The seated elliptical is a new category of exercise equipment that is also referred to as a recumbent elliptical or elliptical bike and this new category combines the no-impact, natural motion cardio benefits of an elliptical cross trainer with the seated comfort of a recumbent bike for a unique total body workout. Your feet rest out in front of you and you pedal your legs in an elliptical motion, forward or in reverse. Pushing and pulling the handlebars bringing your upper-body into play too as you pedal and pump and pedal your way to a great workout. Seated ellipticals have everything that standing elliptical cross trainers do, plus a comfortable seat. So you can do exactly the same elliptical workout that you perform standing but you get to sit with back support. You get a great cardiovascular, total-body workout by pedaling the legs in an ellipse motion and pushing and pulling the arms. From a comfortable seated position you work both arms and legs at a variety of resistance levels. Increasing the resistance and working “just arms” or “just legs” gives you the benefits of strength training as well as a cardio boost!
The seated elliptical affords many of the same benefits as a recumbent bike, including no-impact workouts, cardio challenge, and accessibility for many types of exercisers. Beyond that, though, the recumbent or seated elliptical offers a more natural and more comfortable foot motion, and the longer power stroke of the elliptical (versus the circular motion of a bike) promotes maximum muscle use. Also, the seat on seated elliptical can be positioned in a way that helps to open the hips and torso for greater comfort, less stress on the lower back, and better breathing.