We all know how boring a nine to five routine can be, especially if your profession is primarily a desk job. Hours of screen time and multiple meetings can wear out your focus and concentration over the days.
Here’s why we are reviewing the best mini elliptical in our article. Fitness products help you utilize your time at work in more ways than one!
As a result of a dull and numbing routine, most of us lack the motivation to do any kind of physical exercise. Eating, sleeping and getting ready for the next day are all we plan for as soon as we reach home.
This results in most of us neglecting physical fitness in our routine. A few other reasons behind this include expensive gym subscriptions, and added activity in a cramped up schedule, and just a certain unwillingness due to a hectic and monotonous day at work.
As a result of this, fitness equipment companies came up with many creative solutions to make fitness accessible to working professionals across different fields.
Mini ellipticals were amongst the solutions. These provide most of the benefits of the larger ellipticals, but are lightweight and can be kept under the desk. This makes it convenient to use during work.
In our article, we review some of the best compact ellipticals available in the market. This will help you choose a product that suits your needs as well as your budget.
9 Best Mini Ellipticals
Mini ellipticals have similar functionality to that of the full-sized ellipticals. The differences are that they come only with the motor drive and the pedals, without the additional frame. As a result, there is no external support or frame to grip onto during use of this device.
Mini ellipticals are easy to use and transport, thanks to their lightweight construction. They are compact enough to be snuck under a workstation or office table.
These products are especially beneficial for those with extended hours spent in front of a screen. These include gamers and professionals with desk job profiles.
A mini elliptical helps maximize your time and improves productivity while ensuring an additional calorie burn. It helps in improving circulation and tone leg muscles.
These products are also quiet and hence avoid causing disturbance to your co-workers and surroundings. In this article, we review a carefully compiled list of mini elliptical machines that make it a great option for those looking to sneak in some physical activity during their office hours.
These are the some of the best from our list of Best Compact Elliptical Machines:
- Stamina InMotion E1000 Compact Strider (Best Affordable Compact Elliptical Machine)
- Cubii JR1 Seated Under Desk Elliptical Machine (Best Rated Compact Elliptical Machine)
- ANCHEER Under Desk Cycle (Best Feature Loaded Compact Elliptical Machine)
- Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Mini Exercise Bike (Best Compact Exercise Bike)
- DeskCycle Ellipse: Under Desk Elliptical (Best All in ONE Mini Elliptical)
First up on our list of mini elliptical steppers, we have the Stamina InMotion E1000 Compact Strider. This product from Stamina is available in 3 different color schemes, namely silver, green, and orange.
We shall now highlight a few features of this product that makes it a great option to consider.
— Also read: Stamina Inmotion Compact Strider Review: What makes it the BEST AFFORDABLE Compact Elliptical Machine
- The E1000 has a small and compact design which makes it easy to transport. It also allows the user to slide it under a table thanks to its unassuming design. This makes it a handy office workout equipment.
- The E1000 is provided with an adjustable tension option to provide differing levels of resistance to the pedal motion. This allows the user to maximize the efficiency of the workout and provide them with more of a challenge. This setting can be easily adjusted with the help of a dial.
- The E1000 facilitates both forward and backward pedal motion. This allows the user to target different muscle groups just by changing the motion. The E1000 also allows for use while being seated or while standing. This makes it a great option for office workouts and multi-tasking
Pros and Cons
- Available in multiple color schemes: silver, green, and orange
- Lightweight at 24 lbs, has a very small footprint, fit under desk easily
- Textured foot pedals for better grip
- Pedals can move in both forward and reverse direction
- Adjustable resistance, give the user the option to choose the difficulty level, easily changed with the help of a knob
- Can be used while sitting or standing
- Electronic monitor display, shows the total number of strides, strides per minute, calorie burned and minutes exercised.
- No inbuilt preset workout programs
- Very short stride length, limits tall users
- Comfortable operation is restricted to around 175 lbs, the machine becomes unstable after that
- Lacks a heart rate monitor
- Lacks a foot strap to keep the foot in place while exercising
- PORTABLE, QUIET AND EFFICIENT CARDIO: This mini strider is compact and lightweight, making it easy to use and transport to any home or office space. It’s quiet and unintrusive, too. The minimal space required is 24.5 x 17 inches
- ADJUSTABLE TENSION WITH MONITOR: Vary the intensity of your workout by turning the adjustable dial while you stride. See your stats while exercising with the display monitor.
