How To Exercise On The Elliptical Cross Trainer

How To Exercise On The Elliptical Cross Trainer?

Elliptical cross trainers (elliptical trainers ) are currently one of the most popular exercise machines and are the leader among home training machines – especially since it combines training on a stepper, bicycle and treadmill . It’s worth knowing how to properly train on such a device.

  • First of all, before you start training, it’s worth taking a moment to read the instructions . Knowing the specifics of the elliptical ‘s work and markings on the console and the training programs offered will significantly facilitate and effective training, allowing you to choose settings and functions that are most beneficial to the user.
  • Before starting the workout, a short warm-up should be performed. This is a prerequisite – exercising without warming up can easily strain your muscles and hurt yourself. Ten minutes of stretching and warming up the muscles significantly reduces the risk of injury and injury (you can also warm up for a short while, but you must not skip this step).
  • It is recommended to adjust the level of exercise to fitness and fitness; intensity increases systematically over time.
  • The length of the step is adjusted depending on the preferences or height of the exerciser. It is more convenient for taller people to exercise with a longer stride length. The regulation of this parameter also has an effect on which muscle group we train more intensively during training.
  • It is worth exercising using the elliptical ‘s movable arms – then you train much larger parts of muscles.
  • Without moving your hands and setting the machine for a small step length and a greater load, you perform the most-closest workout to the stepper.
  • You should practice being straight, without bending forward. It is recommended to look ahead and pull / tighten the abdominal muscles .
  • Do not squeeze the handles too much.
  • If you experience pain or discomfort, it is recommended to reduce the intensity or stop training.
  • Before leaving the machine, make sure that it is stopped. Do not jump out of the elliptical during work .
  • To achieve optimal and visible effects, training on the elliptical cross trainer is recommended at least three times a week . Beginners recommend that the training last for about 30 minutes, you can gradually (and should) extend this time.
  • It is worth taking care of the variation of training on an elliptical trainer . Interval training is much more effective than one-load exercises (beginners are advised to take a small load to avoid over training the body).
  • During training, it is advisable to use the pulse measurement option . Keeping it at the appropriate level will allow you to achieve the intended results. The heart rate can be controlled using the elliptical placed in the arms of touch sensors or using a chest strap (the telemetry belt gives definitely more accurate results).
  • If we use heart rate training programs , the cross trainer can adjust the current load to the user’s pulse by reducing it when the heart rate is too high and increasing when it is too low.
  • After training on the elliptical cross trainer, take a moment (at least 3-5 minutes) for stretching and stiffening exercises (according to specialists, this phase should not be avoided, as it exposes you to fainting or muscle pain).

Interval training on the elliptical cross trainer

Interval training has been considered the best endurance training for years. Recent studies show that it is also a workout that allows for intense fat burning (even greater than in the case of aerobic training).

The principle of conducting interval training is very simple and involves interlacing exercises with low and high intensity. The interval improves the efficiency of the cardiovascular system as well as the respiratory system. It also leads to the formation of capillary connections, thanks to which more oxygen is delivered to working muscles.

Interval training can be performed in two ways:

  • Extensive method – a greater number of repeats with a lower level of effort (85% max. HR) interleaved with “breaks” (active, non-resting) during which the heart rate drops to 65% max HR;
  • Intensive way – less repetitions with high intensity (up to 95% max HR), with longer “active breaks” during which the heart rate should be around 60% HR.
  • When conducting interval training, remember:
  • Repetition of interval training no more frequently than every 48 hours (this is the energy deficit in muscles after this type of training),
  • Time of training (due to its high intensity should not exceed 25 minutes with warm-up),
  • Modifying the level of training with increasing condition, and thus – choosing it properly to train the body,
  • Not using training in cardiac problems, problems with joints, etc. (if in doubt, ask your doctor for advice).

The elliptical machine – shaping the muscles and losing weight

Because the elliptical trainer is an extremely versatile device, with its help the user can perform both fat burning and shaping training .

  • Shaping the muscles – you should set a fairly large exercise resistance – they can last a little shorter than in the case of fat-burning exercises (but you must not forget about doing warm-up and cooling / stretching the body!). Greater resistance causes working at a higher heart rate , which means entering the zone of fitness training.
  •  Losing weight – proper training on the elliptical cross trainer (between warm up and muscle cooling) should be medium intensity, with a small or variable load, but it should be as long as possible – to force the heart to work and burn some calories.

On the elliptical cross trainer, you can also do cardio training (ie training performed at heart rate 70-80% HR max), improving the condition and endurance of the body, which improves circulation and increases the volume of the lungs. Cardio training also increases bone density and helps to prevent osteoporosis at a later age (it is also recommended for older people).

Programs controlled by the heart rate in the elliptical cross trainer

Elliptical training aimed at burning fat tissue or improving the overall efficiency of the organism is to control the heart rate in the body . To meet the needs of users, manufacturers of elliptical trainers equipped them with special programs controlled by the heart rate – depending on the elliptical model you can meet one or more of such programs (such as training aprons or interval training).

Pulse- controlled training programs rely on the automatic adjustment of exercise resistance to a predetermined pulse rate (it is recommended to use a chest strap that allows the most accurate heart rate measurement). If the heart rate is too high in relation to the assumed heart rate, it will decrease the load at specific intervals until the heart rate is lowered to the assumed level. Similarly, when the heart rate is too low, the load is increased. In case of problems with reading the heart rate, do not use the pulse controlled programs.


For example , the cross trainer can be equipped with 3 heart rate programs:

– HRC 1 – aimed at burning fat and keeping the heart rate at 60 and 75% HR max. This workout should be performed almost every day for about 30 minutes.

– HRC2 – to improve the condition, the target heart rate is here 85% HR max (these are very intense workouts and you should bear in mind the recommendation for a 48-hour break between workouts).

– HRC3 – aims to lose the weight of the exerciser, the target heart rate is 65% HR max.

Cross trainer with a seat

A specific variant of the elliptical cross trainer is an elliptical exerciser with a seat. You can use it in two ways, or like a traditional elliptical (the seat most often has vertical and horizontal adjustment, so you can not use it at all) or as a certain variation of a training bike (moves as on an elliptical with the ability to sit or train using fixed arms of the elliptical cross trainer – then the training is basically the same as on a bicycle).

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