A common question among most gym-goers is that of choosing between an elliptical machine and a treadmill for the best cardio workout. Being few of the most common machines you can find in any gym, comparison is bound to happen when people with weight loss as a goal begin to deviate toward a particular machine. but the main question that needs to be asked when trying to pick a winner between these machines is just how compatible they are to your lifestyle and your way of living.
An elliptical machine is a stationary workout contraption that can help reduce impact on your joints by simply stimulating a walking, or climbing stairs motion, while working on your upper as well as lower body. A treadmill on the other hand are machines that include a treading carpet which stimulates a sense of walking or running as well.
Technically both of them offer a cardio workout, improving your blood flow throughout the body, while putting a lot of good stress onto your cardio vascular system. Both of them will be burning a lot of calories as well.
What makes them different then, is their level of each of these factors, i.e. the number of calories burnt, or the level of work your cardio-vascular system ends up putting in. to better compare them, therefore, you can find the factors listed below, and choose the workout you prefer by picking your own specificity.
Some Factors you should consider :-
1. Calories burned.
- Elliptical Machine: considering how the elliptical machine seems to be working your upper as well as lower body, you’ll be burning a high number of calories. According to Harvard Medical School, a 160-pound person would lose around 345 calories within half an hour on an elliptical.
- Treadmill: Many experts, though, will actually tell you that a treadmill will help burn more calories, specifically because it is a high impact workout. The best example here would be that if you run for 30 minutes, with your pace being around 10 minutes for each mile, you’re much more likely to lose 270 calories by the end of the workout.
2. Muscles affected.
- Elliptical Machine: seeing how you’re presented with handles for your arms to practice with while working your lower body, you’ll be getting a full-body workout with an elliptical machine.
- Treadmill: a running workout, you’ll be focusing on your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and your calves, technically your lower body, along with your core, which in turn will strengthen these particular muscles alone.
3. Toned Glutes.
- Elliptical Machine: the regular workout when presented on the elliptical machine, works your frontal muscles, specifically your quadriceps more than your glutes. But if you genuinely want to target your glutes into being firmer, you can always perform a variation wherein you work out inversely on the machine.
- Treadmill: most treadmill provide an option of inclining it, and with the incline, working your glutes and lower body is in full swing. This is partly because of the added resistance that the height provides, making you put more pressure on your bottom.
4. Ease of Access.
- Elliptical Machine: most individuals find the momentum of the machine quite awkward at first, but if you can bear with it for the first few sessions many elliptical users find it easier and less stressful due to its low impact regime.
- Treadmill: the simplicity of a treadmill makes it the most accessible machine in the gym, but you need to put in a lot of strength to lose out on fat.
- Elliptical Machines: Probably known for their level of injury-free equipment, these are the best for people worried about injuring their joints, specifically if you’re one to practice on the one simple machine for a long period of time.
- Treadmill: a high impact activity, specifically when you’re on incline, knee injuries are pretty common when it comes to this machine, therefore if you’re one to practice this everyday getting injured is quite possible.
6. Aerobic fitness.
- Elliptical Machine: even though this is a low impact workout, you’ll be fit enough to improve your aerobic fitness to a healthy degree.
- Treadmill: Similar to an elliptical machine, your aerobic fitness will be at an excellent level, healthy enough for you.
7. Starter Fitness.
- Elliptical Machine: you’ll require less effort at the beginner stage while burning a high level of calories at the same time.
- Treadmill: Considering its high impact nature, the first few sessions will be difficult to follow through for burning enough calories that you’d prefer to, at the very least at the start.
- Elliptical Machine: seeing how the machine operates based on how you keep your pace, pushing through the handles as well as shifting your feet accordingly, you’ll need high level of motivation to be able to push yourself. Carrying a great playlist along, or even just watching a movie along with it, can help you maintain a good level of speed.
- Treadmill: this machine requires you to input the pace you want to maintain, which if you don’t will result in you falling out of the machine, therefore, the machine itself will be motivating you to keep up with it. If you’re one who requires a push, the treadmill is a good place to start.
- Elliptical Machine: most trainers will also tell you that a correct form or posture will only result in the right muscles being utilized. Therefore, you need to make sure your feet are properly positioned on the pads provided, while your back is ramrod straight, and your shoulder held back.
- Treadmill: here, you’ll mainly have to focus on keeping your upper body as straight as possible, shoulders held back. But your arms are also as important, with a little space between your arms and your body, and your elbows bend in a 90-degree angle.
- Elliptical Machine: Most people with joint injuries, or even back injuries, should use these contraptions. Overweight individuals as well, should start with this machine at the very least, considering its low impact feature.
- Treadmill: Most runners will find this the best option for them during winters, or other drastic weather conditions. It’s perfect for these individuals.
In conclusion, make sure to pick the right machine based on your own specificity.
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