assembling it.
The downside is that the resistance levels are adjusted manually and doesn't come with preset programs that you usually get with higher end ellipticals.
5- Goplus 2 IN 1 Elliptical Fan Bike Dual Cross Trainer Machine Exercise Workout Home Gym
The Goplus is elliptical/bike trainer machine that is made for people who love running and cycling. The Goplus is definitely an elliptical more than a bike that is added as a bonus. What you are getting is an elliptical that has all the features that you would typically get in a higher end elliptical.
It comes with LCD monitor that shows your heart rate, time, distance, speed, scan and calories burned during your exercise. There are 2 extra grips with heart rate sensors for checking your heart rate to keep you focused on your workout and safe as well.
It's manually powered where you have to adjust the resistance levels using a knob, and the seat is adjustable as well for accommodating people of different sizes. It has a maximum of 220lb weight capacity which is what you will generally get with ellipticals in this price range.
Some people complain that the heart rate monitor is not accurate and others didn't have this problem. I'm guessing this is probably something to do with defected units and not a common issue with this machine. But again, you need to be aware of it if you are interested in buying this unit.
6- ProForm 150i Elliptical
The Proform 150i elliptical is definitely worth considering if you are looking for an elliptical that feels and performs like a higher end elliptical.
It's a front-drive elliptical that has a very smooth and quiet action, and it's very stable and doesn't wobble when you start to pedal very quickly. The LCD screen has a very sleek design, and there are some cool features that I'm sure you will appreciate like,
1- Compatible with google maps where you are can track your progress in real time using the street view feature.
2- Compatible with iFit apps
3- 12 workout apps
4- iPod compatible audio
5- Cup and tablet holder
6- Plug for MP3 input
You are getting 12 resistance levels and 12 preprogrammed workouts built into it and17-inch stride length which is suitable for people who are 5-7 feet in height. It comes with oversized pedals which are really handy for more comfort and easy pedaling without rubbing the side of your feet.
Just like any other elliptical, the LCD screen gives you the pulse, time, distance, speed, scan and calories burned as well as your progress and results. It holds 250lb in capacity and comes with a 5-year warranty on the frame and 90 days on parts and labor. For the price, you are getting an excellent deal and peace of mind that not all elliptical manufacturers will offer.
The only drawback is the assembly of this machine that might take you a while to put together.
Best ellipticals under $1000
1- AFG Sports 5.5AE Elliptical
The design of AFG ellipticals is based on extensive biometric research that focuses on making ellipticals that give you natural body movement to better protect your joints and muscles during your workouts.
The AFG Sports 5.5AE elliptical ticks all the boxes for smoothness, quietness, durability, stability, and design. You are getting a complete elliptical that lets you focus on your workout rather than worrying about moving or missing parts.
With this elliptical you are getting:
1- Multiple user accounts where everyone can check their results and progress.
2- 14.3lb flywheel system that gives you smooth and quiet strides as well more control than other elliptical that don't have the flywheel system.
3- 18-inch stride length for more natural movement.
4- Built-in audio system with surround speakers and audio jack.
5- Cool breeze fan
6- 10 resistance levels and 43 preprogrammed workouts that will keep you boredom free, for sure.
7- Large LED screen.
8- 275lb weight capacity
9- And the best part, this machine comes with a lifetime warranty for the frame and brake, and 1-year warranty on parts and labor.
For an elliptical that's a way under $1000, you are definitely getting yourself a high-quality machine that will last for a very long time and has all the bells and whistles that you ever need.
Again, this elliptical needs assembly just any other one and it will take a while to put together, but trust me it's worth the extra effort and the investment.
2- AFG Sport 5.9AE Elliptical
The AFG Sports 5.9AE is a more heavy duty and robust in terms of performance and durability when compared to the 5.5AE model. It feels much more of a gym quality equipment than any other elliptical that I have reviewed so far.
The challenge that all elliptical manufacturers face is how do they mimic the body's natural running and climbing movement and motion. If they are able to achieve that, then in return, you are going to get a heavy duty and gym quality machine that will get the best out of you in terms of performance and in achieving your fitness goals.
The AFG Sports 5.9AE is designed to do just that for under $1000. This elliptical has so many features that scream gym quality like:
1- Frame is designed to give that natural movement that we all want from an elliptical.
2- The 23lb flywheel technology gives you that controlled and smooth motion that you should expect from a gym quality elliptical.
3- 20-inch stride length which is ideal for people of all shapes and sizes.
4- 16 resistance levels and 43 preset programs.
5- You get 20 levels of incline to make your workout more challenging.
6- USB charging ports, Bluetooth 4.0
7- Audio system and speakers.
8- Multiple user accounts.
9- Max weight of 325lb.
10- Requires some assembly.
11- Warranty covers a lifetime on frame, 3 years on parts and 1-year labor.
I can honestly say that I didn't find any negative things to say about this elliptical itself. Some people weren't happy with the way it was shipped to them, which is got nothing to do with the elliptical but it's something to keep in mind when purchasing any elliptical.
3- ProForm 520 E Elliptical
Proform is a well-known brand in the elliptical world. They make one of the best and yet affordable ellipticals on the market.
Proform 520 E elliptical is very quiet and smooth and hits all the notes and gives a natural movement that you want and expect from a high quality elliptical.
It has some similarities to the AFG Sport 5.5AE model when it comes to the design and the natural movement technology. Just like with the 5.5AE, you are getting a gym quality elliptical that covers the whole nine yards.
You are getting:
1- 19-inch adjustable stride length.
2- 0-20 degrees incline adjustment for more challenging workouts
3- 18 resistance levels and 18 workout apps.
4- 16lb flywheel technology which makes the movement feels very smooth and controlled.
5- Holds up to 300lb in weight
6- Tablet and water bottle holders. The tablet holder expands up to 7inches.
7- iFit ready and MP3 players compatible.
8- EKG heart rate monitor that is known to be to be very accurate.
9- Lifetime warranty on frame and 1 year on parts and labor.
The bottom line is that this elliptical won't disappoint you if you are looking for a high-quality machine for well under $1000.
4- Nautilus E614 Elliptical Trainer
Nautilus E614 elliptical is another elliptical that offers so much for well under $1000. This elliptical is also designed with the natural movement concept in mind. The 18lb flywheel technology and the high inertia drive system makes it feel very smooth and controlled regardless of the workout intensity.
The E614 has the DualTrack LCD display where you can watch your favorite shows (on your tablet) while tracking your time, distance and calories burned all at the same time. It also comes with:
1- 22 programs and 20 resistance levels.
2- Built-in speaker and USB ports
3- 20-inch stride length
4- 6 position incline adjustment
5- 300lb weight capacity
6- pedals are pretty wide so you can adjust the width of your feet.
7- Base is built, but you need to install arms and legs.
8- 10 years warranty on frame, 2 years warranty on mechanical parts, 1 year on electronics and 3 months labor.
For the price, you are getting a very good deal, and it's definitely worth the investment.
If you are looking for a high quality elliptical that will last for a long time and offers that natural movement that we usually get from a gym quality equipment, then my advice is to invest in a flywheel system that guarantees you a smooth and quiet motion as well as control.
The ellipticals that come with the flywheel technology ranges between $600-$800, which not bad for what you are getting. Plus, for this price range, you are also getting so many useful features that you will definitely find yourself using most of them if not all.
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