Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer Review
Sometimes we want a machine that will train our entire body, rather than just our lower body or upper body. Life Fitness decided to tackle this problem by making their Total-Body Arc Trainer (almost identical to Cybex 750AT). But how good is this machine and is it worth it? That’s what we’re going to be looking at today. Before that, you should know the company has another model, the Lower-Body Arc Trainer for those who want to exercise on their lower body.
We’re going to be examining the individual components that make up the Total-Body Arc Trainer and seeing if it is worth all the hype (and the price). We’ll check out features like the monitors, resistance, handlebars and so on before comparing it to the price and warranties that come with it. Once all of that is done, we’ll give our final verdict and call it a day. So with all of that out of the way, let’s hop right into our review of the Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer!
Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Elliptical Machine Review:
Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer Specifications:
It makes sense that we’d cover the technical specifications of this machine first. These are elements like the footprint, weight and weight capacity of the cross trainer. We also like to throw in the colour options available as well. Starting with those colour options, you get “Arctic Silver”, “Diamond White”, “Black Onyx” and “Titanium Storm”. It’s not a wide choice to pick from, as it’s almost all some form of black and gray, but it’s at least something.
In terms of the footprint, this is a chunky machine. While it might not be as long as some of Life Fitness’ other ellipticals, this is still a large machine. It’s wide and it’s tall, so you had better have a large enough space to store it at home. It measures out specifically to be 76.5 inches (194 cm) long, 36.25 inches (93 cm) wide and 62.5 inches (159 cm) tall.
This is an extremely heavy machine. The Arc Trainer weighs a massive 412 lbs (187 kg), so you won’t exactly be picking this up and taking it on vacation with you. In fact, you’ll find it nearly impossible to move around the home thanks to the lack of any sort of wheels. The maximum weight that the Arc trainer can hold sits at 400 lbs (181 kg), which is mildly surprising in that the actual machine weighs more than it can officially hold.
As one would expect for such a professional machine, the Arc Trainer ticks almost all the boxes. The only aspects that you’ll have to keep in mind are that this is a huge machine and that it is a highly immoble one. If you have no problem with that, then it is all good.
Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer Monitor:
You have an absolute lineup of monitor selections to pick from in regards to the Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer monitor. You have a total of 4 monitors to pick from, each with their own abilities and features.
The highest quality of these (and most expensive) comes in the form of the Discover SE3 HD Console. This has a 16 inch 1080p touch screen and 22 different languages available. It can track simple statistics like speed, time and distance. As well as more advanced ones like the watts, average heart rate and calories per hour. There are 6 interactive courses, 7 fitness tests, compatibility with smartwatches and apps like Netflix, YouTube, Pandora and even chess. It’s a large package.
You then have the Discover ST Console. This is another quality console, but not quite with as many features. It doesn’t have the same sort of smartwatch compatibility that the SE3 HD console does. Nor does it have the connection to apps and games, although it does still have virtual courses. Otherwise they have the same language options, fitness programs and so on.
Up next is the Integrity X Console. This is a much smaller touchscreen than the Discover Consoles. It has only 19 languages available and only 17 workouts. The statistics displayed are generally the same, with speed, incline, pace and distance being the standard. This time there are no virtual courses, no smartwatch compatibility, no web browsing and so on. It’s a more basic monitor, but it will do the job.
Finally, there’s the Integrity C Console. This is by far the most basic console and it shows. There are only 4 workouts available with 7 total statistics that come with it. That’s pretty much it. This console is for those who want as cheap a monitor as possible and don’t really care about what all it offers.
Clearly there’s a wide range of what you can get in terms of the monitors of the Life Fitness Arc Trainer. It’s really up to you to decide which one appeals most to you.
Life Fitness Total Body Trainer Resistance:
If you are purchasing such a professional machine, you would hope that it provides a challenge, no? Fortunately, if the Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer does anything well, it is giving out a challenge.
There are 100(!) different levels of resistance available on the Arc Trainer. This is incredible. You can test yourself against all sorts of different levels, up to 1200 watts. It truly allows for all sorts of different customization and innovative workout routines. In this regard it is quite simply brilliant, and the Arc Trainer deserves praise for it.
The drivetrain of many Life Fitness ellipticals tend to use their “WhisperStride” technology. That doesn’t seem to be the case here, as the machine is louder than some of those other trainers. It also has the drive listed as a two-stage drive, so that’s the other major hint. You won’t find any issues here, as it does the job smoothly and requires little maintenance.
