In this article I am going to give you my personal review of the Teeter Freestep Recumbent Cross Trainer after about a year of ownership. You can find out if it’s worth a hoot and you should buy it, or if you should look elsewhere.
For those that want to jump ahead to see the price and what the customer reviews are saying about the Teeter trainer you can check it out on amazon by clicking here.
And yeah.. I know that are a ton of positive reviews and although I will try to give subjective opinion, do know I am a bit biased towards this trainer because it really is just that good.
Teeter’s Freestep Recumbent trainer, the affordable machine that can provide low-impact cardio and toning workouts from the comfort of your own home… Sounds too good to be true right?
Well Teeter claims it isn’t, they claim that with their Freestep Recumbent Cross trainer you’ll get just that.
However, you quickly learn that not everyone tells the truth on the internet (shocker right?) so I want to break down the Teeter Freestep Recumbent Cross Trainer, see what it’s all about and determine if it lives up to the hype and the claims made by its creators.
However, unless you’ve spent some time doing physical therapy, you might not even know what a recumbent cross trainer is, so let’s start with the basics.
What is a Recumbent Cross Trainer?
While they’ve been slowly appearing in gyms across the country, a Recumbent Cross Trainer still remains a rare sight in most commercial gyms and big chains. It’s a shame really because these really do provide an amazing low impact workout for when you want to take it easy but still get in a full body toning workout.
Basically, it’s the result of combining an elliptical machine and a recumbent bike. So now you probably have a new question, What is a recumbent bike then?
Well in layman terms, a recumbent bike is an exercise bike, but instead of sitting in the upright seating position, you are sitting in a more comfortable relaxed seating position. This takes the pressure of the joints and allows for a more comfortable workout.
So put together a recumbent and an elliptical and what do you get? A machine where both your arms and legs get a workout, but instead of standing up you’re sitting down.
This, in turn, provides a stable position for your hips and back, to prevent any pain or fatigue. Plus the motion of your feet is not circular, which drastically reduces stress on your knees and ankle joints.
As you can see, it’s a wonderful device for those that need therapy of have injuries that prevent them from working out regularly. Which is why it is mostly seen in PT centers and hospitals rather than gyms.
However, the models the docs use are prohibitively expensive for most of us. But as popularity grows, more and more brands are coming out with budget-friendly options so that you can get one of these wonderful devices for your own home.
That’s what brings us here today, to determine if teeter has done a good job of adapting this technology for everyday use while keeping it budget-friendly. Read on and find out if Teeter’s Recumbent trainer is worth your buck or not.
This is my personal opinion after having owned one for about a year now.
Benefits of Teeter’s Recumbent Cross Training
Before I get into what makes or breaks a particular model, I think we should discuss what it is that makes Teeter’s recumbent cross trainers a valuable asset for your home and gym.
Burn More Calories, Faster
When it comes to cardio, there is no better machine than the Teeter Freestep to burn calories faster, without putting your muscles and joints under great stress.
Like I said above, a recumbent cross trainer involves not just pedaling or rowing with your arms, but both. This in turn results in more stimulation to different muscle groups, your back, arms, quads, calves and more.
It’s no wonder then that by using more muscles, you’re going to burn more fuel, or in this case, calories!
In fact it is proven that a cross-trainer will burn up to 20% more calories than simply using a recumbent bike.
Can Do Both Cardio and Toning Workouts
Like most cardio equipment, recumbent cross trainers are wonderful for cardiovascular development. They are very easy to use and get the blood flowing instantly. In fact they are even better than most because the provide a full body workout, exerting yourself even more!
But it doesn’t end there for this piece of equipment. By adjusting the power settings on most bikes, you can increase resistance for each push and pull.
This means you’ll get to train strength as well as cardiovascular capacity, which is especially useful for those that suffered from injury and need to build up both muscle mass and cardio at the same time.
Proper Lumbar Support
A problem most runners face is that as your cardio sessions get longer and longer, your lumbar muscles and spine start to fatigue under the pressure of holding you upright for so long.
As this progresses, you might end up with back pain, trouble sleeping and even back issues. Luckily, when training with a recumbent cross trainer, you can get all the benefits of cardio described above, without putting your back in jeopardy.
This is because recumbent cross trainers are equipped with big lofty seats that will keep your spine and hips correctly placed in a neutral position.
Knees Don’t Travel Over Toes
A common issue with cycling is that as your feet go through the circular motion of pedaling, your knees will often travel over your toes. This puts unnecessary stress on your kneecaps, tendons, and joints and can even lead to injuries.
If you choose to go with a recumbent, you won’t have to worry about this at all, since the motion is up and down instead of circular, specially designed for injured patients that don’t have the mobility required or have very weak joints.
Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer Review
Alright, now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get down to brass tacks, let’s do a deep dive into the Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer.
