Product selection tips
Before selecting your home exercise equipment it is worth to take some time to study its technical parameters, which determine its functionality. Knowing these details will help you make a conscious choice and prevent your new equipment from being set aside. Your next step should be defining your needs and future workout plan. If you intend to use the product by yourself only, it is reasonable not to spend your funds on a professional model for fitness gyms, but rather to purchase a lighter version designed for home use instead. Our H-Class (for home use) equipment will be the perfect choice for you.
Type of resistance
It is the most important parameter of exercise bikes (upright, recumbent or spin) and elliptical trainers. The most common mistake is making a choice solely based on the weight of the flywheel. Much more important is its construction, which determines the way in which the resistance is created. There are 4 types of resistance:
mechanical resistance– generated by a friction band fitted to the edge of the flywheel
outer magnetic resistance
– created by magnets placed on an outer segment of the flywheel.
Provides mid-level smoothness and durability.
inner magnetic resistance
– created by magnets fitted alongside the inner edge of the flywheel; provides smooth movement and high durability. The inner and outer magnetic resistance is generated as the magnets approach and recede from the flywheel.
– provided by electromagnetic induction; the distance between the magnets and the flywheel is constant. This type of resistance offers the smoothest and extremely quiet operation.
In the first 3 cases, the resistance can be regulated with a tension knob (from 1 to a maximum of 8 resistance levels) or the computer (1 to 32 levels). Electromagnetic resistance may be adjusted by computer only.
Determine which additional functions, add-ons or accessories you will need to keep your motivation at a high level and take full advantage of the time invested in your workout. Depending on your personal preferences you can choose the equipment that will help you sustain motivation for a very long time.
Display feedback– usually shows duration, speed and distance. Some consoles also provide body fat information and heart rate control.
Built-in workout programs
– may be fixed or customizable. The more options you have for your choice, the more tailored to your needs your exercise will be.
– usually located on the handlebar or on special, dedicated handles. Less often used are telemetry straps offering much better comfort and full freedom of movement, which is especially appreciated by treadmill users.
– indicates the rider’s power output while turning the pedals during a workout, which enables a much more accurate count of burned calories. Fitted in high-end equipment.
– may be manual or electronic. If you are looking for smooth adjustment and operation, the electronic regulation with the right type of flywheel will be the best choice.
– such as seat, height, handlebars, stride length – depending on equipment type. A proper body position during training enables you to extend workout time and avoid injury.
Speed and incline (applicable for treadmills)
– should be adjustable according to your preferences and physical possibilities. The incline is adjusted manually or by computer and is always stated in percentage points or levels – remember that these values are not equivalent. The speed is measured in kilometers per hour (km/h), and motor parameter in horsepower (HP).
– enrich your workout experience with Google Street View and help manage training data. It is the perfect solution for everyone wanting to keep track of their results. Mobile applications are supported by the latest, high-end equipment.
Tablet / smartphone holder
– pay attention to placement in regard of your comfort and the size of your mobile device.
Bottle and towel holder
– obvious features and therefore often forgotten; especially useful during longer workouts.
– music can be a great motivator – if you can’t imagine training without your favorite pieces, make sure that your fitness equipment offers this feature. Speakers are currently fitted in most treadmills.
Unfair business practices
Finding the perfect piece of home exercise equipment doesn’t have to be a difficult task. It is helpful to determine your needs and expectations and possess some basic knowledge about technical parameters and available features. It is also good to consider the following points, which can help you make the right choice without losing your health or money.
Brand name mattersFrom time to time new brands appear on the market. Some of them will most likely develop, however, there will also be ones which had been created for a one-off sales campaign. In such cases we can’t be sure about the quality of the equipment, but what’s more important – about its safety. If you decide to buy such product, read the warranty terms carefully – they may prove to be utterly unfavorable.
Weight of flywheel
It is unfortunately a very common practice to overstate this parameter. Unfair sellers take advantage of the fact that most customers are unaware of the basic rules regarding this component and its influence on other technical parameters of the equipment. As has already been explained, the construction of the flywheel is much more important than its weight. Numbers can easily be manipulated and we often succumb to the thought that a higher parameter equals higher quality. Enquire about details and clarify your doubts – it is the only way to save money and get the product you really need.
Service and repair
The cons of purchasing unbranded / one-off fitness equipment have already been mentioned. Additionally, in such situation spare parts are often unavailable and the service is insufficient. For this reason it is highly advised to check the product’s technical support prior to purchase. Proper customer service is also important after the warranty period.
We are programmed to believe that price and quality are interlinked, but this is not always the case. Overstating the weight of flywheel is only one of the methods used to increase the price of exercise bikes and elliptical trainers. Another can be a misleading classification of fitness equipment with power cord as having electromagnetic resistance. The fitness equipment might in most cases need to be plugged in only to make the console work and not to generate electromagnetic field.
Applicable EU Norms
According to EU regulations, all fitness equipment must meet specific and mandatory safety standards. Treadmills, for example, fall under the European Norm PN-EN 20957 and are divided into 3 classes – A, B and C – according to their technical parameters. The size of the running surface is correlated with the maximum speed of motor – the higher the speed, the wider the running surface should be. Worth noting is also the accuracy of parameters measured during workout: class A comprises treadmills whose accuracy is the highest, class B – equipment with satisfactory accurateness, and class C – the least precise products. Unfortunately not all sellers follow all these requirements strictly, so for your own safety and comfort, make sure that your product of interest meets the obligatory safety standards. The current requirements are presented in the table.