Elliptical Trainer

Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer

The Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer – affordable solution to weight-bearing exercise that is low in stress to knees and ankles!

Some home exercise equipment is better suited for various levels of activity, motion ranges or general health conditions than others.  For me in particular, I chose the recumbent bike to start getting in shape after my knee surgery.   It was important to exercise being mindful of maintaining low impact on my knees while allowing for good cardiovascular training.  When a friend told me she was thinking of getting an elliptical and asked my opinion, I decided to do a little research to help her make the decision. Here is what I have learned.

Ellipticals share the benefits of the recumbent bike in that they offer low impact exercise and good cardiovascular workouts.  In addition, they provide the added benefit of being a weight-bearing exercise, but more on that later.  The elliptical is almost a hybrid between an upright bike, a stairmaster and a treadmill.  It has the benefit of the weight-bearing features of the treadmill and stairmaster without the impact or stress on your joints.

In addition, the elliptical equipment has the pedal movement of the bike and also the handle bars that allow you to exercise not just your legs but your upper body as well.  For me the major concern would be if you have any kind of injury or limitations on balance that hinders your ability to carry all the movements involved in an upright position.  My friend can handle the range of movement and the balancing requirements.  So this was her choice.

Weight-bearing exercise

This type of exercise helps build and keep healthy bones.  The way it works is that while exercising in an upright position, your bones adapt to the weight of your own body and the pull of the muscles working against gravity.  The process of adaptation of the bones causes them to generate more bone cells to better equip the body to respond to the challenge.  This in turn generates a stronger and denser bone.  This type of exercise is recommended to reduce the effects of osteoporosis.

What to look for in an Elliptical:

  • Magnetic brake resistance – This type of brake is quiet and provides a smooth braking performance.
  • 1-10 electronic resistance range – The various resistance ranges allow for adjustments to the intensity of the workout.
  • Foot Path – It is important to choose an elliptical that has a comfortable foot path, a natural range as when you walk or run. This will minimize strain and fatigue.
  • Arm handles – The arm handles provide the option for a full body workout rather than just the lower body.
  • Ability for the pedals to move forward and backwards – The ability to “back pedal” allows for the exercise of a more complete set of muscles.
  • Programs – The more the better.  This keeps the repetitive workouts more varied.

Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer

Horizon brand has what they call a “Six Star” certification for exercise equipment.  In essence the six elements they focus on for this certification are:

  1. Easy access
  2. Zero distance  between the pedals
  3. Upright body position
  4. Natural foot path
  5. Optimal handlebar positioning
  6. Smooth pulley function

Easy access – a low pedal height for easy and safer entry and exit.  Having the pedals at a low distance from the floor increases the safety of getting on and off the equipment.

Zero distance between the pedals – eliminates stress on hips and back.  Let’s face it, we don’t walk or run with a lot of distance between our feet.  If you buy a machine that forces you to have your feet separated as you exercise, you are asking for an unnatural posture that will only add strain to your hips and back.  Your endurance will lessen as your fatigue increases.

Upright body position – the straight body posture reduces fatigue, increases comfort and provides faster results.  Just as we were taught when we were children, “stand up straight don’t arch your shoulders”.  Good posture not only looks better but it helps maintain less strain on our spine.  Less strain means less fatigue.

Natural foot path – mimics walking and running reducing the fatigue of unnatural paths.  Natural path means natural stride.  This coupled with the Zero distance equates to a more overall natural feel to your workout.

Optimal handlebar positioning – places grips within ideal reach and distance for small and large framed users alike.  By placing the handlebars at a good distance once again, you lower the stress on your posture and therefore increase your comfort and endurance.  The handlebars are what makes possible for a total body workout.  It enables for exercising your legs and also your arms.  This allows you to reach and maintain a good cardiovascular workout in a shorter period of time.  For those with little time for exercise, it has been said that 20 minutes on an Elliptical can deliver a good enough workout to main good physical activity.  In addition, this being a whole body exercise it tones muscles and increases the ability to loose weight faster.

Smooth pulley function – increased angular momentum provides smooth and efficient motion.  This is another comfort feature.  The smoother the ride the more you will last.

In addition to the Six Star features, the Elliptical EX59 from Horizon comes with 10 programming options, surround speakers and fitness fan.  There is also a connection cable to plug in your MP3 player and a bottle holders to help keep you entertained and hydrated.  Finally, there are also two smaller side holders to put additional items like your iPod or phone, etc.

The possible down side

This machine is not battery operated like some.  It requires an electric connection.  In addition the maximum weight capacity for a user is 275 lbs.

What others have said about this elliptical:

This elliptical trainer has received a 5 Stars review rating from Amazon consumers.  Below are the highlights of what has been said by the consumers of this equipment.  The full reviews are available at Amazon

  • Just got it and I love it!
  • Very nice elliptical in this price range

  • EX-59 Smooth, Functional, Good Value

  • Good Machine at great price

  • Top notch!

Where to buy the Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer

You can buy the Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer at Amazon.  At the time of this writing they include free shipping.  Although the list price for this Elliptical trainer is $799, you can now purchase it from Amazon at less than $600.

If you have decided to get in shape and improve your overall physical condition, get it now delivered free to your door with a 25% discount!


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