Elliptical Machine or Treadmill

Elliptical Machine or Treadmill

Elliptical Machine or Treadmill

Whether to chose an elliptical or treadmill for an effective cardio workout, is an almost timeless debate that has stormed fitness forums. When it comes to the core concept of these machines, the treadmill enables you to walk, jog or run on a moving ramp, whereas an elliptical machine allows you to mimic walking, skiing, running, stair climbing etc. by pedalling, and your feet never touching the ground!

Elliptical vs Treadmill

Equinox Personal Trainer Rachel Mariotti explains the benefits of the elliptical vs treadmill 


Should you buy an Elliptical or Treadmill for your Gym?


There’s nothing more comfortable than having a versatile piece of gym equipment right at your home. For cardiovascular exercises that enable you to burn the maximum calories, the treadmill, as well as the elliptical trainer are prevalent machines. Each one has its essential functionality, set of features, the degree of personalization and of course, its pros and cons.

So we’re here with a useful comparative analysis of both, to help you decide whether an elliptical or treadmill should be more up to your liking! Since we’ve already discussed the multiple features and benefits of elliptical trainers, let’s take a look at the merits and demerits of a treadmill.

Treadmill Pros
Easy to Use- This is a cardio machine with operating guidelines that are pretty much simple and straightforward.
Wide Range of Adjustable Parameters- A treadmill lets you adjust all possible variables related to the effectiveness and ‘challenge scale’ of your workout, right from incline and speed, to calories burned, warm-up time, cool-down time etc.
Safe- As compared to outdoor terrains like sidewalks, parks, jogging tracks etc., the treadmill ramp provides a slightly cushioned impact on your feet, thereby making it safer.

High Rate of Calories Burnt- Running on the treadmill is considered as one of the most vigorous cardio exercises, regarding calories burnt.
Hi-tech Features-Advanced Models come with sophisticated entertainment features, terrain variations, heart-rate tracking, mobile app compatibility and so on!

Treadmill Cons
Unnatural Motion- Many Orthotists (Foot Doctors) are of the opinion that the running motion that one tends to develop on treadmills, is abnormal and might cause foot ailments, joint pain etc. in the long run.
Risk of Injury- Inexperienced users run the risk of getting imbalanced and slipping on the tread, while others might find it difficult to run on natural terrains, once accustomed to using the treadmill.

Monotonous- Unlike Ellipticals, you don’t have any option for an upper body workout, or for working for different muscle groups.
Posture Issues- Owing to the limited types of movements achieved on treadmills, one could also develop incorrect posture and muscle imbalances in the long run.


What an Elliptical machine does that a Treadmill doesn’t!

An Elliptical Trainer protects your sensitive body parts like hip, knees, back, elbows etc. from undue strain.
Some intermediate and advanced Elliptical Trainers help you work on different muscle groups, and exercise your body using upper body handles that mimic the action of skiing poles. Some of the best elliptical under 500 that i have tried was working fine. I recommend having a budget of 1000.

The pedals can be maneuvered forward and backward, thereby strengthening your calf and hamstring muscles.
An Elliptical Trainer wins hands on over a Treadmill regarding providing a diversity of workouts. You can choose from multiple training programs and can rest assured of never getting bored!

Emulation of Natural Human Movements like running, walking jogging, stair-climbing etc. is the defining aspect of an elliptical trainer, something that’s not for, in treadmills.

elliptical vs treadmill

The decision of opting for an elliptical or treadmill depends on some factors such as:

  • Fitness Targets or the kinds of workout you’re aiming at.
  • Your medical history and current health condition (whether you have weak knees, elbows, back pain etc.)
  • Your current fitness level
  • Your spending capacity, you have to find the best elliptical that fit your need.
  • Overall comfort level.


You can read more here for The Definitive Solution for Best Elliptical under 1000