10 Best Cross Trainer for Training at Home in 2022

cross trainer
Written by Sonia Naz

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Those who prefer to build up their fitness at home rather than in the studio no longer have to bring half a fleet of equipment into their home. A so-called cross trainer is sufficient.

The mixture of stepper and Nordic walking movement trains not only endurance but also a whole bunch of muscle groups from the arms, thigh and calf muscles to the buttocks and knees. 

Training goals are easily achieved with endurance training on the cross trainer. And that is easy on the joints. It is not without reason that cross trainers have overtaken other fitness equipment such as the ergometer with their market share of a good 70 percent.

The variety of models for cross trainers for strenuous training is enormous and the price range is wide. This product comparison would like to support the purchase decision. A total of 10 cross trainers with their different properties and special features are presented.

The guide following the product comparison goes into detail on the technology, explains contexts and technical terms and says what consumers should pay attention to when buying.

In addition, various alternatives to the cross trainer are presented and tips for a better workout are given. Finally, there is a look at the test results and test winners from Stiftung Warentest and Öko-Test.

Detail Review for 10 Best Cross Trainers at Home

1. ANCHEER Elliptical Cross Trainer with App Control and Ten Resistance Levels

ANCHEER Crosstrainer

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The ANCHEER Crosstrainer is black / red and has a flywheel of 18 kilograms. The device is equipped with ergonomic handles and a magnetic brake system.

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There is also a belt drive mechanism. This model also has ten resistance levels. This makes it possible to adjust the training intensity. The training can be made more effective.

The ANCHEER elliptical cross trainer has an LC display. This transmits training information in real time. For example, users are shown the time, distance, speed, heart rate or calorie consumption.

There is also a suitable fitness app. This can be used to simulate natural training units. You can also compete with other people at home, in real time using the app. 

The pulse sensors on the handles are designed to monitor the heart rate of the user, while the screen can also be used as a tablet / mobile phone holder.

The device itself weighs 36.5 kilograms. Users may weigh a maximum of 150 kilograms to use the cross trainer. The device should be safe to use during exercise.

Anti-slip pedals should ensure a stable and secure hold. The space required in the four walls at home is limited, as the dimensions are 119 x 61 x 152 centimeters.

The flexible design of this elliptical trainer should enable a joint-friendly full-body workout for arms, legs, bottom and shoulders.

According to the manufacturer, up to 90 percent of the entire body muscles are used when training on the cross trainer. This should enable a high calorie consumption.


How heavy is the ANCHEER crosstrainer?
The model weighs 36.5 kilograms
Can I fold the device?
No, the cross trainer cannot be folded up.
What guarantee does the manufacturer give?
Users of the ANCHEER crosstrainer have a one-year guarantee.
How resilient is the cross trainer?
The maximum permitted body weight is 150 kilograms.

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2. Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Elliptical Trainer Machine – for Intensive Fitness Training

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The Sunny Heath & Fitness Sports elliptical cross trainer has a flywheel mass of 21 kilograms. Thus, the turning point of the up and down movement should be easy to overcome. 

Thanks to the eight intensity levels and the 16 predefined programs, it is possible to design the training according to your own fitness.

Beginners as well as advanced learners choose an easy or demanding training. The whisper-quiet belt drive, according to the product description, should ensure that the Sunny Heath & the Fitness cross trainer can be used at home without disturbing other family members or neighbors.

Using the heart rate monitor on the handlebars or with the heart rate belt the exerciser can keep an eye on his heart rate. The profiled standing surface should ensure a secure hold on the training device and the anti-slip handles should help to keep your balance.

According to the manufacturer, the angle of inclination of the handlebars, which can be adjusted by 100 degrees, helps to carry out training that is easy on the back and joints. The feet can be adjusted in height in just a few simple steps.

The Sunny Heath & Fitness elliptical cross trainer is intended to facilitate the settings with the multifunction display. The user selects the training program at the touch of a finger. In addition, he can find out about the speed, travel time, pulse, distance and calories consumed at a glance.

Further product features are:

  • Magnetic brake
  • USB connection
  • Bottle holder
  • Holder for tablet and smartphone
  • Conveyor rollers
What is a magnetic brake? Cross trainers are often equipped with a magnetic brake. In such a model, the resistance is determined by the distance between the magnet and the flywheel. The cross trainers with the magnetic brake system are often quiet and durable. More information about the magnetic brake system and other cross trainer braking systems can be found in the guide below.


How high is the flywheel?
The flywheel mass of the Sunny Heath & Fitness Sports cross trainer is 21 kilograms.
Spoiler title
The cross trainer has 16 pre-defined training programs.
Does the cross trainer measure my pulse while training?
Yes, the device has sensors on the handlebar. A heart rate belt is included in the scope of delivery.
How heavy can I be to use the cross trainer?
The maximum weight for users is 125 kilograms.

