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The Most Common Mistakes When Using an Elliptical

Only Going in One Direction

Many elliptical trainers allow you to work out in both a forward and reverse motion. If you’re only going in one direction then you’re definitely missing out on one of the main benefits of using an elliptical. Working out in a forward motion targets your thighs and calves; working out in reverse targets your glutes and hamstrings.

Slouching or Swaying

Every time you get on your elliptical trainer, make sure you stand up straight, relax your shoulders, and keep your back in line with your hips. This ensures that you work out with correct technique, maximizing the benefits of using an elliptical while preventing injury. One more thing: no bouncing, even if it does make your workout more fun!

Taking it Easy

Compared to a treadmill, it is easy to slack off when using an elliptical trainer. This is because a treadmill will hurl you off the running belt if you take it easy for a second or two. As there’s no danger of this happening when using an elliptical, make sure you check your pace periodically.

Putting All Your Weight on Your Toes

The general consensus among fitness instructors and certified personal trainers is that you should put your weight on the back of your foot. However, others suggest that you start on your heels and roll through your whole foot. Who’s right? Well both actually; either is acceptable. Just make sure that you don’t put most of your weight on your toes and you’ll be fine.

Not Entering Your Personal Information

Many people simply step onto their elliptical and start working out. However, you should always enter your personal information, as the majority of machines on the market are calibrated for a 150-pound person. Entering your information will lead to a more accurate calorie read, which can act as a great motivational tool to keep going.

The Machine Starts to Purr

If you can hear the machine start to purr, then you’re definitely doing it wrong. The purring sound occurs when you’re going too fast without enough resistance. In other words, you’re not working out as effectively as possible. It is therefore better to keep a steady, moderate pace at a resistance level that feels challenging. Doing this will result in the most effective workout.

Not Mixing Up Your Workout

As with most things in life, if you keep on doing the same thing day after day you will get bored of it. Using an elliptical trainer is no exception. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to mix up your workout, either by frequently changing the resistance level or changing the pace at which you work out at.

Not Using the Handlebars

Not using the handlebars is a mistake. We mean, they’re there for a reason, right? Moving the handlebars is definitely a good idea if you’re looking to tone your arms. The inclusion of movable handlebars is one of the main reasons why elliptical trainers are so popular, as they offer a total body workout.