The 7 Best Cheapest Ellipticals For Your Home Gym

 Written by 

Julien Raby

 Last updated on 

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An elliptical can be one of the best home gym investments you make, especially if you’re not a fan of running! And the good news is that you don’t need to shell out a lot if you’re buying your first elliptical. You can find some amazing machines for surprisingly decent prices, as long as you aren’t expecting a gym-quality commercial machine.

We’ve scoured the internet to bring you the best cheapest elliptical choices to add to your home gym. Choose one of these if you want a quality elliptical that’s going to get you closer to your fitness goal without breaking the bank.

The best cheapest elliptical in a home gym
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In A Hurry? Here’s Our Best Picks

SOLE Fitness E20 2020 Model Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym Exercise Equipment, Smooth and Quiet, Versatile for Any Workout, Bluetooth and USB Compatible…
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EXERPEUTIC 6000 QF Magnetic Elliptical with Bluetooth MyCloudFitness App, Black and Blue
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XTERRA Fitness FS2.5 Elliptical Trainer Machine
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Sunny Health & Fitness Elliptical Machine Cross Trainer with Optional Exclusive SunnyFit App Enhanced Bluetooth Connectivity SF-E322002
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ANCHEER Elliptical Machine, Elliptical Machines for Home Use with Pulse Rate Grips and LCD Monitor, 8 Resistance Levels Smooth Quiet Driven for Home Gym Office Workout 350LBS Weight Limit, Silver
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Sunny Health & Fitness Full Body Workout Electric Motorized Elliptical Trainer with Pre-Programmed Digital Performance Monitor, Low Impact Exercise, and Pulse Sensors - SF-E320002
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Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Elliptical Trainer Machine w/Device Holder, LCD Monitor, 265 LB Max Weight and Pulse Monitoring - Circuit Zone, Black (SF-E3862)
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Product's nameBest Overall
SOLE Fitness E20 2020 Model Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym...
Runner-Up
EXERPEUTIC 6000 QF Magnetic Elliptical with Bluetooth...
Best Flywheel
XTERRA Fitness FS2.5 Elliptical Trainer Machine
Best With App
Sunny Health & Fitness Elliptical Machine Cross Trainer with...
Best Basic Machine
ANCHEER Elliptical Machine, Elliptical Machines for Home Use...
Best For Short Users
Sunny Health & Fitness Full Body Workout Electric Motorized...
Best Low Step-Up Height
Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Elliptical Trainer Machine...
Final ThoughtWe particularly like the decent stride length, the incline, and the lifetime frame warranty. It performs well in all other categories too.Excellent features in a great priced package. Runner-up favorite.The slightly larger flywheel makes the resistance more robust. Good for performance and those who want more of a challenge.Those who want to use an app will appreciate the variety it offers for a nice price.Nothing fancy, but will get the job done nicely and at an affordable price.It's a good choice despite the short stride length. Would make a great option for shorter users.Low step-up height for those who may be limited in mobility, older, or want to use it for injury recovery.
Floor Space69" L x 24" W x 64" H55”L x 25”W x 64”H51"D x 24"W x 63"H
39.4L X 26.4W X 59.8H In
38" x 24" x 70" ( L x W x H)49.4L x 23.4W x 63.4H in63L X 21W X 66H In
Weight Capacity300 lb270 lbs300lb
220 Lb
300lbs
285 Lb

265 Lb
Stride Length18″ Stride length18″ stride length14” stride length
11 In Stride length
16' stride length with large 15" x 6 " ( L x W) pedals11.5 In
15.75 In Stride length with
Resistance Levels20 levels of magnetic resistance24 levels of magnetic reistance24 levels of resistance8 levels of resistance8 Magnetic resistance levels16 Levels of Resistance16 levels of resistance
Programms8 pre-programed workout programs24 Pre-set Workout Programs24 total programs: 12 preset, 4 user controlled, 4 heart rate, 1 body fat, 1 watt, 1 target heart rate, and one manualConnects to SunnyFit APP where you get access to 100+ programsUnknown24 Built-In Programs24 pre-programmed workouts
WarrantyLifetime frame
3 year electronics
1 year parts
1 year labor
‎1 year limited‎5 years frame; 1 year parts, 1 brake
3 Year Structural Frame, 180 Days Other Parts And Components
Unknown
3 Year Structural Frame, 180 Days Other Parts And Components

3 Year Structural Frame, 180 Days Other Parts And Components
Price$$$$$$$$$
Learn moreSee at AmazonSee at AmazonSee at AmazonSee at AmazonSee at AmazonSee at AmazonSee at Amazon

Why Trust BoxLife?

