Here’s an overview of the basic types of cardio exercise equipment:
1. Stationary bikes are designed for people who prefer sitting than standing while burning calories. If you prefer the comfort of cycling than walking, rowing, or jogging for cardiovascular fitness, toning or building of your thighs; stationary bikes is for you.
The stationary bike is a great leg builder; it will help strengthen your quadriceps muscles, the gluteus muscles, and the hamstring muscles.
There are two types of stationary bikes: the upright bikes and recumbent bikes. Upright bikes simulate a regular bike; the only difference is that it will not let you go anywhere.
Recumbent bikes, on the other hand, have bucket seats so you pedal out in front of you. If you are new to exercise or prefer more back support because of a lower-back pain, you may find a recumbent bike more comfortable to use than an upright bike.
2. Stair climber is an excellent workout machine for your calves, thighs, hips, buttocks, and lowers back. If you prefer more than just walking and jogging, a stair climber is for you. However, it is important to consult your doctor first if you have previous or preexisting knee problem as it may exacerbate your injury.
Stair climbers come in two types: with dependent steppers and withindependent steppers. If you are a beginner, it is advised to use the dependent stepper type as it is easier to use than the independent stepper type. The intensity of workout can be adjusted manually or through computer controls.
3. Rowing machines help strengthen your arms, legs, shoulders, and back with very low impact. However, it is not advised to people with back problem and even those with healthy backs are cautioned as it can strain muscles from rowing.
Rowing machines have different types of resistance. Standard rowing machines use air resistance, other models use a water flywheel which is more closer to real rowing, and still other models use pistons or cylinders.
Among of the best stair climbers are the ones with comfortable, adjustable seat and footpads; a bar with easy and comfortable grip; and with low noise.
4. Elliptical trainers are like the treadmill, they are designed to mimic the human gait during locomotion. However, compare to treadmill, this machine doesn’t require your feet to leave the pedals which make it feel like you are running on a cloud.
Elliptical trainers are recommended to people who suffer from lower-limb injuries or arthritis. The drive system of an elliptical machine is the mechanism by which it applies resistance during exercise. There are two basic types: front drive and rear drive.
5. Treadmill is probably the top seller among types of cardio exercise equipment. This machine offer an ideal way to increase your cardiovascular capacity, burn calories, and strengthen your lower body by allowing you to run and walk.
Unlike walking or running outdoors, exercises with treadmills minimize stress on your joints.
The shock is absorbed by the treadmill’s cushioned deck. If you are overweight or have joint problems, fitness experts advise to look for a deck with more cushioning, preferably 18 inches wide or more.