The resistance is the highlight here. You get so many options in terms of what you can do with the Arc Trainer that it feels like you could use it forever and never get bored with it. The drivetrain helps in this regard, as it makes the entire process smoother and requires extremely little maintenance.
Total-Body Arc Handlebars, Stride Length and Pedals:
Up next are the elements that you’ll be physically interacting with the most. The handlebars, stride length and pedals are what you’ll be holding onto and standing on, so you want them to be comfortable.
There are two sets of handlebars on the Life Fitness Arc Trainer. You one pair in the “traditional” handlebar spot that will move back and forth with the pedal movements. This will give you the “Total-Body” workout that the machine advertises. Then you have a stationary pari about hip height on the sides. These are there to give your arms a break during the workout. The handlebars also allow for controlling the resistance remotely, without using the console. The fact that they are padded and quite comfortable is also a bonus.
The stride length is fixed at 24 inches. While this should be fine for most people, it would have been nice to see the ability to adjust the stride length. It would just be another level of customization that the Arc Trainer seems to lean so heavily on. There are different incline ranges (low, medium and high) which sort of makes up for it, but it would be nice to see the adjustable stride length regardless.
The pedals are oversized and non-slip, so you won’t have to worry about your feet fitting. But otherwise there aren’t too many features to note here. They do the job required of them and that’s about it.
You won’t find too many faults with these elements of the Arc Trainer. Yes, they could have improvements, but the handlebars are definitely the highlight here.
Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer Price and Warranty:
Now we get to the potentially brutal aspect. The prices that come with the Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer can rise quite high, so one should be prepared for that. The end price generally depends on what console you are thinking on getting.
If you want the SE3 HD, expect a price around $11,750. For the ST console, it drops to around $9,850. The X Console drops that to around $9,450 and the C Console brings it down to $8,700. Clearly none of them are cheap, by any means. But if you want the higher-quality consoles, you had better be willing to pay for them.
The warranties that come with the Arc Trainer are actually rather awful. There is a 2 year warranty on the frame, 2 years on the motor and 2 years on both the electrical and mechanical parts. For a machine that could cost over $11,000, you would expect a much larger guarantee.
Total-Body Arc Cross Trainer Assembly and Shipping:
For a machine this large, you generally want it assembled for you. Fortunately, Life Fitness has a “White Glove” delivery and installation service that will let you know when it arrives. Then they will let you give a date and time as to when you want it assembled and they will send a team to do that, free of any charge. This is quite nice, as even veterans of the assembly process might be overwhelmed at building such a machine.
The shipping process is less certain. Life Fitness is based in the United States and the shipping process generally takes 1-2 weeks. This can be affected by human error and the ongoing pandemic, as well as other factors. So keep that in mind when waiting for it to arrive.
Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer Pros:
Plentiful Monitor Options:
You’ve got a lot of choices when it comes to the monitors on the Arc Trainer. The best part is that they are almost all extremely good. The C Console is probably the worst of the lot, but only because it lacks the plentiful workout programs that all the others have. For all the others you get a pretty complete package, with the SE3 HD Console being a complete package with so many additions that it is almost overwhelming.
Advanced and Complete Build:
The Arc Trainer is built to make your entire body get fit. Of course, this should be obvious from the name, but you can really feel it onboard. It wouldn’t look out of place in an advanced gym, which is a most definite plus.
So Much Resistance:
You have so many resistance options on the Arc Trainer that it is ridiculous. There are over 100 different levels of resistance and 21 levels of the ramp. Toss in what the consoles offer you and you can spend literal days on the Arc Trainer and never run out of new things to do. This is rather brilliant and perhaps the most appealing aspect of the machine.
Life Fitness Total-Body Arc Trainer Cons:
This is a Huge Machine:
The Arc Trainer weighs over 400 lbs and has no sort of wheels. It is also an extremely large machine, as we pointed out. These combine to make a machine that simply will not fit in smaller homes.
This one is fairly straightforward. It costs a lot of money. Even with the most simple console available, you are still dropping at least $8000 on this piece of exercise equipment. That’s a lot of money for a lot of people.
Extremely Poor Warranties:
For such an expensive machine, you want guarantees that it will work for a long time. The fact that there isn’t even a lifetime warranty on the frame is actually rather absurd. Life Fitness have provided better warranties for ellipticals that cost an eighth of what the Arc Trainer does.
Our Final Verdict
This is a fantastic piece of exercise equipment. The Life Fitness Trainer might be a mouthful, but it works wonderfully. You have so many options, whether it is the console, color or resistance. The only issues that you might run into are the size and the price. If you are OK with both of those and do not care that the warranties are very short, then this is a no-brainer purchase.