★★½☆☆ BUDGET ELLIPTICAL
ProForm Hybrid Trainer is a two in one machine. It is an innovative cardiovascular machine that is considered one of the best inexpensive elliptical/recumbent trainers on the market. With 16 quiet magnetic resistance and 16 preset-programs, the ProForm Hybrid Trainer provides a challenging workout for novice users. It has some great pros such as being a recumbent and elliptical, offering oversize cushioned pedals and seat, quiet operation and 16 resistance levels.
You don’t get bored because you don’t have to work on the same machine for 50 minutes. The adjustable console features a basic small non-backlit LCD display, speaker, audio jack, and tablet holder. ProForm Hybrid Trainer is Bluetooth and iFit App compatible as well. There are also 16 pre-programs workout and 16 difference resistance settings to keep motivated throughout the workout. However,
the ProForm Hybrid Trainer also has cons such as simple non-back-lit console which can’t be easily reached when using it as a recumbent, the short part warranty and also short stride. Although, you can’t really beat the price. The Hybrid Trainer elliptical is a good value for the money but this trainer is not for everyone.
ProForm Hybrid Trainer vs Hybrid Trainer XT vs Hybrid Trainer Pro
There are three different ProForm Hybrid Trainers, the ProForm Hybrid Trainer, the ProForm Hybrid Trainer XT and the ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro. The Hybrid Pro costs around $200 more the other two.
- Hybrid Trainer vs Hybrid Trainer XT. They have the same price (less than $400). There are two main differences between these two models. Hybrid Trainer XT has added cushioning on the seat and the pedals for recumbent exercise are separate from the elliptical exercise. The rest of functionalities and features are just the same.
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (Resistance 20 vs 16).
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (iFit LIVE vs iFit). iFit LIVE connects your elliptical to the Internet using the WiFi in your home and allows you to download workouts to your elliptical. iFit LIVE also allows you to use the Google maps feature to map out new trails from a library of famous world trails (France, Hawaii, Grand Canyon, and more) to run and bike. iFit connects your elliptical using Bluetooth and it doesn’t allow downloading programs on your machine.
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (tablet holder vs none).
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (improved traction and comfortable pedals vs basic pedals).
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (17-inch stride vs 15-inch)
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (cushioned comfortable backrest vs basic mesh plastic backrest)
- ProForm Hybrid Trainer Pro vs ProForm Hybrid Trainer (Lifetime frame, 1-year parts and labor vs 5-year frame, 90-day parts & labor)
So, here is the deal:
Now that we are clear on the models and differences of the Pro-Form Hybrid Trainers, it’s your decision to pick the one that best suits your needs and budget. However, if you decide to go with the basic ProForm Hybrid Trainer, read down below to find if it’s for you or not.
You should go for the ProForm Hybrid Trainer if:
- You are novice or intermediate level athlete. Hybrid Trainer can make a good cardio training machine for exercisers who don’t do intense training.
- Tight on budget and space. It’s a compact and quiet trainer that offers a full body workout. It’s also two full machines in one, meaning it does exactly what a recumbent does and also what an elliptical does. You actually buy an elliptical and a full recumbent bike. You can now avoid spending $1000 for two machines and instead invest less than $500 for one that does both. Not only you will be saving money but you will also be saving space by investing in ProForm Hybrid Trainer.
- You are a are in the process of recovering. ProForm elliptical Hybrid offers low-impact activity on the back and knees which is great for those doing recovery or rehab. One of the really good features of ProForm Hybrid Trainer is that it’s two in one.
- You don’t have space or the money to buy a recumbent bike and an elliptical. This machine comes super handy and useful because it takes less space and cost less than two cardio machines. It’s not only for upper or lower body, as you would expect from most cardio machines. It’s a total body workout.
- Your partner wants to do recumbent and you want to do elliptical. In many houses, it happens that one of the spouses or family members either can’t or don’t want to do elliptical training but rather the recumbent because it has less impact on the back, while the other person prefers elliptical exercise.
You should NOT go for ProForm Hybrid Trainer if:
- You are an elite athlete. ProForm Hybrid Trainer is not for intense training due to the lack of durability and functionalities.
- Shorter than 5.3″ and want to use this trainer as a recumbent bike only. The seat doesn’t come all the way forward to perfectly accommodate trainees below 5.3″. With the seat all the way forward and the pedals all the way pulled back, it’s still hard for short exercises to sit and peal comfortably.
- You want a relaxed recumbent bike with the console easy to reach. If you are looking for a nice and comfortable recumbent bike to sit back and easily read the display or change resistance, forget about ProForm Hybrid Trainer. You can sit back and relax as long as you are average height but you still wouldn’t be able to reach your console. See the guide to some of the good recumbent bikes on the market.
- You want to interact with the virtual environment. To connect to the apps on the web you need to do $100 yearly subscription with iFit. The screen is also hard to see due to being non-back-lit and far from the seat.
- We don’t recommend the ProForm Hybrid elliptical for heavyweight exercisers as it won’t be stable and does wobbling when doing the cross training exercise.
What is special about ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical
- Pedals are adjustable fore/aft. You can simply adjust them by a twist of a knob located underneath the pedals. Therefore, the average height members of the family won’t have any problem finding their perfect position on ProForm Hybrid Trainer.
- Two machines in One. ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical and recumbent bike is two machine in one. You can change from recumbent to elliptical in 5 seconds in two (2) simple steps. One step is to lower the pedals and the second step is to move the console to a vertical position. You don’t even need to completely get off the ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical and recumbent bike.
- Variety of exercises for elderly and younger family members. For elderly members of the family doing elliptical is not very convenient. However, the recumbent bike is recommended for everyone by physiotherapists. Elliptical exercise by itself can also be boring from time to time, especially if you don’t have much of options on the machine. The Hybrid Trainer elliptical allows you to do 5 minutes of easy workout on the seat, get back up and continue the elliptical training. It’s a unique verity that the Hybrid elliptical offers for the exerciser.
ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical has 16 quiet and smooth resistance levels. That’s enough to challenge the novice and intermediate level exercisers but professional exercisers probably need more resistance. You can change the tension by pressing the buttons located on the console. Keep in mind the ProForm Hybrid doesn’t have resistance controls on the handlebars, so you need to reach out to the console for adjusting resistance.
Stride and Incline
The ProForm Hybrid Trainer has a 15 inches non-adjustable stride. It also doesn’t have incline ramp so, the user can’t do more challenging training. The stride length is too short and that’s one of the reasons we don’t recommend ProForm Hybrid elliptical to trainees above 6 feet. Unless they want to use it as a recumbent bike. In fact usually, the light and short female trainees are the ones that really appreciate the workout the ProForm Hybrid offers.
ProForm Hybrid elliptical trainer has a very basic Display. It’s not back-lit with the blue light so you won’t see the values if you are working out in dark. The Display runs on four (4) AAA batteries. You can track the following necessary workout information on the screen. Time, Calories, RPM, HR etc.
This elliptical machine has 16 preset-programs, 8 for recumbent exercise on the right side of the console and 8 for the elliptical exercise on the left side of the console. You can choose any of the programs and enjoy the workout.
Bluetooth and App connectivity
You can connect the ProForm Hybrid to your device through Bluetooth and track all your data on the App. This Trainer is compatible with iFit App so, you can access to multiple program libraries and exercises designed by popular TV trainers Chris and Heidi Powell. However, the subscription is not included and you need to buy $100 yearly subscription.
Cooling fan and speaker
The Proform Hybrid Trainer elliptical doesn’t have the cooling fan but it has a speaker. You can plug in the iPod or MP3 player to listen to your music.
The hybrid elliptical is compatible with wireless chest strap and also has pulse sensors on the handlebars.
