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An elliptical machine, right there in your own home can do wonders to your body, health, and soul.
That is, in case you'll actually use it, and not as a coat rack.
So, in this Schwinn 470 elliptical review, we'll check if one of the most popular models by Schwinn, is worth its price tag.
Schwinn 470 Elliptical Review
The 470 by Schwinn is one of the more popular ellipticals out there.
It's packed with features, which is a good thing, because let's face it, exercising on an elliptical trainers can get quite boring.
Especially over time. On the other hand, they also bump up the price.
And in the 470's case, it's a huge bump.
That in mind, when we look for cardio equipment, we want to make sure it can, and will make us work up a sweat whenever we'll use it.
That's the whole point of owning a cardio equipment.
And in that field, the 470 delivers, and in oh so many ways.
Be it its flywheel, the 25 resistance levels, the 10-degree incline ability, the Bluetooth connectivity or the 29 workout programs.
Bottom line is, it's a sturdy, feature packed, well built elliptical that can help you achieve your fitness goal by turning your workouts to a fun routine you'll actually be looking forward to.
This is a serious piece of equipment, and I would only recommend it to you if you're know you'll definitely use it.
should you even own an elliptical trainer?
If you're having trouble going to the gym every other day, or you're just plain lazy, an in-home elliptical machine might do the trick.
Let's face it, working out at home is a lot more convenient than at the gym.
Not as fun, but more convenient.
I mean, between the job, the kids, your other half, and the parole officer, it can get pretty hard squeezing a 45 minutes workout in the gym.
Not to mention the time it might take you getting there and back.
Therefore, an elliptical machine, right there in front of you, might actually help you get the exercise you need, to get in shape and maintain it.
And I'm not saying that.
Losing the weight is only half the job, the other half is maintaining it.
This study from Penn State College of Medicine, states that only one out of six, of once overweight or obese Americans, lose weight and maintain that loss.
So a cardio equipment in your own home, which you can use whenever you want, in such a convenient manner, might actually be helpful to not only lose weight but also maintain it in the long run.
Now, obviously that's only half of the answer since there are a lot more factors on the line, (like diet) but hopefully, you get my point, and you also don't have a parole officer.
You Might Also Want To Consider:
Elliptical For Weight Loss?
First of all, excuse me for stating the obvious, but, you can lose weight with any cardio equipment. (And a proper diet)
Secondly, excuse me for rehearsing my material.
Because if you've read my best elliptical under 1,000 article, then you know where I'm going with this.
Nevertheless, it's still relevant to the topic we're hitting.
Anyhow, this calorie burning chart from Harvard medical school shows that on an elliptical, you will burn an average of 2.16 calories for every pound of body weight.
So, if you weigh, let's say a 185 pounds, exercising on an elliptical for 30 minutes will make you shed 400 calories.
Not bad at all, actually, it's pretty darn impressive.
Because, the only other 3 gym activities/equipment that will help you burn more calories than the elliptical are:
- Ski Machine - 422 Calories
- Aerobics, Step: High Impact - 444 Calories
- bicycling, Stationary: Vigorous - 466 Calories
However, the main advantage the elliptical has over the other 3, is that it's a low impact cardio equipment.
Which means two things:
- You don't feel like you've been hit by a truck after a workout.
- It will be easy for you to break the "30 minutes workout barrier" and burn even more calories.
So, yeah, an elliptical is good for weight loss, but again, it's not the only factor on the line.
Elliptical trainers have more than a few benefits to them.
From a pure fitness perspective, the fact that it works both your upper and lower body is the main one.
You won't find any other cardio equipment that has this ability.
It's what also contributes to the fact that calorie burning is quite effective on an elliptical.
However, that's not the only benefit.
Another noteworthy advantage the elliptical bike has to offer is a workout that is easy on the joints.
Its design is meant to emulate the natural movement of your hips, knees, ankles, and joints as if you were running or walking.
Which brings us to the next point, the elliptical is a low impact fitness equipment.
So, if you're avoiding jogging because you're recovering from an injury, or you suffer from joint pain, you would still be able to exercise on an elliptical.
All while you burn the same (if not more) amount of calories, without stressing your muscles too much or putting pressure on your joints.
There are other benefits to the elliptical, but since this article isn't specifically about them, let's get to the point already.
our Schwinn 470 Elliptical Review
The Schwinn 470 elliptical machine we're reviewing here is the new version of the model.
