Life Fitness Elliptical Reviews and Comparisons

Life Fitness Elliptical machines

Life Fitness is one of the leading commercial and residential elliptical manufacturers producing tens of thousands of ellipticals every year. Life Fitness produces and distributes both commercial quality and standard quality elliptical cross trainers around the globe. Founded in the 1960s, they innovated the world’s first electric stationary bike in 1968, marketing it as the Lifecycle. The company has been ranked among the world’s most powerful fitness equipment brands globally. 

Along with being the first fitness brand that created the electric bike, the company was also the innovator of the advanced whisper-stride ellipticals. Life Fitness continues to expand their elliptical lines by producing masterful and unrivaled cross-trainers, such as FlexStrider, with highest technology consoles on the market.

Life Fitness Background

In 1991, Bally Total Fitness sold the company to a group of investors and in 1998, Brunswick Corporation acquired Life Fitness. Ever since, the company gained a global reputation producing some of the top elliptical machines, indoor cycles, and other fitness equipment.

The brand competes with other leading fitness equipment manufacturers like Precor, NordicTrack, Sole, etc. They also sponsor many exhibitions and sports events worldwide. Their headquarter is currently in Illinois and count distributors in over 120 countries in all continents.

Today, Life Fitness is considered one of the most specialized manufacturers in the fitness industry. They sell high-quality commercial and residential fitness equipment. The result of four decades of hard work is that Life Fitness ellipticals and other products can be found in the high-end clubs, military bases, hospitals, and residential homes. Life Fitness has two main lines of products, each line several series, and every series of multiple models of exercise machines.

With confidence, I can say that Life Fitness products are one of the most reputable and renowned fitness equipment in the world today. From the Platinum Club Series to the E Series, they are all designed to bring comfort and high-quality performance.

Editor's Choice From Life Fitness!

4.5/5
Life Fitness E5 elliptical machine review

Comparison Table of Life Fitness Ellipticals

ReviewImageVerdictPriceCapacityDisplayStrideProgramsResistanceIncline
Life Fitness E5 EllipticalLife Fitness E5 elliptical machine review400 LBS 4 in x 6 in
18/24 inches16 programs 20 Levels0
Life Fitness E3 EllipticalLife Fitness E3400 LBS N/A20''16 programs 20 Levels0
Life Fitness E1 EllipticalLife Fitness E1 Elliptical400 LBSN/A20''16 programs 20 Levels0
Life Fitness X5 EllipticalLife Fitness X5350 LBSN/A 18/24 inches12 programs 20 Levels0
Life Fitness X3 EllipticalLife Fitness X3350 LBSN/A20''12 programs 20 Levels0
Life Fitness X1 EllipticalLife Fitness X1350 LBSN/A20''12 programs 20 Levels 0
Life Fitness FS4 EllipticalLife Fitness sf4350 LBS7''22''11 programs 20 Levels0
Life Fitness FS6 EllipticalLife-Fitness-FS6 400 LBS7''18/24 inches13 programs20 Levels0
Life Fitness Flex Striderlife-fitness-flexstrider-ellipticals400 LBS10''0-36 42 programs 26 LevelsN/A
Life Fitness GSC EllipticalLife Fitness GSC elliptical trainer400 LBS16''24 in (61 cm)12 programs (100 Levels0-21
Life Fitness 95X EllipticalLife Fitness 95x elliptical400 LBS7''20''24 programs 26 LevelsN/A
Life Fitness Active EllipticalLife Fitness Activate400LBSN/A 18''8 programs 25 Levels0-21

Overview of Life Fitness's Elliptical Machines

Table of Contents

Life Fitness has six series of ellipticals with many different options to consider. We will review each one of the these Life Fitness product lines individually and then discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the series.

Platinum Club Series (Elevation Series): Two advanced ellipticals

Club Series + (Integrity Series): Four commercial quality ellipticals

E Series: Three ellipticals for residential use

FS Series: Two side-drive compact ellipticals designed for home use

X Series: Three ellipticals designed pretty similar to E Series for home use

Activate Series: One standard elliptical

Life Fitness Platinum Club Series (Elevation Series) Ellipticals:

It’s the most advanced and elite cardio series elliptical line for commercial use. They are also considered the top-of-the-line elliptical machines with a combination of the latest technology and reliable functionality. The Platinum Club Series ellipticals are the best commercial quality cardio equipment that Life Fitness has ever made. There are three different ellipticals in this Series: Life Fitness Platinum Club Series FlexStrider Variable-Stride Trainer, Life Fitness GSC, and the Life Fitness Platinum Club Series 95x Elliptical Cross-Trainer.

 

The technology and biomechanically design used on Elevation Series ellipticals provide a natural and comfortable workout. The traditional elliptical in this Series costs between $6000 to $7500 and the FlexStrider costs from $9000 to $11000, depending on the console.

