Best Residential Ellipticals of 2016
Residential ellipticals are designed and equipped for home use, ultimately trying to provide the same performance and durability as the ellipticals you would find at the local gym yet at a cheaper price.
While these elliptical machines might not hold up for years with 10 hours+ use per day, they're usually more than enough for the average household
Read on to see our top rated elliptical machines for home use.
Top 5 Best Rated Residential Ellipticals
ProForm PRO 9.0 NE
NordicTrack C 9.5
Rating: 94.2 %
Rating: 93.6 %
Rating: 93.5 %
Rating: 93.4 %
Rating: 93.3 %
|Resistance||20 levels||24 Levels||n/a||22 Levels||24 Levels|
|Stride Length||20"||0" - 38"||58"||20 inches||18" - 20"|
|Flywheel||27 lbs||20 lbs.||n/a||28 Lbs||25 lbs|
|Pricing||See Best Price||See Best Price||See Best Price||See Best Price||See Best Price|
Residential Ellipticals Buying Guide
Exercise equipment was once reserved for the local gym. Then, it progressively became more affordable and available to the residential market. Today, it is possible to either invest in a local gym membership or purchase a product to store in your own home. As a result, elliptical manufactures have responded by offering two general categories — Residential Ellipticals and Commercial Ellipticals.
Commercial ellipticals are generally reserved for gyms and hotels because they are expected to be used 6-8 hours per day and need special attention to withstand the use. However, consumers who are really serious about their exercise equipment and intent on owning the best elliptical available might invest in a commercial-grade elliptical for their home. Regardless, residential ellipticals will satisfy most consumers who need something that is designed for light to average use.
Residential ellipticals, first and foremost, are cheaper and more attractive for the home market. However, that is not to say that residential ellipticals are inferior to commercial market as there are several residential ellipticals that are surprisingly good. When shopping for an elliptical, one of the first decisions you need to make is do you want a commercial or residential elliptical?
- Designed with highest quality parts
- Built to last even under the most intense use
- Popular among gyms and hotels
- Affordable for independent consumers
- Designed for home use (1-5 users)
- Warranties cover expected lifespan of elliptical
- Often do not take up as much space
Home Use Ellipticals
Consequently, it’s important to not automatically label all residential ellipticals inferior to commercial ellipticals because some of the high end residential elllitpicals can actually compete with their commercial counterpart.
Unless you plan to use your elliptical hours upon hours (and will have multiple users doing the same) you should do fine with a residential elliptical.
If you plan to buy a residential elliptical you need to pay attention to these vital features:
- Resistance type
- Stride length
- Levels of resistance
- Weight capacity of frame
The five features (above) are all very important to the operation of a good elliptical. Since residential ellipticals vary substantially in price range, these five specs will drastically change from the cheapest to most expensive residential ellipticals.
The type of resistance, levels of resistance and stride length are especially important because they ensure steady performance. If you have a really short stride length it may not be satisfactory to taller users. If you only have 8 levels of resistance your workout options will be very limited.
Of course, you also need a frame that is durable and though most frames on ellipticals are backed for life you want to make sure you’re investing in something sturdy. A word of advice is always under-sell the “maximum weight capacity” because a lot of elliptical manufactures will say it supports 350 lbs. when it probably only supports 275 to 300 lbs. adequately.
Lastly, budget ellipticals rarely have a flywheel. Thus, the operation is not nearly as smooth or quiet. If you’re serious about getting a great elliptical be sure to invest in something with a flywheel.
The features (below) may not be quite as important as your vital specs but they do enhance the fitness experience substantially:
- Type of Display
- Number of Workout Programs
- iPod/mp3 compatibility
- Built-in speakers
- Cooling fan
- iFit Live
These days, exercise equipment is all about maximizing performance and thus you need a good display system to relay all important exercise data. A lot of exercise equipment has LCD display while a few products sport LED display. Most experts think that LED display is higher quality but personal preference may differ.
Owning an elliptical that is music friendly (iPod dock, built-in speakers) is very important in the mp3 era. If you’re passionate about music make sure you get an elliptical that supports your addiction.
iFit Live is a really revolutionary workout program that is endorsed by celebrities like trainer Jillian Michaels. It’s a fantastic program but you’ll need to pay more for an elliptical that is compatible with iFit Live. Also, pay special attention to the details because some ellipticals support iFit Live but you need to purchase the module separately (Wi-Fi also required).
More Residential Ellipticals
The following did not make the Top 5 Residential Ellipticals, but are still worth a look: