Best Elliptical for a Tall Person

There’s no denying that an elliptical is a fantastic piece of exercise equipment. However, when your height exceeds that of the average person, problems can arise. As a result, knowing what to look for when purchasing the best elliptical machines for tall people is important; particularly since even the budget models are still fairly pricey. 

Nobody wants to spend a lot of money only to discover that it isn’t right for them. Therefore, to avoid the trouble of buying an elliptical trainer that isn’t designed for tall people or doesn’t fit them, we’ve put together this buying guide.

SOLE Fitness E35 Commercial Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym Exercise Equipment, Smooth and Quiet, Versatile for Any Workout, Bluetooth and USB Compatible
Schwinn Fitness 470 Elliptical
ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer
Nautilus E618 Elliptical Black, One Size
SOLE Fitness E35 Commercial Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym Exercise Equipment, Smooth and Quiet, Versatile for Any Workout, Bluetooth and USB Compatible
Schwinn Fitness 470 Elliptical
ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer
Nautilus E618 Elliptical Black, One Size
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SOLE Fitness E35 Commercial Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym Exercise Equipment, Smooth and Quiet, Versatile for Any Workout, Bluetooth and USB Compatible
SOLE Fitness E35 Commercial Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym Exercise Equipment, Smooth and Quiet, Versatile for Any Workout, Bluetooth and USB Compatible
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Schwinn Fitness 470 Elliptical
Schwinn Fitness 470 Elliptical
ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer
ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer
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Nautilus E618 Elliptical Black, One Size
Nautilus E618 Elliptical Black, One Size

Key Aspects a Tall Person Must Consider

Long Stride Elliptical Trainer

You’re probably aware of the significance of the foot stride. Because an elliptical machine is so good at mimicking your natural walking and running patterns, the foot stride for your height is crucial. You will be taking smaller steps if the machine you choose has a limited foot stride length. It’ll be unpleasant, uncomfortable, and, above all, it’ll hinder your capacity to get the most out of your workout.

Anyone above 5’7′′ who buys an elliptical with a stride length less than 20 inches is generally doing oneself a disservice. The majority of elliptical trainers at your local gym or health club will have a 20-inch stride length. This is to ensure that the large majority of members are catered for. Please don’t try to fit into a 20′′ model if you are extremely tall. Look for an elliptical machine with a 22-inch stride length.

Essentially, it’s worth noting that, while some elliptical machines on the market now offer adjustable foot strides, others are set at a single measurement. If you plan on buying an elliptical that will be used by more than one person, an adjustable length model may be the ideal option for you since it will allow anyone shorter to use it comfortably.

How to Measure Your Foot Stride

You should measure your foot stride to determine the type of elliptical you need. Make a mark on the ground or use tape to wrap it around the back of your heel. Now, take a step forward in a natural way. Make a mark where your front toes land. To find your foot stride, measure the distance between the two marks.

Warranty

Another important feature to consider when looking for the ideal elliptical is the manufacturer’s warranty. Longer warranties are beneficial to both tall and short consumers.

A longer warranty, on the other hand, is a good indicator of overall quality; if a manufacturer is ready to issue a long warranty, it suggests they believe their product is durable enough to last.

Frame guarantees on high-quality ellipticals will last a lifetime. They’ll also come with a five-year parts warranty and a year or two of labor coverage.

Flywheel 

A flywheel large enough to produce a smooth, natural elliptical motion is required for anyone over six feet tall. Further, a flywheel weighing less than 20 pounds is not recommended; a flywheel weighing 30-35 pounds is ideal. This will eliminate the stumbling, jolting exercise motion that many taller individuals experience when using home elliptical machines.

User Weight Capacity

Another factor to consider for elliptical users is the machine’s weight capacity. There should be at least a 50-pound difference between your weight and the machine’s maximum user weight. Choosing an elliptical with a weight capacity of at least 300 pounds will ensure that it can easily handle most tall and big users.

Dimensions

When selecting an elliptical, dimensions are another crucial aspect to consider, especially for tall people.

As for taller persons, a machine that is too small might bring dozens of new issues. This could render the machine useless because they wouldn’t be able to use it.

On the other hand, an elliptical that is excessively large has its own set of issues.

Front, Rear, or Side Drive

What difference does it make if the trainer’s drive is in the back, front, or even side of the machine? This is crucial since it can impact the person’s stride form. In comparison to front-drive elliptical machines, rear-drive elliptical machines often have less of an upward motion.

Why is this important? Simply put, a rear or side drive elliptical has more headroom. If you’re tall and want to exercise in a room with a normal ceiling height, the distance between the top of your head and the ceiling is minimal. 

