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3 Wrong Ways to Use an Elliptical

The elliptical is one of those machines you look at in the gym, and wonder if the designer had a seizure half-way through its design. It looks like a mix between a stationary bicycle and a stair master, and yet, there are always people working out on them. Is there a secret to this workout machine that we don’t know about? Regardless of your personal opinions of the debate on machines versus free weights, there is no questioning the benefits of the elliptical. However, there is some right and wrong ways to use this machine, and the advice is well worth listening to if you want to get the most out of your workout.

You Set Resistance Level to “0”

Without any resistance, your body cannot build muscle. Resistance is the key aspect of all exercise; even light weights do wonders with enough repetitions. The motions on the elliptical are meant to work out the quads, hamstrings, butt, calves and other muscle groups, as well as cardio. Keep the weight up; you should never feel like you can go another couple of minutes at the end of a workout.

Declining to Change Directions

The wonderful thing about the elliptical machine is that it is not just meant to provide forward movement; it is able to let you move in the opposite direction, or backwards, as well. Moving backwards puts emphasis on the hamstrings and glutes so don’t forget to utilize all aspects of this machine!

Focusing Only On Your Legs

The elliptical was designed with moveable handles for a reason; don’t neglect them and give your legs the entire workout! A good rule of thumb is to train on this machine in intervals: focus on the legs for two minutes, then the arms for one minute, then two minutes for both. Train at five minute intervals, and you will see some great results in even a half hour session.

If you like using an elliptical machine, why not purchase one for home use? Check out some elliptical reviews and get ideas on models, pricing and effective uses.