Pedals and Handlebars
On this model of the ProForm Hybrid Trainer, the pedals and the seat are both For/Aft adjustable to accommodate different sizes of users for recumbent exercise. They are large and cushioned to make both your elliptical and recumbent exercise more enjoyable. You don’t have to put your feet in a cage, simply place your feet on secure and oversized pedals. The lack of the strap is convenient for some while some users prefer strap during the recumbent exercise.
Note: Because the seat and pedals can’t be adjusted to come too close, shorter trainees wouldn’t be able to reach the pedals fully and find a comfortable and natural position for recumbent training.
ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical offers both stationary and moving handlebars. It means you can concentrate both on your lower body and core by using the stationary grips, or do a full body training using the moving handlebars. There are heart rate sensors built on the stationary hand-grips, however, some users question the accuracy of them. Note that you can’t use the handlebars during the recumbent exercise and for better stability, you need to hold the hand-grips on the sides of the seat.
It’s soft and comfortable in the bottom and the backrest is ventilated to keep you fresh during the long period of cardio workout. As mentioned before the seat is also adjustable for/aft but not up and down. The seat is a great feature for elderly users who need to something to support their back during the workout. So, either you are recovering or your spouse is 80 and needs a comfortable seat to exercise while you are still 65 and can do elliptical, the ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical and recumbent has you covered. Lean back on the comfortable seat and improve the blood circulation while watching TV.
More information on ProForm Hybrid Trainer
Flywheel and Drive
ProForm Hybrid Trainer has a light 13-lb flywheel, which is not much but you can’t really beat the price. Plus, this machine is magnetic so the weight of the flywheel is not a huge factor. This elliptical recumbent machine also features a quiet belt drive system to eliminate the need for everyday maintenance. The mechanism of ProForm Hybrid Trainer works both forward and reverse. So, you can work on different muscles pedaling in both directions.
ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical has two big wheels located in front of the machine for easy portability. Pick up the machine from the rear and take it wherever you want in the house.
- Water bottle holder
- Transport Wheels
- User warranty:
- 5-Year on the frame
- 90-Day parts and labor
Things you can purchasing with ProForm Hybrid Trainer:
ProForm Hybrid Trainer assembly
Assembly is pretty easy and you wouldn’t need a technician to do it for you. You are probably going to need a second person to help you hold the unit etc. The tools you need to put the Hybrid Trainer together are Phillipe screwdriver, an adjustable wrench, and a rubber mallet hammer or something alike.
Long story short, if you are below 6.2″ and aren’t pro exerciser and your budget is below $400, the ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical is the best option for you. You won’t find any other machine in this price range that offers what ProForm Hybrid Trainer does. If you want better and can afford to spend more, I recommend the Sole E35. The magnetic resistance on Hybrid Trainer is enough for new and intermediate levels, you can even do strength training. It’s quiet and apartment friendly. It’s also Bluetooth enabled and connects to iFit which is a great feature for accessing more training programs.
You don’t get bored doing cardio due to the variety of workout you get on ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical and recumbent bike. When standing on the ProForm Hybrid Trainer elliptical you have no obstacle to prevent you from watching TV as the console is lower than the handlebars. However, there are some functionalities missing. The LCD display is dark, the machine doesn’t have incline ramp and the stride is short but you also need to consider that you are paying only few hundred dollars and not few thousand.
Will I recommend you buy the ProForm Hybrid elliptical if you can afford to spend more than $500 or if you are an elite athlete? Probably not, because it’s not durable for intense exercise and it doesn’t have much of functionalities.
- Two in one design
- Multiple handlebars
- 16 Magnetic resistance levels
- It doesn’t require electricity plugin
- 16 Preset-programs
- iFit compatibility
- Adjustable seat and pedals
- Affordable price
- Large and cushioned foot pedals
- Forward and reverse motion
- Display is not back-lit
- There is no user profile on the console
- The stride is short
- It doesn’t have incline ramp
- Short part warranty
- It doesn’t have media shelf
- Display is too far when doing recumbent exercise
- You can’t get heart rate while doing recumbent if you are not wearing chest strap
- Recumbent can’t be used by people shorter trainees