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3. Christopeit Sport FXM 2 1621 – Foldable Cross Trainer Ergometer Including Heart Rate Belt

Christopeit Sport FXM 2 1621 Crosstrainer

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The Christopeit Sport FXM 2 1621 is a cross trainer ergometer. This cross trainer in our comparison has a flywheel of about 12 kilograms. Its flywheel is in the front. Other features are:

  • Can be folded up : After training, the device can be folded up and stowed away to save space, so that less space is required. When folded, the dimensions are 126 × 67 × 171 centimeters. The installation dimensions are 202 × 67 × 171 centimeters.
  • Foot shells: According to the manufacturer’s instructions, the foot shells are slip-resistant.
  • Magnetic brake system: According to the manufacturer, the magnetic brake system is wear-free.
What is an ergometer?  Ergometer have a computer-controlled resistance control and allow a very precise setting of the resistance. This setting is made in watts. The acquisition is particularly useful for people who place great value on precise measurement and precise control of the resistance or who want to complete intensive training units. More information about the ergometer is available in our guide

The Christopeit sports cross trainer is also equipped with transport rollers and an LC display. On this the user can read seven pieces of data at the same time.

These are the pulse, the speed, the time, the approximate calorie consumption, the distance, the pedal rotation and the power in watts. 

The stride length of the model is around 47 centimeters and the foot plate distance is around 10 centimeters. The device can be loaded with a maximum user weight of 130 kilograms.

There is also the cross trainer ergometer with twelve training programs and four heart rate programs equipped. It has a manual program and a speed-independent watt program for this purpose.

In the manual program, it is possible to specify the calorie consumption, the distance, the pulse and the training time and to set the resistance level. In the speed- independent watt program the user can set a power between 10 and 350 watts.

The handles are provided with sensors for hand pulse measurement. Alternatively, it is possible to use a chest strap. The training computer has this by the Christopeit sport cross trainer via an integrated pulse receiver. A heart rate monitor is included in the scope of delivery.


Can I adjust the height of the foot caps?
Yes, it is possible to adjust the height of the foot caps.
In which steps can I adjust the wattage?
The user selects the wattage in steps of 5 watts.
How many resistance levels does the model have?
The Christopeit Sport FXM 2 1621 cross trainer is provided with 24 resistance levels.
Does the Christopeit Sport FXM 2 1621 crosstrainer have a fitness test function?
Yes, the model is equipped with a fitness test function. Thanks to this, the device can rate the user’s training, performance after training with a grade of 1 to 6.

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4. Sportstech CX625 Cross Trainer – For high Demands

Sportstech CX625 Crosstrainer

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The high-quality sports equipment from the Berlin manufacturer Sportstech is popular and this brand is also represented in the field of cross trainers.

According to the manufacturer, the Sportstech CX625 cross trainer is primarily intended for users who are looking for an exercise bike for high demands.

The Sportstech CX625 brings a flywheel of 24 kilograms and should run very smoothly. The 16-step computer-controlled magnetic brake system supports the smoothness and the elliptical running movements according to the manufacturer.

The user should benefit from an ideal form of training so that he can optimize his endurance and train different muscle groups.

To structure the workout as simply as possible, a free fitness app from the manufacturer can be downloaded from the app stores. 22 different training programs can be selected via the app.

Thanks to the support of Google Maps or Delightech, the user can virtually walk around the world in the Street View view. This takes motivation to a whole new level.

In order to be able to connect the app to the console of the Sportstech CX625 cross trainer, it is necessary to attach the tablet or smartphone to the pre-installed bracket and to establish the connection.


Are the handles of the Sportstech CX625 cross trainer height adjustable?
Is the flywheel attached to the front or back of the device?
The flywheel is attached to the front of the Sportstech CX625 crosstrainer.
Is the cross trainer compatible with every chest strap?
No, the device is only compatible with uncoded straps or the manufacturer’s chest straps.
What is the distance between the pedals?
The distance between the pedals is 22 centimeters.

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5. Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer and Elliptical

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The Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer and Elliptical weigh about 60 kilograms and is 58 centimeters wide, 171 centimeters high and 155 centimeters deep. Its floor rollers make it easier to move the training device. 

The training programs include four programs for beginners, four programs for advanced users, and four programs for professionals.  The Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer model also offers a manual mode that can optimize training for calorie consumption, training time, pulse or distance.

If you want to track your training progress or share it with others, you can install the Kinomap fitness app, which is compatible with the Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer.

