Elliptical trainers are now one of the most popular home exercise machines. They make a good way to save money on those expensive gym fees and travel time by working out in the home. Also, the popularity is being helped by the advances bring made in the quality of the machines. The Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer is a good example of this improvement.
It is a big step up from Horizon’s previous model the EX-58 not just a marketing exercise. It comes with 10 resistance levels, 10 program options, 3 speed fan, SixStar Certified and MP3 compatible speakers. SixStar Certification is a way of certifying that an elliptical trainer meets the 6 key requirements of the benchmark system. This only awarded to a few elliptical trainers and the EX-59 is one that has received this benchmark.
It is not one of the cheapest elliptical trainers on the market. However, it is still an affordable option for many people and it remains one of the popular machines. Is this popularity justified? Let’s find out.
Dimensions: 73 x 22 x 65 inches
Visual Display: Yes
Resistance Levels: 10
Weight: 154 lbs
Weight Capacity: 250 lbs
Stride Length: 18-inch
Warranty: Frame – 1 year, Brake – 20 years, Parts and labor – 1 year
Accreditation: It is hard to find elliptical trainers that are in an affordable price range for most people and also achieve the accreditation of the SixStar Certificate. This elliptical trainer appears to achieve this.
The SixStar Certification provides a recommendation in quality and also attests to the trainer being an effective ergonomic design.
Six Star Certification looks at 6 key elements to give the most “natural elliptical feel.” There are 6 experts on the panel that award the certificate. The 6 elements that this elliptical trainer met the standards are ZEROgap pedal placement – The pedals have no gap between them so less stress is placed on the backs and hip. StraightUP posture – users stay upright while exercising to get the most benefit out of their training and is also the most comfortable position. SUREstep access – pedals are low to the ground so getting on and off is easy and safe. For this model there is 10 inches between the ground and the pedal. IDEALfit handlebar – The handlebars are are of a reach and distance that can be used by users of any size. FLATellipse foot pedals – the motion of the pedals is like actual walking and jogging motion which helps to make it more comfortable for the user and reduces tiredness. SMOOTHpulley – the ratio of the drive pulley provides the most comfortable, efficient and smooth motion as is possible.
The EX59 is one of the few trainers that has actually met these 6 requirements and been certified by the expert panel at SixStar Certification. Many other elliptical trainers make this claim but in this case it is great to see that it has been verified by a third party to back up the claims.
Quiet: Many people have noted that is a very quite trainer. In fact some of have noted that it might be too quiet. Elliptical trainers do tend to be quiet machines but it appears from investigations that this trainer is much quieter than the average by quite a large margin. This is down to the quality of the parts and how it has been designed.
But this quietness can only be achieved when it is properly assembled when you receive it. See below for our thoughts on the assembly process. The nuts and bolts need to be fully tightened and the moving parts also need to be properly lubricated (they do come greased but it may have rubbed off during delivery). Assembly is made easy with clear instructions and all the parts are well labelled.
Easy Assembly: This trainer can be put together by one person following the directions included with it. It can be done by one person but there are certain parts where it is a little tricky and an extra pair of hands will make the process easier. When the trainer is put together as instructed you get the quiet machine talked about above and you’ll be able to watch TV without adjusting the volume too much, if at all.
Warranties: It is great to see that the manufacturer’s warranty on this is quite long. You get lifetime warranty on the frame, the brake is given a 20 year warranty, and labor and parts have a 1 year warranty. The warranty length on this machine provides a degree of comfort that it will be durable and you can use it for years to come without too many problems, if any.
Controls: Some people find the control and display options of this machine limited with the price being over $500. You do get 10 resistance levels. The increases and decreases in resistance are smooth when it is changed and it is easy to change them using the number buttons. It also comes with 10 workout programs that can be changed while you exercise consisting of 3 workout options with 3 targets and one custom program. So it doesn’t come with big number of options.
Having said that, it is an effective elliptical trainer and does include some nice to have features like the 3 speed fan and MP3 compatibility functions. As said earlier some people feel some more should be included when paying over $500 for an elliptical trainer.
Constraints: This trainer is designed for users up to a maximum weight of 275 lbs. However, there are some things to consider when using at faster speeds. When it is used at these faster speeds the user needs to slowly build up to the speed as it is not completely stable at top speeds. Any sudden changes in the position of weight can leave you feeling off balance for a moment which takes a bit of getting familiar with.
Although the stride length is 18 inches it may feel a bit restrictive at fast speeds and for taller users who have long natural strides. This trainer is great for slow and average speeds but when going faster than that it can feel uncomfortable as the stride length is less than most people feel is natural.
Should You Buy The Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer?
This is probably not for someone who is going to be an infrequent user, as there a cheaper alternatives that may be better suited. It is designed for regularly use and it is considered to be a very effective elliptical trainer. The SixStar Certification attest to this, and it is not given to that many trainers. It is given by a third party panel of experts so it is something that can be relied upon.
This all means that the Horizon Fitness EX-59 Elliptical Trainer is well designed, comfortable and durable trainer. This is a quiet machine and the only noise anyone is likely to hear is the music pumping out of the speakers. It makes this a good choice for people who live in apartments or in houses with neighbors.
It would be good if the console came with more functionality but this is only minor issue with the overall quality and effectiveness of the trainer. To get a professional or expert level trainer you are going to be looking at paying more than a $1000. If you are not looking for one of these then this is a great trainer to end your search on.