Let’s begin by saying that the FreeStep does all a Recumbent Cross Trainer should, as part of Teeter’s “Stabilization” series, it goes to great lengths to provide its owners with a challenging, effective cardio and muscle building workout while keeping comfortability to a max and stress to a minimum.
But if that’s what all it did, I wouldn’t be writing about it, would I?
The FreeStep comes packed with a couple of main features that really make it stand out from the competition.
Best Features – Things I Like & Things To Know
Patented Stride Technology
The folks over at Teeter really take their customer’s health seriously. They know that their machines are often used by patients in recovery or who suffer from chronic conditions like arthritis that make using regular cardio machines impossible.
That’s why they’ve developed their own stride motion technology. By keeping the stride smooth and linear they prevent any stress from landing on vulnerable joints like your knees.
Related: Best Treadmills for Bad Knees
This is aided by their use of premium, “UltraGlide” steel ball bearings, which ensure the are no rough spots or bumps that can make the use of pedals or handles painful or uncomfortable.
Unlike most recumbents, whose handles can’t be moved, the FreeStep’s arms can be rearranged so that you can choose which muscles are worked.
This is in turn will allow you to schedule your workouts as you please, choosing to work different muscles each time you use it, as well as avoid imbalances that can occur from neglecting certain muscle groups.
But that’s not all, thanks to its magnetic resistance systems, the strength needed to use the FreeStep can be adjusted, so that no matter if you’re a beginner, intermediate or advanced trainee, you can get a workout.
Even better, you can track the speed, distance, time and calorie burn of each workout thanks to the included digital screen, which is awesome if you’re trying to lose some weight. It’s even battery powered so you won’t have to worry about having an outlet nearby!
Designed for Home Training
The FreeStep was designed with home ownership in mind, which is why it comes with a few additional features you might not find in a commercial or rehab Recumbent Cross Trainer. Little things that make having one at home more enjoyable.
To start with, its small footprint, needing only 54″ (L) x 38″ (W) to fit in your home, which means no matter where you live, a house, apartment or even if you’re just renting a room. You can get one of these puppies.
Not only that but thanks to its magnetic resistance system, there are no grinding gears, so the FreeStep is whisper quiet while in use.
This is great because it allows you to comfortably watch tv or listen to a podcast, so you can get a workout in while zoning out on the latest TV show. Before you know it, the show is done and so is your workout!
Speaking of watching shows, the FreeStep comes with a device stand so that you can place your phone or even tablet. That way, you don’t even need to move around furniture so that your machine faces the TV.
Just open any streaming app like NetFlix or youtube and get to burning calories.
One Size Fits All!
Finally, one of the most important aspects of the FreeStep is that virtually anyone can use it.
In fact, according to Teeter, anyone between 4’11” – 6’6″ can comfortably use their Recumbent Cross trainer.
How? You ask, well it’s thanks to their aptly named “Comfort Select” seat, which is larger than most machines, has extra padding and features two different adjustable anchor points. That way you can customize the seating position to fit your needs making it an excellent option for tall users and for short users as well.
Not only that, but it can accommodate users up to 300 lb, so no matter where you are on your fitness journey, you can count on your FreeStep to help you out!
Affordable Price and Financing
What really shows that the FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer is really for everyone out there and is extremely affordable all things considered.
It’s honestly crazy how many features they managed to include for a fraction of the cost, compared to other options out there, I mean compared to the Nautilus R616 or the Schwinn 270 this bike is a bargain.
And it’s made even crazier when you realize that you can get financing for it! So you won’t even have to pay for it lump sum. Instead, enjoy the benefits of a low impact cardio and strength workout while paying a small fee each month!
And not to worry as Teeter even offers a free 2 year warranty for their devices, so even in the unlikely case that something goes wrong, they’ve got you covered!
Started in 1981 by the engineer Roger Teeter after finally getting relief from his chronic back pain via the use of inversion tables, Teeter began working on improving their design and function.
To this day, they specialize in inversion tables but have expanded into aiding recovery and easing pain through the use of low impact, cleverly designed machines.
They are proud of what they call “The Teeter Difference”, since their products are unique, using several of their self developed patents and going through multiple certifications so that their customers can get a quality product for the lowest price.
Should You Buy the Teeter Freestep?
Well, after going through each feature that makes this a great product, I’m proud to say I got one for myself and you should too.
You can check one out on amazon by clicking here
It made a great addition to my home gym and force me to get some much-needed cardio, especially now that summer is in full swing!
It’s cheap, comfortable, healthy and will help you burn calories while you watch Netflix on your iPad. I challenge you to think of a reason NOT to get one of these!
This is especially true for senior or people going through rehabilitation, that can’t workout unless it is very low impact and risk free.
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