Connected to the app, this cross trainer sends values ​​such as heart rate, route progression or times in the software from our comparison.

Kinomap evaluates the data and makes its own tours available to other users on request. It is even possible to train together with other users over the Internet.

The model has a tablet holder. If necessary, the user can place his tablet PC, smartphone or eBook reader on this. This enables him to read, watch videos or use the Kinomap fitness app while exercising.

The Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer has a flywheel of 21 kilograms.  The maximum weight of the user should be 120 kilograms and his stride length40 centimeters. 

The model is equipped with hand pulse sensors and a Silent Belt system, thanks to which the belt drive is very quiet according to the manufacturer. Further features are:

  1. Training computer: On the training computer the user reads various values ​​such as the training time, the distance covered and the pulse. It is equipped with a USB charging port.
  2. Flywheel: The flywheel of the cross trainer is attached to the front. According to the manufacturer, the movements are natural and smooth. This is easy on the joints.
  3. MagResist system: The cross trainer allows you to choose between 32 magnetic resistance levels.
What does flywheel mean? The flywheel is also called the flywheel. It ensures that the sequence of movements is as even as possible, in which, after half a turn, it leads to the next lap with enough gentle swing. The process works best when the centrifugal mass matches your body weight and strength. If the weight is too heavy, the athlete could feel overtaken by the device, and his performance is lagging behind. On the other hand, a weight that is too light has the opposite effect. The ideal mass for most people is between 18 and 25 kilos.


Is the Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer equipped with rollers?
Yes, the model has floor rollers.
Does the training computer show the calorie consumption?
Yes, the training computer shows the calorie consumption.
Does the model have a cup holder?
Yes, the Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer is provided with a cup holder
Are the handles equipped with pulse sensors?
Yes, the handles of the cross trainer have pulse sensors.

6. Niceday Elliptical Machine and Cross Trainer

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The Niceday Elliptical Machine and Cross Trainer is black and has a flywheel of 16 kilograms. It can withstand a weight of up to 150 kilograms and is also suitable for people up to 2 meters tall. The flywheel is attached at the back.

The Niceday Elliptical Machine model has a WLAN function. Via the training computer, it is possible to wirelessly access social networks and various apps.

In addition, the cross trainer is equipped with a holder for a tablet PC or smartphone and a holder for a drinking bottle . The model also has a USB port with a charging function. Further features include:

  • Magnetic brake system : The model is equipped with a permanent magnet brake system. With this braking system, the resistance is controlled electronically.
  • 16 programs: The device has 16 programs. This includes four heart rate programs and four custom programs. The model also has a watt program. The load control is speed-dependent.
  • Pulse receiver: The cross trainer is equipped with a pulse receiver for chest straps. This enables the connection between the device and a heart rate belt done automatically. The chest strap is not included. It must therefore be purchased separately. Alternatively, it is possible to measure the pulse using the integrated hand pulse sensors to monitor.
What are heart rate programs? For effective endurance training, it is important to stay within your optimal heart rate. Many cross trainers, support pulse monitoring with so-called heart rate programs. With these programs, the cross trainer automatically adjusts the resistance to the optimal pulse of the person exercising.


Does the model have a bluetooth function?
No, the crosstrainer does not have a Bluetooth function.
Spoiler title
Yes, the device is compatible with the Kinomap fitness app.
How heavy is the device?
The cross trainer weighs 53 kilograms.
Does the cross trainer have transport rollers?
Yes, the Niceday Elliptical Machine device is equipped with transport rollers.
Does the training computer show the heart rate?
Yes, the training computer of the Niceday Elliptical Machine shows various training values ​​such as pulse, training time and speed.

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7. FUNMILY Elliptical Machines for Home Use

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According to the manufacturer FUNMILY Elliptical Crosstrainer is a very high-quality training device that enables training at the gym level.

The device should be suitable for all levels of experience and every level of training. With the MagResist system, the user can set 32 ​​different levels of difficulty. The Silent Belt system should ensure an extremely quiet belt drive.

With the Kinomap app there is the possibility to train on a wide variety of virtual walking routes or to take part in virtual multiplayer competitions and compete with others.

What is special is that consumers are looking for a flywheel when buying this cross trainer of 18 or 20 kilograms. The training computer offers twelve training options: for each for beginners, advanced and experts. 

There is also a performance program, a cardio program and a manual mode in which the user can set the training time, the distance, the calories consumed or the maximum heart rate.

Useful features such as the integrated hand pulse sensors and a tablet holder are also included in the CAPITAL SPORTS cross trainer.

What are hand pulse sensors? Most cross trainers are equipped with hand pulse sensors. These are located on the handles. In order to measure the pulse using these sensors, it is necessary to touch the electrodes. The measurement is less precise than measuring the pulse using a chest strap.