 

The Platinum Club Series Ellipticals are compatible with four different Life Fitness consoles. Depending on which console you go with, the price varies up to $1400. Here are the four models of consoles that you can purchase with these two incredible ellipticals:

 

➽ Discover SE3 HD Tablet Console

16″ High-definition 1080p touch-screen display with connection capability to wireless, wired internet and Bluetooth devices. Compatible with entertainment apps such as Netflix, Hulu Plus, ESPN, YouTube, Pandora, Newsy, BBC, Flipboard, The Economist, Solitaire, Chess, Sudoku, and LFconnect.

 

➽ Discover SE3 Tablet Console

16” touch-screen display with connection capability to wireless, wired and standard Bluetooth devices.

Compatible with entertainment apps such as Netflix, Hulu Plus, ESPN, YouTube, Pandora, Newsy, BBC, Flipboard, the Economist, Solitaire, Chess, Sudoku, and LFconnect.

 

➽ Discover SI Tablet Console

10” Touchscreen Internet (wired and optional wireless), Bluetooth, Lifescape interactive courses, integration with popular fitness apps.

 

➽ Explore Console with QuickNav Dial

A contemporary design combined with Internet (wireless or wired), Bluetooth® functionality and compatible with LFconnect.bes

Strengths of Life Fitness Platinum Club Series ellipticals

☞ Connection between exercisers

Exercisers can connect to have an engaging and more fun workout experience.

☞ Console options

With ellipticals in this category, you get three intuitive console choices that provide entertainment, workout tracking and detailed information for the club owner about the elliptical.

☞ Preset-programs

Depending on the console, you get up to 42 workout programs.

☞ User profiles

All the consoles offer limitless user profiles for gym trainees.

☞ Custom Workouts

Exercisers can create up to 9 custom workouts that suit their needs.

☞ Elliptical color choices

There are four colors that allow you pick what fits your club interior.

☞ Sleeker improved design

The three ellipticals in the Elevation Series are designed to provide better and unparalleled cardio experience.

☞ Self-powered

These Life Fitness elliptical machines can generate the power required to workout. However, if the attachable TV is used, it requires AC power.

Weaknesses of Life Fitness Platinum Club Series ellipticals

☞ Incline Ramp

Life Fitness ellipticals in this category don’t feature incline ramp.

Life Fitness Club Series + (Integrity Series) Ellipticals:

There are four ellipticals in this Series designed for commercial use. The DST Elliptical, DX Elliptical, SX and SC Elliptical. They are similar to the more advanced Platinum Club Series. However, they lack in high-tech consoles (advanced entertainment options). They are also less expensive compared to the elliptical trainers in the Platinum Series. These ellipticals feature rear drive which makes them large and not easy to store for individuals with small space. The Life Fitness Club Series+ ellipticals are compatible with three consoles while the Platinum ellipticals are compatible with four consoles.

➽ ST Console

1080p HD TV Touch-screen compatible with Wireless Standard/WiFi and Bluetooth
➽ X Console
7″ LCD touchscreen, compatible with Wireless Standard/WiFi and Bluetooth
➽ C Console
Basic LED compatible with Wireless standard but not with Bluetooth

Strengths of Life Fitness Club Series + Ellipticals

☞ Console Options

The High Definition ST Console is one of the most advanced options on the market and it’s compatible with three ellipticals in this Series.

☞ Quiet performance

25 whisper quiet and powerful magnetic resistance levels in all the four elliptical machines.

☞ Handlebars

Two models (DST and DX) in this Series have built-in multip-grip and remote resistance controls.

☞ Self-powered

All the four Life Fitness ellipticals in this Series are self-powered.

☞ Pedal space

Minimum 3-inch space between foot pedals.

Weaknesses of Life Fitness Club Series + Ellipticals

☞ Fixed Stride

All the four elliptical cross trainers in this category offer fixed 20-inch strides.

☞ Incline Ramp

Neither of the four Life Fitness elliptical machines in the Integrity category has incline ramp.

☞ Workout programs

The consoles offer from 4 to 24 preset programs while in the Platinum Series some consoles offer up to 44 programs.

☞ Static hand-grips

Static handlebars don’t have pulse sensor.

Life Fitness E Series Ellipticals:

E Series of elliptical machines are designed for home use and consist of three models of ellipticals: the E1 entry-level, the E3 mid-range model and the top model in this Series the E5 which is also one of the best ellipticals under 5000. All three of them feature biomechanical test, magnetic resistance and whisper quiet technology.

 

While they are durable and can provide cardio exercise for multiple users, you need to keep in mind that they are not for commercial use. The Life Fitness E1 &E3 are compatible with two consoles, the Go Console and the Track Connect Console. However, Life Fitness E5 cross-trainer is compatible with three consoles: Go, Track Connect and the Track + Consoles.

