on March 17, 2014
I've been looking for a new piece of exercise equipment for a few months, as I had spinal fusion surgery this past summer and was told by my orthopedic surgeon that I need to exercise regularly to get my back muscles back into shape. I had an old exercise bike for quite a few years, but trying to pedal without lumbar support was terrible. I've looked at quite a few elliptical machines and recumbent bikes (both on amazon & the local sporting goods store) but either the price was too high or the settings were too difficult for a novice. After reading a lot of the reviews I took a chance on this piece of equipment (the price was great, 2 for the price of 1) and the fact that most people complained about a "short stride" on the elliptical setting sold me. I am 5'2" (about 115 lbs.) but I have fairly short legs and an even shorter stride. Most of the machines I tried at the sporting goods store had strides so huge that I felt like I was going to get thrown off into the wall!! So here are some of the things I encountered after ordering this trainer (sorry if my list is a little long, but I wanted to give answers to a lot of questions I had before ordering):
*It took 7 days to receive the purchase (I used the free shipping so I was expecting about a week to receive the order).
*The box is HUGE (according to the UPS man 125+ lbs.) luckily I have a nice UPS man who rang my doorbell and asked where I wanted the box stored. He wheeled it right into the garage. My husband was able to unpack the box in the garage and bring the pieces up separately.
*It took exactly 2 hours for my husband to put it together, and that includes looking for a piece that happened to be missing. He's not the handiest guy but he's put together his fair share of IKEA furniture. ;o) We also had all of the necessary tools, phillips head screwdriver, rubber mallet, a ratcheting screwdriver set/wrench set. You also need 4 AA batteries for the LCD screen.
*The pieces were actually packed in a coherent manner. I'm sure you've tried to put together furniture where none of the pieces are labeled and/or all of the hardware is thrown together in a baggie. The large pieces were labeled left & right with stickers and the hardware was all prepackaged on a cardboard sheet and labeled with the size/piece # of each screw and nut.
*One caveat, however, my husband had to do a lot of contorting around on the floor to get the trainer put together. Not all of the screw holes were in convenient areas on the machine! He also stated that it seemed each nut only fit one particular screw, some went on easy and some not so much. His theory is that the company makes it "just hard enough" to put together that you think about saving yourself time by hiring someone to put it together!
*We found a piece was missing, one of the seat handlebars. We were able to put it together without the piece. We also found 2 extra pieces that don't even belong to this machine...weird. I called customer service, waited about 15 minutes on hold, but spoke with a very polite and friendly lady who ordered the part for me. Hooray! She didn't seem surprised when I told her that one part was omitted from the package while we received 2 parts that we don't need for this machine.
*I tried the recumbent setting first. You have to lift each pedal, unfold the brace that is underneath and insert it into the pedal carriage. It's not difficult to do once you are looking at it--one of our pedal braces was pretty hard to unfold and we needed to loosen the screw some to get it moving. After that it was easy to fold & unfold. You also have to pivot the console, so you can see it while you bike, also not hard to do. If you need to adjust the foot pedals you just loosen the pedal knob and slide the pedal forward or backward on the pedal leg.
*For someone who has had very involved back surgery, the recumbent seat is pretty comfortable. No, it does not adjust but you can adjust the foot pedals and put a small pillow behind your back if you need extra lumbar support (which is what I did).
*I easily switched the trainer back to the elliptical setting (I was able to leave the pedals in the same position as the recumbent), so it was just folding the braces back up into the pedals & pivoting the console straight again. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
*Again, I have shorty legs so I thought the stride was just fine for me. Also, I was pretty much wheelchair bound by the time I had my back surgery...prior to that I had so much nerve pain in my legs that I couldn't do many day to day activities (i.e. drive, play on the floor with my 2 year old, sit or stand comfortably). I was never a competitive runner or athlete so when I was looking for a new exercise machine, I needed something basic, not too fancy, something that will provide good back support and a machine that would fit my petite size. Take this into consideration. If you are a marathon runner or are built (and workout) like a professional NFL player then this trainer probably isn't for you! But if you want something that is a decent "home machine" then I recommend the hybrid trainer.