The team here at BoxLife has experience on just about every piece of cardio equipment you can imagine. Between us, we’ve been on ellipticals of every brand, all sizes, designs, capabilities, and features.

Thanks to our vast collective experience in the fitness world, we look at cardio machines in a different way to most people. We get excited about features. We scour the user manuals. And we do tons of online research, so we can get ahead of any potential glitches or issues.

So when we recommend ellipticals, know that we’ve put thought, effort, and consideration into them. There’s research, analysis, and in many cases, personal experience behind everything you read here.

Our Top Pick
Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Elliptical
Based on our testing, this is the best budget Elliptical for beginners. For less than 475$, it has most essential features that you've come to expect. It's compact and sturdy, frankly it offers great value for money. It's also backed with an 3 years warranty.

Who Should Choose a Cheap Elliptical?

Cheap ellipticals are not for everyone. If you’ve got money to spare, you may prefer to choose something a step up. But don’t mistake cheap ellipticals for low-quality machines. As long as you can find the good quality ones, you can absolutely get by with a budget elliptical if you’re:

  • On a very tight budget
  • Looking for the best value for money
  • Unsure if the elliptical is really the machine for you

How We Chose the Best Cheapest Treadmill For Home Use

Our team sat together and listed all the affordable ellipticals we had personal experience with before. That gave us a good list to begin with, and we rounded it out by performing some in-depth research online to see what we’d missed.

We pored over buyer websites like Amazon, Walmart, sporting goods stores, and other big retailers that sell sporting equipment. Another thing we did was amass a huge amount of real-world information on the various features and frustrations, from the perspectives of people who’d actually bought and used them.

In the end, we narrowed it down to this list—a group of deeply researched, much-loved ellipticals that real people have had great experiences with.

A woman using the best cheapest elliptical in her garage
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How We Tested Them

While the price point may be the main feature you consider if you’re looking for a cheap elliptical, it’s still important to check out other features so you know you’re getting a quality machine. Here are the key features we tested on each machine to ensure it was worth its spot on this list.

  • Price Point
  • Resistance Levels
  • Built-In Programs
  • Stride Length
  • Flywheel
  • Extras
  • Warranty

The Best Cheapest Elliptical Choices – Our Top Picks

SOLE Fitness E20 Indoor Elliptical – Best Overall

Sole Fitness manufactures surprisingly awesome-quality machines for their price points, and the E20 Elliptical wins top spot on our list of best cheapest elliptical choices. 

With an 18-inch stride length, almost anyone can work out comfortably on this exercise machine. If you’re shorter than 5 foot 4 inches in height, you might find that it’s a bit of a reach, but anyone taller than that will be quite comfy. 

The E20 has a decent weight capacity as well. Users up to 300 lbs in body weight will be able to exercise comfortably and safely on this elliptical machine. 

It features 20 resistance levels, so you can really go hard on it if you’re in the mood. Unlike most cheap ellipticals, it actually has an incline function! You won’t be able to change it mid-stride, because it consists of 3 manually-operated levels, but it’s a real nice-to-have. 

Eight preset workout programs allow you to simply push-and-play, without having to worry about changing the resistance manually. It’s a great way to get a workout that semi-accurately represents what you might experience outdoors. 

One of the things we really appreciate about this elliptical is that it’s compatible with wireless heart rate monitors. The pulse sensors on cardio machines are notoriously inaccurate, so this is excellent news for those who want to monitor their heart rate or exercise in heart rate zones. 

It also has a handy USB port for charging devices while you’re working out, a water bottle holder so you can easily stay hydrated, and a ledge for your phone or tablet so you can distract yourself or follow along to a workout. 

