Bowflex vs NordicTrack Elliptical Machine: Comparison and Reviews

Are you having trouble deciding between Bowflex vs NordicTrack Elliptical?

Are you wondering which of the two brands is suitable for your basement home gym?

Well, you are certainly not alone!

With these two being the most prominent elliptical trainers in the market, even the most experienced fitness coaches get confused when selecting the best brand for their fitness equipment.

But don’t you worry:

I’m going to compare the two models comprehensively to help you make an informed decision based on YOUR preferences.

Before we move on, here’s a quick look at the two models head to head:

Now, let’s get the show on the road, shall we?

Picture
Type
Stair Motion
Running Motion
Display
High Contrast LCD/LED
7" Smart HD Touchscreen
Number of Built in Programs
11
30
Number of Resistance Levels
20
24
App
Yes, Free
Yes, Monthly Fee
Maximum User Weight
300 lbs
325 lbs
Equipment Size
Compact
Large
Heart Rate Monitor
Built in and Bluetooth Compatible
Built in and Bluetooth Compatible
Warranty
Picture
Type
Stair Motion
Display
High Contrast LCD/LED
Number of Built in Programs
11
Number of Resistance Levels
20
App
Yes, Free
Maximum User Weight
300 lbs
Equipment Size
Compact
Heart Rate Monitor
Built in and Bluetooth Compatible
Warranty
Picture
Type
Running Motion
Display
7" Smart HD Touchscreen
Number of Built in Programs
30
Number of Resistance Levels
24
App
Yes, Monthly Fee
Maximum User Weight
325 lbs
Equipment Size
Large
Heart Rate Monitor
Built in and Bluetooth Compatible
Warranty

Bowflex vs Nordictrack Elliptical: 5 Important Features to Consider

Both Bowflex and NordicTrack are excellent options if you are looking for an elliptical to use in your home gym set up.

“An elliptical trainer or cross-trainer (also called an X-trainer) is a stationary exercise machine used to simulate stair climbing, walking, or running without causing excessive pressure to the joints, hence decreasing the risk of impact injuries.”

Reference: wikipedia.org – Elliptical trainer

But if you are not a millionaire, owning them both is not an alternative.

Here are some key points to consider before making your choice:

Type Of Exercise

What type of workout are you a fan of?

Do you fancy stair climbing more than your morning jogs? Or do you like them both the same?

If you love that stair-climbing motion, you may want to consider the Bowflex Max. However, you will be locked into an up and down movement the entire session.

NordicTrack, on the other hand, is designed for those who love forward and backward movements. If you are looking for something that can provide a running-style motion, then this is it!

Both versions are great calorie burners, though.

It only boils up to what kind of exercise you have a liking for.

You want an elliptical trainer that will motivate you to do what you love best. So do yourself a favor, get one with the motion you prefer!

You don’t want to invest loads of money on something that will end up in a dump!

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

Calorie Burning

It’s the whole reason you are here, right?

Now, this is going to be a little tricky because both beasts are known to be effective fat burners…

However, Max seems to hold all the good cards under its sleeve here.

Well, it may not be because it helps you burn more fat, but simply because the brand itself has taken a step further to perform tests and provide results that prove it!

Bowflex argues that the Max trainer gets you burning double the amount of calories you burn on a traditional elliptical. In fact, some of those who took part in the test even burned close to 600 calories in 30 minutes!

Quite amazing, isn’t it?

But let’s dig into the science around this a little bit:

The Max trainer utilizes the stair-climbing technique. This means that you will be working your lower body muscles more during the exercise.

It doesn’t end there.

Bowflex has included special high-intensity interval training programs in all their trainers.

Studies show that intensive interval training helps you burn calories even when your body is at rest!

It is deemed the most effective workout in regards to energy-burning and weight loss.

But wait.

I’m not trying to rule out NordicTrack. You can still pull a high-intensity interval training workout on the elliptical and melt just as much fat as you would on the Max trainer.

What I’m simply saying is that Bowflex really has some good points here…

The company has been sharp and smart enough to produce evidence that supports its claim.

And some evidence is always good, right?

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Bowflex Max – Tested to burn double amount of calories as an traditional elliptical.
  • NordicTrack Elliptical – Burns calories as crazy, but have not been tested towards other ellipticals like the Bowflex.

Incline And Space

Sometimes you want a machine that can allow you to adjust your inclination.

Other times you don’t care how much you bend but just want something that can fit the available gym space.

NordicTrack gives you an option to add some incline to your workout. The best thing about changing the slope of your pathway is that you get to work on different groups of muscles.

The result?

Better cross-training and overall body workout!

You just don’t get this with Bowflex.

However, you will have a space advantage because the trainer is much smaller than the NordicTrack elliptical. It might be the best option if you don’t have a huge gym space.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Bowflex Max – More compact than the NordicTrack. Takes up less space.
  • NordicTrack Elliptical – Provides the opportunity to add incline to your workout. Bigger construction than the Bowflex Max.

Console

The display of your machine plays a major role in the enjoyment and effectiveness of your exercise.

Select one that provides all the vital feedback you need. You will be staring at this thing for the best part of your workout so your choice must be right!

The Max comes with a well-laid-out console that displays all the basics. Some models like the M7 even have a Bowflex App and built-in workouts!

Also, every console has a media shelf and a place to put your tablet.

You also find the same layout on NordicTrack.

In fact, the newer designs of this elliptical trainer come with an elegant touch-screen HD display.

