August 25, 2008
Octane xRide: The world's first seated elliptical machine.
Likes: Although originally intended for older people, it provides a superb workout for all ages. The comfortable seating position calls to mind a new and improved recumbent bike, with the short seat and back pad gliding up and back at a 45-degree angle. The back pad also tilts for a custom fit. Great variety; programs allow all-body, arms-only and legs-only workouts. Multi-position handlebar lets you work arms at different angles.
Dislikes: Poor control-panel placement. Although I'm of average height (just over 5-foot-9) I had to reach forward, off the back pad, to press the resistance and workout keys. While merely irritating for me, it would be harder to manage for short, senior exercisers. A land yacht at 71 inches.
Price: $3,799; xRide6 (with no heart-rate monitor) is $3,199. (847) 638-1582; www.octanefitness.com.