- MULTIPLE MOVEMENT OPTIONS: Depending on your needs and abilities, the In Motion E1000 Compact Strider can be used sitting or standing. Pedal forward or reverse to target different muscles.
- THREE COLOR CHOICES: Customize your exercise machine by choosing one of three vibrant color options. Weight Limit:250 lbs
- GREAT FOR GAMERS: Get an effective workout while gaming – passive, low-attention exercise promotes leg movement and improved circulation in a non-distracting way while playing video games
Up next in our list of the best compact ellipticals, we have the Cubii JR1 Under Desk Elliptical. This product was developed by those looking to break the sedentary lifestyle fuelled by desk jobs.
The Cubii JR1 has multiple features that make it a great product in the market. We shall discuss a few of these features below.
- The Cubii JR1 is a robust and ergonomically designed product. Despite being slightly on the heavier side compared to its competitors, this product uses that weight to ensure a smooth and stable pedaling operation.
- On purchase of the JR1, the user gets access to the exclusive Cubii Community, which allows users to interact with other users of the same product. It also helps striders get access to full body workouts and live classes designed by fitness trainers from Cubii.
- The pedals have a large surface area that makes it comfortable for multiple foot positions. It also has a cushioned surface that provides extra grip while using this product.
- The product has 8 resistance modes to choose from, which allows users to improve their fitness and challenge themselves more as per their requirements.
- The Cubii JR1 is equipped with a digital monitor that helps you keep track of your goals like calories burned, distance traveled, strides pedaled, and so on.
Pros and Cons
- Compact and ergonomic design, aesthetically pleasing color schemes
- 8 resistance levels
- Digital display displaying parameters like distance pedaled and calories burned
- Cubii community to interact with other users
- Access classes and live workouts
- 1-year warranty and 30-day return
- Cushioned pedals for better grip and comfort
- Design issue makes the pedals fragile and causes detachment from the arm
- Expensive product, heavy construction
- No secure strap to keep the foot in place
- COMPACT ELLIPTICAL- Leading compact and ergonomic mini elliptical that lets you workout or rehab while you sit at home or the office.
- REHAB AND FITNESS EXERCISE PEDDLER - The smooth gliding motion can be switched between 8 resistance levels to increase desk exercise as you gain strength.
- WHISPER QUIET MINI EXERCISE BIKE - Enjoy your favorite show, read your current book, and stay productive at work all while you Cubii without the worry of distraction!
- BUILT-IN LCD DISPLAY - The digital monitor allows you to keep up with your progress by tracking calories burned, strides pedaled, distance traveled, and more!
- PORTABLE ELLIPTICAL – The Cubii under desk elliptical allows you to move a little more and burn calories while you pedal at home in the living room or in office at your desk.
The next product in our mini elliptical review is the ANCHEER Under Desk Elliptical. This product has a dual color scheme and comes in two options.
You can choose from a red-black finish or an aqua-silver finish. Here are a few features of this product which impressed us quite a bit.
- This product has a dual power mode. It can be connected to a power source to help assist you during the workout or it can be used without connecting to the power. The powered mode is useful for those recovering from injuries and aged users.
- The ANCHEER Under Desk Cycle has a 5 level manual speed mode as well as three auto speed modes. This makes it convenient for users to set the speeds according to their convenience.
- It has an easy to operate remote, which makes it convenient to change settings without having to bend down to make changes. It is also provided with a multi-function LCD display, which has a scan function. This allows you to cycle between the time, distance covered speed and calorie burn of your workout.
- It has large and textured pedals that help you get a better grip while pedaling. It is also quiet and smooth while in operation, which helps keep the peace of the surroundings.
- It has a forward as well as backward movement option which helps you target different muscle groups using just a single product.
Pros and Cons
- Remote, easy to read LCD display, has a scan feature to display four workout parameters
- 5 level manual speed and 3 automatic speed settings
- Can be powered for an assisted workout or used without a power connection
- Large and textured pedals for better grip can move forward and backward
- Quiet and smooth operation
- Multiple color scheme
- 1-year quality assurance on material
- No foot strap to secure the feet while in operation
- Can’t be used while standing
- Lacks stability at higher speeds
- 【Complete Updated in December 2019: Focus on improving quality issues】【2 in 1 & Compact】This leading compact ergonomic elliptical can plug in the power to assisted workout or use it directly without power. It gives your full workout while you sit at home and office.
