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How To Choose The Best Low Impact Home Gym Equipment

Aug 17, 2007
More and more, we are reminded to exercise to get in shape and maintain good health. Unfortunately, many of the exercise options that are offered to help us can hurt us at the same time. High impact exercises burn a lot of calories and offer good cardiovascular benefits. At the same time, they can damage joints and bones. There are now options available that have the same benefits as high impact exercises but also minimize the chance of injury.

There are several great low impact pieces of exercise equipment. Three of these are:

Exercise bikes
Rowing Machines
Elliptical Trainer

Let's examine each of these exercise machines.

Exercise Bikes

Exercise bikes come in two main forms, upright and recumbent. The upright bike is like regular bikes in that you are sitting upright when using it. The benefit of an upright bike is that you can use it sitting down or standing up. Alternating sitting and standing will burn more calories by increasing exertion.

The recumbent bike leans back and your feet are positioned in front of you. These bikes offer more comfort and back support, but burn fewer calories since you have to remain in a seated position. Both styles of bike offer good exercise benefits, but mainly just exercise your legs. The prices range from $300-$600.

Rowing Machines

Rowing machines are built to simulate rowing a boat. They provide a good workout, not just for rowers but also for anyone seeking a good overall form of exercise. They range in price from $100 all the way up to $1500, depending on the quality of the machine and the options available. They offer four forms of resistance:

Air-This works by using a fan. As you pull on the bike, the fan spins and simulates the feel of rowing an actual boat.

Hydraulics-This works through hydraulic cylinders or pistons. While less expensive, they don't work as smoothly as others.

Water-This works by pulling bars through a small water tank and comes closest to simulating actual boat rowing.

Magnetism-As the title suggests these models use magnets. They offer a smooth, quiet ride and are more expensive.

Elliptical Trainers

Elliptical trainers also offer a good workout. The movement of the pedals combines the benefits of both a treadmill and an exercise bike. This works by standing upright on the pedals, which move around a large wheel. Since many have cross training bars that move back and forth, you get both an upper and lower body workout. The prices range from $200 up to $2500 for elliptical machines. Choose one with the following attributes:

Large wheel in front for sturdiness
Magnetic breaks for longer wear
Articulating footpads to keep circulation in your feet.
A stride length between 18 and 21 inches.

When determining which piece of equipment is best for you, consider all the facts presented here. This way you can decide which machine is the right one for you.
About the Author
Gregg Hall is an author living in Navarre Florida. Find more about this as well as other Fitness Equipmenthttp://www.fitnessequipmentplus.com
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