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arc trainer vs. elliptical

Anyone know the difference between these two pieces of equipment? Which burns more calories? What about muscle groups?
They sure seem to work the same muscle groups so I'm very curious...

Wed. Mar 7, 5:46pm

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Here's a link to an online pdf that scientically compares arc trainers to ellipticals.


Wednesday, March 07, 2007, 6:14 PM

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Thanks for the scientific info but I'm really not scientifically minded... I'm just more interested in layman's terms for how these two are different and which tends to burn more calories.
But, again, I do appreciate the info...

Thursday, March 08, 2007, 1:06 PM

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It seems that this study really focused on whether these pieces of equipment place undue strain on joints as opposed to which burns more calories, etc.
But, thanks for sharing anyway.

Thursday, March 08, 2007, 1:08 PM

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The article points out how ellipticals place more stress on your knee and can cause back ache or injury while stating that an arc trainer won't. With that kind of information, why would it matter which burned more calories? Do what is better for your body!!!!! (And I am a layman; I haven't taken a science class since gr. 11)

And thank you so much to the person who linked to the article. I've been saying for years that ellipticals put you all out of alignment and put stress on your knee joint and potentially your back. Nice to have an article to back it all up...

Thursday, March 08, 2007, 8:13 PM

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ArcTrainers burn WAY MORE calories

Elliptical machines hurt my knees. ArcTrainers never give me a problem, so that's the #1 reason why I like them.

They also have all of these different settings: hill interval, cardio, strength, etc. some of which are really tough. You will really feel your gluts and quads the next day. This is the only cardio machine (besides running on a treadmill) that I feel gives you a REAL workout.

And I can burn 300 calories in 30 minutes on the ArcTrainer - pretty good for a cardio machine (and this is with my own heart rate monitor - machine estimates tend to be a lot higher than real calories burned).

Friday, March 09, 2007, 10:55 AM

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To the 10:55 poster

Are you sure the ArcTrainer burns more calories? I have ssen that too when I compare the calories indicated on the elliptical to the ArcTrainer after the same amount of time. But I am not sure that I believe it. I have read that you can't really trust the machines when it some to calories burned.

After 30 minutes on the elliptical, the calorie count says 400. After 30 minutes on the ArcTraner, it says 500. My heart rate monitor suggests that I am working equally hard, so it doesn't make sense to me that the calories burned would be that different.

I find both machines get me going and nearly to the same extent.

Friday, March 09, 2007, 4:04 PM

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I feel like by and large the ArcTrainer and ellipticals are pretty comparable. These machines come in a lot of varieties and usually with a lot of settings, so how much energy they use up isn't really straightforward to compare.
I feel like the biomechanics and relationship to your anatomy is different on different machines and I don' t know what the effect is on calories, but it probably makes a difference in which muscles bear more load. For example, it feels to me like the Arctrainer has a longer vertical stroke than a Lifefitness elliptical.

Monday, March 12, 2007, 9:40 AM

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The thing about the Arc Trainer, according to the little sticker on the machine, is that the different levels mimic different machines/motions. Like 0-1 is a X-country skier, 2-4 is the elliptical, and I think the higher ones are the stepper, the hiker, and the climber. I'm more likely to use the arm poles because they're way more comfortable than any of the elliptical arm poles have been. My only complaint is that it feels like the pedals are a little to far apart in terms of width.

Calories burned...the resistance levels don't compare well (1-20 v. 1-100), so using my heartrate as a guideline, the output is pretty equal.

Monday, March 12, 2007, 10:56 AM

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Arc Trainer is Un-Elliptical and Burns More Calories w/Less Stress

When Cybex introduced its Arc cross-training cardiovascular machine five years ago its mission was to build a breakthrough piece of equipment that provided impact-free exercise and maximum training affect on muscles without overstressing the body.

“Perceived effort and joint discomfort are totally different on the Arc Trainer, compared with elliptical machines,” said Jeremy Boone, a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, who works with a vast array of exercising populations and is also part of the offseason program for the NFL Carolina Panthers. “I have clients who just can’t push themselves hard enough on elliptical trainers without it becoming too uncomfortable, or even painful, but on the Arc Trainer, they can work as hard as they want without experiencing any pain or discomfort. Even athletes with previous or rehabbing knee injuries feel that the Arc Trainer gives them a great workout without any knee pain.”

The Arc Trainer’s unique, “un-elliptical” pattern provides leg movement in a biomechanically correct motion that is impact free. The footplate moves in an arc path which simulates a rhythmic step up activity with proper mechanics, significantly reducing the shear component at the knee.


Monday, January 12, 2009, 6:48 PM

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heart rate / calories

This is something that's bugged me as well. Similar heart-rate implies similar oxygen burned implies similar work being done. Yet the ArcTrainer also tells me I am burning 40% more calories over the elliptical. Makes me suspicious that the ArcTrainer is simply inflationary.

Sunday, February 22, 2009, 10:21 PM

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