The only potential downside is the machine weight. At 175 lbs, this budget machine might not be the easiest to get upstairs if you live in an apartment. 

The last spectacular feature of this treadmill—given its price—is its warranty. All Sole machines have a lifetime warranty on their frame, 3 years on electronics, and a year on the parts and labor. Excellent option for its price!

Pros

  • Excellent features for its price point
  • 20 resistance levels and 3 levels of manual incline
  • Compatible with chest strap heart rate monitors
  • Lifetime warranty on the frame

Cons

  • Heavy, so it might be difficult to move around alone
  • Fewer preset programs than others

Key Specs 

Price Point $599 
Resistance Levels 20 resistance levels 
Built-In Programs 8 preset workout programs 
Stride Length 18 inches 
Flywheel 14.4 lbs 
Extras Chest strap compatible, USB charging port, Bluetooth, tablet holder, water bottle holder 
Warranty Lifetime frame, 3-year electronics, 1-year parts, 1-year labor 

Spectacular Value in an Affordable Package 

This elliptical has a bunch of features normally only found on machines three times its price! You can’t go wrong with this one… It’s got everything you’ll need for a great workout, at a very affordable price. 

Exerputic 6000 QF Magnetic Elliptical – Runner-Up

Another top quality budget machine, the main reason this one doesn’t hit the top spot is its poor warranty. Plus, it’s a step behind our top choice in terms of incline, which it doesn’t offer at all. 

It features 24 built-in workout programs, so you’ve always got something ready and waiting for you. That’s enough choice for you to find something appropriate for any goal. If you do want to go manual and just ride, you’ve got 24 levels of resistance to play with. 

Unlike most, this elliptical has dual flywheels. Not only does this add more power to the resistance, but it also makes for a smoother pedaling action… One that feels much more like a higher-priced machine. 

The 18-inch stride length is a happy medium that suits most users, so more than one member of the family should be able to use it effectively. Other things we like are the tablet shelf, heart rate sensors, water bottle holder, and Bluetooth connectivity for apps and music. 

Unfortunately the one thing we’re disappointed about with this machine is its warranty. In comparison to the previous elliptical, the 6000 QF features a 1-year limited warranty, which isn’t much at all.

Pros

  • 24 resistance levels for added challenge
  • 24 programs to suit all your needs
  • 18-inch stride length is suitable for most users
  • Dual flywheels add power to the resistance

Cons

  • No incline option
  • Subpar warranty

Key Specs 

Price Point $499 
Resistance Levels 24 resistance levels 
Built-In Programs 24 onboard programs 
Stride Length 18 inches 
Flywheel Dual flywheels with belts 
Extras Bluetooth connectivity, tablet shelf, water bottle holder 
Warranty 1-year limited 

Plenty to Play With 

With 24 resistance levels and 24 programs to play around with, there’s almost no way you won’t be getting a great workout on this machine. Plus, the dual flywheels provide a really nice smooth elliptical motion, so if the warranty doesn’t bother you, this is a great choice. 

XTERRA Fitness FS2.5 Elliptical Trainer Machine – Best Flywheel

The size of the flywheel is an important factor in ellipticals. The heavier it is, the smoother the pedal stroke… And the more power it adds to the resistance. The XTERRA Fitness FS2.5 features a 22-lb flywheel, which is notably heavier than most others on this list. 

As well as the heavier weight, the flywheel is located in the rear of the machine, which makes a significant difference to the stability of the elliptical. So if a smooth, powerful pedal stroke and solid stability are your preferences, this is a good choice. 

That’s not all it has, though. You’ll find 24 adjustable resistance levels for more than enough force to push against, plus 24 present programs so you can just climb on, push a button, and go for it. 

The biggest potential issue here is the shorter stride length. At 14 inches, it’s better suited to users of between 5 feet and 5 foot 6-ish—taller users won’t be able to get their full stride. Some people might not mind this, but others will find it uncomfortable. 

Our Top Pick
Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Elliptical
Based on our testing, this is the best budget Elliptical for beginners. For less than 475$, it has most essential features that you've come to expect. It's compact and sturdy, frankly it offers great value for money. It's also backed with an 3 years warranty.