Spoiler title
The pulse is measured using hand pulse sensors integrated in the handle.
Do I need a power connection for this device?
Yes, the FUNMILY Elliptical Crosstrainer needs to be plugged in to operate.
Can I move the cross trainer around the apartment and place it in a different place?
Yes, according to Amazon reviews, changing the floor space is relatively easy using the attached transport rollers.
Can I use the device as a beginner?
Yes, the manufacturer points out that the cross trainer is suitable for every fitness and experience level.


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8. Sportstech CX640 Elliptical Cross Trainer – with Video, Events and Multiplayer App

Sportstech CX640 elliptical cross trainer

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The elliptical cross trainer CX640 from Sportstech is suitable, according to the manufacturer, thanks to the high-quality workmanship both for your own four walls and for fitness studios. 

This device from our comparison has a 16-stage magnetic brake, which the user controls via the training computer, and a flywheel of 24 kilograms, which should ensure a pleasantly smooth run. It is possible to choose from 26 different training programs.

According to the manufacturer, this cross trainer has many useful features. This includes heart rate measurement using the device’s handles.

The pulse can optionally be determined using a chest strap. This is not included in the scope of delivery. With the Kinomap app belonging to the cross trainer, the user experiences real routes in video mode.

To further increase motivation, it is possible to compete with other athletes in real-time in multiplayer mode.

According to Sportstech, the user can train with this cross trainer under real conditions, transfer route data to their own device and create an individual training history


Is a chest strap included with the Sportstech CX640 elliptical cross trainer?
No, according to the Amazon product description, the chest strap must be purchased separately. If you want, you can alternatively have your pulse measured using the hand sensors on the device.
Does the cross trainer have a tablet holder?
Yes, the Sportstech CX640 elliptical cross trainer has a tablet holder and a cup holder
Does the elliptical machine come assembled?
No, the structure is very simple according to Amazon customers.
What is the distance between the pedals?
The distance between the pedals is 22 centimeters.
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9. SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

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The SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine is equipped with a 9-kilogram flywheel and an LC multifunction display. The display shows various training values ​​such as wheel revolutions, training time and calorie consumption.

In addition, the SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine has a Bluetooth interface and a USB charging port, which enables a tablet PC or smartphone to be charged. The device also offers the option of using your own smartphone or tablet PC as a fitness computer.

This is achieved with the help of the iC + trainer app. This is available in the App Store and the Google Play Store.

The flywheel of the SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine weighs 24 kilograms.  The stride length in this model from our comparison is 51 centimeters and the Q factor9 centimeters.

The model weighs 69 kilograms and has a magnetic brake system that, according to the manufacturer, is wear-free. It has 16 resistance levels and is equipped with hand pulse sensors Mistake.

The device also has an HRC receiver. This is compatible with Unicode chest straps from Polar. The programs of the SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine model include:

  • Twelve preprogrammed training programs
  • Four heart rate programs
  • A watt program
  • A manual program

Who one of the heart rate programs should use a heart rate belt is required. The hand pulse sensors are not sufficient for the use of an HRC program. The chest strap is available separately.

The SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine is equipped with a free memory space. Accordingly, it is possible to create and save a training profile.


Is a chest strap included?
No, the SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine does not come with a chest strap.
Does the model have a holder for a drinking bottle?
Yes, the device has a bottle holder.

Is the cross trainer equipped with transport rollers?
Yes, the SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine is equipped with transport rollers.
What is the maximum load capacity of the device?
The SCHWINN Fitness 411 Compact Elliptical Machine can be loaded with a weight of up to 135 kilograms.
Spoiler title
Yes, it is possible to fold up the running rails after training.

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10. Sunny Health & Fitness Elliptical Cardio Climber Cross Trainer Machine with Stepping Motion

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The Sunny Health & Fitness Crosstrainer is an elliptical trainer. It has a flywheel system of 23.5 kilograms and an LCD monitor . The monitor is provided with a backlight.

At the same time, the user sees various training values ​​on the display, such as speed, training time, calorie consumption, pulse and distance.

What is an elliptical trainer? On some cross trainers, the flywheel is at the rear. On other models it is attached to the front. Such devices are often referred to as elliptical trainers. They allow even more joint-friendly training. In our guide we describe the cross trainers and elliptical trainers in more detail.

