KEY DECISIONS

      • 1

        Programming options. Some ellipticals have programs that include walk/jog/run, hill climbing and interval training.

      • 2

        User capacity. Not all machines are created equal when it comes to user capacity. User capacity ranges from 250 to 450 pounds.

      • 3

        Ergonomics. Elliptical machines should simulate how the body naturally moves.

      ELLIPTICAL TRAINER TYPES

      FEATURES THAT MATTER MOST

      • Heart-rate monitor

        Exercising in your proper heart rate zone, you'll optimize your workout toward meeting your fitness goals.

      • Electronic programming

        Most elliptical machines record distance, speed, heart rate and time elapsed. Machines differ greatly in the type and number of workout programs available.

      • Articulating foot pedals

        Articulating foot pedals are most important on front-drive ellipticals since the movement isn't as smooth.

      • Padded foot pedals

        Some ellipticals offer increased padding, such as orthopedic pads, to cushion the pedals for a more comfortable workout.