*I'll have to make an update after my husband uses the trainer (he's 6'2" and about 200 lbs.) and let you all know what he thought of the stride. **He used the trainer the other day and said that the shorter stride didn't bother him enough to make a difference in his exercising. But after he used it, it started to squeak some...**
So overall, a good purchase for me, and I hope this answers any questions anyone may have!
on March 3, 2013
This product arrived in just one gigantic box the size of a small refrigerator. The UPS guy had extreme difficulty getting it up the stairs in front of the house and we had to go out and help him. It took the 2 of us 4 hours to put it together on a Saturday afternoon. I have assembled many products out of boxes and this was by far the most difficult one. If you have a power screw driver it might help. You should also consider paying a handyman to do the assembly for you. The product comes with an 800 number to call for a professional assembly but I am sure it will cost quite a bit. We were unable to get the heart rate monitor to work so I will try to use the manufacturer's warranty for that. Keep in mind that it will be very difficult to return this product due to it's weight and repacking challenges. We had to put a lamp near the trainer because the monitor has no back light. The trainer is completely silent and works well. The conversion from one to the other requires the removal of a hard to turn piece so you may have to keep some pliers handy.
If you are really motivated for in home exercise that you can't go wrong with this hybrid trainer. I removed one star for the very difficult assembly. If the trainer could be delivered completely assembled I would give it 5 stars for sure. Very sturdy material and looks great in just about any room. Used it a few times so far and love it.
UPDATE: Apparently it is impossible to use the manufacturer's warranty. I tried calling Proform and was on hold for 30 minutes before a live person answered. He then put me on hold for another 15 minutes and hung up. The same thing happened a second time. I called Amazon Customer Service and the Rep was treated the same way. His Manager also tried and was unsuccessful. I was told that Amazon may delete this item from the website until this problem can be resolved. The warranty is only for 90 days anyhow and Proform is apparently trying to discourage the customers from using it until the warranty expires.
UPDATE: The shipping weight of this product is 148 pounds according to the UPS label. The Amazon description has the wrong shipping weight.
UPDATE: It has been 6 weeks since the delivery and still no repairs. Every time I call the parts are on back order.
UPDATE: It is now over 2 months and I am still unable to get any service for the trainer. Parts were on back order all this time but have finally been received. Now the problem is the authorized service agent - Mac Services. Each time I call Mac there is no answer and I just get voice mail.
on March 21, 2013
Not great, but not bad.
I just got this for my wife and myself.
So, some quick stats on the two users for this
Me 6'2' 175 Lbs
Wife is 5' 6" and her weight is well within normal weight for BMI
Wife disabled with a 5 lbs weight limit.
We have had this unit for less than a week.
Ordered this and the first hiccup was the "free shipping" was only available if you had amazon prime...
So I signed up for the free trial. To bad the joke is on them, that box weighs 150 lbs give or take and we live in Hawaii, go go $12 for two day delivery.
Box was delivered on time, but getting the FedEx guy to bring it inside just to inside the door, less than fun.
The instructions were very easy to follow, its only 20 pieces give or take that need to be snapped together. I was able to put it together solo in just under two hours, after working a 32 hour shift.
One of the fun parts of this machines layout is this: In places where if it breaks, you could sue, everything is very well made, to the point where you dont even need the three screws per join.
In places where if it breaks, you could not sue, its so bad its not even funny. ( cup holder, monitor)
They say it has a stride of 15", WATCH OUT, I work for people that are 80+ years old and have a longer stride than that. When I use it, its like I am shuffling, very uncomfortable. Over time I will get the hang of it, but make sure you take a look and see what a normal stride is for yourself.
Livestrong.com has a nice article about stride length.
AllEllipticals.com recommends 16- and 18-inch stride lengths for users 5 feet 3 inches or shorter. If you are between 5-3 and 5-7, select an 18- to 20-inch stride length. If you are over 5-7, select a stride length more than 20 inches
You can still get a good work out, but wow does it feel odd.
The resistance works well, im not sure how fast it will burn up the AA batteries it needed.
Testing it before my wife got on it, I did a resistance 1 shuffle as fast as I could, maxing out the RPM speed. The unit was very stable.
The heart monitor does not work, so I will give them a call this weekend and see what hoops I have to dance thru.
With the size of the box and all the little boxes that goes in side of it, its a one way trip, shipping it back..would be more than it cost I would think.
Pros: Works well, feels safe, does what it says. Wife likes it
Cons: non vital parts are poorly planned, 15" stride means I can't run to work out, but I can shuffle really fast!
Update: Wife loves it, she is on it most days. My self... not so much, that stride is a killer ( and i am lazy ).
Heart monitor works ( ish) , and it worked out of the box, the handle had white strips covering the chrome, they need to be removed.
Its been almost 3 years now, and as i have said we live in Hawaii so its a hard climate on metal.
Some squeaking on the right foot join where the foot and the vertical arm join meet. I tried to take that side apart so i could add a new lubricant. What i found is taking this thing apart is 10 times worse than trying to put it together. I gave up after about an hour. Most hardware stores have a nice thick gear grease you can use to re-lube the joints with. I would stay away from DW-40 and such ( love the stuff but this is not a good application for it).
