Best Compact Elliptical: Choices for small spaces

Maher Mohammed

Meet the expert

You can call me the Fitness & Health GEEK. I've been involved in the fitness industry since 2015. Exercise and Nutrition are my bread and butter.

In this post, we are going to talk about the best compact elliptical machines that have been made. Most importantly, we are going to pick the ones that are most affordable, with the highest quality, and convenient.

You may wonder.. what is a compact elliptical? “I only know the regular elliptical which I find in the gym every time I go.”

Compact ellipticals are in fact just as similar as the regular ellipticals. But, compact ellipticals on the other hand are better when it comes to a home gym or home training.

If you have the chance to save the gym’s subscription money and be able to use this machine at home, would you do it? Definitely!

Training at home has many benefits, including that it will save you much time, instead of driving to the gym, waiting for other athletes to finish their sets, and so on, you will just go to the specific machine you have in your home and train.

Compact ellipticals are much smaller in size, can be foldable or non-foldable for storage, and take up little space when compared to regular ellipticals. Because of these reasons, you should pick a compact elliptical with you home.

Best Compact Ellipticals:

1. Schwinn Compact Elliptical Machine

Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine

Schwinn is known for its high-quality ellipticals. It made our list in the normal ellipticals and is making it again on our best compact ellipticals list.

The Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine is a machine that represents the company.

It comes with an 18″ stride length, which is normally shorter than other ellipticals. Even though it is somehow short, it is so smooth and quiet, allowing for the best workout at home.

The Machine comes with 16 levels of resistance which allows for progress over the weeks. On top of that, it allows athletes of different levels to train with it whether beginner, intermediate or, advanced athlete.

Moreover, it comes with a streamlined console that tracks time, distance, calories, speed, and heart rate.

Pros

  • Smooth and quiet operation
  • Bluetooth heart rate monitoring
  • Can be connected to RunSocial App

Cons

  • Some users felt the workout data isn’t accurate
  • Not the cheapest machine

Who it’s good for

The Schwinn 411 Compact Elliptical Machine suits best everybody that wants a high-quality, multiple-featured, and space-saving machine at a reasonable price. It is good for beginners, intermediates, and pros because of the 16 resistance levels it comes with.

Who it’s not good for

It is not good for people who are on a limited budget and prefers a cheaper machine with the same features.

2. EFITMENT E005 Compact Elliptical Machine

EFITMENT Magnetic Elliptical Machine Trainer w/LCD Monitor and Pulse Rate Grips

When it comes to cheap ellipticals of high-quality materials and performance, We must say EFITMENT E005 model has made is so far.

With the very low price of $200-300, it offers a great number of features that will make you even impressed with it despite the entry-level price.

The EFITMENT E005 comes with an 11″ stride length, which is smaller than most of the compact elliptical trainers. It won’t be as good for tall users. It also has 8 adjustable resistance levels which is good to maintain progress throughout your workout program.

The Elliptical machine has a tablet and phone holder, and an LCD screen that monitors time, distance, speed, and calories burned.

Pros

  • Smooth and quiet
  • Can be transported easily due to the lightweight and transporting wheels
  • Cheap

Cons

  • Short stride length of 11″ won’t suit taller users best
  • When tablet is on the holder, you can’t use the LCD screen

Who it’s good for

The EFITMENT E005 Compact Elliptical trainer suits best people with a very limited budget who are looking for a convenient and affordable way to train at home.

Moreover, if you like to transport the machine from in front of the TV to the room and vice versa, it will suits you best because it is lightweight and has transporting wheels.

Who it’s not good for

The EFITMENT E005 elliptical trainer isn’t good for you if you are a tall person. As it comes with a short stride length, you will not feel comfortable training with it. Consider looking for other options.

3. Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E905 Elliptical Machine

Sunny Health and Fitness Magnetic Elliptical Bike

Sunny Health & Fitness is a company that makes various pieces of equipment with the best quality available and at very affordable prices. The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E905 Model is ranked #1 on Amazon and has nearly 90% of positive reviews.

The Sunny Health & Fitness Elliptical Machine is a magnetic resistance machine with 8 adjustable levels of resistance.

Moreover, it comes with anti-slip footplates that allow for stability and safety while training. Even more, it comes with an LCD monitor that tracks time, speed, distance, calories, and pulse

The two negatives of this model are that it has a weight limit of 220lbs and that it comes with an 11″ stride length.

Which short when compared to other ellipticals. Other than that, the Elliptical Machine is completely convenient and affordable.

Pros

  • Great price
  • Padded footplates and handles
  • Lightweight and smooth

Cons

  • Weight limit of 220lbs
  • 11″ stride length
  • No warranty

Who it’s good for

The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-E905 Compact Elliptical Machine is good for people who are on a limited budget and want to get a high-quality workout at home. The model offers great features at a reasonable price.

Who it’s not good for

This Elliptical Machine is not good for people who are heavier than 220 pounds. As the machine has a weight limit of 220lbs, it would not be wise to buy it if you are heavier because you will have a high risk of injury and the machine will not be safe for you.