It has an impressive max user weight of 300 lbs, which is quite decent for a piece of fitness equipment in this price range. This means that heavier users can work out with confidence. 

It’s worth noting that there’s no water bottle holder on this machine. It also doesn’t feature a device holder, but it has an accessory tray and MP3-compatible speakers. 

The FS2.5 also has a decent warranty for its price, with 5 years on the frame and a year on the parts—better than many in its price range.

Pros

  • 22-lb flywheel adds extra power to the resistance
  • 24 resistance levels and 24 preset workout programs for variety
  • Very affordable for almost anyone
  • Decent warranty

Cons

  • No incline option
  • Stride length is a little short

Key Specs 

Price Point $299 
Resistance Levels 24 levels of resistance 
Built-In Programs 24 onboard programs 
Stride Length 14 inches 
Flywheel 22 lbs 
Extras MP3-compatible speakers 
Warranty ‎5-year frame, 1-year parts, 1-year brake

Impressive Flywheel 

The 22-lb flywheel is impressive on this machine. The heavy flywheel itself contributes to a smooth motion, more powerful resistance, and even extra stability. Worth it for the budget-friendly price tag!

Sunny Health & Fitness Essentials Series Elliptical Machine SF-E322002 – Best With App

If you’re tech-savvy and can handle doing all your workouts on an app, then the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E322002 could be the one for you. While it has no built-in programs, the accompanying SunnyFit app features over 100 to choose from. 

Although the elliptical only features 8 resistance levels, it’s still enough for beginners and intermediate users to get a good workout. However, take note that the stride length is 11 inches—much less than others, and only suitable for users around 5 feet tall. That’s a big disadvantage for many. 

If you do fit on it, though, you’ll be pleased to know that it features stationary and moving handles for choosing between a full-body workout and a lower-body workout. Plus, the pedals are bi-directional, which adds an extra element of challenge. 

There’s a 3-year warranty on the frame, which is decent. Parts and components have a 180-day limited warranty.

Pros

  • SunnyFit app gives you access to 100+ different workouts
  • Moving and stationary handles
  • Bidirectional striding adds challenge
  • Wheels for easy moving

Cons

  • Stride length won’t be long enough for even slightly taller individuals
  • Fewer resistance levels than others

Key Specs 

Price Point $299 
Resistance Levels 8 resistance levels 
Built-In Programs None – syncs to app with 100+ 
Stride Length 11 inches 
Flywheel 11 lbs 
Extras Media rack 
Warranty 3-year structural frame, 180-day other parts and components 

Great Workout App 

If apps are your thing, the SunnyFit app brings you 100+ workouts at your fingertips. It’s easy to use and fun, so this one is worthwhile if you’re a tech-savvy user. 

ANCHEER Elliptical Machine – AR-17 – Best Basic Machine

If you’re just looking for something that’s basic, has no frills, and will give you a decent workout, this could be it. The Ancheer AR-17 is nothing fancy, but for its price it’s a great basic choice if you don’t want anything confusing. 

You’ll get 8 resistance levels that you need to adjust manually using a twisting knob. There’s a lightweight 13-pound flywheel that’s located at the rear of the machine for extra stability. It’s not clear if there are any built-in programs or workout modes, but we’re assuming not as it’s a very entry-level machine. 

There are no extra features, like water bottle holders or speakers. But the oversized pedals have a 350-lb maximum user weight capacity, and it has both stationary handles and moving ones that are ergonomically designed. 

Surprisingly, the stride length is a pretty decent 16 inches, which means users of 5 to 5 and a half feet can use it comfortably. Built-in transportation wheels make it easy to move around, and the rear-located flywheel adds an inherent stability. 

It’s worth noting that Amazon claims this elliptical has a lifetime warranty. But we can’t find any other information backing this up, so we wouldn’t count on it necessarily.

