The Top Elliptical with 400 lb Capacity

Have you heard ellipticals are one of the best ways to lose weight but worry because those flimsy little machines look like they couldn’t hold your weight?

Keep reading to learn your elliptical’s true capacity and discover how to pick the right one for your needs.

How much weight can an elliptical hold?

These little machines are surprisingly strong.

Even the most basic, compact elliptical can usually hold at least 250 pounds. The slightly larger commercial ones you see in gyms usually have a weight capacity of around 400 pounds.

Do ellipticals have weight limits?

Does a weight limit mean that a 356 pound person who gets on an elliptical with a 350 pound weight limit will immediately break the machine? Not exactly.

Instead, the weight limit is just a guarantee that the machine works normally for those up to a certain weight.

If you exceed the weight limit and hop on a machine, it might not work properly.

Are ellipticals good for weight loss?

So why do so many larger people use ellipticals if they risk exceeding the weight limit? The reason is because ellipticals are great for weight loss!

Ellipticals are a great form of cardio, so they help you burn calories and melt away the fat.

A study at the Medical College of Wisconsin discovered that the average elliptical user burns almost 100 calories more an hour than the typical treadmill user (1).

The Mayo Clinic explains that ellipticals are also good for weight loss because they are easier on the joints (2). Heavier people who try running risk damaging knees and other joints from excess weight, but ellipticals can make exercise safer.

Types of Elliptical Machines for Heavy People

A good option for heavy people is a standard lower-body-only elliptical trainer. This type of elliptical has stationary handbars, so there’s less of a danger of you losing your balance.

Cross trainer ellipticals that also move your arms back and forth can be a good choice because they work out all the major muscle groups at once.

Just about any type of elliptical machine can work for heavy people as long as it has a high enough weight capacity. However, you may want to avoid compact or foldable ellipticals.

These lightweight designs are usually too flimsy for heavier people to remain comfortable on.

How to Pick the Best Elliptical Machine

There are four basic factors to consider when buying an elliptical.

Simple Monitors vs Advanced Computers and Features

If you are easily overwhelmed by technology and just plan on running at a basic speed for a set amount of time, you might be fine with a basic monitor.

However, there are a lot of advanced machines that can be useful for your weight loss journey. Consider features like adjustable resistance, timers, training programs, and more.

Flywheel Noise (Resistance vs Magnets)

A lot of people overlook flywheel noise when they are just starting to purchase an elliptical, but loud machines can be surprisingly annoying.

You need to take the time to learn how your potential elliptical will be handling flywheel noise.

To keep the interior parts from moving too freely, machines use either magnets or resistance to make sure you get your workout.

If your machine uses actual resistance, it will have equipment rubbing against each other inside, so when these parts wear out, you may notice unpleasant squealing noises.

Machines with magnetic resistance tend to be quieter all the time, and they have less of a chance of breaking down (3).


If you live in a small home, you might be tempted to go with a compact machine that won’t get in your way.

However, bigger machines made of metal and other sturdier materials are better at accommodating exercisers of all sizes.


If you can pay a little more, you can invest in your health and get a machine that makes it easy and comfortable to lose weight or get fit.

However, if your budget is limited, it is still possible to find high-quality wallet-friendly options by looking a little harder. Check for sales or look at used equipment to ensure you do not have to sacrifice quality to stay in your budget.

How much should you pay?

Ellipticals come in all sorts of prices, ranging from $300 to $3,000.

You can expect to pay about $1,500 to get a standard, good-quality machine for home use.

The Top 5 ellipticals for 400 lbs capacity and up

If you don’t have a bunch of time to examine different elliptical styles, don’t worry! After looking at a bunch of different options, we’ve found the five best ellipticals for users over 400 pounds.

Note: If you click some of the links in this article we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

The Sole Fitness E95 Elliptical Machine

Max Weight Capacity: 400 pounds


  • Allows you to put the machine in both forward and reverse modes.
  • Choose from 20 levels of resistance.
  • Articulating, over sized food pedals can be adjusted for maximum comfort.
  • Built in speakers and a 6 inch LCD display keep you entertained while exercising


  • Some users find it difficult to put together.
  • Very heavy equipment can be difficult to move.

Captiva Cardio Core Elliptical Trainer Machine

Max Weight Capacity: 400 pounds


  • You can hold onto stationary or moving handbars to get your preferred workout.
  • This elliptical lets you adjust stride length for comfort.
  • Stabilizing system allows heavy users to have a vigorous workout without the machine rocking back and forth.
  • Workout every part of your body with the special side to side motion.


  • Mechanical gears are more likely to suffer from wear and tear.
  • May not work well for taller users.
  • The built in speakers and docking port are only compatible with Apple products.

Bodycraft SCT400g Recumbent Elliptical Machine

Max Weight Capacity: 400 pounds


  • Can be used by people with mobility issues or physical problems.
  • Magnetic brake resistance is quiet and low-maintenance.
  • Put a book or tablet on the rack to stay entertained while you exercise.
  • Swivel seat makes it easy to get on and off the machine


  • You don’t burn quite as many calories when using a recumbent machine.
  • Priced on the higher end of the elliptical pricing scale.

Sole Fitness E98 Light Commercial Elliptical Trainer

Max Weight Capacity: 400 pounds


  • Magnetic resistance technology means you barely hear the machine while it’s operating.
  • Attach your phone or tablet to the machine to hear music and video.
  • 10 inch LCD screen clearly shows progress and monitors heart rates.
  • Bluetooth capability seamlessly transfers yoru workout data to your device.


  • As a commercial machine, you should expect to pay top-dollar for a new model.
  • Some customers feel that the monitor does not provide enough workout details.

Captiva Yowza Elliptical

Max Weight Capacity: 400 pounds


  • Compact shape makes it fit easily in your home.
  • Adjustable controls let you design a machine that fits your body type.
  • A three speed fan keeps you cool while you exercise.
  • The simple, no-frills design means it is more affordable than other ellipticals


  • Yowza’s customer service has a bad reputation, so it can be hard to get help.
  • This model doesn’t come with Bluetooth capability.
  • The higher noise level can be annoying for some users.





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