Low Impact Exercising: Opposite to the other gym equipment available on the market, the elliptical trainer and the fitness flyers have the advantage of low-impact exercising, namely a workout that does not strain your joints and ligaments. However, as you will read from most of the reviews of elliptical trainers, the similarities between the two machines stop here.
While the elliptical trainer has been on the market since the 1990s and is currently available in lots of variations, such as rear-drive, center-drive, or front-drive, the fitness flyer is manufactured by a single direct marketing company and so far does not present any alternatives.
Basic Design Difference
Possibly the biggest distinction between the two devices resides in their unique designs. Overall, as stated in so many reviews of elliptical trainers this piece of equipment is significantly more advanced (from a mechanical point of view) than the fitness flyer. In a nutshell, the elliptical trainer incorporates a flywheel mechanism connected by a drive belt to the crank arm. Therefore, when the machine is in motion, you are basically moving the flywheel and creating inertia with the drive mechanism. On the other hand, the fitness flyer contains a frame shaped like a ‘U’, where the long metal arms and the pedals are usually attached.
Considering their design, both the elliptical trainer and the fitness flyers are excellent choices for low-impact workouts that solicit the upper and lower body simultaneously. However, as the fitness flyer is typically smaller and lighter than its counterpart, the movements you will be performing on each machine differs.
The distinction for the pattern of movements on these low-impact workout types of equipment also comes from the shape of the pedals. The pedals of the fitness flyer are designed more like an arc, similar to the skiing equipment, whereas one of its counterparts is elliptical. Therefore, the elliptical trainer’s pedal ensures a constant oval motion, and the fitness flyer’s pedal permits only a back-and-forth movement.
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Resistance in Flyers and Ellipticals
Changing the resistance intensity on a fitness flyer is typically done by adjusting the knobs found in the handles. At the same time, these machines are equipped with a small monitor that provides some basic information about the workout, more specifically time and distance. On the other hand, reading any reviews of elliptical trainers will help you realize that this machine is also more advanced technologically. With regards to the display, the newest models include a digital monitor that shows extra useful data such as heart rate, resistance level, and calories burned in addition to the time and distance.
Moreover, the elliptical trainers permit you to adjust the intensity of the resistance digitally and the top-notch machines include a power-inclined ramp. Furthermore, certain machines are able to record user data such as heart rate to automatically adjust the intensity and resistance. It is necessary to mention that the array of programs available on the elliptical trainer is significantly higher than the one available on the fitness flyer. Overall, elliptical trainers have dozens of interchangeable programs that allow a full workout, starting with a short warm-up, intense interval training, and stretching.