Which Ellipticals Are Better: Front vs. Rear Drive?
First ellipticals appeared at the end of the last century. Since then they have settled in gyms and conquered our homes. Initially an elliptical machine had only one modification and it was a rear drive model by Precor. This cross-trainer simulated walking, running, climbing workout substituting average bikes and treadmills. Nowadays we have front drive, improved rear drive examples as well as developing center drive and hybrids models.
All of them have a number of advantages. Still which one is considered to be the best choice for your home workout? Let's compare two basic types of ellipticals: front vs. rear drive machines.
Pros and Cons of Front Wheel Drive
Let's start with a general definition of motion you will receive with any front drive machine. It resembles climbing upstairs due to a bigger slope angle. The main benefits of front drive ellipticals are an agreeable price and space-saving parameters, so it suits every pocket and every premises. These models are lighter that makes them easier for transportation or simple replacement within one room. Besides, if you choose a front drive model with an articulation pedal, it will grant you more workout options and more natural stride.
As for claimed cons, they are mostly connected with problematic maintenance and cleaning. Besides, some professionals think that provided motion is less natural than one of rear drive models.
Pros and Cons of Rear Drive Machines
These models are unfairly considered to be outdated. On the contrary, according to doctors' view, contemporary rear drive ellipticals offer the most natural and injure-free running movement. For patients with chronic joint problems the climbing tendency of front drive models simply won't do. So rear drive elliptical machines are a truly universal solution providing the most comfortable and natural motion. Besides, you are better centered without leaning forward as with front drive machines. Maintenance and repair of rear drive models are also considered to be among their benefits. Such machines have fewer moving parts, so smaller repair expenses are involved.
One of the rear drive models' disadvantages is their high price. Indeed, they are way more expensive than front drive ones. However, if you count how much you spend on costly gym membership a year, you won't worry about the price. Besides, it's up to you to determine how much your health costs.
Another claimed flaw is the size. When comparing both types of ellipticals: front vs. rear drive, the latter takes more space and is more bulky, so take it into account prior to making a purchase.
Best Ellipticals for Each Drive Wheel Position
We have selected the best ellipticals for both front and rear drive wheel models. The models mentioned below were chosen on the basis of average customers' and professionals' reviews.
5 Leading Front Drive Ellipticals
- ProForm 1310 E
- NordicTrack Elite
- Schwinn 430
- SOLE E95
- Nautilus E514c
5 Best Rear Drive Models
- ProForm Smart Strider
- Yowza Fitness Islamorada
- Precor EFX 245
- Life Fitness E3
- Smooth Fitness CE 9.5
The above mentioned list includes both expensive professional models like Precor and more affordable variants like ProForm. Surely this confrontation of ellipticals front vs. rear drive is not finished; still the main highlights are already mentioned. We believe this article will be essential for those who are in search of a decent elliptical for home workout. No matter if your space is roomy or small, you can find the best elliptical for home in terms of perfect size, price, characteristics, number of programs and accessories.