The Sunny Health & Fitness elliptical trainer also features 19 programs:

  • Twelve training programs: These twelve programs are predefined. When using one of these programs, it is possible to set the calorie consumption, the training time, the upper heart rate limit and the distance.
  • Four heart rate programs : Thanks to the four heart rate measurement programs, the cross trainer enables pulse-controlled training.
  • Manual program: In the manual program, it is possible to change the load level during training. There are 16 resistance levels to choose from in terms of load.
  • Personally definable program: With this program, the user can define a training profile, adapt it to his needs and save it. The program allows the setting of the load level and the definition of the training time, the upper pulse limit, the distance and the calorie consumption.
  • Watt- controlled program: Who the Watt program wants to use, can set a power between 10 and 350 watts.
The Sunny Health & Fitness elliptical cross trainer is foldable. When folded, it has the following dimensions: 117 centimeters in length, 60 centimeters in width and 158 centimeters in height.

Other features of the Sunny Health & the Fitness cross trainer are the integrated hand pulse sensors and the two transport rollers.

The model also has a magnetic brake system and can be loaded with a maximum weight of 145 kilograms. His stride is 51 centimeters and its Q factor at 11 centimeters.


Is there a chest strap included?
No, a chest strap is not included.
How much does the device weigh?
The Sunny Health & Fitness CardioCross Carbon Pro SF-3200 cross trainer weighs 79 kilograms.
How can I adjust the speed?
The speed can be set with the rotary knob or setting wheel.

Spoiler title
When assembled, the cardio machine is 164 × 60 × 158 centimeters in size.

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What is a cross trainer?

An elliptical cross trainer is a fitness device that can be used in fitness studios and in your own four walls. The cross trainers in the fitness studios are much more robust and professional in their equipment than the cross trainers in the home area.

For those who want to save the trip to the gym or the costs for it and prefer to improve their stamina and fitness at home , a cross trainer can be very useful. Such a device mimics human walking.

Nowadays at a not too high price for the purchase of the device. Unlike running on the treadmill or in nature, training on an elliptical cross trainer is very easy on the joints, which is why the devices are suitable for seniors or rehabilitation sports.

Since the arms are also used on the cross trainer, numerous muscle groups are trained. At the same time, the user completes endurance training. By training on the cross trainer it is possible to burn fat, lose weight and build muscle.

There are different versions of these devices – from the simple entry-level devices to the cross trainers with app. connection, Bluetooth and a variety of different programs.

How does the cross trainer work?

The Crosstrainer, or crosswalker, consists of a body with two robust step shells on which the user places his feet. To move the arms, the cross trainer has a handle in the middle and two movable handles that the user can hold on to during training. In terms of the form of movement, a harmonious sequence of walking movements should be created.

There is often a training computer in the middle handle and hand sensors incorporated, with the help of which the measurement and display of the pulse rate is possible.

A flywheel, also known as a flywheel , provides the appropriate resistance. The user can – depending on the fitness equipment – regulate this more or less individually.

The advantage of training with the cross trainer is that there are no vibrations on the body when running – unlike, for example, when jogging. The joints are only subjected to minimal stress.

The cross trainer imitates a harmonious, even running movement and uses almost all muscle groups, including the arms and trunk.

In addition to the muscles, the user trains the cardiovascular system with the cross trainer. Some devices offer special programs for this, which are individually adapted to the athlete based on the measured pulse.

Many of the cross trainers – including some from our comparison – offer the option of running backwards. When running backwards, the user can use some muscles that are not available in most sports.

Are there alternatives to the cross trainer for training at home?

When looking for the ideal fitness device for at home , consumers can discover numerous options: treadmills, rowing machines, bicycle ergometers and the smaller versions of the cross trainer, the so-called stepper, are just a few examples.

When making a choice, consumers should primarily focus on the sporting options and preferences. Below we briefly introduce some home trainer variants:

  1. Stepper: Steppers are similar to cross trainers in their construction. They have step shells and, depending on the model, handles. However, the steppers do not imitate a forward, elliptical running movement, but rather the movements when climbing stairs. The feet move up and down, not back and forth.
  2. Bicycle ergometers: The bicycle trainers were very popular in earlier decades. The goal of fitness-enthusiastic users was to “trample” on the bike in the evening, to move around and maybe lose a few pounds. Today the well-known bicycle is still used as an exercise bike – but it has become much more modern and effective, with the same fitness goal. The bicycle ergometer has also made a name for itself in rehab and popular sports with its positive training effect. This home trainer is efficient for leg training. However, the arms are trained less and thus somewhat neglected.
  3. The treadmill: The treadmill is probably one of the most effective home trainers. Athletes can use the treadmill to simulate running, walking and jogging at home. Completely independent of the weather, you can cover several kilometers while the device simulates the relevant sport. It is important to pay attention to the joints. These are more stressed than with a cross trainer.
  4. The elliptical trainer: The elliptical trainer is a subspecies of the cross trainer. Both devices differ in their structure, the functionality is the same. Elliptical trainers are easier on the knees and train leg muscles and arms equally. They are the best choice if you have problems with your knees.
  5. The cross trainer: During a training session on the cross trainer, many muscle groups are trained. Those who want to burn fat and lose weight can achieve good results with regular training or interval training on a cross trainer. The training is very easy on the joints. For example, when watching your favorite series, the fat metabolism is stimulated while training with the cross trainer and calorie burning gets going.

