Do Ellipticals Use Electricity?

People who are considering purchasing elliptical trainers will ask the question: do ellipticals use electricity? This is an important logistical question. People are going to need to position their home elliptical trainers next to an electrical outlet if elliptical trainers use electricity. Some people might be wary of adding to their electric bills by buying fitness machines that use electricity. Consumers who are environmentally conscious might be concerned about purchasing fitness machines that use a lot of electricity, especially because people will need to use elliptical trainers most days of the week for an extended period of time in order to get most of the fitness benefits.

It depends on the elliptical trainer, but elliptical trainers generally do not use electricity. The majority of modern elliptical trainers are self-powered in the 2010’s. It is true that the electronic displays that give people readings related to their heart rates, their choice of workout programs, or the number of calories that they’ve burned will use some energy. However, these displays are battery-powered, and they only use between five and ten watts of energy at the most. Compared to the energy usage of fitness machines like treadmills, the electricity that an elliptical trainer will use over the course of several decades is negligible.

Some treadmills are completely self-powered. Even the electronic displays are powered using the energy that the exercising person generates over the course of the workout, because that energy is kept within the system. Riders generate the energy that powers elliptical trainers, making elliptical trainers sustainable in a way that the majority of other fitness machines today are not.

The Energy Usage of Elliptical Trainers and Other Exercise Machines

People who are looking for a green way to exercise should use elliptical trainers, especially if they already use other forms of exercise equipment. Obviously, the greenest way to exercise is taking a walk outside or doing something else that literally requires zero energy. As long as people are not driving anyplace in order to walk somewhere, they’re still going to be using literally zero energy.

However, taking a walk outdoors really isn’t an option for a lot of people. Some people live in neighborhoods that really aren’t safe enough for that. Other people live under weather conditions that just aren’t favorable for outdoor walking for part of the year or for most of the year. People who want to be able to walk all year will usually make use of treadmills, and treadmills are terrible from an environmentalist perspective.

Treadmills use between 600 and 700 watts of energy. Treadmills also start to use more power as they get older, and the people who use them are going to wear them out relatively quickly. Elliptical trainers are not going to use slightly more energy as they get older. People only have to periodically replace the batteries on their digital displays, and they will have elliptical trainers that are in proper working order. People can also buy elliptical trainers that use literally zero energy, except for the energy that people are going to generate using their own muscle power.

Also see: Do Elliptical Machines Work Out Your Core?

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