How to Choose the Right Cross Trainer


Taking the plunge and equipping your home with the right tools to support your fitness journey requires an investment that shouldn’t be taken lightly.

You must do your research and find equipment that’s made to last and caters to your body type and fitness objectives.

Cross trainers widely differ model-to-model, so we created this blog post to provide you with all you need to become an informed shopper when searching for your ideal elliptical machine.

Woman Exercising on Elliptical Cross Trainer

Stride Length

Simply put, this refers to the length between the pedals when at their furthest point away from each other. Determining the correct stride length is imperative for your level of comfort when using the machine and can prevent unwanted injuries.

Taller individuals and those with longer legs will require a larger stride length than someone smaller.

Below, is a rough indication of what stride length will be appropriate based on your height:


Under 5”       28cm

5’ – 5’3”        30cm 

5’4” – 5’10”  40cm

5’11’+            50cm



One of the initial stages that you should centre your focus on, is price. Formulating a realistic budget for your entire home setup will be beneficial to your pursuit. It’s also crucial that you understand the distinction between affordable and cheap.

Granted, a more expensive price tag does not always equate to a good quality machine. However, a higher spec machine with an extensive list of features and high build quality will reflect a larger price.


Our range of cross trainers is a perfect balance of quality and performance with an affordable price tag.



It’s important to ascertain the amount of space you’re working with. Have you found an appropriate location in your home to accommodate your elliptical machine?

The last thing you want is to order a machine that won’t be practical to use in your living space and will merely collect dust. The CT600 PRO is our largest cross trainer with a length of 156cm and a height of 176cm. For those with less space available, the CT200 is our smallest unit with a length of 115.5cm.


Rear Drive vs Front Drive

There are 2 positions in which the flywheel may be located on an elliptical machine and both positions will provide a different experience.


Rear Driven:

The flywheel on a rear-driven unit will be located at the back, behind the area you will be standing when exercising. The movement and direction of the legs will mimic a more natural running style.


Rear-driven cross-trainers tend to provide a smoother motion although this is largely dependent on your preference. Both the CT200 and CT300 models that we stock on our website are rear-driven elliptical machines.

Front Driven:

The flywheel is located at the front of the machine for all front-driven ellipticals. The motion is more circular on this type of elliptical machine so it’s worth trying both styles and seeing which you prefer. We are more than happy to assist you with this, feel free to pop over to our showroom and try out each cross trainer individually.


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Home unit’s vs commercial units

When browsing the internet in search of your dream elliptical machine you will likely have come across both options. It’s important to understand the reason behind the disparity in price, between the two types.


Commercial cross trainers are built with the sole purpose to withstand frequent, high-intensity loads every week. Therefore, the build quality will be proportionately higher than a unit designed for the average homeowner.


Build/Set Up Process

If constructing a bedside table from IKEA is a daunting prospect, then a cross-trainer with a straightforward building process is perfect for you.


Our cross trainers come partly pre-assembled and have a shorter build process than other ellipticals on the market. The building of our machines is very simple and our handy manual coupled with our YouTube tutorials, will provide you with all you need to set it up correctly.


Fitness goals

As a keen fitness enthusiast myself, I can appreciate the importance of finding the right machine to fit my needs. You must identify your fitness goals before throwing your money at that YouTube advert that keeps popping up everywhere.

Our goal with this post is to provide you with a clearer picture of what your ideal setup could look like and what to look for when browsing online or in person.


  • Light usage, kickstarting your fitness journey:


If the ink from your ‘new year, new me’ tattoo is still fresh, and you’re determined not to get it covered up until at least march… then you’ll likely want a very user-friendly machine. There’s little point in buying a machine with all the bells and whistles to cater for a pro athlete because this will probably deter you from using it.


An elliptical model with easy programs and a user-friendly monitor will provide you with all you need to stay in shape. The CT200 fits the bill perfectly, as it was designed with the sole purpose to increase comfort and offering more convenience to you.


  • Regular usage:


You’ve been working hard on your fitness for a while now and are passionate about getting healthy. You’re at a more committed stage of your workout journey. If this rings true for you, then you’ll want something slightly more advanced. The CT500 might be just what you’re looking for, given the greater degree of resistance levels at your disposal. In addition, the monitor allows you to set targets for distance, time, and calories burned during your workout and presents them clearly and concisely.


  • Avid fitness fanatic


You live and breathe fitness and you’re upgrading your current cross trainer or switching from the gym to a home setup.


You’ll want the ability to challenge your body and take advantage of integration with other apps to track your progress. The powerhouse that we call the CT600 PRO might be right up your alley.

With an astute track system to assist your movements and a non-slip pedal surface, you can comfortably crank out those intense cardio sessions.


What’s more, you can create custom plans and connect with third-party apps such as iconsole and Kinomaps.

This integration will allow you to track your progress and gives you the option to follow along with geo-located videos, that sync up to your workouts.


Finally, give yourself complete peace of mind with your purchase. Go over the warranty and returns policy with a fine-tooth comb. At JLL Fitness, we want all of our customers to be 100% satisfied with their purchases. Therefore, we offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on all of our cross-trainers. In addition, a 12 months parts warranty is included.


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Billie Harrison

Digital Marketing and Social media Senior Advisor at JLL Fitness

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