How Much Does an Elliptical Trainer Cost? Do Higher Price Ellipticals Perform Better than Lower Priced Trainers?

When Looking For Your Next Elliptical Trainer, How Much Should You Expect To Pay?

One of the most favored and popular gym equipment today is an elliptical trainer which was introduced in the mid-1990s. This incredible machine provides an excellent body work out, and it’s also a piece of great equipment you can use at home without any inconvenience. It does not take up a lot of space, and you can choose a model that works quietly if you want.
Elliptical trainers are extremely easy and safe to use. But you won’t find it so easy when you have to choose one. The reason is that they’re available in a wide variety of models, and each model has a different price tag. You can either choose a basic model for a few hundred dollars, which offers a standard cardio exercise. Or a beefy model for of thousand dollars or more, which offers an intense full-body workout and has lots of advanced features.

In this post, we have analyzed different types of elliptical trainers and compared their features and the difference in their cost or price. You will also learn why some models are more expensive than the others and the reason why there is a huge price gap between a commercial and a piece of home equipment.

Factors which separates an affordable elliptical trainer from an expensive one

It’s obvious that any gadget or equipment which has better features is the one that has a higher price tag. When it comes to elliptical trainers, the ones with advanced features are usually the ones that are solidly built, and they’ll cost a lot more.

But, there are some major characteristics that affect the price of these machines. Let’s discuss each of these in detail.

1 – Stride Length

The stride length is one of the most important factors when it comes to your comfort levels on an elliptical and the final results you could expect from your workout. Many low cost ellipticals compromise on their stride length, not addressing different types of users and their needs.

A too short stride length for you makes your legs move on a shorter range of motion, this way impacting your effort and can even feel akward and uncomfortable, sometimes leading to more serious muscular issues.

On the other end, a big stride length for you could result in an overextension of your muscles and being off-balance, leading to an uncomfortable work out and possible injuries.

That’s why the stride length can make or break your elliptical experience. So, you might ask, what is the perfect stride length for me?
The image below should shed some light on this subject:

Credit: Octane Fitness

Imagine that you and your wife wan’t to use the elliptical, and you both have different heights. How can you both train without spending money on different ellipticals for each? You can always get a trainer with an adjustable stride, improving the chances of you and the rest of your family enjoying a full body workout at home.

Being on a quest to find an elliptical with a good stride length for you is not an easy task, but as a general rule making your own research is imperative to make the best decision without throwing money down the toilet.

2 – Weight of the flywheel

The number one factor which affects the price of these cardio exercise machines is the weight of the flywheel. This is because the flywheel is very crucial in keeping the equipment stable when it is in operation. It is also responsible for ensuring the smoothness of the machine.

A heavier flywheel does not make much noise, and they’re much smoother and stable than elliptical trainers with a lighter flywheel. Needless to say, the cost of the machine will be higher if the flywheel is heavier. Ellipticals with the highest price tags usually have a flywheel that weighs more than 30 pounds, while the majority of the basic and affordable models have flywheels that weigh about 20 pounds or less.

3 – Weight capacity

The weight capacity is the maximum recommended user weight. The greater the weight capacity of the machine, the higher the price. There are ellipticals that have a weight capacity of 250 pounds or less. These models are affordable. The high priced options can handle users weighing up to 400 pounds.

4 – Type of pedals

Generally, elliptical trainer machines come with pedals equipped with a light cushion, heavy cushion, or no cushion. Cushioned pedals are great for reducing the strain on the joints, especially on the knees. The better the quality of the cushion, the better comfort it provides. This also means that a machine with a better cushion will have a higher price.

5 – Size and quality of console screen

Almost all modern ellipticals have a console screen, which allows the users to manage the controls. It also displays workout statistics such as time and duration of exercise, calories burned, and heart rate. Machines with better quality and larger console screens add more to the price. This is because more information can be displayed on a larger screen and with better clarity.

6 – Rear vs. Front-drive

The rear-driven machine provides a better elliptical movement, and they are usually the ones with a higher price than those with a front-drive.

7 – Advanced features

Some of the machines at a higher price range have very advanced features such as Wi-Fi, built-in speakers and fans, Bluetooth, and touchscreen.

8 – Warranty

This one is self-explanatory, the longer the duration of the offer or warranty, the pricier the machine will be.

Commercial elliptical vs. Home Grade elliptical

Commercial Ellipticals vs. Home Grade Ellipticals

The gap between these two types of machines is huge in terms of price and quality. Home grade ellipticals are much cheaper and affordable, while commercial units are packed with lots of cool features, better-built quality, and are more expensive. This, however, does not mean that commercial machines are more advanced or better. This is simply because commercial units are designed for repeated use, and they’re built to meet the requirements of different types of people with different body weight, and height.
As discussed above, the major difference between the two is their built quality. Commercial machines are made with highly durable materials to ensure that they can withstand repeated use. This is one of the main reasons why commercial grade ellipticals are more expensive.

The prices you could expect to pay for an at home elliptical can go from less than 100 dollars to several thousand dollars, up until 3 or 4 thousand if you would like to get an at home trainer on the higher end.

For a commercial gym grade trainer the prices go from a few thousand dollars up to more than 10 thousand dollars. As you can see there is a big price gap between home and commercial trainers.

Another reason why they have a higher price than home equipment is because of the competition. Equipment manufacturers know that there are a lot of other similar products on the market. To make their product unique, special, and to grab the people’s attention, they have to include more and more features.

How much should you pay for an elliptical trainer?

If you’re buying the equipment for personal use or you’re on a budget, you can get an affordable model for a few hundred dollars, say $200 or lesser. However, you cannot expect it to be very stable and comfortable, have cool features, or expect it to last for years.
Most people who exercise a lot opt for mid-ranged elliptical trainers; these are priced at $350 to $500. These machines are great, both in terms of performance and durability, and they come with great features too.
The ones that will offer maximum comfort and durability are those machines that are rated for commercial use. Commercial grade ellipticals are also better in terms of safety, durability and perfomance, but they’re pretty expensive. Some go up to more than ten thousand dollars.


Elliptical trainers are designed for a particular purpose, and that is to help you burn calories and stay in shape. Regardless of what type of equipment you buy, it will serve the same purpose, although there may be a slight difference in how they perform and endure through time. Many low priced ellipticals are simply not worth it, because you will be saving money yes, but many components will be of low quality and are really not made to last, just to sell.

But you are lucky today, because we have done most of the research here at Naxus Fitness. If you want to make a informed decision, read our individual elliptical reviews on many of the most well known elliptical brand manufacturers, this will help you choose and compare all the latest low priced, middle end and higher grade models.

Choosing your next cardio elliptical cross trainer doesn’t have to be hard, you just need to focus on some key characteristics to make a buy that won’t waste your time and money.

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