Quite Unusual Eliptical Cycles

Looking to give your workout a kick-start in the new year? Consumer Reports has tested some very interesting exercise devices that'll help you burn off holiday treats in no time.

"When I first saw these bikes, I was thinking to myself, "What the heck is that?"

Elliptical cycles are like nothing you've ever seen.

Karin Weisburgh says, "They are kind of weird looking. It was intimidating to get on there the first time."

They're sort of a cross between a bicycle and an elliptical trainer.

Ina Gozenpud says, "I like the standing up. My butt didn't hurt. I really appreciated that aspect of it."

And they could give your workout a boost!

John Walsh says, "I was huffin' and puffin', and I run all the time."

So Consumer Reports wanted to know, what's the deal with elliptical cycles.

Rich Handel of Consumer Reports says, "Like a bicycle, pedaling these puts less stress on your joints. But unlike a bicycle, there's no seat, so you can't sit and coast. Which may give you a better workout."

Consumer Reports tested two elliptical cycles with 14 different panelists. Because they don't handle as well as a bicycle, testers found they worked best on paved trails, away from traffic.

The "StreetSider Sprinter" has three wheels, and you steer by leaning your body, like you're skiing.

The handlebars move back and forth, so it's a full-body workout, but the 16-hundred dollar price tag will give your wallet a real workout, too!

The second cycle, the "ElliptiGo" rated a bit higher. More like a bicycle, it has two wheels and uses handlebars to steer. but unfortunately, the cost is more challenging at 18-hundred dollars!

Walsh says, "If price wasn't an issue, I would probably buy one of these. It was just a good time. It was a good workout and kind of, a lot of fun."

Both cycles can be used indoors, but you have to buy a separate stand for another 300 to 400 dollars.

Consumer Reports also tested 31 traditional elliptical machines and named on a Best Buy for a thousand dollars.

It's the AFG 3.1 AE. A big plus-it has features that you find on more expensive machines, like an automated incline.

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