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Best Folding Elliptical Machines For Small Spaces

  • By Kate Moore
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Getting a folding elliptical is the best and most convenient way for you to work out in the comfort of your own house without having to give up any significant space.

Compact elliptical machines can be stored in a closet or hide in the corner of your tiny condo or apartment. They allow you to get a great workout if you have time constraints or if the weather is poor.

Gazelle Edge Glider Gazelle Edge Glider

Compact glider that folds quickly for storage in small places. Provides feedback on time, distance, speed, and approximate calories burned.

SF-E902 Air Walk Trainer SF-E902 Air Walk Trainer

Affordable folding elliptical designed to fit in tight spaces and give you a great workout without breaking the bank. This machine comes with an LCD monitor which displays time, total distance, count and calories burned.

SF-E905 Elliptical Machine Cross Trainer SF-E905 Elliptical Machine Cross Trainer

Home elliptical machine with 8 levels of magnetic resistance. Includes digital monitor with time, speed, distance, calories, and pulse readings.

Ellipticals Are The Perfect Endurance Equipment

When it comes to the best affordable elliptical—an elliptical that’s gentle on your knees and joints is what you’re looking for first and foremost. By design, an elliptical should grant you the benefits that jogging offers you while giving you none of the aching drawbacks that runners endure.

You want to be fit and still able to work and perform errands without feeling like you’re going to collapse from joint and knee pain! So how do you achieve this? How do you go about choosing the best foldable elliptical for you?

Below are all of the factors that you should consider when choosing an elliptical; doing so will help you make an informed decision about which elliptical is best for your desired wishes.

woman working out on a folding elliptical machine

Personal Needs

Obviously, when thinking about purchasing a foldable elliptical, you should consider how much you’re willing to spend. Top-of-the-line ellipticals can be very expensive and even intimidating price-wise if you’re not ready to spend a lot. However, you can easily score yourself an affordable elliptical—it simply depends on your wants and needs.

What about the quality? If you know that there will be some level of budget constraints when it’s time to choose an elliptical, rest easy knowing that you don’t have to compromise quality to buy a more affordable piece of equipment.

Your fitness goals will ultimately determine the price range of your foldable elliptical.

For example, if you’re someone who is only concerned with the results—it only matters that you fit in your favorite dress by the time summer arrives, then maybe you don’t need an elliptical with all the bells and whistles. Perhaps, you only need an elliptical with the bear essentials, capable of giving you your coveted results—nothing more and nothing less.

However, if you’re looking to test your limits and gauge the intensity of your workout– track your heart rate, speed, and distance traveled, then a more expensive elliptical would be most likely what you’re looking for.

Remember, the best elliptical for you is not the most expensive one; it’s the elliptical that best satisfies your needs both economically and functionally!

elliptical machine for working out in an apartment or small condo

Feature Customization

At first glance, you may think that such features only belong to the more expensive ellipticals. You’d be surprised to discover that even the most affordable ellipticals have some kind of customizing feature.

Customizing features allow you to adjust the machine in some way, shape, or form, whether it’s to enhance a workout or adjust the machine for the height of the person using the elliptical. An elliptical is a fairly simple machine to use, but it helps to have the extra adjustments that make it a perfect fit.

Moreover, some ellipticals can be customized to target a particular problem area for you or even a specific muscle group. Similar to treadmills, many ellipticals come with adjustable incline. And for the taller people, ellipticals can increase the length of their stride to accommodate them.

small folding elliptical machine in a park

User-Friendly Console

What’s a console? A console refers to a screen that informs the user of their progress. A console’s complexities can vary depending on your needs and how much you’re willing to spend.

For instance, some consoles come with an ensemble of entertainment options meant to delight you as you enjoy your intense workout. A console can provide you with top-notch entertainment as you burn off the calories from music to movies.

However, a console can be solely fitness orientated, offering you a bevy of fitness programs to choose from, all the while tracking your progress and vitals, including your heart rate. Some consoles even go as far as displaying virtual obstacle courses on LCD screens, making the workout more engaging.

High-end ellipticals can come with Wifi consoles capable of having a USB charging port with smartphone compatibility with Bluetooth connectivity to boot. It’s safe to say that you can get precisely what you need based on the litany of consoles available on the market.

Flywheel and Resistance

The flywheel and the mechanism for resistance are two aspects of an elliptical that you do not want to compromise on because they determine the quality of your workout and how long the elliptical will last in the grand scheme of things.

The flywheel is the part of the machine involved in providing resistance, and it is responsible for movement when you pedal. Ideally, when it comes to the braking system, you should choose ellipticals equipped with an electromagnetic braking system. Such a system feels very smooth to the user, and it is easy to use because the resistance is adjusted with a simple push of a button.

The flywheel’s size is something that you especially want to pay attention to since heavier flywheels are considered better because of the smooth feel that they provide. Flywheels can range from 13 to 35 pounds. The heavier the flywheel, the smoother the elliptical will move.

group working out on a series of compact elliptical machines

Available Space

Whether you live in a studio apartment or a large home, there are ellipticals that are suitable for homes of all sizes. If you’re tight on space, a compact elliptical is a small piece of equipment that will be more convenient and still get the job done. If you have the room and want a high-end elliptical, know that it won’t fold, but you can find an elliptical that has all the gadgets and the feel of a workout gym.