Wow!

This means that you can stream videos live on the internet, catch up with your friends on social media, and play games online as you exercise…

There are even docks where you can plug in your iPod so you can listen to your favorite music or workout audio files.

How about when the workout gets all heated up, and you need something to cool your body off?

NordicTrack has inbuilt fans to keep that cold air coming – again; you don’t get this with the Max consoles.

Now, don’t you think investing in a console that gives you all these benefits could make your workout more enjoyable?

I think so too!

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Bowflex Max – Nice console which contains all the basic needs and in addition several built-in workouts. Also comes with a media shelf to place your tablet.
  • NordicTrack Elliptical – Fancy touch screen HD display (stream media, be social etc while exercising). Docking for music player. Built-in fan.

Fitness Technology

Technology is changing fast, especially in the fitness world.

Today, every gym equipment manufacturing company is working so hard to incorporate the latest trends in its machines.

Bowflex and NordicTrack haven’t been left behind either.

They have brought some incredible features to the table. From Bluetooth tracking to world travels and video streaming, it just can’t get any better…

If you look at Bowflex for instance, its M5 and M7 versions come installed with good Bluetooth tracking. Everything you do on the Max trainer reflects on your Bowflex App via the Bluetooth.

This helps you to monitor your heart rate, the amount of calories burnt, and much more on the go!

If you have been using other fitness apps like Apple Health, Google Fit, and MyFitnessPal, you can sync the Max trainer’s high intensive workout with these to track your fitness and attain your new goals.

Hey, but wait. There is more:

Bowflex is now offering some fresh workout videos that you can stream live from your phone as you hit the Trainer…

Cool or what?

So, how about the NordicTrack elliptical?

All models include the iFit Coach App that takes your entire elliptical training online.

This enables you to keep a keen eye on your workouts and successfully achieve your fitness objectives.

And don’t think you will miss that trip to Paris with an excuse of “going to the gym”. You can do the travel right on the NordicTrack console…

iFit, really lets you enjoy real-life adventures!

You will literally see buildings pass you by as you make that run on the elliptical right from your display!

And there’s more:

You also get to watch live casts of even those workouts that are not related to elliptical training like squats, yoga, pushups, lounges, and more.

So generally, iFit gives you more options than the Bowflex App does. The only downside about it is that you need to pay some membership fee to use it.

Bowflex App, on the other hand, is free.

At this point, it’s worth mentioning that you don’t need iFit to do your workouts on the NordicTrack elliptical trainer.

This machine works just fine with or without the app if you do not want to splash the membership fee.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Bowflex Max – Bowflex app tracks everything. Hooks up via Bluetooth. Can be synchronized with apps like Apple Health, Google Fit, etc.
  • NordicTrack Elliptical – Comes with iFit Coach App, a complete and thorough fitness app. Hooks up to the HD screen for an amazing exercise experience. Ifit has a membership fee if to be used.

Bowflex vs NordicTrack Elliptical Comparison


Bowflex Max Trainer M7 Cardio Machine

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THE FEATURES

  • Stair motion.
  • Compact.
  • Free app.
  • Large, sharp LCD/ LED display.
  • Bluetooth compatible.
  • Equipped with AI which adapts to your fitness level and progressively increases resistance for you to achieve new goals.
  • Perfectly suited for HIIT (high intensity interval training) sessions.
  • Aerobar grips with built in resistance level and burn rate adjustment.
  • Solid sport performance grade pedals.
  • Warranty.
  • Item weight, 148 pounds.

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NordicTrack Elliptical Trainer

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THE FEATURES

  • Running motion.
  • Touch screen HD display.
  • Adjustable angle, can add incline.
  • OneTouch® resistance control. 24 different settings, form easy to hard.
  • Warranty.
  • Bluetooth heart monitor chest belt.
  • Aux music port, built in 2″ speakers.
  • Smart 7″ HD Touchscreen with 30 fitness apps.
  • Built in cooler fan.
  • 0-10 degree adjustable incline.
  • Smooth 18 pound flywheel.
  • Item weight, 218 pounds

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Final Words: Bowflex Max vs NordicTrack Elliptical Trainer?

So should you go for Bowflex Max or NordicTrack Elliptical trainer?

Elliptical trainers come with a lot of benefits, and as you can see – the different brands hold different benefits.

Look at the Max for example. It takes up less space and has been proven to burn more calories.

NordicTrack elliptical, on the other hand, comes with more sophisticated consoles and cross-training options. Thanks to its compatibility with iFit, you can even go on a virtual tour as you train!

So all said and done, it all gets down to your preference.

Are you looking to burn more calories? Something not too big or too small? Fancy features?

Bowflex vs Nordictrack elliptical, which are the best?

It’s all up to you:

Think about what you really want, and you will be sure to get the right equipment for your gym:

  • If you want the most cost-efficient equipment and you do not give a crap about fancy features, the Bowflex Max is for you!
  • If you are looking to have fun while burning calories, and you like cool features, -you should go with the NordicTrack Elliptical.

If you are also considering other options for your cardio exercise, be sure to check out this massive guide to cardio workout equipment – loaded with inspiration and product reviews!

There are also a ton of other manufacturers offering ellipticals like Sole, Nautilus, and Schwinn. Some good models to consider are:

  • Sole elliptical e55.2018
  • Nautilus e614 elliptical.
  • Schwinn 470.

Other Helpful Resources