When we moved i opted to just move the entire thing at once vs trying to take it apart, it worked better than i would have thought.
It eats the 4 ( or 6?) AA battery after 4 months with heavy use.
After using it myself for a few months i noticed that my normal walking gate has gotten shorter, so i will no longer touch it.
Handles are still in good shape after all this time as well as the seat. No real extra care or maintenance was done on them other than the normal wipe down at the end.
Very minor rust on a few places on the frame. less than expected really.
Wife still uses it, still loves it, but with her health issues she already has a shorter stride than normal.
Best advice i can offer, measure your stride, marks on the ground, shoe lace tied together, what ever works for you. Make sure that a stride that short will really work and feel natural.
on October 23, 2015
My $60 yard sale elliptical finally gave up the ghost and I went looking for a replacement. After nearly a week of searching, of actually going to Wal-Mart to buy a machine only to find that the Wal-Marts in my area no longer carry exercise equipment in store and then finding the reviews that would have made me instantly regret my original choice, I found this machine on Amazon.
I like the Prime shipping, especially after seeing the shipping costs. I was not that impressed by the cycle option, but, hell, the entire machine costs a good deal less than I expected to pay, so I concentrated on what it is.
1) It's an elliptical, which is what I want
2) It's inexpensive, which is what I want
3) It's got a higher weight limit than is standard, which is what I want
4) It does not require AC current, which is what I want
4) It has 14 resistance levels, which is more than I want but that's cool
5) It allows me to rest my Kindle HDX on a board between the handle bars so I can watch video while I work out, which is what I want
6) It does not take up a lot of room, which is what I want
7) It's quiet enough that I can hear my video with my headphones, which is what I want
8) It counts revolutions rather than distance, which is not what I want but can live with
9) It's got a 15" stride which is shorter than I want but I can live with it
10) It's got more of what I want than what I don't want.
Assembly was fairly straightforward. I am methodical so I unpacked all pieces before I started and made certain I had the right tools. From start to finish, it took just a bit over two hours for me to put the thing together. This included several interruptions and phone calls because it is the universal rule that no one needs to talk with you until you are in the middle of something else.
I heeded the advice given concerning lithium grease and had a can on hand during assembly. Whenever the instructions called for grease, I used it and tossed the included packet. After assembly and tightening and use of a few days, I am not hearing any squeaks. It might be the lithium grease I used, it might be my superior assembly skills, or it may be my inhuman strength and ability that has caused mere bolt tightening to become the equivalent of an industrial weld. Pick the one which makes me most attractive in your eyes.
My first time using the machine, I selected the highest resistance level, 14. I did this because I have used elliptical for several years now and, typically, set the resistance level high. Or I did it because I made the assumption that this low cost machine would barely make me sweat.
Either way, I was wrong. Now I use level 7 and am dripping in sweat at the end of 45 minutes.
This is a solid piece of equipment and I would recommend it.
Now, it ain't magic and you will have to actually use it consistently before you will see results but that's how life is. You just can't show up one day and demand the world cater to your whim and then stomp off when it refuses and come back a couple of months later claiming you made a mistake and then get angry when you are turned away.
But, I'm not bitter.
on October 7, 2014
We have owned this machine for 6 months now and it has been a hit in our house. My wife is the one whom uses it and she has lost over 20 lb since beginning her regiment on the hybrid trainer. She mainly uses it in the bicycle conformation and rides for approximately one hour, 4 to 6 times per week.
There are several features of this equipment which work well for us. First, it is comfortable enough for my wife to sit on for an hour straight, as described earlier. I have used it for 30 min on a couple of occasions (I am not a fan of stationary aerobic equipment) and, after adjusting the pedals so that I am sitting upright, have also found it comfortable enough to watch a TV program. Which brings me to my second positive feature, the size. Our home is relatively small (1250 sq ft) but the impact on our living room is small enough to make the bike a permanent fixture near the television. The unit seems sturdy, as I can ride the machine (I am 245 lb) in both the bike and the elliptical conformations without any fear of unbalancing it. The machine runs very quietly- my wife bikes at 5am and wakes no one in the house except the dogs.
I believe the machine is a great value overall and recommend it to anyone looking for a cost-effective cardiovascular exercise in the home. The only slightly negative comment I have for it is that the display comes on whenever the fulcrum is engaged. This uses the batteries in the display panel. So any time a kid or another person comes in, they seem to automatically have the urge to rotate the handles, draining the batteries. In six months of regular use, we are on our second set of batteries.