 

Depending on the console the price of these ellipticals varies. The E5 elliptical can cost from $4000 to $4800, E1 and E3 would cost from $2000 to $3200. The E5 in the E Series is the most popular cross trainer that allows the user to electronically adjust the stride length from 18″ to 24″.

 

➽ The Track + Console

It features the blue back-lit LCD and it’s the most expensive console for this Series. It has Bluetooth connection capability, offers interactive workouts/App connectivity and USB charging/data transfer port. There are 4 user profiles, 16 built-in workout programs and 12 custom programs on the Track+. You can also connect your iPod and control your music through the console.

 

➽ Track Connect Console

It’s also similar to the Track + Console except that it doesn’t have the blue back-lit display. They both are in the same price range and cost around $400 more than the Go console.

 

➽ The Go Console

It’s the entry option for this series and it features less modern technology. Go console offers only 2 user profiles, 2 custom workouts, and 12 preset-programs. The user can’t interact online or charge their device because Go Console doesn’t feature a USB port and Bluetooth connection. However, it features a blue backlit display and allows two users to track the necessary workout data on the console.

Strengths of Life Fitness E Series Ellipticals

☞Console

There are three choices of console models with interactive workouts.

☞Stride

While the E5 is the only model with an electronically adjustable stride (18″ to 24″), the E1 and E3 are also equipped with the standard average stride length of 20 inches.

☞Noise

All three ellipticals in this category feature WhisperStride™ Technology and self-aligning ball-bearing system which provides a nearly silent operation.

☞App and Device Compatibility

Track and Track+ consoles connect to Android, iPhone, iPad, iPod and LFconnect app, Fitbit, Run Social, etc.

Weaknesses of Life Fitness E Series Ellipticals

☞ Incline Ramp

None of these cross trainers are equipped with an incline ramp.

☞ Stride

Only one elliptical in this category has an adjustable stride.

Life Fitness FS Series Ellipticals:

“Small Footprint, Big Impression,” that’s the motto of this series of Life Fitness ellipticals. Due to the popularity and the need for compact ellipticals, Life Fitness designed the FS Series cross-trainers. These ellipticals are side-drive and don’t occupy too much space. However, while being used, they need 75 inches fore/aft space.

 

Aside from taking less space, the SF ellipticals also feature the innovative 3-in-1 design. You can do the traditional elliptical exercise, attach a resistance cord to one of the points and do strength training and the platforms on each side to allow for upper-body workouts.

FS elliptical cross trainers feature the 7″ LCD color touchscreen console. This console interacts with various popular fitness apps through the LFconnect App. It has connection capability to Bluetooth, NFC, and home internet/WiFi which allows you to update the console software and upload workouts.

Note: We are not sure if the FS Series ellipticals are compatible with other high-end Life Fitness consoles.

 

There are two ellipticals in the Life Fitness FS Series:

➽ FS6 Adjustable-Stride Cross-Trainer.

It features 18″ to 26″ adjustable stride length, 20 resistance levels, largely extended pedals, 12 workout programs, moving and static handlebars. This model is slightly more expensive than the FS 4 elliptical machine.

 

➽ FS4 Elliptical Cross-Trainer.

This model is pretty much the same as FS6, except for the stride. FS4 elliptical cross-trainer features 22″ fixed stride.

Strengths of Life Fitness SF Series Ellipticals

☞ Size

They are compact and occupy less space, which makes them ideal and convenient for apartment use.

☞ Console

The interactive touchscreen 7-inch display offers entertainment for a longer period of exercise.

☞ Stride

The electronically adjustable stride on the FS6 and the standard length stride on the FS4 provides a good elliptical and treadmill exercise.

☞ Comfort

Both these ellipticals feature large comfortable foot pedals and also built-in controls on the moving handlebars for easy resistance and stride adjustment.

Weaknesses of Life Fitness SF Series Ellipticals

☞ Programs

There are only 12 workout programs on the console.

☞ Information

Lack of data to indicate if this Series is compatible with other Life Fitness consoles with larger LCD displays.

Life Fitness X Series Ellipticals:

This Series includes three models of mid-range ellipticals. The top model X5, the mid-range model X3, and the entry model X1. They also used to be some of the popular Life Fitness products due to their price. However, I can’t say that this is going to remain in 2020.

 

These three cross-trainers include WhisperStride™ Technology, self-aligning ball bearings system, creating a smooth and whisper-quiet performance. They are solid ellipticals but they are older models and don’t feature high-end quality for commercial use. The more expensive and better elliptical in this category is the X5 with 18-24 inches of adjustable stride length. However, the stride is adjustable manually and not electronically. It means that the user needs to get off the machine to adjust the stride, while on the E5 you can adjust the stride by a push of a button on the go.

