How Do Cross Trainers Work, and Why Are They So Effective?

Fitness, Elliptical Trainer, Elliptical, Gym, Trainer


The cross trainer is an instantly recognisable machine. To give you a rough idea, it slightly resembles an exercise bike but without a saddle. What makes the elliptical cross trainer so popular is that it is a highly effective workout machine that works the entire body at one time.

Here are the basic components of a cross trainer and a brief explanation of how they work:


What is a Cross Trainer


Movable Handlebars and Foot Paddles 


man running on Cross Trainers


These two components are the parts that are going to give your body a good workout.

They are powered by a flywheel with adjustable resistance levels, meaning that you are able to choose how intense or easy your workout is.



Variable Incline 


Although this is not a feature that all cross trainers will have, it is one that is beneficial if your machine does have it as a feature. By adjusting the incline on your cross trainer, you are able to choose whether you want it to feel like you are going uphill or downhill.

This will allow you to work different muscle groups at varying intensities. So whether you’re looking to build some muscle or shred the fat, you can control it.


Built In Programs 

Again, this isn’t a feature that all cross trainers will have in common, but it is beneficial. A lot of the mid-range to high-end devices will have a number of built in programs which will allow you to maximise your results, whether that is weight loss or toning.


Adjustable Resistance 

people exercising

As you build your fitness, you will find that your workout sessions become easier meaning that you will have to work out for longer in order to get the results that you want. With a cross trainer, this isn’t an issue.

With the majority of the elliptical cross trainers on the market at the moment, you are able to adjust the level of resistance so you can make your workout far more intense as your fitness levels improve. This will allow you to keep pushing yourself, improving your results even further.


Tracking Function 

Most cross trainers will have an LCD screen that will allow you to monitor your progress. Typically this will include information such as the distance that you have travelled and the calories that you have burned, among many other pieces of information.

Some of the higher end devices will even provide you with graphs and charts which demonstrate your progress.

Now that you know how a cross trainer works, you are probably wondering what it is that makes them so effective as workout machines. Here are a couple of ways in which the cross trainer outdoes other workout machines.


They Work the Whole Body

cross trainer machine

What you will find with a lot of home workout machines is that they are only designed to work certain areas of the body, such as muscles in the upper body, or the legs.

This is fine if you have problem areas that you want to work on, but if your goal is an improvement in general fitness or you want to lose weight, then this is unlikely to work for you.

One of the biggest benefits that you get with the elliptical cross trainer is that you are able to work every muscle group each time you work out. As you can imagine, this will allow you to get much better results, whether you want to lose weight or tone your muscles.


You Can Burn More Calories

With machines like the treadmill or the exercise bike, you can burn a significant amount of calories, but your workout will have to be quite intense. One of the best things about the elliptical cross trainer is the fact that you are able to burn far more calories because you are working every muscle group at once.

Again, if your end goal is to lose weight from every area of your body, then the cross trainer is one of the best machines that will allow you to do this.


They offer Many Adjustable Settings

Another very good thing about the cross trainer is that there are so many ways in which you can adjust the settings to give you a personalised workout that will work well for you personally. For example, you can not only vary the intensity of your workout, but you can also adjust the incline, the stride length and the resistance.

This will allow you to play around with the settings so that you can find the one that works best for you personally which will allow you to make sure that you are getting the best results possible from your daily workout.

As you can see, the cross trainer is certainly an impressive piece of gym equipment. If you want to save space, keep your workouts from getting boring and improve your overall fitness then a cross trainer is a fantastic investment.



  1. daniel alexx 12/06/2018
  2. Cristina Olivia 12/03/2018
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