- 【Multiple Movement Options】Depending on your needs and abilities, there are Auto (P1-P3) & Manual (5-levels speed) for your choice. Pedals can forward or backward to target different muscles. Note: only use it while sitting.
- 【Built-in Display Monitor】Start planning and recording your fitness statistics by using the advanced LED Built-in Display Monitor which keeps track time, distance, scan, speed, calories burned.
- 【Whisper Quiet & Portable】Designed specifically to be whisper quiet, You can enjoy the convenience of working out without disturbing those around you. It's portable and easy to move. No assembly required.
- 【Large Anti-slip Pedals & 1 year Warranty】Get an effective workout with large textured anti-slip foot pedals and low-attention exercise promotes leg movement and improved circulation in a non-distracting way.This elliptical has 1 year guarantee on material.
Next up, we have the Sunny Health & Fitness Magnetic Mini Exercise Bike in our list of mini ellipticals with resistance bands. Coming from a reliable manufacturer, we shall take a look at the features of this product.
- This product comes with 8 levels of tension settings for versatility while working out. This helps you choose the intensity while exercising.
- This device has straps that make it a dual-arm and leg toner. Place the mini elliptical on the table and it doubles up as an arm toner. The provision of non-slip pedals provides extra grip while pedaling with your legs.
- The device is provided with an LCD display that shows the speed, distance, and calories burned during the workout.
- It supports weights upto 220 lbs. It also has a low profile that allows it to be used as an under-desk elliptical without having to worry about bumping your knee
Pros and Cons
- Inexpensive, lightweight and low profile design, quiet operation
- Dual function as arm and leg toner
- Straps to secure foot and hand, large anti-slip pedals for added grip
- 8 resistance level settings for versatile operation
- Reports of pedals becoming loose or detaching
- Lacks grip with the floor or table while operating
- SAFETY STRAPS: Pedals work well with both feet and hands. Pedals are adjustable to fit foot or hands for safety and stability.
- ADJUSTABLE TENSION: 8 Levels of tension for a versatile workout. Adjust resistance to challenge your arms and legs toward building muscles.
- EASY TO READ LCD: Displays Time, Speed, Distance, ODM, Calories
- DURABLE DESIGN: Supports 220 lb maximum user weight limit.
The next product in our list of mini elliptical trainers is the jFit Under Desk & Stand Up Mini Elliptical. We now discuss a few features of this product which caught our attention.
- The jFit elliptical comes with an adjustable angle pedal. This allows for dual operation while sitting and standing. The pedals are large and provided with grooves for additional grip during operation.
- The product has been well thought out in terms of transportation. It has wheels in the front which help for easy shifting within a space. It also has a carry handle, which allows for easy transportation considering its lightweight frame. It can also be attached to your office chair for further stability.
- It has a variable resistance option. This can be accessed by a tension knob, which makes it easy to use while exercising. The device is also quiet during operation, which makes it suitable for office use
- It has a built-in LCD display, which gives information about pedaling speed, calories burnt and the distance traveled. However, this display is hard to read when the product is placed under a desk.
Pros and Cons
- Rollers in the front and lightweight construction make it easy to transport,
- The handle is provided to carry around, attachable to office chair for further stability
- Large foot pedals with adjustable angles make for maximum comfort while pedaling
- Can be used while sitting or standing
- Digital monitor displaying 4 functions, rotates to change seating or standing mode
- Tension dial for easy adjustment and multiple workout options
- Small stride length makes it uncomfortable for tall users
- Large size makes it hard to fit under desks
- Questionable durability when used in standing mode, no grip to hold onto during this mode
- No secure strap to keep foot in place
- THE ONLY UNDER DESK & STAND UP ELLIPTICAL: Our mini elliptical features a unique, smart design with adjustable angle pedals! This advanced feature allows for BOTH under desk AND standing up exercising as it also provides you with the perfect fit!
- HIGHLY VERSATILE & COMPACT DESIGN: This elliptical sports a compact design that will allow you to fit it under any desk and also features a top handle to allow you to move it anywhere easily AND a front handle for additional support.
- SUPER-QUIET: This mini elliptical is a perfect addition to any home gym or can be the perfect solution to stay fit as you work on your desk. The larger wheels provide a smoother, quieter ride while making for less wear and tear and improved durability.
- MEASURE YOUR PROGRESS: With every 2 in 1 elliptical trainer you get a Series 1050 Monitor that records your time, distance, speed and calories burnt! It features a very easy to use design with a turning dial for both standing and under desk exercising.
- ADJUSTABLE DIFFICULTY: Whether you like going hard and sweating it out or a casual work out over a longer period of time, we got you covered! This mini elliptical features a tension dial that can provide you with an adjustable resistance.
Next up, we look at the features of the ATIVAFIT Under Desk Elliptical Bike as part of our best mini elliptical review
- This elliptical supports use while sitting and standing. It also supports a dual motion to work out different muscle groups, thanks to its forward and backward pedaling option.
- This product has multiple resistance levels which can be adjustable using a dial that is easy to access. It is also equipped with an LCD display that displays functions of the total count, time, calories, and distance. This helps you access your training data while exercising.
- A brake resistance mechanism allows this product to be quiet and smooth. This helps maintain the peace of the surroundings in which you are using this device.
Pros and Cons
- Large anti-slip pedals to provide grip prevents injuries
- Dual forward and backward motion to work out different muscle groups
- Can be operated both while sitting and standing
- LCD display to display 5 different functions, an adjustable dial to change tension settings
- Dual-color scheme, namely silver and red-black
- Stable base to prevent it from moving around
- No strap to secure the foot
- Display hard to read when kept under a desk
- Multiple - Function: Ativafit mini exercise trainer supports sitting or standing position, forward or reverse motion, pedaling or running. Depends on the needs, you can workout your body while sitting or standing up and it makes your workout varied and convenient.
- Highly Adjustable & Built-In Monitor: This mini elliptical is designed with multiple resistance levels, you can adjust and control the intensity of your workout according to your needs. A built-in LCD monitor features with 5 functions: time, count, distance, calories ,total count. You can see your training data while exercising with the display monitor.
- Large Anti-slip Pedals: This Ativafit elliptical trainer has two large and sturdy anti-slip foot pedals, which can effectively avoid the damage caused by the friction and better fix the trainer, secures the feet and ensure high comfort ,allows you to pedal as hard and fast as you want.
- Compact Design: This mini home trainer is compact and lightweight designed, which makes it easy to use and transport in any home or office space, provides comfortable and efficient training sessions. Size: 22.4*19.7*51.2 inch ( Length*Width * Height).
- Quiet Use & Service: Ativafit mini elliptical works quietly with brake resistance mechanism, ensures high smooth and quiet pedal motion. You can enjoy your workout without disturbing others in the same room. If you have any questions, please contact with us.
The next product in our best mini elliptical review is the Sunny Health & Fitness Motorized Under Desk Elliptical. Here are a few standout features of this product.
- This product has a motorized auto assist which can be used when connected to a power source. This makes it easy for guided workouts with support from the pedaling mechanism itself.
- It has a 3-speed automatic option and 3 resistance options in the manual mode. We found the options of resistance a bit underwhelming, especially while comparing it with other products.
- It has an automatic shut-off feature that turns off the device after 30 minutes of inactivity.
- The pedals are oversized and anti-slip to provide grip and comfort during your workout. It also has a backward and forward motion option that helps you work out different muscle groups.
Pros and Cons
- Includes a nonslip mat to provide additional grip
- Power connectivity for automatic modes
- Dual forward and backward pedal movement for targeting different muscle groups
- Carry handle makes it easy to transport
- Automatic shut off timer
- Digital monitor to monitor resistance, step count, and direction of pedal motion
- Smooth glide wheel design to minimize the impact of workout
- Non-slip foot pedals, oversized design for maximum comfort and grip
- 3-speed mode
- Cannot be used by people with pacemakers because of the magnetic components inside the product
- Very limited resistance options compared to other brands
- Motorized auto Assisted elliptical with large textured anti-slip foot pedals
- Easy to read buttons allows to change functions quickly: auto, manual, forward or backward pedaling, and step counter
- Auto mode has 3 levels of speeds low, middle and high. Manually Use with 3 levels of resistance
- Automatic shut off timer activates when machine is idle over 30 minutes. Non-slip floor mat included
- Built in carrying handle for easy movement. Operates with 120V wall plug for automatic modes. Ready to use out of the box. No assembly required.
Next review the DeskCycle Ellipse as part of our review on mini ellipticals with resistance bands. Here are a few features which made us take notice of this product
- A smooth and quiet magnetic resistance makes this product very quiet. It also has 8 different resistance levels that make it a versatile product for users with differing requirements. These resistance settings have been carefully calibrated to accommodate the needs of the elderly and those rehabilitating from injuries.
- The pedals are extra long and have a customizable height according to the needs of the user. It also has a bidirectional stride. This allows the user to pedal forward and backward, helping them work different muscle groups.
- The LCD display is large and displays 6 functions. These include revolutions, RPM, time, calories burned and so on. It can count upto 100.000 revolutions in a single session. It is detachable and can be conveniently placed to make reading the data easier.
Pros and Cons
- 8 magnetic resistance levels, quiet and smooth operation, designed for elderly people and injury recovery
- Long pedals for multiple foot positions, anti-slip design to provide more grip, adjustable height for maximum user comfort
- Forward and backward pedaling option to workout different muscle groups, resistance adjustable by a dial
- Large LCD display with 6 function options, detachable for easy reading
- Can be secured using Kensington lock
- 1 year warranty
- Expensive compared to competitors
- Display feels cheap, especially considering the price point
- No strap to secure the foot
- Lacks Bluetooth connectivity and supporting app for the price
- STAY FIT IN THE OFFICE: Our high quality under desk elliptical exerciser can help you burn calories, boost your energy level, and increase productivity while reducing stress during work
- SMOOTH AND QUIET MAGNETIC RESISTANCE: The whisper-quiet, ultra-smooth pedal motion and precision flywheel allow you to workout quietly without disturbing your coworkers or family members
- EASY TO USE: Large 6-Function LCD display tracks revolutions, RPM, time, calories burned and more; Counts up to 100,000 revolutions in one session
- 8 CALIBRATED RESISTANCE SETTINGS: Choose from very easy to challenging options; perfect for the elderly, individuals with disabilities, and physical therapy
- SWITCH IT UP: Extra long and wide pedals allow you to adjust the shape of your elliptical motion by where you place your feet; bidirectional pedaling options (forwards and backwards)
The last item in our review of portable ellipticals with resistance bands is the Wakeman Folding Pedal Exerciser. This product has a simple design and compact frame that makes it very convenient to transport and set up. Here are some of the most attractive features of this product.
- The Wakeman Exerciser can double up as an arm toning device thanks to its secure strap design. All you have to do is place the product on a table. Thanks to its easy setup and lightweight frame, it is also a convenient and cheap product to use in multiple settings, be it at home or in the office.
- The Wakeman Exercise is provided with an informative electronic display. It displays the revolutions completed, revolutions per minute, total minutes exercised, and the calories burnt. These parameters are easy to read and are displayed alternatively using a complex scan feature.
- It has an adjustable resistance setting that allows users to adjust how much force they need to make the pedal move. This challenges users across all age groups and requirements.
Pros and Cons
- Secure strap to keep the foot in place
- Can be placed on a table to tone the arms too
- Very cheap and lightweight
- Electronic display, shows number of revolutions per minute, revolution count, time exercised and calories burnt
- Multiple tension settings for multi-purpose use depending on user requirement
- Design issue with the resistance that causes the the frame to heat up
- Small pedal size makes it uncomfortable during intense activity
- Lacks stability due to minimal frame
- EASY TO USE –Simply place machine on the floor and cycle to work leg muscles and burn calories. This pedal bike can also be placed on a tabletop to help tone arm muscles. Non-slip feet pads and secure straps add stability and prevent sliding.
- ELECTRONIC DISPLAY – Electronic display allows users a 5-function view of time, revolution count, revolutions per minute, and calories burned. The easy to read screen alternates automatically through a sophisticated scan feature.
- ADJUSTABLE RESISTANCE – The low-tension setting is perfect for rehabilitative purposes, or switch to a higher intensity for strength training and toning muscles. The customizable resistance dial included can easily change appropriately.