Moreover, it isn’t good for taller users, As it comes with a short stride length. You will not feel comfortable using the machine.

4. NordicTrack C 7.5 Compact Elliptical Machine

NordicTrack C 7.5 Elliptical

NordicTrack is making it on our list for the first time with the NordicTrack C 7.5 Elliptical Machine. A budget-friendly compact trainer that has a lot of fancy features with a budget below $800.

It has a 20″ stride length which is the biggest until now on the list. More importantly, it is the first compact elliptical machine to have the incline feature on the list. The incline feature allows for more intense workouts and progress.

Moreover, it comes with 26 workout programs made specifically by a certified personal trainer so you can have variety and enjoyment while working out. The elliptical trainer has 22 resistance levels, which allows for weekly or monthly progress and increases in the workout intensity.

The NordicTrack C 7.5 elliptical has an access to iFit app and can be connected to iPod. As it also comes with a lifetime warranty of the frame, 2 years warranty for the parts, and 1-year warranty for labor.

Pros

  • Incline feature, 22 resistance levels
  • iFit-enabled, and 26 built-in workout programs
  • Long warranty
  • Water bottle holder

Cons

  • Customer service isn’t the best

Who it’s good for

The Nordic Track C 7.5 Compact Elliptical Machine is good for someone that loves fancy workouts, loves to use apps, and wants to have different workout programs to choose from and allow for enjoyment.

It suits best some that want to have a decent home gym. Also, it is good for various athletes at different levels of fitness. Beginners to intermediates can use this machine perfectly.

Who it’s not good for

This model of compact elliptical machines is not the best thing to buy if you prefer a less fancy machine to get the job done.

5. NordicTrack Spacesaver SE9i Elliptical Trainer

NordicTrack Spacesaver SE9i Elliptical Trainers

NordicTrack made it to our list with this model for the 2nd time in a row. The NordicTrack Spacesaver SE9i Elliptical machine is made with a great number of features to help you reach your goal in the most enjoyable and effective way.

The NordicTrack Elliptical Machine comes with a 7″ Smart HD touch screen which makes it far luxurious from other ellipticals. Moreover, it comes with 24 levels of resistance to progress through over the weeks or months.

Not only that, it has 10 levels of the incline feature so you can add more intensity to your home workouts.

It is iFit app included, can be connected to iPod, and interactive google maps. It also has 30 built-in workout programs to allow for enjoyment and improve adherence to training.

Pros

  • Easy assembling
  • 7″ touch screen with a web browser and iFit included.
  • 24 levels of resistance and 10 levels of power incline.
  • 10 years frame warranty, 2 years for parts, 1 year for labor

Cons

  • The customer service is not the best
  • Flywheel is not heavy enough for advanced athletes

Who it’s good for

The NordicTrack Spacesaver SE9i Elliptical Machine suits best someone who wants to invest in some luxurious machine.

Also, it is good for someone that gets bored so quickly for routine, as it has 30 workout programs and accessible to google maps and iFit app, you will enjoy this machine.

Who it’s not good for

This machine is not good for someone that doesn’t need all of these features and find it not useless. Also, it isn’t the best choice for advanced and pros athletes as the flywheel is somehow light and can be broken with heavy work.

6. ProForm 895 Cse Smart Strider Elliptical

ProForm 895 Cse Smart Strider 895 Cse Elliptical

We have mentioned ProForm machines on our normal elliptical list. Now, it has made our lists again with the ProForm 895 Cse Smart Strider Elliptical. This Compact elliptical machine is convenient for a home gym because it can be folded and stored easily, and arrives nearly assembled.

The ProForm 895 Cse Smart Strider Elliptical machine comes with a 7″ touchscreen that makes your workout looks and feels real with its iFit included and Virtual Google Maps technologies.

It has 24 adjustable levels of resistance, and 32 built-in workout programs made specifically for enjoyment and variation to help you achieve your goal faster and easier. The machine also comes with a two-level workout fan to support you in summer and when its hot.

The compact elliptical trainer comes with a lifetime warranty for frame, 3 years for parts, and 1 year for labor.

Pros

  • 32 Workout apps
  • 24 levels of resistance and 10% incline feature
  • Workout fan of two levels
  • High weight limit of 325lbs
  • Smartphone compatible, iFit app included

Cons

  • The resistance system of 18 pounds is light compared to other ellipticals
  • The customer service is not the best

Who it’s good for

The ProForm 895 Cse Smart Strider Elliptical machine is good for someone who has a high weight and wants something that feels luxurious. On top of that, someone that has trouble in adherence to exercise will find this machine quite interesting.

Who it’s not good for

The machine may not be good for advanced trainees. As the flywheel and resistance system tend to be light, you should consider a heavier machine so it can last long with you without breaking.

7. Body Power 2-in-1 Elliptical Stepper Trainer

Body Power 2-in-1 Elliptical Stepper Trainer with Curve-Crank Technology

Body Power 2-in-1 Elliptical Trainer is one of its kind. Instead of being an elliptical trainer only, it has the element of being a stepper too. With this technology, you will not be only using an elliptical you will be using an elliptical and a stepper at the same time.