It's certainly not the entry level elliptical from Schwinn, (that would be the Schwinn 430), however, in the same time, there are more sophisticated alternatives to it on the market.
Nevertheless, it is still one of the most popular models out there, and that's despite, or because of its price.
I'll let you be the judge of that.
On paper, it's a step up compared to the old one, mainly because of its Bluetooth connectivity.
But since we know there are more to an elliptical than just its connection options, we decided to do a full review of the Schwinn 470 elliptical machine.
Just to see if this baby is living up to its name.
It's not a cheap elliptical, so if you're on a limited budget, it might be best for you to check the 430 I linked to a couple lines above.
And one more thing before we start:
In this review, we've decided to do things a bit differently by starting with,
Knowing that features are a huge buying factor, especially in this price range, we decided to break them down first, and then move on to the "boring" mechanical parts.
Just wanted to get this out of the way.
So now, let's start.
First Of All, The Fan
The 470 packs a 3-speed fan, which might come in handy when you're really sweating on the machine.
But, don't expect to get mind-blowing wind through your hair, while you look sexy and sweaty at the same time.
However, the fan does help a bit, and in my books, when you're sweaty, any wind is better than no wind.
Next, The Aux Input And The Speakers
So, you know that feeling when you're really exhausted and you're favorite tune comes up and you suddenly feel re-energized?
You know, as if you're Rocky and someone is doing a training montage featuring you?
No? It's just me?
But this research clearly states that listening to music with a strong groove activates the motor system.
Anyway, the Schwinn 470 has an aux input that will allow you to blast your favorite songs and tracks to its two sealed acoustic speakers.
All kidding aside, the speakers are actually not that bad, I mean they're not home stereo speakers, but they do sound pretty good.
And besides giving you an extra boost, working out to your favorite tunes might help turn your workout sessions to something fun that you're actually looking forward to.
And The USB Port
In old models the USB port was used to transfer workout data from the bike to the Schwinn-connect website.
But since the Schwinn 470 packs a Bluetooth capability, this is not the case here.
And also schwinnconnect.com was taken down and is no longer supported.
In this case, the USB port is simply used to charge your smart device, which you might be using while you exercise besides listening to your songs.
Which brings me to the next point.
The Media Rack
Someone has to say it.
Working out on an elliptical can get a little bit boring over time, and during the workout.
That's why having something like the media rack might help pass the time more easily.
The media rack is essentially a shelf on which you will be able to place your phone, tablet, or magazine.
And obviously, It comes even handier if your elliptical is not in front of the TV.
Basically, it allows you to watch Stranger Things on your tablet while you workout.
Almost all of Schwinn's models feature a thing that's called: Dual Track Display.
Luckily, the Schwinn 470 elliptical machine is one of them.
Because when your tablet is on the media rack, it's blocking the main display with all the stats.
And that's where the "dual thingy" comes in.
You'll be able to keep track on pretty much everything with the lower display since it shows the:
- Level of resistance
- Calories burned
Schwinn is not the only brand that has a media rack on its models, but, it's one of two that offer this feature.
So no worries, you're able to track your workout metrics even if you're deep into your show on Netflix.
Another thing I like about the displays here is the fact that they both have backlight.
Something I don't like about it, is that you can't dim it, and when you workout in really dark rooms that light can sting your brain.
The console of the Schwinn 470, at least in my opinion, is far more beautiful than the old one, that frankly, looked like an alien's face staring at you.
However, I can totally see a few worried faces from users who have never used this console before.
And it's easy to understand why.
The console does look a little bit scary with all its buttons at first, but, once you get to know it, it's quite easy to operate.
In fact, I might as go as far as saying that you won't need to read the user manual in order to understand how to use it.
Overall Schwinn did a good job redesigning the console and gave it a more modern look, and as stated above, it's rather easy to use once you play with it a couple of times.
One last thing about the console that I personally liked are the quick resistance level buttons.
With them, you'll be able to fast skip a few levels.
So if you're at level 5 and you want to go up to 10, you only have to press one button and you're there.
This is quite helpful if you're into high-intensity workouts.
Another noteworthy option of the Schwinn 470 is its user profile setting.
Even though the number of user profiles, 4, is the same as was in the old 470, it still a helpful feature.
Especially, if you're not the only one that will be using this elliptical machine.