Cross trainers and treadmills are among the fitness equipment with which a targeted training for fitness, condition and coordination is possible.

The advantages and disadvantages of a cross trainer at a glance:

  • Available in many price ranges
  • Joint-gentle training
  • Full-body training possible at home
  • Cardio training and muscle building at the same time
  • Takes up space in the apartment
  • The price increases as the functions increase
  • Possibly monotonous training
  • Limited braking power

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What should I look for when buying a cross trainer?

Some cross trainers are equipped with many special features.  Others limit themselves to the minimum.

In the presentation of the individual cross trainers in our comparison, interested parties were able to get a first impression of the features and equipment of the cross trainers. 

If you want to buy a cross trainer for at home, you should pay attention to the following criteria when buying:

The handles

Can the height of the cross trainer handles be adjusted or are they rigid? The focus is on the upper body. When training on the cross trainer, the elbows and shoulders should be at the correct angle to each other.

This can prevent tension and poor posture in the upper body. That is why an adjustable handle is ideal – especially for small or very tall people.

The stability

Steppers are small and some of them have no handles. This promotes the sense of balance. The steppers without handles are often not so stable on the floor that they can tip over in the worst case.

In contrast, most cross trainers are very stable and stable. The footrests should be coated with rubber to prevent slipping or slipping while exercising.

The flywheel

In our cross trainer comparison it became clear that the cross trainers each have a different flywheel mass.

The flywheel mass indicates the counter weight with which the cross trainer slows down the momentum with the selected resistance by pedaling.

The higher the flywheel mass of the cross trainer, the more even the entire sequence of movements during training. As a rule of thumb, the higher the centrifugal mass, the higher the quality of the device.

Often the resistance can be regulated continuously . There are also cross trainers whose resistance levels can be individually regulated. Good cross trainers have a flywheel mass of 20 kilograms and more.

The maximum weight load

The resilience of the cross trainer is different. When buying such a fitness device, consumers should ensure that the permissible user weight is sufficiently high. Good cross trainers can often cope with a body weight of up to 150 kilograms without hesitation.

The braking system

Numerous cross trainers are equipped with a magnetic brake or an eddy current brake, also known as induction brake. A magnetic field brakes the flywheel in both variants.

In the case of a cross trainer with a magnetic brake, the magnetic field is created by a permanent magnet. In a model with an induction braking system, an electric coil generates the magnetic field. 

The models with magnetic brakes or eddy current brakes usually offer a low volume and are long-lasting.

An elliptical cross trainer with an eddy current brake enables a more precise adjustment of the resistance. If you want to train with a high wattage or use the cross trainer professionally, you can choose a model with an induction brake.

The pulse measurement

Many models can measure the heart rate during exercise. By monitoring the heart rate, the user can prevent himself from overworking or under working.

Most cross trainers have hand pulse sensors on their handles. These sensors determine the heart rate less precisely. Another disadvantage is that the person exercising has to touch the sensors to measure their heart rate. This restricts the freedom of movement of the hands and arms.

Alternatively, there is often the option of a heart rate belt to use ear clips. These two variants allow a more precise measurement of the heart rate.

If the heart rate is to be measured using a chest strap, the cross trainer must be equipped with an appropriate receiver. A chest strap is required for this. This is often not included in the scope of delivery.

If you want to use the ear clips to measure your heart rate, you should check whether the cross trainer has a suitable connection before buying it. The user wears the ear clip on his ear.

The clip determines the pulse and sends the value to the training computer via a cable. One of the disadvantages of ear clips has been the often poor durability. In addition, the ear clip can slip and is often perceived as not particularly comfortable.

The different training programs

Some cross trainers get by with just a few training programs. Others offer a wealth of possibilities – as our comparison has shown. Cross trainers, which offer programs for the heart and circulation , are especially useful for people who have problems with the heart or circulation and want to do some exercise.

The pre-programmed training units offer an efficient training process, as the resistance changes at certain time intervals and the trainee has to use more or less force to get to the goal.

The display, the app connection and the other functions

The display should be easy to use and read. With most cross trainers, the setting is made via the display, which is available on some devices in the form of a touchscreen.

