Cross trainer machines are one of the most popular cardio workout machines that you can find in almost all gyms. These are also good to become a part of any home gym, as it requires no installation or continuous expert intervention or support. These are based on the simple movement of walking, running or climbing steps. Therefore, it is easy to use and proves perfect for beginners and home gyms.
Cross trainer machines are sometimes also referred to as elliptical machines or elliptical gym equipment. Although they may look the same there is a slight difference that makes one a little better than the other. Elliptical gym equipment comes with one single set of fixed bars. This form of machine focuses on the lower body workout. On the other hand, the cross trainer machine has two sets of handlebars: one is fixed, like elliptical machines and the other one is moveable, which moves front and back with the foot paddle. The benefit of cross trainers is that the moving handles help workout the upper body parts like the chest, back and arms. For this reason, people with upper joint ailments should strictly go for elliptical gym equipment.
So basically, cross trainer machines are an advanced or hybrid version of traditional elliptical machines. Some people may also refer to it as an elliptical cross trainer, as it has both types of handles. Where elliptical machines work for glutes, quads, hamstrings, calves and lower shins, the cross trainers additionally show results on the triceps, biceps, chest and abdominals.
How to work out on a Cross Trainer Machine
When you hop on the machine make sure to stand with a straight back and shoulders. Do not look down at your feet, keep your eyes ahead. The incorrect posture leads to injury and back & neck pain.
Next, hold the handles correctly. Try to keep hands parallel to the ground, holding too high or too low will affect your neck. Select from the movable or stationary handle, depending on which kind of workout you are aiming at: the full body or just the lower body parts.
Moving to the feet, make sure you are placing it firm and flat. Do not try to push it with just the toes or heel. Once the paddle goes up you can raise your heel. It may sound complicated but with slow speed and practice, it becomes easier.
The movement of the legs goes alternatively. It should glide in synchronization. When the paddle moves forward it goes down and while returning it goes a little up. The cycle repeats itself to take you into a smooth motion.
As it is always suggested, at a beginner’s level start slow. Once into practice increase the speed and resistance to get better and faster results.
The varied combination of speed and resistance gives different results. If your focus is to build muscles then go for higher resistance. On the contrary, if you aim at gaining strength and stamina you can increase speed and time while keeping the resistance low.
Benefits of Cross Trainer Machine
The benefits of bringing a cross trainer to home gyms are numerous. Other than it requires no installation and ease of use, working out on this machine can lead to many fitness goals.
Low Impact- A lot of people who suffer from joint pains or have weak knee, hip and ankle joints benefit from cross trainers. The reason is that it works on a low-impact mechanism. The foot at the paddle really doesn’t lift up. This avoids any kind of impact that one may get on placing the foot back on the base.
Full Body Workout- The movable handles of a cross trainer help engage the upper body while the legs are working down. This helps save time on working individually on each body part.
Build Muscles- With the higher resistance levels, a cross trainer can help gain muscles. Paddling may look easy but higher resistance demands a lot of work from the muscles, which results in toned and gained muscle strength.
Good for Recovery- As cross trainers are low-impact exercise machines, these are perfect for people who are looking for a workout after recovery or accident. Cross trainers can keep them stay active with no or low impact on joints and muscles.
Perfect for Home Gyms- The machine that needs no installation or instructions and support from an instructor is obviously the perfect choice for a home gym. Cross trainers also do not require a lot of space or a dedicated room for a workout. Therefore, it makes the ideal choice for workouts at home.
If you like walking but the treadmill gives you joint pain and you can’t scoop time for morning walks, then a cross trainer machine is the ultimate solution for your fitness. Easy to use and fun to work on, this machine is suitable for all members of the family be it young or old. The ease level to use makes it an absolute choice for a family home gym!
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