Basically, a user profile won't only store your predefined settings, but also your weight, age, sex, height, etc.
In the same time, it's what also helps the machine customize some of the workout presets to the user.
Bottom line, if you're not the only one who will be using the Schwinn 470, having 4 users profiles is quite helpful.
In the old model, if you wanted to keep track of your progress and general workout stats, you had to download it to a USB device, connect it to your PC and upload it to the Schwinn connect website.
This is not the case with the 470. Since it has Bluetooth connectivity.
Having Bluetooth ability makes the whole process a lot easier.
You'll be able to pair your 470 with your phone and to sync all your stats without all the hassle.
And that's not only great because the process is easier, but also because keeping track of your progress might actually help keep your motivation level high.
Think about it, you'll always know how much calories you've burned, the distance you've gone, and that might motivate you to keep going.
But the Bluetooth has another usage you'll might want to try, and that's the syncing with the RunSocial App.
The RideSocial app is a social exercise app, that enables people from all over the world to compete and share progress with each other, or on various social networks.
The app is actually live and besides you being able to challenge other users, the app also simulates running in different locations in the world.
Obviously, it doesn't beat running in the real world, but it can sure add a competitive aspect to your workout, and helps spice things up a bit.
And, the fact that you can go against other users is also a motivation boost, so yeah, I think it's a nice feature to have.
The new Schwinn 470 has 29 preset workout programs, just like the old one did.
However, that's still slightly higher than the 22 that come with the 430.
Having this much presets for you to choose from, basically means you can diversify your routine from time to time.
It also means that you don't have to overthink how you should "attack" the bike in order to get the most out of it.
As I've just said above, the Schwinn 470 does provide a nice share of presets, and 4 of them you can set as you please.
The rest, like the 12 profile programs, for example, will have the bike automatically adjust the resistance and overall intensity of your exercise.
Another example is the heart rate program.
It basically allows you to set a bpm goal.
The 470 will automatically adjust its settings until you reach that goal, and will try to help you maintain it throughout your workout.
Heart rate sensors
Speaking of, the Schwinn 470 does have heart rate sensors.
In my opinion, their location could have been better.
It would've been a lot more convenient and practical to have them on the elliptical arms.
Because if you want to get a pulse reading, you'll have to hold on to the sensors for a minimum of 30 seconds.
That's 30 seconds you're not working your arms.
It might not sound bad if you want to get a quick pulse reading and then get back to work your arms.
But, if you want to keep a constant eye on your pulse, you'll have to keep your hands on the sensors.
That pretty much beats the point of an elliptical.
Though Schwinn is not the only one to not place the sensors on the elliptical arms, it would have been nice if they had.
On top of that, there's a chance the reading will not be very accurate.
There are several factors that affect the pulse accuracy reading such as, you moving (I know!), sweaty hands, moist hands, your EKG signals are too low for the sensors to pick up, etc.
On a good note though, you can get a non-coded transmitter like the Polar T31 that will work with your unit.
That way you'll get constant, accurate pulse reading, and you don't have to let go of the elliptical arms.
So now, let's move on to the more physical and technical aspects of the Schwinn 470.
The new version of the 470 has the same footprint as the old one did.
And although it might be a bit disappointing, for an elliptical at this level, it's within the range of average footprints.
The Schwinn 470 is 28.2" (71.5 cm) wide, 70.1" (178.1 cm) long, and 63.2" (160.5 cm) high.
Which makes it slightly wider than its direct competitor, the Nautilus E616 which is 26.7" wide.
Bottom line is, for an elliptical, the Schwinn 470 has a standard footprint.
However, make sure you add at least 15" space from all sides to assure maximum safety while using it.
So make sure you take it under consideration when you measure the available space in your place.
The stride length on the Schwinn elliptical is 20" long.
You can't adjust the stride, however, 20" stride should be enough for most users, including you.
20" is right there in the middle, not short, but, not too long either.
Since longer stride for users under 5'7 will often mean pulled, or just sore muscles.
Having a 20" stride basically means that Schwinn is aiming at a large number of potential users.
And for you, well as long as your not exceptionally tall, you should be fine with the 470's stride.
It does provide smooth motion, and it also promotes better emulation of the legs natural movement.
While 17 lbs might not sound as much, (because it doesn't), the flywheel of the Schwinn 470 is a perimeter weighted one.
It differs from others because its weight is distributed on its edges.