In addition to the program selection and the resistance setting, the display often shows the training success. As a rule, the display, which is usually easy to use, shows the following values:

  • The distance
  • The training time
  • The set, current resistance
  • The speed
  • The calorie consumption
  • The pulse

Cross trainers that have an app connection and a Bluetooth function offer even more features. With some devices, users can choose, for example, whether they want to run virtually on the beach or across green meadows. The information is shown on the display or a tablet or smartphone.

Interesting facts about the cross trainer

Today’s cross trainers offer a variety of programs and features, such as the connection to the smartphone, so that the training successes can be recorded in the media.

The rolling movement of the foot is important when running on the cross trainer. As a rule, the newer cross trainers are designed in such a way that this is automatically integrated into the sequence of movements. This means that today’s cross trainers are gentle on the joints and promote athletic fitness with consistently better training results.

Important when training on the cross trainer: Keep an eye on your pulse and train in the optimal pulse range. This allows the organism to focus on burning fat, fitness and building muscle.

The HRmax value indicates the optimal pulse value. This value is used to measure the heart beats per minute at full capacity. This value varies from person to person.

Determine the HRmax:For men, age is deducted from the value 220. That is, for a 40-year-old man, the HRmax is 180.

For women, the HRmax is determined by subtracting the age from the value 226. A 40-year-old woman has a HRmax of 186.

How do I move correctly on a cross trainer?

Correct movement on the cross trainer is the be-all and end-all of proper training.  Anyone who moves incorrectly on the fitness equipment can suffer postural damage.

It is important to move your legs smoothly and evenly. You should be “in tune” with the poor. With a correct sequence of movements, a fluid rhythm results.

When exercising on the cross trainer, the legs do most of the work – not the arms. When taking the first steps, some people may tend to push the elliptical machine with their arms. Beginners should make an effort to focus specifically on footwork.

It is important to keep arms and legs balanced during exercise. With the cross trainer, specific muscle groups can be trained and tightened through the corresponding load. We give some tips on this below:

Exercise for firm buttocks

When exercising in a bent knee position , the muscle in the buttocks is more stressed. The user should tense the stomach and buttocks and try to keep the training duration in this position for half an hour.

Exercise for a firm stomach

In order to train the stomach and tone the muscles, it is important to take an upright position on the cross trainer. The back muscles must be stretched during the execution.

Avoid leaning forward and sticking your butt out. Only with the right posture can the user carry out efficient training and prevent postural damage.

Exercise for toned thighs

The legs are very stressed when training on the cross trainer, as they have to fight against the set resistance. If you want to  tighten the  thigh muscles , you should run backwards on the cross trainer in between.

When running forward, the front thigh muscle is used, while running backward, the rear muscle is used.

Over time, some athletes get to the point where they are looking for new challenges on the cross trainer. In this case it is possible to combine the training units with weights, for example, in the form of training cuffs for the ankles and arms.

Tips for the first steps and training units on the cross trainer

Regardless of whether the main focus is on building muscle, weight loss or endurance – every workout should start with a warm-up.

This phase is between 5 and 10 minutes on the cross  trainer. During the warm-up, the body is  gently and slowly introduced to the upcoming training session. When warming up, the intensity should be low.

After the warm-up it is possible to slowly increase your performance. This means that the cross trainer increases speed and resistance. The exerciser should feel that the heart rate increases. This second phase can also last between 5 and 10 minutes.

In the following intensive phase , the body is “ramped up” to the highest performance level and the heart rate also increases. At the beginning of the training, the intensive phase can only be 5 minutes.

It is important to slowly approach the training program. After 5 minutes in the intensive phase, the trainee can give his body some time to rest. Those who want to end their training program slowly run out.

Once the training is over, the cool-down begins The heart rate is reduced and breathing becomes slower. The speed and resistance decrease, eventually reaching the starting level.

The warm-up and cool-down should coincide in terms of time. The phases of increase and relaxation during the training run should also be coordinated

Accessories for the cross trainer

A large selection of accessories is available for training on the cross trainer. With this, the training can be made more efficient or clearer. For example, there are:

