Buying an elliptical trainer is a significant investment. With the higher end machines costing as much as $3000 you really need to make a smart decision when you do buy one. As one of the very best cross training machines is can do wonders for your health and your weight loss goals, but with the wrong machine you will probably not use it as well as you should.

Although most elliptical cross trainers look more or less the same, there are some distinct differences that you need to look out for to make sure that its right for you. Here are 3 very important things you need to look out for.

1. Stride length

the stride length represents the length of the extremes of the foot pedals. This varies across different machines but the standard is 44''. If you are shorter than the average person then this can be very uncomfortable and if you are taller than the average person then it probably won't give you much of a workout. Some machines allow you to set the stride length, so if you are going to use your elliptical at home and it has more than one user then you might want to look into this.

2. Storage

Ellipticals are big machines. Unlike treadmills they cannot fold up neatly to go under your bed and out of sight. Fortunately some of the latest machine does have a storage mode where a part of the machine folds up. Some machines can fold up small enough to fit in a closet space, so if you are set on having it out of sight then you need to look into this.

3. Flywheel Design

The flywheel is the device that allows for the elliptical rotation and is the most important part of the trainer. While most ellipticals have a central flywheel at the back of the machine, some of the newer ones use a duel flywheel design that allows for the machine to be much shorter and fatter. Many consider this a more robust design and the wider frame makes it much more stable.

Read more about the latest Nordictrack ellipticals and read my in-depth review of the NordicTrack FreeStrider 35S.

Author's Bio: 

Article by John C. Burrow - Please visit John's website for more infromation and advice.