Since an accident 24yrs. ago, I have had to make exercise a lifetime committment. I would like to down size the pieces I have (recumbent cycle, small stepper, treadmill, rower) to a more efficient eliptical stepper/walker. Can I still reap all the benifits from this one eliptcal machine, that I had gotten from all my other equiptment together? And any advice on a recomennded type or brand. It has to be up scale, because for me it's a lifetime investment.

Downsizing is a great idea as long as you maintain variety in your overall exercise routine. By that, I mean making sure that you are complimenting your cardiovascular program with a solid strength and flexibility routine. Having said that, yes, you can reap all the benefits of cardiovascular activity on ANY piece of equipment as long as you maintain your heart rate in your target range. The difference in equipment varies based on the needs of the client, whether you want an activity that provides impact or non-impact (treadmill walking vs. elliptical or bike). Since the elliptical is a non-impact exercise, it is especially important to include a strength training component.

If you want an elliptical-style piece of equipment that encompasses everything in one, you could consider either the PreCor Total Body Trainer – which has adjustable incline, resistance and upper body motion, or the Cybex Arc Trainer – which also has adjustable incline, resistance and upper body motion. Also, make sure when purchasing equipment that you buy from a reputable dealer that includes service.

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