  1. An underlay mat: This underlay mat can be placed under the cross trainer. The mat protects the floor from scratches and absorbs the noises that can arise when exercising on the fitness machine. The training succeeds without disturbing the family or the neighbors.
  2. A drinking bottle or a drinking bottle holder: Sport makes you thirsty. That is why you should drink enough during training, about 0.5 to 1 liter of liquid is ideal to avoid circulatory problems. However, drinking breaks would be annoying. If the cross trainer does not have a bottle holder, you can buy one in an accessory store and mount it afterwards.
  3. A heart rate monitor or a heart rate monitor: Most cross trainers have a heart rate monitor that is integrated into the handles of the device. If both hands are on the handles, the sensor measures the pulse and shows the determined value on the display of the cross trainer. However, many athletes prefer the heart rate monitors, which are either attached to the wrist or around the chest. These heart rate monitors provide far more accurate results, even when the hands are not on the handles of the cross trainer.
  4. Fitness wrist bands : The fitness wristbands are a further development of the classic heart rate monitor. These little companions are worn on the wrist. They provide values ​​about the current pulse rate and show the calorie consumption, the distance covered and the speed. Monitoring and analysis of sleep are also possible with the fitness bracelet. The advantage of the combination of cross trainer and fitness watch: As a rule, the fitness bracelet automatically recognizes the sporting activity and tracks the whole thing. The user can later analyze the values ​​and data determined.

Has Stiftung Warentest carried out a cross trainer test?

Yes, the Stiftung Warentest took a close look at various cross trainers a few years ago. The consumer organization carried out the cross trainer test in February 2011. Since then, one thing or another has happened in fitness equipment.

The testers put ten devices through their paces. Some were able to shine in the test with the grade “good”. However, there was an elliptical cross trainer that the experts rated “poor”.

The expensive cross trainers performed best in this test. But two medium-priced cross trainers also managed to get the test grade “Good”.

Has Öko-Test carried out a cross trainer test?

Öko-Test has not yet published a test on cross trainers. If the company publishes a cross trainer test in the near future, we will report on the test result of this practice test here.


Ergometers allow you to set the resistance in watts. The load setting is very precise. The ergometers are equipped with a motor and computer-controlled resistance control. They often have different training and heart rate programs and a higher maximum resistance than the exercise bikes, where the resistance is usually set manually.
Hand Pulse Sensors
Hand pulse sensors are located on the handles of a cross trainer. They measure the pulse as long as the user is touching the corresponding electrodes on the handles. The measurement is usually not very accurate.
Heart rate programs
Heart rate programs are also known as HRC programs. They allow pulse-controlled training. When using an HRC program, the cross trainer automatically adjusts the pedaling resistance to the pulse of the person exercising. In this way, he ensures that the user trains with his pre-training heart rate without having to monitor his heart rate all the time.
Magnetic Break System
Various cross trainers have a magnetic brake system. Such devices are equipped with a permanent magnet. This creates a magnetic field. This magnetic field brakes the flywheel. With a cross trainer with a magnetic brake system, the pedal resistance is determined by the distance between the magnet and the flywheel.
Heart Rate
Many cross trainers are equipped with a receiver for a heart rate belt and enable heart rate measurement with the heart rate belt. Such a belt measures the heart rate more precisely than the hand pulse sensors. After the measurement, it forwards the value to the training computer. This is done without cables. The belt is worn over the chest.
Another name for the Q-factor is the pedal distance. It reveals how big the distance between the two treads is. A cross trainer with a smaller Q-factor enables more ergonomic motion sequences. A low Q-factor is especially important for people with problems in the hip or other joint problems. Training sessions on a model in which the distance between the treads is too large can lead to malpositions of the feet and overloading of the hip and knee joints.
Stride length
The step length reveals the length of the steps that the user can take with the cross trainer. A sufficiently large stride length is important so that the movements on the cross trainer can be ergonomic. The ideal size of the stride depends on how trained and how tall the user is. Athletes and tall people usually need a longer stride than untrained or short people. With some crosstrainers it is possible to adjust the stride length.
The centrifugal mass influences how evenly and healthily the movements on the cross trainer can be. An elliptical cross trainer with a larger flywheel enables more rounded movements and can prevent the movements from being jerky. Choppy movements would put a lot of stress on the joints.
Trainings Computer
Cross trainers are equipped with a training computer that measures various data during sports units and shows them on the display. These data often include the speed, the distance covered, the cadence and the training time. Many models also show the approximate calorie consumption and current heart rate.
The cadence describes the crank revolutions per minute. It is also called a cadence. The abbreviation is UPM or RPM.
Watt Programm
Some crosstrainers are provided with a speed-independent or speed-dependent watt program. With a speed-independent watt program, it is possible to set a watt output before training. The device finally ensures that the user trains with the specified wattage. Accordingly, the wattage does not change automatically and does not depend on the cadence. If you reduce the cadence in a speed-independent watt program, you need more force to step on the pedals. Because in such a case the device increases the resistance. The resistance is reduced when the cadence is increased. With a speed-dependent watt program, the wattage varies depending on the cadence.

About the author

Sonia Naz

I'm a Review Content Writer since 2013. I provide research driven and unbiased buying guides to help you make smart decisions. I give authentic, trusted and unbiased reviews to help people for making better decisions.

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