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The elliptical trainer is a relatively new piece of aerobic exercise equipment, but it's here to stay. Most commercial gyms have them and they get a lot of use. An elliptical is also a great piece of home fitness equipment. Something of a cross between a bike and a treadmill, it gets its name from the elliptical, or egg-shaped, motion of the pedals. Ellipticals can be used by anybody from a deconditioned beginner to a pro athlete.
The elliptical trainer (or cross trainer as it is also known) is an excellent machine for those who suffer from joint problems. The smooth, flowing action of this machine ensures there are no jerky movements on body parts. Unlike a treadmill, the cross trainer provides a low impact exercise which would be more beneficial for the elderly. As well as increasing cardiovascular endurance, the cross trainer can also increase muscular endurance simply by increasing the resistance level. The upper body can also be worked using this machine as there are 2 handles which move in time with the movement of the legs (kind of like a skiing action).