Note that you can easily transfer a lightweight elliptical, which is something to keep in mind if you ever need to move it from one room to another or from one home to another.


You want to select a folding elliptical that consists of high-quality steel. Steel is known as a compound metal; it’s composed of both carbon and iron and can withstand the elements and resist rusting and losing its shape. No one wants to invest in a gym machine that won’t last even a year before needing to be replaced.

The Best Folding Ellipticals For Tight Spaces

Gazelle Edge Glider

Compact glider that folds quickly for storage in small places. Provides feedback on time, distance, speed, and approximate calories burned.


Most Compact: Gazelle Edge

If space is a precious commodity in your household and you can’t afford to place a standard elliptical in your living space, then the Gazelle Edge is the elliptical for you. Perfect for all fitness levels, the Gazelle’s features settings are suitable for both beginner and advanced users alike.

The Gazelle Edge offers low-impact resistance training designed to shed pounds and strengthen the body. Additionally, the Gazelle Edge places minimal stress on your joints to boot. The Gazelle Glider has ten different exercises having the benefits of walking, stretching, running, aerobic dancing, and cross-country skiing with minimal strain and stress on your joints.

The Gazelle Edge Glider comes with an easy-to-use computer that provides feedback on time, distance, speed, and approximate calories burned during a training session.

Key Features:

  • The user-friendly computer gives you feedback on speed, distance, time, and approximate calories burned.
  • Holds up to 250 pounds with the 1-1/2-inch gauge steel construction
  • High-density foam handlebars for a comfortable grip
  • Quickly folds and is easily storable

SF-E902 Air Walk Trainer

Affordable folding elliptical designed to fit in tight spaces and give you a great workout without breaking the bank. This machine comes with an LCD monitor which displays time, total distance, count and calories burned.


Most Affordable: Health & Fitness SF-E902 Air Walk Trainer

This is another elliptical that you should define by its convenience—able to be folded into half its size in a snap; the Air Walk Trainer is perfect for anyone with not enough space to devote to a full-size elliptical. This compact elliptical comes equipped with an informative LCD monitor, which displays time, total distance, count and calories burned.

Furthermore, the Air Walk Trainer comes with an adjustable abdominal pad, which you can move up and down to ensure proper placement and support. The Air Walk Trainer provides aerobic training, which grants you all of the benefits of stretching, running, cross-country, walking, aerobic dancing, and skiing without damaging impacts that come with performing these activities, which can do a number on your knees and joints.

Key Features:

  • Offers non-slip pedals for safe maneuverability
  • 220 Ibs weight capacity with 45-inch stride length
  • Product can fold up to half the length (15L x 19W x 61. 5H)
  • LCD monitor shows the time, count, total distance covered, and calories burnt.

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T1407M

Compact size that packs down to 20 x 23 x 50 inches. Includes foam grip handles and a digital monitor tracks that tracks calories burned, distance, speed, and time.


Best Workout: The Sunny Magnetic Elliptical Trainer

The Sunny Magnetic Elliptical Trainer is a shining example of an affordable elliptical with a magnetic braking system. Magnetic braking allows for smooth upper and lower body workouts without added stress on the joints and knees. The Sunny Elliptical even features anti-slip foot platforms designed to provide extra stability during dynamic movements. The Sunny Elliptical provides low-impact, cardiovascular training conveniently in your own home.

The Sunny Magnetic Elliptical Trainer comes equipped with pulse sensors designed to track your heartbeat as you enjoy an intense workout. Moreover, this elliptical comes with a digital monitor that displays your heart rate, distance traveled, and time helping you keep track of all of your fitness goals.

Key Features:

  • Hand pulse monitor provides user with heart rate readouts.
  • Eight different magnetic resistance levels
  • Anti-slip foot platforms with synchronous moving handles
  • Wheels offer easy transportation

That’s A Wrap!

Remember, you don’t have to pay an arm and a leg to get your fitness life in order. So don’t let finances keep you back any longer from attaining your goals. Choose today from this list of ellipticals that we have compiled for your convenience and get on your way to become a fitter version of yourself.

Don’t forget that when choosing the elliptical that’s best for you, you want to consider a few factors. You will want to consider what you can afford, the kind of space you have to devote to a piece of equipment.

Additionally, you want to consider the customizing features, the console, and how advanced or simple you’re willing to have it. Last but not least, consider the flywheel and how big it is if there is one present.

Our top pick was the Gazelle Edge Glider because it provides users with all of the features we would suggest in a folding elliptical, but if you’re limited on space and would prefer a more compact design, the Air Walk Trainer is for you. Though these are both affordable options, if you’re looking for a folding elliptical on a budget that still has the bells and whistles, go for the Sunny Magnetic Elliptical.

With any of the above folding ellipticals, you’re sure to find a great product that will help you accomplish your fitness goals in no time!