Pros

  • 8 resistance levels with an adjustable twisting knob
  • Ergonomic handles, both movable and stationary
  • Built-in wheels makes it easy to move it around when necessary
  • Sizeable textured pedals can hold up to 350 lbs

Cons

  • Warranty is unclear
  • May not have enough features for some people

Key Specs 

Price Point $299 
Resistance Levels 8 resistance levels 
Built-In Programs Unknown 
Stride Length 16 inches 
Flywheel 13 lbs 
Extras None 
Warranty Lifetime, according to Amazon, but unclear 

No Fuss, Just Pedaling 

Sometimes, there’s no need for plenty of features on an elliptical. If you want something that’s basic and easy to use, with no confusing programs built in, this is the one for you.

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E320002 – Best for Short Users

Elliptical users around 5 feet in height will appreciate this one. The stride length of 11.5 inches is perfect for short users… But anyone of average to tall height will not be able to use it comfortably as they won’t get a full stride. 

If you do meet the height requirements, you’ll be pleased to know that it’s got some great features. Between 16 resistance levels and 24 onboard programs, there’s plenty of room for an excellent workout. 

The full-motion arms allow you to get a really comprehensive full-body exercise. Wide, textured pedals help you to get a stable footing before letting loose. 

A media shelf and water bottle holder are nice features. There’s also a 3-year frame warranty, which is decent for the price point.

Pros

  • 24 preset workout programs for a wide range of exercise options
  • 16 resistance levels
  • Full-motion arms allow you to get a full-body workout
  • Wide, textured foot pedals for stability

Cons

  • Stride length won’t be enough for average to tall users

Key Specs 

Price Point $340 
Resistance Levels 16 resistance levels 
Built-In Programs 24 onboard programs 
Stride Length 11.5 inches 
Flywheel 11 lbs 
Extras Media shelf, water bottle holder 
Warranty 3-year structural frame, 180-day other parts and components 

Short Users Will Love It! 

Users around 5 feet tall will be perfectly comfortable on this machine. It’s nothing fancy, but it’s a decent choice, both in price and performance features.

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E3862 Magnetic Elliptical – Best Low Step-Up Height

The elliptical is an excellent recovery tool for those who want to stay active in a safe way. It’s also great for older people or those with slightly limited mobility. The step-up height of 9.4 inches on the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic SF-E3862 elliptical is low enough to get on and off easily. 

It’s got good features for performance. 24 preloaded programs and 16 magnetic resistance levels give you a multitude of workout options. Plus, the full-motion handlebars means you can work the upper body muscles as well as the legs. 

The stride length of 15.75 inches is on the shorter side, but it’s once again good for those with less mobility. It’s also got a water bottle holder and media shelf so you can really settle in comfortably. 

For its price, the 3-year frame warranty is not too bad. One of the things we also like about this machine is that they specify that you can use it without electricity. It will be stuck at the last resistance used, but you can workout during a power cut if you need to!

Pros

  • Low step-up height of 9.4 inches is great for those who may have limited mobility
  • Full-motion handlebars for an effective upper body workout
  • 24 preset programs to give you a choice of challenging workouts
  • Can be used without plugging it into a power source 

Cons

  • No incline option
  • Stride length may be too short for tall users

Key Specs 

Price Point $228.99 
Resistance Levels 16 resistance levels 
Built-In Programs 24 onboard programs 
Stride Length 15.75 inches 
Flywheel Unknown 
Extras Media shelf, water bottle holder, manual mode 
Warranty 3-year structural frame, 180-day other parts and components 

Great Choice for Less Mobile Users 

The low step-up height and smaller stride length makes this machine an excellent choice for people who are a little more limited in their mobility. It still has fully moveable arms so you can get a great total-body workout. 

Buyer’s Guide: What To Look For In the Best Cheapest Elliptical

Planning on shopping for the best cheapest ellipticals but not sure where to start? Here’s what you should be checking out on any machine you look at. 

Price 

Obviously, the price will play a big role in your choices. Certain ellipticals will be out of your own budget, and that’s okay. You can find plenty of great machines under $500—some even under $300. 

However, the key is sifting out the good machines from the bad ones. It’s a good idea to settle on a budget first—we recommend around $500—and then narrow down the better quality machines within that range. 

To find the better quality machines, we recommend analyzing them by the following criteria to ensure that they’ll be able to provide you with what you need for a good workout. 

