Best Compact Ellipticals of 2016
Compact ellipticals are lightweight, portable and really useful for homeowners who do not have a lot of space.
Compact ellipticals may sacrifice a few specs (to get that sleek design) so make sure you are getting the features you need to maximize performance.
Compare the top 5 compact ellipticals in the table below.
|Top 5 Best Rated Ellipticals||
NordicTrack C 9.5
NordicTrack C 7.5
Octane Fitness XT-One
|Full Review||Read Review||Read Review||Read Review||Read Review||Read Review|
|Resistance||n/a||24 Levels||n/a||22 Levels||30 resistance levels|
|Stride Length||58"||18" - 20"||58"||18" - 20"||20" - 28"|
|Max. Weight||300 lbs||350 lbs||300 lbs||325 lbs||400 lbs|
|Programs||35||32||35||26||72 (on XI console)|
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Compact Ellipticals Buying Guide
If recent trends present any clues, consumer products are definitely becoming much more compact with the prime example being cell phones. Do you remember when cell phones first became available? They were ridiculously massive! Today, some cell phones fit comfortably inside the palm of your hand. As a result, the exercise world has begun to imitate what some companies are doing in the personal electronic market.
Compact ellipticals offer several distinct advantages. Compact ellipticals are lighter, smaller and may or may not fold. As a result, compact ellipticals are easy to transport, require less floor space and may fold to save even more room when not in use. Compact trainers obviously make a lot of sense for a consumer-driven society that is running out of space to put things.
Compact Ellipticals — Pros vs. Cons
- Lightweight, easy to transport if you move often
- Require less floor space in tightly condensed rooms
- Often fold to create extra room
- Regularly equipped with transport wheels for additional mobility
- Traditionally affordable
- Since the trainer is smaller, compact ellipticals may sacrifice specs
- Stability of the frame may not be as consistent
- Arguably not as well produced
In the end, it all depends on availability. If space is a premium in your household, you need a space efficient elliptical. However, if you have the extra storage compact ellipticals might not provide the most attractive option.
The stereotype inside the fitness world for years has been that compact ellipticals (like other compact home gyms) are inferior to other ellipticals that are not as concerned about saving space but performance. While true to an extent, compact ellipticals have actually traveled miles in terms of quality production.
For starters, manufactures have managed to find ways to transform high quality performance and durability from larger models into the compact designs. In addition to better design, more exercise companies have come into the picture thus creating stronger competition between manufactures and more options today than ever.
Compact Elliptical Features
Today, the three distinct features of compact ellipticals are:
- Size (Length x Width)
- Folding vs. Non-Folding
Simply put, if you want a compact elliptical in the 21st century your first benchmark for comparison is weight of the machine. Obviously, the lighter the elliptical the more compact the trainer. Secondly, the size of the elliptical will quickly give you an idea of just how compact the elliptical stands. Of course, features like transport wheels and 2 side flywheel design are other clear signs of compatibility.
Unfortunately, folding ellipticals have not quite caught on like folding treadmills. Therefore, not a ton of folding ellipticals exist and not all of them are that well produced. Hopefully in the next few years we will begin to see more folding ellipticals because the market is pointing toward the desire for more compact ellipticals.
More Compact Ellipticals
The following did not make the Top 5 Compact Ellipticals, but are still worth a look: