Tethered to treadmills? Try the cardio machines in the corner

Mon Jan 19, 2015 8:03am EST
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By Dorene Internicola

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Gym goers seeking to boost their workouts might do well to aim for the less-used equipment beyond the busy rows of treadmills and elliptical trainers that dominate the center of the cardio floor, fitness experts say.

What the rower and the moving stairs may lack in traffic, they can make up for in effectiveness and intensity for people willing to think outside the box.

“What’s the best piece of cardio equipment? My short answer is the one no one’s using,” said exercise physiologist Tom Holland, author of “Beat the Gym.”

People tend to do what they’re good at and what they see others doing, he said.

Holland's favorite under-appreciated machine is the moving stairs.

“It’s tougher than the traditional StairMaster, harder to cheat on, and usually hidden away in dark recesses of the gym,” he said.

The treadmill is the most used machine, according to the trade association IHRSA (International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association), followed by resistance machines and elliptical trainers.

Stair climbers and recumbent cycles are among the most ignored, it says.   Continued...