Using an elliptical or going for a walk are both excellent forms of cardiovascular exercise. Each one keeps you active and helps you burn calories, all while being gentle on your joints.
But is one a better workout than the other? Determining which one is best for you will depend on your fitness goals and health needs, so we recommend asking your personal trainer for advice. However, here are some of the basic topics clarified:
The elliptical puts far less stress on your joints than walking. This is because when you walk, your foot fully leaves the ground, and your body weight, plus some gravity, is applied to your joints with each step. However, when using an elliptical, your feet remain primarily on the footplates as you stride, therefore it reduces the impact on your joints.
Your personal trainer will most likely recommend the elliptical for those with arthritis, achy knees, and hips, or recovering from an injury.
Better Calorie Burner
Both exercises are cardiovascular, so they're a great way to burn calories if that's your goal. However, many factors go into the number of calories you'll ultimately burn during a workout.
Your personal trainer will recommend switching things up and making your routine more challenging as you go along on your fitness journey. You can do this by picking up the pace or adding some resistance or incline to your workout.
Better For Weight-loss
Ellipticals can burn more calories than walking, so if you're looking at maximum calorie burn, the elliptical wins. However, there are many things you can do to alter the intensity of your elliptical or walking workout to burn more every workout.
Always stick to the type of exercise you enjoy more, so if you prefer walking ask your personal trainer for recommendations to bring it up a notch.
Better For Building Muscle
Again both the elliptical and walking are cardiovascular exercises, but they can help build muscle and strength. Adding resistance to any workout and challenging your muscles will increase your strength and muscle over time. This would be another instance where you could ask your personal trainer for some advice.
Better Full Body Workout
Both exercises are lower body-based workouts. However, the elliptical offers handlebars for you to use, making it more of a full-body workout than walking. Regardless of which exercise you choose your personal trainer will always remind you to be mindful of your core.
When walking or using the elliptical, your core should be tight while your limbs focus on moving. An activated core will help you protect your back from injury or aches and pains.
Remember that the best workout for you is the workout you'll consistently do. Enjoying it will help support your fitness journey. We are always here to help you reach your goals so if you're looking for ways to switch up your workout, give us a call and set up personal training session today.