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Cardio training

Price

Price may be the most important factor in your decision. Choose based on the features you need, like HP & cushioning. Under $1000: ideal for walking/light jogging & designed for occasional home use. Over $1000: heavier-duty for everyday commercial use; larger motors & stronger belts.

Manual vs Motorized & Folding vs Non-folding

Manual is more affordable, but it's harder because your feet move the deck & belt. Motorized is more expensive because the belt moves itself with adjustable speed/incline. If you have space, non-folding is great, but a folding treadmill works well without less quality.

Fitness Goals

A treadmill is a great step towards a fitness goal - from walking to running, you'll benefit from regular exercise. Choose a model that'll meet current & future needs. As you work out more, you'll find that you can increase the incline/speed, so ensure it can grow with you.

Features

Features to keep in mind include: Motor (HP): the higher the better; CHP: Continuous Horsepower delivers a smooth run; Deck Size & Weight Capacity: so you can move comfortably; most accommodate 275-300 lbs; Programs: from a light walk to an aggressive run with the push of a button.

Price

Prices vary, but simply put - spend more, get more. Exercise bikes fall into 2 price ranges: Over $500 for a smoother, sturdier ride with better resistance, more adjustability & features. Under $500 for lighter use. You'll still get a good workout, but less bells & whistles.

Recumbent vs Upright Bikes

You have 2 choices: Uprights resemble usual bikes & have less lumbar support, but make for intense workouts. In recumbents, you're reclined, with back support & feet in front - comfortable & ergonomically correct, great for someone with back problems or new to exercising.

Fitness Goals

Fitness goals are crucial to your choice. A $500+ bike is great for intense cardio, but it doesn't mean a pricey bike isn't ideal for novices. If you want to exercise often, quality bikes can convince you to keep it up. For modest goals or light use, look for a bike under $500.

Features

Important features to consider: Resistance, this is what makes your workout challenging. Options include Belt & Fan, Magnetic & Range. Other features to keep in mind: Adjustability (to ensure you'll fit properly); Display & Monitors (so you can keep an eye on your progress).

Price

Know your budget before shopping. Ellipticals fall into 2 price categories: budget (under $1000) for light or intermediate use; higher-end (over $1000) for consistent intermediate/advanced use. Good models exist for under $1000, but be sure to test for noise & stability.

Rear-drive vs Front-drive

Rear-drive ellipticals have flywheels at the back for a smoother motion. They need less overhead space, are quieter & have fewer parts. Front-drive ellipticals have flywheels at the front & take up less floor space. They have a track that requires cleaning.

Fitness Goals

What are your exercise goals? Weight-loss? Toning? Staying in shape? Your goals may determine the features you want in an elliptical. If you're a beginner, look for basic functions; advanced users may want more programs/features to keep them motivated & working hard.

Features

Important features include: Resistance, to increase the intensity of your workout; Stride Length, the furthest distance between the pedals during motion (look for at least 17"); Incline, which allows the elliptical to be raised/lowered to alter the elliptical motion.

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