Consider what happens if you use an elliptical that goes up and down. Your head might go through the ceiling, giving you a complete view of the inside of your roof. Stick to the back and newer side drive elliptical trainers unless your ceiling permits for an extra six inches or more of an upward movement.

We’ve compiled a list of the seven best compact ellipticals with long strides based on various specs and user needs to help you get a fantastic exercise in the comfort of your own home.

Top Seven Ellipticals with a Long Stride

  1. Sole Fitness E35

You can simply concentrate on getting onto the Sole Fitness elliptical and sweating your way towards your fitness goals since this machine is equipped with all the necessary elements to make your workout as enjoyable as possible.

The stride length is adjustable between 20 and 22 inches, making it perfect for tall users. Additionally, the noiseless motor mechanism, which includes a 25-pound flywheel, doesn’t even give your roommate the slightest hint that you’re working out.

Handlebars are a pleasure here because they provide the best grip possible to prevent any slips.

Aside from that, the handlebars are mostly used to adjust resistance levels (16 total) and inclination levels between 0 and 30 degrees with a simple touch of a button located on the handlebars for simple control.

The handlebars can be used to monitor your heart rate, and the machine comes with a chest strap for easy and precise readings.

To make workouts easier, this low step-up height elliptical comes with a built-in cooling fan and a water bottle holder, as well as a 7.5-inch backlit LCD screen that displays key metrics like speed, distance, calories burned, and more.

Pros 

  • Can hold up to 375 pounds of weight
  • Forward and reverse functions
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Only 10 programs available
  • Complicated to assemble
  1. Schwinn 470 Elliptical

This Schwinn elliptical is a good choice for relatively tall persons with a fixed 20″ stride length, but those above six feet may want to look elsewhere. We included it in our top recommendations because it’s likely the only elliptical with this stride length that costs less than $1000.   

The stride length is steady and accurate. It also features extra-large cushioned footplates and can support up to 300 pounds of weight. Thanks to sturdy center frame support and oversized crossbar tubing, the frame is extremely solid and stable. It has 29 pre-programmed routines, including many fitness tests and heart rate programs.

This elliptical has telemetry heart rate capabilities, but it does not come with a chest strap. Although there is an ergonomically positioned point on the handlebars for grip heart rate reading, really tall people will likely have to bend to use it. Tall users may also need to position it in a room with an eight-foot ceiling rather than the low seven-foot ceilings found in basements, attics, and garages.

Although the console is somewhat cluttered, it is very user-friendly. Up to 13 metrics, including time, pulse, speed, and RPM, can be displayed on the two LCD panels. Quick keys make it simple to adjust the inclination and resistance settings. There are 25 resistance levels and a 10-degree motorized incline range. 

From low to high speeds, the operation is smooth and silent thanks to the high-speed high-inertia perimeter weighted flywheel drive system. The option to export your data is a fantastic feature of this Schwinn elliptical. It can be linked to the SchwinnConnect website or apps like My Fitness Pal.

You may charge your phone or other devices using the same USB connector that you use to connect and access your data. If you want to listen to music or view something on your phone or tablet through the inbuilt speakers while working out, this is a good option.

This elliptical has transport wheels that make it easy to move around, but it does not fold up and it is quite big. It takes a few hours to put together, but it’s simple, and the instructions are clear. As long as you’re not too tall, the Schwinn 470 delivers a lot of value at a lower price tag for this level of quality.

Pros

  • Power adjustable incline
  • 20” stride length 
  • Dual track LCD displays

Cons

  • Cannot adjust the angle of pedals
  • No wireless heart rate receiver
  1. ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer

One of the best console screens you’ll find is on the ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer. The 10-inch touchscreen panel is full color and has touch screen features. Its screen has 35 built-in exercise apps to help you get the most out of your workout. You’ll get access to a nearly limitless number of workouts created by experienced personal trainers. Also, you can use the console’s screen to explore and watch YouTube videos while working out. 

ProForm Pro 16.9 Elliptical Trainer

You can use Google Maps to “climb” across the Swiss Alps or “stroll” through the neighborhoods of a favorite city if you have an iFit subscription. There are also simple buttons for adjusting the incline gradient from 0 to 20 degrees and the 26 digital resistance levels.

The elliptical is made of commercial-grade steel and is extremely durable. This machine has a lot of advantages, including the fact that it comes almost completely assembled. It only takes a few minutes to set it up and get it ready to use. With both grip pulse sensors and a wireless chest strap included, this elliptical has you covered if you like to track your heart rate and customize your workout accordingly. 

Multiple grip positions are included on the moving arms with resistance to provide your arms, chest, and shoulders the same workout as your lower body.

