Fitness / Elliptical

The Don’t List: Elliptical Workout Don’ts

Are you making these common mistakes on the elliptical?

We’re continuing on with our “Don’t List” series today by tackling the elliptical machine. For those who hate running or are looking for a break from strength training, elliptical workouts can offer a great way to burn calories and stay fit. However, as with any machine, it’s good to keep in mind the habits that can prevent you from getting your best elliptical workout. We spoke to Aaptiv trainer Candice Cunningham to get her tips on what not to do when you hit the elliptical. Skip these elliptical workout don’ts.

7 Elliptical Workout Don’ts

1. Don’t slouch

Slouching puts a lot of unwanted pressure on the lower back—something you always want to avoid when working out. Check in on your posture throughout your entire elliptical workout.

2. Don’t hold on too tight

If you have moveable handles keep a loose grip and keep the focus on your lower body. Using the handles as a means to balance yourself is fine. However, once you start holding on to too tightly, you’re using the handles to relieve some of the resistance you’re feeling during your elliptical workout. This means a less effective workout in the end.

3. Don’t put all your weight in your toes

Keeping your weight in your toes during an elliptical routine deprives your butt of a great workout. Try putting your weight in your heels to target your glutes and hamstrings. Focusing your weight in your toes can also have a negative impact on your knees. Work on training yourself to use your glutes so you get the workout you want.

4. Don’t always hold on

An elliptical workout can mimic the same motion as an outdoor running or treadmill workout. Take your workout up a notch and and model a running posture by keeping your arms loose by your sides with your elbows bent and in close to your sides.

5. Don’t stick to one speed all the time

Working out at one speed for the duration of your workout very likely means you aren’t challenging yourself. Try an Aaptiv workout that incorporates intervals or gradual speed increases to get better results from the time you spend on the elliptical.

6. Don’t forget to engage your core

Engaging your core does more than just strengthen your abs. It will help you keep a neutral spine to prevent stress on your lower back and it will keep your movement in line. Practice great posture!

7. Don’t forget to relax

If you’re tense during your workout, you’re storing up stress in your shoulders and neck. Relax, breathe steadily and all the way down to your your stomach. Avoid shallow breathes that end at your chest. A relaxed approach to your workout will let you focus in on your posture and form and should help you avoid extreme soreness.

Take an elliptical class with Candice:

Beginner: 70’s Slow Build
Intermediate: One, Two Step
Advanced: Quick Pain

Check out our other “Don’t List” articles:

The Don’t List: Treadmill Workout Don’ts

The Don’t List: Cycling Workout Don’ts

Elliptical Fitness

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