- PRODUCT DETAILS – Open Dimensions: 19.5 in. (L) x 14.25 in. (W) x 9.5 in. (H), Pedal Width 4 in. Folded Dimensions: 12.5 in. (L) x 14.25 in. (W) x 6.5 in. (H). Electronic Display requires one 1.5v battery (included). No assembly required.
What makes Mini Ellipticals so Popular?
While reviewing the mini elliptical trainers listed above, we noticed that mini ellipticals were becoming more popular in the fitness segment. Therefore, it would only be fair if we discussed its growing popularity in the fitness segment.
This would help you understand the product better and make a more informed choice about the best compact elliptical for you.
Ellipticals facilitate exercise while sitting down. This means you can workout those leg muscles and get them toned even during the most boring activities. It also allows you to multitask.
Reading a book or catching up with your friend on call can now become healthier with a mini elliptical to workout on at the same time.
— Also read: Treadmill vs Elliptical: Which is BETTER and WHY?
Mini ellipticals are cheap and lightweight. This means you can move them around easily. Setting them up is not too hard and allows you to use them wherever, whenever.
This also makes it an affordable choice for those looking to recover from injuries that require low impact exercises during rehabilitation
For those with budget constraints, a full-sized elliptical might be way over budget. Mini ellipticals solve that issue by allowing you to gain most of the lower body benefits of a full-sized elliptical, while not having to worry to spend as much.
Most ellipticals also have a dual orientation which allows for the pedals to move both forwards and backwards. Since mini ellipticals have a discreet design meant for use while in offices and other public spaces, they are designed to be quiet.
As a result, you can exercise without being a disturbance to your surroundings. This reason makes it very popular in the modern-day fitness industry.
Are they really worth buying?
Yes! Mini ellipticals are a budget friendly and compact option when it comes to fitness equipment. It caters to working professionals, gamers and those with extended hours before a screen.
As part of our mini elliptical review, we have listed the reasons why we think the mini ellipticals are worth all the hype
- They are lightweight and compact.
- They are cheaper than full frame ellipticals.
- They help in multi-tasking and getting physical exercise during sedentary activities.
- They operate silently, which helps people exercise in non-conventional places like their offices without disturbing their surroundings.
- They have a forward and backward pedalling motion option which helps target different muscle groups.
- They are a great option for those looking to rehabilitate from injuries as they are low impact cardio trainers.
Which muscles do mini ellipticals target?
Mini ellipticals exercise multiple muscles in the lower body region. The primary focus of these products are toning the leg muscles.
- The quadriceps or quads, help transfer body weight while pushing down on the pedal. This muscle group benefits the most from the motion of elliptical trainers. Thanks to the forward motion of pedalling, the quads are strengthened. This helps with further lower body strengthening exercises like squats and lunges.
— Also read: Benefits of Having an Elliptical Machine
- The hamstrings are exercised as they help push the pedal down to its starting position. If you pedal in reverse, the motion of the elliptical becomes more hamstring dominant and helps workout those muscles more effectively.
- The core muscles are another major group that are worked out. This muscle is essential for the stability of the entire body during the motion of foot pedals. This is especially required when you use the mini elliptical while standing. A better core helps improve body posture and reduce the risk of injury to your back.
- The glutes can be toned too using a mini elliptical. These muscles combine with the hamstring and quads to push the leg down. The glutes are not worked out while being in the seated posture, but are effectively worked out while upright.
The other muscles that are worked include the calves, muscles in the foot and ankles. The back muscles are also vital to provide stability while using the mini elliptical.
At the end of this best mini elliptical article, the best compact elliptical goes to the ANCHEER Under Desk Cycle. The features of this product that stood out for us include
- Access to controls with easy to operate remote.
- Dual-color scheme looks aesthetically pleasing.
- Has an automatic and manual mode for assisted operation. This supports the use of the product by the elderly and those recovering from injuries.
- Quiet operation and works smoothly together with oversized, anti-slip pedals.
With this, we come to the end of our article about the best mini elliptical in the market. We hope this article has given you the knowledge you need to make an informed choice about this particular fitness equipment.
We have reviewed some other big ellipticals here, you can read that as well if you want:
- Proform Endurance 520E (270+ Reviews)
- Schwinn 411 Elliptical Review (2,456 Reviews)
- Best 2 in 1 Cross Trainer: TOP 10 Product