With all the different products and competing claims, selecting a non-impact cardio trainer can be a long and dizzying exercise, but it doesn’t have to be. Consider that for every 100 ellipticals and cross trainers sold each year, only three are traded in. So your choice has long-term impact on members satisfaction and your bottom line, especially because non-impact cardio trainers make up over 25% of all fitness equipment purchases. Yet there has never been a straightforward, systematic method for evaluating your options – until now. Here are five key factors to make your choice clear. 1. Get beyond the hype. Flip through any trade publication and you’ll be barraged with equipment ads promising six pack abs and bulging biceps. But how can you tell what’s grounded in science? Demand to see the evidence behind the advertising. Look into the company’s background and find out how, and why, new products are developed. 2. Consider cardio. All non-impact cardio workouts are not created equal. Different equipment leads to different results. According to research teams at the University of Wisconsin – LaCrosse, when test subjects thought they were working out just as hard on all three machines, they ended up burning a lot more calories on this Cybex Arc Trainer. In other words, they burned 16% more calories on an Arc Trainer than on an elliptical. The equivalent of 500 more calories per week, 26,000 more calories per year, and seven more pounds of fat. That’s the same amount of time, with the same effort – just better results. 3. Look beyond cardio. What machine provides the best cross-training benefits to your members? AthleteFIT introduced Arc Trainer power training to two very different athletes. Within eight weeks, our soccer player experienced significant changes in her running speed and lower body strength. Our recreational exerciser was introduced to a leg press Arc Trainer sprint session. Six weeks later, he was jumping significantly higher, as well as running faster – all while recovering more easily, which leads us to some simple conclusions. 4. Pain versus gain. It’s simple: the better exercisers feel, the better their results. Researchers at the University of North Carolina measured perceived effort versus actual effort. Their discovery? When it comes to cardio trainers, non-impact does not equal non-stress. Elliptical knees stress is comparable to lungeing. Elliptical motion requires the constant pushing forward which may cause overuses issues on the knees. The arc motion is down and back. The Arc Trainer knee stress is comparable to walking. The Arc Trainer delivers a more comfortable workout so you can exercise longer, with greater comfort, get better results and recover faster. 5. It’s all about versatility. In all likelihood, your membership is made up of a spectrum of segments. You’re looking for a machine that has the versatility to help the most diverse range of members in the most different ways. Consider these fitness trends: high intensity interval training, exercise and weight loss, power training. The Arc Trainer is designed for it all. These five key criteria should help you to make an informed, intelligent purchase decision. Remember to look at all your options. Ask the tough questions and demand proof. You’ll discover there is only one machine that aces the Ultimate Fitness Test.