I am sure there are better machines out there, but this unit is great for the price we paid (approx $350) Just remember that buying a machine doesn't help you lose weight. Using it does.
on January 27, 2013
Shipping was crazy-fast. Received in two-days; took a while for us to assemble (we aren't handy like that). However, it was not difficult at all. I'm typing on this as I'm doing the recumbent exercise. I've been reading a book and watching t.v. for over an hour while using the bike. I'm just over 50 - the only exercises my body is used to - is low intensity walking.
I'm glad to have taken the plunge.
on January 24, 2014
I spent almost $700 between the machine, the installation service, the mat, and the extended warranty. The box arrived undamaged. The installation company contacted me prompted and sent the man to do the install. Then the trouble began.
The plastic connector for the main wiring was crushed and the wires bent when we unpacked the box. Since the box was undamaged, this had to occur during packing. We could not continue the install. I paid $250 for the install services, and the guy's primary concern was that he wouldn't get paid for this trip to my house since he couldn't complete the install. He made NO commitment to return when the part was replaced.
On to PROFORM (alleged) customer support. I have registered the product online, per their request. I have spent more than 10 minutes on HOLD on their customer support phone line without speaking to a live person. I attempted to chat online with support, but support is not available for CHAT.
DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME AND MONEY ON PROFORM.
on December 12, 2013
I workout 4-7 times a week, even during my fibromyalgia flares. I love this trainer. I use the bike position most, but it love the elliptical too. I have had another elliptical...a cheaper brand that broke. This one is very durable, and it's not going to break with being used often. After using an older style recumbent bike, I am really happy to have a digital display where I can see exactly what resistance I am on, rather than a dial.
If you can read directions, it's not hard to put together. My husband did most on his own, with just needing help to hold two pieces together once in awhile.
My only complaint, is I wished the seat would tilt a little. Depending on the length of your legs, and the way you need to sit, the back of the seat isn't always supportive..
on November 16, 2013
So we just got our new ProForm Hybrid and so far it's awesome, not gym grade but great for our condo. I'm 5'5"/petite and my husband is a muscular 6' so hopefully our experience is a good representation.
Setup: The box is obnoxiously heavy and we have no elevator, so we opened it and took the pieces out which was very manageable and fast. Almost everything is packaged in cardboard (#CaptainPlanetlovesyou). You need a small phillips screwdriver and it helps to have a pair of pliers, but that's not strictly necessary. The bolts have hexagonal bolt holes on the frame, so you can actually just use an allen wrench to screw those in no problem. Took me a couple hours in total and it was very straight forward.
Elliptical mode: It's perfect for me. I have a long stride for my height and tend to hit my knees on most ellipticals; the bars are nicely out of the way on this one, so it's not an issue. It shakes a little when my husband uses it, but he's over 200lb. It's rated for 315lbs but I wouldn't take that as gospel. Elliptical mode is very smooth and quiet, but make sure you put plenty of grease on during setup just in case. My husband says the stride is "just a bit" short for him, but he uses ellipticals often and seems to be coping with it OK.
Recumbent mode: The pedals flip up/slide forward and back easily, so changing modes or users is a breeze. For some reason, I noticed more noise when both of us were biking (from the base of the machine under your seat). It's not terrible, barely noticeable with the TV on, but there is a bit of click there on each stride. To see the monitor while sitting, you have to unscrew a knob behind it and tilt it forward, but the screw (like those old annoying gas caps, comes completely off, sorta lame, but nothing outrageous.)
Monitor: This is my one big beef with this machine. It counts calories. It has reasonable functions. It scans through display settings. BUT, inexcusably imho, it has no actual distance measurement. I run in miles. Hubby runs in km. Either way we both want to know how far we've failed to travel in our livingroom. The monitor only gives distance as # of revolutions, which is already driving me nuts. Instead, I'm monitoring my workout with time, HR, and intensity--but I prefer to do set distances. The HR monitor is reasonably accurate and registers quicker than the one at my gym, but it's only located on the stationary elliptical handles, so you can't use HR while biking or doing the elliptical with active arm motion. But this simplifies the wiring a lot so I think it's reasonable.
All in all, it's a solid piece of equipment. Definitely worth the money and I see us both getting good use out of it. And it's not loud enough to freak out the cat, silly but important. So the whole family's happy.
on October 16, 2013
I ordered the Proform about 3 weeks ago, the first 2 or 3 workouts it was somewhat quiet. It seems the more I workout the louder it gets. We have tried WD-40 and lubricate with no luck. This is really sad beacuse I was really looking forward to working out at home. For the money spend $400 I could have just gotten a gym membership for a year. I'm very disappointed to say the least.