The machine comes with a technology called Curve-Crank Technology. Meaning that it has constant tension on both horizontal and vertical sides which makes it smooth, and quiet.

The 2-in-1 Elliptical Stepper machine has 8 levels of resistance with a heavy flywheel which allows everyone from beginner to advanced trainees to use it. On top of that, it comes with LCD screen that tracks time, distance, speed, and calories burned.

Pros

  • Hybrid machine for more enjoyment and variation
  • Curve-Crank technology
  • Smooth and quiet
  • Easy to transport

Cons

  • Weight limit of 250lbs
  • Takes time to assemble

Who it’s good for

Body Power 2-in-1 Elliptical Stepper Trainer suits best someone that wants to use an elliptical machine, but also eager to use a stepper.

This machine will give you the best of both worlds. Moreover, the machine is so small and light weight so it can be moved or put in any place available.

Who it’s not good for

It’s not good for someone that weighs over 250lbs, as it has a low weight limit of 250lbs. Also, if you do not want to assemble machines or don’t have the time to, you should consider looking at other options.

8. Cubii Pro Seated Under Desk Elliptical Machine

Cubii Pro Seated Under Desk Elliptical Machine for Home Workout, Pedal Bike Cycle Motion, Bluetooth sync Fitbit & Apple, Whisper Quiet, Compact Mini Exerciser w/Adjustable Resistance & LCD (Noir)

Cubii Pro is the first seated under desk Elliptical machine we talk about on this list. Because of its name “Under Desk” we see that it is from the best compact ellipticals ever.

Cubii Pro Seated Under Desk Elliptical Machine is recommended by professionals and professional websites. Including Mayo Clinic, Forbes, Time, Apartment Therapy, and of course, Recycle Studio!

What is so special about it that you can workout while you sitting working in your office, if you are doing your homeworks, watching TV. You can workout with this machine anywhere and anytime.

You can connect the elliptical trainer to Cubii Pro app, iFit, or Apple HealthKit to track your workouts and statistics. Moreover, it has 8 levels of resistance to allow for progress.

The machine has a quiet and smooth operation making anyone around you to not feel a thing.

Pros

  • Best Compact Design ever made
  • 8 levels of resistance
  • Smooth and quiet
  • Free application to track workouts and for motivation

Cons

  • Can be expensive
  • Heavy
  • Seated workouts only

Who it’s good for

The Cubii Pro Seated Under Desk Machine is the best elliptical for office workers. Because it allows to train while sitting, you can be training while doing any other activity, like working, studying, watching TV.

It is good for people that wans to get a workout in, but don’t have any time to do so. It will allow you to workout while doing your other tasks perfectly.

Who it’s not good for

The Compact Machine is not good for people who want to train while standing. As the machine is only made for sitting workouts, it will not be as effective for people who want to have time only for training.

Compact ellipticals: A buying guide

Even though compact ellipticals are smaller in size and have lighter weights, they do the same job with similar quality to the normal elliptical. They are usually lighter in weights, and smaller in size so that they can be transported or stored anywhere.

In this buying guide, We are going to discuss some of the things you should know and keep in mind while choosing or buying your future compact elliptical machine.

Resistance

Resistance is important because it is the main driver of training. The elliptical should be smooth enough to allow comfort while training, and has enough resistance that it is hard enough. The best elliptical machine would have various resistance levels to choose from.

Also, smooth machines prevent high risk of injury. Because ellipticals are low-impact machines, they do not offer a great risk of injury but when it’s not smooth, they definitely will.

Stride

Most ellipticals have pedals that close to each other. That’s because narrow-spaced foot is healthy and natural.

Almost every adult would prefer a 20″ Stride length. But ellipticals can come with different lengths ranged from 18 to 22″. According to your height, you should choose a stride length that feels comfortable to you.

Incline

The Incline feature is a feature that increases calories burned in a single workout. It increases the intensity of training that demands higher efforts to meet. Some compact ellipticals will have the incline feature which is a big plus.

Durability

Durability is from the most important things when you are looking for the best compact elliptical machine. The best elliptical machine should last long enough that it is worth the money, and maybe if it is good enough, it will not need any repairs to be done.

Most compact ellipticals can hold up to 300lbs weight limit. The bigger the weight limit, the durable the machine is. On top of that, looking at the warranty is so important. Typically, the parts of the machine will have 2 to 5 years of warranty.

Conclusion

At the end of the day these are the bare minimums you need to look for in a compact elliptical:

Lightweight: the compact ellipticals are so easy to move whether you want to move houses, or you just want to move it from room to another. Usually, it comes with wheels to be easier when moved.

Can be folded: Some ellipticals can be foldable, which is a great option if you want to put some other pieces of equipment along with the elliptical in your home,

Smaller size: Compact ellipticals are smaller in size when compared to the average ellipticals which make them more appropriate for home gyms.

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