The ProForm Pro 16.9 is a variable stride, power-adjustable elliptical with a maximum stride length of 20 inches. Its big pedals are padded and adjustable. There is a 375-pound weight limit. A smooth and steady stride is achieved thanks to the front-drive design and the big 32-pound effective flywheel. 

On the other hand, a front-drive design makes it a little more difficult to balance. This elliptical is one of the quietest on the market thanks to ProForm’s unique SMRTM Silent Magnetic Resistance. Although this is a large piece of equipment, it is very easy to move around thanks to its front-mounted transport wheels. It isn’t foldable; however, it has a modest footprint when compared to other professional-level ellipticals.

While the variable stride adjustment option allows everyone in the family to use it, the maximum length of 20′′ may not be enough for exceptionally tall users.

Pros 

  • Large touchscreen
  • Built-in iFit program with membership
  • Can control music with buttons

Cons 

  • Front-drive design
  • High price
  1. Nautilus E618 Elliptical

The powerful Nautilus E618 Elliptical made its debut in late 2016 as the series’ best elliptical trainer. It has the best resistance system and longest stride in the lineup, yet it doesn’t take up much room because the flywheel is stored upfront (the frames of rear-drive ellipticals are visibly longer). Basically, this trainer is designed for people of all abilities. It’s ideally suited for people who aren’t particularly short, and it’s above average in terms of toning different muscle parts. 

A fitness menu with over two dozen preset programs, as well as customized options, can help you get the most out of your workout time.

long stride elliptical

This E618 has moveable handlebars for your upper body. These have premium grips, which means that you can use them in multiple grip positions to work your body in different ways. The E618 Elliptical features a 22″ stride that can be changed in many ways for the lower body. Because there are three footplate angles and numerous power-incline levels to choose from, each trainee effectively gets multiple elliptical paths.

E618’s console has a Nautilus stats tracking program, allowing each trainee to get precise calorie burn feedback and track long-term development. The console also includes a Bluetooth option for syncing activity data with popular fitness applications like Apple Health and MyFitnessPal.

Pros

  • Wide range of resistance
  • 29 programs to choose from
  • Four user profiles

Cons

  • Front-drive ellipticals usually require more maintenance
  • Data windows use basic technology
  1. Sole Fitness E95 Elliptical

You may be surprised by the Sole E95 elliptical’s high price, but once you learn about its features and how to use it, you won’t be able to complain about its price.

One of the top front-drive elliptical trainers is the Sole Fitness E95. With its noiseless driving technology, it ensures the smoothest exercise experience for every sort of user—beginner, moderate, or advanced.

Users will be impressed by the machine’s 20 various resistance levels and 20 distinct inclination levels, which could take your workout to the next level. It offers an adjustable stride length of 20 to 22 inches, allowing different family members to benefit from a single piece of equipment.

This robust elliptical is also appropriate for overweight/obese individuals to exercise without worrying about safety issues due to its maximum user weight of 400 pounds and its 30-pound flywheel capacity (one of the biggest on the market).

Although the handlebars are immovable, they are equipped with pulse sensors that assist in adjusting the inclination and resistance levels.

The machine is sturdy and long-lasting, with a lifetime warranty on the heavy-duty steel frame. A large console and Bluetooth connection are additional features that allow you to connect with other fitness apps or listen to some music by linking your smartphone or tablet.

Pros

  • Heavy-duty flywheels
  • 10 exercise programs
  • Customizable options

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Stride length does not suit shorter users
  1. Sole E25 Elliptical

The E25 is an adjustable stride length elliptical with a weight capacity of 350 pounds and a stride length of 20 to 22 inches. 

It has ergonomically designed foot pedals that are placed two degrees inward for a more natural feel. This is a one-of-a-kind characteristic that physiotherapists suggest for reducing joint tension. People over six feet tall can receive a full, natural gait motion thanks to the extended stride length.

The E25’s control module includes a built-in tablet holder, audio speakers, and 10 built-in workout routines. All your training diagnostics are displayed on the 6.5-inch display. The console can also be linked to the Sole Fitness app for a more detailed workout analysis.

You can exercise your muscles from different angles by pedaling forward and backward. With a 20-degree incline capability, you can increase the intensity of your workout.

A 20-pound flywheel on the cardio machine aids in delivering a smooth stride motion. With the adjustable handles, you can work both your upper and lower body at the same time, while the stationary handlebars focus on your lower body.

Pros

  • Ergonomic inward pedals
  • 20 incline levels
  • Weight capacity of 350 pounds

Cons

  • Expensive
  1. Diamondback 1060EF Elliptical 

If you live in an apartment with close neighbors, or your family is still sleeping when you work out, you might want to get the quietest elliptical machine available. To that end, we propose the Diamondback 1060EF Elliptical Trainer with Adjustable Stride.

