What’s the Best Elliptical for Low Ceilings?
Want to find a home elliptical trainer – but worried that your ceiling height is too low?
It makes sense.
After all, the last thing you want to do is buy an elliptical and set it up – only to find you’re scraping up against the ceiling with your head.
Not a fun experience.
But don’t worry – this post will help you avoid all of that.
Below you’ll find 3 great options when it comes to the best elliptical for low ceilings.
You’ll also get all the measurements you need to see if it would fit your ceiling height requirements.
First however it’s important to note that you need to consider the tallest person that will be using the crosstrainer – whether that is you or someone in your family. Take their height as a guide when looking at elliptical trainer ceiling heights.
So let’s get started
Best Elliptical for Low Ceilings:
The Horizon 7.0 AE elliptical is one of our best picks here as it has a very low step-on height of just 10 inches from the ground (less than 1 foot).
So take that and add it to the height of the tallest user in your home. Then add on another 2-3 inches to account for moving up and down – and you’ll have your minimum ceiling height needed for this elliptical.’
For example, let’s say your tallest user was 6 feet. You take the pedal height of 10 inches plus another 3 inches (just to be generous and give you extra room to move up and down) to give you 13 inches.
Converting inches to feet, 13 inches works out to 1.08 feet. So that means you’ll need a ceiling height of approximately 6 feet plus 1.08 feet or 7.08 feet.
(If you only add 2 inches to account for the running motion – which is a bit more realistic – this works out to exactly 7 feet.)
Let’s take another example of a person that’s 5 feet 10 inches. If you add the 13 inches on to that (10 for the pedal step-on height and 3 to give you extra room to move up and down), then you’ll get just under 7 feet.
So this elliptical will generally fit nicely in a slightly higher-than-7 foot ceiling. This is great if you have a low ceiling basement.
Most ceiling heights today in modern houses are a bit more generous – about 8 or 9 foot ceilings. So this elliptical will be absolutely fine in either one of those cases.
But it’s not just about the ceiling height on this trainer – you also get some great construction as well including a rugged frame and heavy 23 pound flywheel for an extra smooth ride.
There’s also a media shelf – so you can store your tablet and watch Netflix or YouTube videos as you run.
While it’s not necessarily a commercial-grade machine, if you’re looking for an affordable, quality elliptical trainer with a low ceiling height requirement, the Horizon 7.0 AE is a great option for you.
The Nordictrack Freestrider is a center drive machine – meaning that instead of one large flywheel in front or in back of the pedals, there are 2 smaller flywheels on either side of the pedals.
One of the benefits of the center drive designs (in most trainers) is that the pedals tend to be placed lower to the ground. Thus you can get away with a lower ceiling height.
According to the Nordictrack Manufacturer, the pedals are 12 inches from the ground (or about one foot). So that’s just a bit higher than the Horizon above.
So to calculate your needed ceiling height we take the pedal height plus 2-3 inches to account for extra movement up and down and then add it to the height of the tallest user in your home.
So if the tallest user was 6 feet you’d need 6 feet plus 12 inches plus 3 inches – for a final minimum ceiling height of 7 feet, 3 inches.
If the tallest user was 5 feet 8 inches, you’d need 5 feet 8 inches plus 12 inches plus 3 inches for a final ceiling height of 6 feet, 11 inches – or just under 7 feet.
Again, just like with the model above, you’d be more than fine with an 8 or 9 foot ceiling with this trainer.
Nordictrack currently makes 3 different Freestrider elliptical models. The big benefit of these trainers?
Unlike a traditional elliptical where you’re locked into one set stride length (and one running path) – you get an adjustable, adaptable stride on these trainers.
So you can do short, up-and down strides, longer jogging strides or even longer hurdling-type strides. You have a lot more crosstraining options with these ellipticals, which makes them great value for the money.
Plus, because they don’t have the traditional wheel-and-track design out back, they’re also more compact than a standard elliptical trainer.
Overall if you’re looking for something beyond a traditional elliptical, the Nordictrack Freestrider is worth your time.
While the Max Trainer isn’t necessarily a standard elliptical (it’s more like a hybrid elliptical-stair-climber, it does have some unique benefits – including being fairly low to the ground.
According to the manufacturer, you’ll need about 15 inches above the tallest user height for this machine. That’s about 1.25 feet above the tallest user height.
So if your tallest user is 6 feet you’ll need a minimum ceiling height of 7 feet, 3 inches.
If your tallest user is 5 foot 8 for example, you’ll need a minimum ceiling height of just under 7 feet. So this is very similar to the Freestride elliptical above as far as ceiling height.
The Max trainer is also lower to the ground than any of the other Bowflex ellipticals or the Lateral X trainers – which require you to have at least 29 inches or 2.4 feet above the height of the tallest user.
The main benefit to the Max Trainer?
It can help you burn calories faster – up to 2.5 times MORE calories than a regular elliptical trainer.
It’s also the most compact trainer on this list measuring just 25″x 46“. So it’s ideal for smaller spaces like a condo or apartment.
If space is an issue for you – along with ceiling height, it’s probably the best option on this list.
So if you’re looking for a crosstrainer with a low ceiling height that can also help you burn more calories and takes up a lot less space in general the Max Trainer is a great option.
So those are some contenders for the best elliptical for low ceilings – I hope that gives you some ideas. All of them have their strengths.
The Horizon 7.0 is an affordable starter elliptical with the lowest ceiling height requirements – and a great design as well.
The Nordictrack Freestrider is a popular center drive trainer that gives you a completely adaptable, adjustable stride for better crosstraining.
The Max Trainer is the most compact trainer on the list – and is designed to help you burn maximum calories in minimum time with special HIIT training workouts.
But all of them are great elliptical trainers for low ceiling heights. Just remember to consider the tallest person who’ll be using the trainer when looking at the ceiling height requirements. Good luck!