 

All three Life Fitness X Series Ellipticals are rear-drive and compatible with two different Life Fitness Consoles, the Go Console, and the Track Plus Console. The Go Console is pretty basic with no internet or Bluetooth connectivity. The users don’t have entertainment options such as app connectivity, device compatibility, etc. There are only 2 user profiles, 2 custom workouts and 12 preset-workouts on the Go Console.

However, the more expensive console, the Track+ offers plenty of interactive workouts. It’s compatible with LFconnect Application, Android, iPhone, iPad, and a few other entertainment apps. On the Track+ console, there are also 14 workouts, 12 custom programs, and 4 user profiles. Note: Neither of these two consoles is in Life Fitness high-end console categories.

Strengths of Life Fitness X Series Ellipticals

☞ Console options

They are all compatible with two Life Fitness elliptical consoles (Go and Track+).

☞ Stride

The X5 in this Series features an adjustable stride.

☞ Coach Zones

Allows the users to target arms and glutes and other specific muscle groups.

Weaknesses of Life Fitness X Series Ellipticals

☞ Stride

Out of the three models in the X Series, only one has adjustable stride and it can be adjusted manually.

☞ Consoles

Unlike the new Life Fitness elliptical Series such as Elevator, the X series has only 2 console options and neither of them is anywhere close to SE3 consoles.

☞ Incline

None of the ellipticals in this category offers incline ramp.

Life Fitness Activate Series Elliptical:

Life Fitness Activate
Life Fitness Active Series

There is only one elliptical in the Activate Series category. The elliptical in this Series has standard quality for residential use. In this series, there isn’t a commercial-quality cross trainer. Unlike most Life Fitness ellipticals, this one supports less than 400 lbs (350 Lbs) user weight. It features a basic LED display and has the option to add the TV on top of the console.

We haven’t been able to confirm if this elliptical in Activate Series is compatible with multiple console options. One of the good features of Life Fitness ellipticals is multiple console choices and apparently, the Active Series lacks in this feature. This Series features rear drive machine/s which makes them larger than the front and rear drive ellipticals. This particular elliptical in the Activate Series feature 25 powerful magnetic resistance levels and on-the-fly programming.

Overall, the Activate Series Elliptical Cross-Trainer has an intuitive design that is perfect for exercise rookies or veterans. It benefits from extensive biomechanics research that creates a smooth and natural feeling ellipse path

Life Fitness Advantages

➽ Noise. Most of Life Fitness ellipticals feature whisper-stride technology and maintenance-free ball bearings which reduces friction.

➽ Comfort. From the cushioned large size foot pedals to multiple adjustment controls for resistance, to the biomechanics testing, these ellipticals are created for comfortable and natural human motion movement.

➽ Warranty. Pretty much all the Life Fitness ellipticals come with Lifetime warranty on the frame, 5 years on parts, 3 years on the console and 1 year on labor (Standard Warranty). You can also purchase one of the following protection plans to extend the warranty: 3 Year Premium Extended Protection or 5 Year Premium Extended Protection.

➽ Console. Life Fitness offers some of the unique consoles with the interactive workouts, multiple apps compatible and up to 16 inches touchscreen displays. For every series, there are from 1 to 4 console options (entry level to advanced high-tech displays).

➽ Handlebars. Life Fitness ellipticals come with multiple hand-grip options unlike most other brands with vertical straight handlebars. The loops on the moving handlebars provide a good variety to work on different upper body muscles. The built-in controls/buttons handlebars allow the users to easily change resistance and stride length without taking the hands off the grips.

Life Fitness Disadvantages

➽ Incline Ramp. None of Life Fitness ellipticals offers adjustable incline. So, the users can’t do a proper hill/stair climbing.

➽ Stride Lenght. Among tens of Life Fitness ellipticals, only four of them offer adjustable stride: FlexStrider, FS6, X5 and the E5 cross trainers.

➽ Console Options. Despite offering some of the most high-tech consoles, they still miss in built-in fans and speakers.

➽ Size. Except for two ellipticals with side drive mechanism, the rest of Life Fitness ellipticals are rear drive and occupy more space than front drive trainers.

➽ The Website. Life Fitness website is confusing due to assigning different names and Series to the same products. It’s also pretty difficult to find all the Life Fitness ellipticals in one place.

The Final Verdict

Each model of Life Fitness ellipticals and consoles has its own characteristics and evokes a unique feeling of adventure, power, and success. With a variety of sizes, materials, and models, the versatility of these ellipticals is guaranteed to satisfy the most sophisticated tastes and elite exercisers. Life Fitness gives you a reason to prefer the brand! They brought durability, whisper quiet technology and options to choose an elliptical that suits your budget and athletic level.

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