Resistance Levels 

Depending on your fitness level, you may be content with 8 to 10 levels of resistance, or you may want more. Keep in mind that if you’ve never used an elliptical before, it may take a bit of getting used to, but it’s also hard to gauge what each level is going to feel like—10 light levels may just not be enough. 

Those who are already pretty fit might want an elliptical with 16 to 24 levels of resistance. The more levels you have, the more versatile you can make your workout, especially if you want to do intervals or build muscular endurance.

Someone testing the resistance levels of the best cheapest elliptical
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Onboard Programs 

Some cheap ellipticals have no built-in programs. This isn’t as bad as it seems—it just means you’ll need to figure things out yourself as you exercise, changing the resistance manually as you go. 

Others include anything from 8 to 30 preloaded programs. These may include interval programs, “fat burning” heart rate zone programs, endurance programs, and even custom ones that you can create depending on your own goals and preferences. 

Stride Length 

The stride length is probably the most important thing to ensure that you’ll be able to have a comfortable workout on the elliptical you choose. This is the distance between the tip of the front pedal and the back of the rear pedal when they’re stretched out at full stride. 

Stride length is important, because this is how far your feet will be moving apart from each other. For someone who’s just over 5 feet tall, a normal stride should be between 14 and 16 inches. 

So if you’re on an elliptical with a stride of 22 inches, you’re definitely not going to be comfortable. You’re also not going to perform well as you ‘re moving out of your natural range of motion. 

On the other hand, if you’re 6 foot 4 inches tall, that 22-inch stride length is optimal. Choose an elliptical with a 14-inch stride length, and you’ll never be able to reach your full stride, causing discomfort, frustration, and reduced performance. 

It’s worth noting that some ellipticals have adjustable stride lengths, but this is usually reserved for the higher-end machines and extremely hard to find in cheap ellipticals. 

Someone looking for the stride length of the best cheapest elliptical
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Flywheel Size 

A larger flywheel—or as it’s usually phrased, a heavier flywheel—makes for both a more stable elliptical, and a smoother pedaling motion. Heavier flywheels build momentum much better than light ones, and hold that momentum more strongly and for longer. 

As well as flywheel weight, it’s also worth looking at the location of the flywheel on the machine. Rear-drive ellipticals are usually more stable as the center of gravity is in the rear, but most cheap ellipticals are likely to be front-drive ellipticals. This isn’t a bad thing—it just means you need to make an effort not to rock it while you’re pedaling. 

Extra Features 

Cheap ellipticals aren’t always completely basic machines. Many of them feature some handy extras that can make your experience of using them more appealing and more convenient. 

Things like water bottle holders, speakers, tablet holders, USB ports, and anything else that’s not a standard elliptical feature falls under this heading. It’s up to you what you really need or want in this section. 

Warranty 

A good warranty implies that even though the machine is cheap, the company has confidence in their own products. Unfortunately, some cheap elliptical machines come with a subpar warranty, but others are fairly decent for their quality.

A woman at home using the best cheapest elliptical
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FAQs

Are Cheap Ellipticals Worth It?

Buying a cheap elliptical is worth it if you choose a great quality one. Some cheap ellipticals are of surprisingly great build quality and hold almost as many features as more pricey ones.

But ultimately, the answer to this question lies in your workout goals for the elliptical. Are you just looking for a light steady-state elliptical workout a few times a week? A cheap elliptical will be more worthwhile than an expensive one.

Are you planning on dropping the pounds doing HIIT workouts multiple times a week? Then it may be more worthwhile to invest in something a little more upmarket.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Cheap Elliptical?

Many cheap ellipticals are badly made, contain far fewer features than the expensive machines, just don’t last, have poor warranties, and are unsafe. However, if you find the few gems in the bunch, you can actually get a quality elliptical for a very decent price.

The key is actually finding the diamonds in the rough, which is what this well-researched list is all about!

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About

Julien Raby is the owner of BoxLife. He owns a bachelor in literature and a certificate in marketing from Concordia. He's Crossfit Level 1 certified and has been involved in Crossfit since 2010. In 2023 he finally made it to Crossfit Open Quarterfinals for the first time. LinkedIn Instagram Facebook

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