Lower Impact on Joints: Elliptical trainers are easier on the joints when compared to other forms of cardio exercise. Running or jogging subject the joints to more shock than elliptical trainers. Elliptical trainers are designed to simulate the natural movement of the feet and legs while running and jogging, with a lower impact on the joints, making them a better option if you’re recovering from a nagging injury or have arthritis.
Upper Body Workout: Most elliptical trainers come with handles that help work out your upper body along with the lower body. This is a benefit that’s absent from most other cardio equipment such as treadmills or bicycles. The handles on an elliptical trainer move in sync with the pedals. Thus, applying pressure with your arms helps tone up the upper body.
Exercising your Core: Not gripping the handles and using only your legs during the workout, helps tone up your core muscles. Minus the support of the handles, your core muscles tend to tense up to help maintain balance; thus helping strengthen them, and giving you the benefits of a core workout, such as better posture.
Reverse Strides: Using elliptical trainers in the reverse direction helps work out different muscle groups. This is harder to achieve on a treadmill or through normal walking and jogging, since it requires a higher degree of coordination.
Lower Level of Perceived Exertion: An elliptical trainer, owing to its lack of impact, leads exercisers to believe that they’re exercising a lot less than they actually are. Elliptical trainers or cross trainers actually help burn the same amount of calories as a treadmill with a lower degree of perceived exertion and with lower strain on the joints.
Cons: It’s easy to use the momentum of the machine to power it (especially at lower levels), reducing the effectiveness of your workout. Therefore, it’s necessary to consciously avoid doing so.