The Diamondback Elliptical replaces the standard weighted flywheel with their Whisper Quiet Magnetic Resistance system, which, as you might think, is designed to be whisper quiet by minimizing the number of moving parts and friction points inside the machine.

Diamondback 1060EF Adjustable Stride Elliptical Trainer, as its name suggests, is an elliptical with an adjustable stride length. The ability to change stride lengths from 18 to 20 to 23 inches makes this machine much more versatile for exercises and more pleasant to use for people of different heights.

In terms of price, the Diamondback 1060EF Elliptical Trainer is in the middle of the pack.

Pros

  • Adjustable stride lengths
  • Quiet system
  • Compact machine

Cons

  • Small display
  • Doesn’t come with many programs

Frequently Asked Questions on Ellipticals for Tall People

Can You Be Too Tall for an Elliptical?

In general, for people who are 5-foot-6 to 6 feet tall, a 20′′ stride length is ideal. Most individuals will be able to use the elliptical comfortably at this length. Many people who are a few inches taller than six feet will be comfortable with a 20” or 22” stride length.

What Stride Length Is Best for an Elliptical?

On an elliptical, stride length is the distance between the pedals when they are at their furthest distance from one another. Although stride length may appear to be a minor consideration when purchasing an elliptical trainer, it is one of the most essential factors that is sometimes overlooked. The length of your stride is important in determining whether or not you receive an effective workout.

This length should correspond to your natural walking stride for the optimum workout experience on any exercise machine. The figure is determined by the user’s height. A taller person’s stride length is longer, whereas a shorter person’s stride length is shorter.

Stride length can be calculated in a variety of ways, but the most straightforward and accurate method is to use a height-based calculation. Yes, there is some math involved, but it is quite simple. To begin, measure your height in inches. Then, divide the result by 0.25. If the product is a decimal, round it up to the nearest whole number, and you’ve got your stride length. Isn’t that simple?

An elliptical with a stride length of 16 to 18 inches should be used by anyone 5-foot-3 or shorter. As for most people, an elliptical with only a 14-inch stride length is not advised. Users between the heights of 5-foot-3 and 5-foot-7 should choose an elliptical with a stride length of 18 to 20 inches.

How Much Height Do You Need for an Elliptical?

If you’re six feet tall or shorter, an eight-foot ceiling should be enough to use the machine. Further, if you’re taller than six feet, calculate how much the elliptical adds to your height and compare it to the height of your ceiling. When you stand at the tallest point of the elliptical motion, you should leave at least four to six inches between the ceiling and the top of your head.

While each elliptical model has a different step height, it’s a good idea to estimate that you’ll need an extra 12 inches of space above the head of the tallest user in your home. A six-foot person, for example, will be able to use a Precor Elliptical with a seven-foot ceiling height comfortably.

Avoid placing your elliptical machine underneath any ceiling-mounted fixtures. Chandeliers and ceiling fans will obstruct your ability to use your elliptical trainer. They can also be dangerous and lead to injury. When setting up your elliptical, use common sense. Choose a location with lots of headroom and enough space around the elliptical to easily climb in and out of the machine without hitting your head or bumping into something.

Can You Adjust the Stride on an Elliptical?

Power adjustment is currently used on many ellipticals to alter the length of the user’s stride. This is achieved by adjusting the power ramp’s level, hence adjusting the length of the user’s stride.

Simply push the power ramp button on the console to make this modification.

Turning an adjustment knob is required for the manual version of the stride adjustment. Adjustment knobs come in three varieties: rear-drive, adjustment knob and arm combos, and dual adjustment knobs.

To shorten or lengthen the stride on rear-drive models, pull the knob, and then slide the bracket to the other holes on the machine. The right and left sides should be set to the same stride length to achieve correct rotation.

Conclusion

As a tall person, you are willing to spend a large amount of money on an elliptical trainer, so you must ensure that you are purchasing a machine that will last for many years without requiring a lot of maintenance, and that the equipment you purchase is the best fit for you.

We recommend the Sole Fitness E95 Elliptical Machine as the best elliptical machine for tall people because it is well-built and has a long stride.

If you’re tall and want to buy an elliptical machine, don’t go for one with a shorter stride length.

Tall people (above six feet) will benefit from all seven of the ellipticals discussed above, as they provide optimal mobility, safety, muscle building, weight loss, and an enriching training experience. Choose any of them and you’ll reap the rewards.

We also recommend looking at the warranty to determine the quality issue because manufacturers who try to cut corners make their warranties less useful for end-users. As a result, it’s a good idea to think about the manufacturer’s warranty when buying an elliptical.

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An ex-triathlete, fitness coach and writer with a Masters in Sports Physiology. Fitness is my passion and I've had my fair share of home fitness equipment tried and tested!