And It's good for a couple of reasons, but the main one is:
It helps the flywheel generate more inertia, despite being somewhat light-weighted.
The more inertia, the more weight going around full-circle, the more force you have to put in.
Secondly, having the weight distributed on the edge, helps the flywheel keep a constant momentum, and contributes to a smoother ride.
Finally, it also help cut off some unnecessary pounds from the unit's overall weight.
And although we're not talking about a portable bike, it's helpful if you know you'll be moving this thing around in your house.
Resistance type & levels
Besides the flywheel, the resistance type and the number of levels are other important factors for the exercise experience.
The 470 uses a magnetic based resistance which is good mainly because it requires less maintenance on your side, compared to a felt pad resistance type.
No wear and tear pads that you'll have to replace every couple of years, and no squishing sounds caused by the pad friction on the flywheel.
As for the number of levels, well, the Schwinn 470 has 25.
To compare, the Nautilus E616 also has 25 levels of magnetic based resistance, and the Schwinn 430 has 20.
General speaking 25 levels should be enough for you, and I highly doubt you'll ever be able to ride on the highest level.
Between you and me, 25 is just a number to make potential buyers go "WOWWW".
Nevertheless, it also means that there's a lot of room for you to progress on this machine.
The main thing I like about the incline adjustment in the Schwinn 470, is that it's motorized.
Secondly, the fact that you can change the incline during the workout.
On the Schwinn 430 for example, you won't be able to do so.
That's because It's got a manual adjustment, and you can't change it during the workout.
You have to stop pedaling to adjust it.
Having to stop every time you want to change the incline level can really hurt your workouts flow.
Having the option to change the incline on the go is great and can actually help increase the resistance level.
Furthermore, increasing the incline level targets your hamstrings and gluteal muscles.
So, it will allow you to specifically target those muscles if that's what you're after.
The Schwinn 470 offers a 10-degree incline ability, which is the standard in and even at higher priced ellipticals.
frame & sturdiness
Like many other elliptical trainers in its price range, the 470 can support a max user weight of 300 lbs.
It should be enough for most users.
Now, even though we're not talking about commercial gym equipment, the 470 does feel sturdy and stable.
It gives you a certain feeling of confidence when you ride it.
The build quality as expected from a brand like Schwinn is more than good.
However, like with any other equipment, some users complained about issues at the manufacturing level.
Parts that don't fit or that came broken, squeaking sound, etc.
It's hard to determine whether these issues really are a result of bad design/manufacturing, or shipping gone wrong.
Simply because the majority of users say the opposite.
That's why I always say make sure you buy from a respected retailer that can back up the purchase.
alternatives to the schwinn 470 elliptical bike
In its price range, there aren't many alternatives to Schwinn 470.
If you're willing to give up on some of the features, then you'll find some good ellipticals, like the Schwinn 430, or the Nautilus E614.
But, we wanted to list other ellipticals that can either offer you the same benefits the 470 does or more.
So, here goes.
1. Nautilus E616
The E616 by Nautilus is a direct competitor of the 470.
It's got Bluetooth connectivity, 20" stride, 29 workout programs,
a slightly heavier flywheel, motorized incline adjuster, and 25 resistance levels.
It's pretty much the exact copy of the Schwinn 470, so if you can get it at a lower price than it, I would say go for it.
Check its price here.
2. Nautilus E618
The E618 is one step up compared to the 470.
In addition to Bluetooth ability, it's got 22" stride, which is the main reason you'll want to consider it.
Furthermore, you'll also find 29 presets, 25 resistance levels, 30 lbs perimeter weight flywheel, motorized incline adjuster, and more.
And it also comes with wireless chest strap, that gives a much more accurate pulse reading than the sensors you see on most indoor bikes.
Check price here.
3. Sole Fitness E35 Elliptical Machine
Another step up from the Schwinn 470 is the E35 from Sole Fitness.
And though it doesn't have Bluetooth connectivity, it does have an adjustable stride length of 20" to 22".
features wise, It's not "sophisticated" as the Schwinn 470 or the two above.
However, it's closer to be considered as a commercial grade equipment.
Check the price here.
Wrapping Up The Schwinn 470 Elliptical Bike Review
The Schwinn 470 elliptical machine is one of the more popular ellipticals out there.
It's packed with features, which is a good thing because let's face it, exercising on an elliptical can get quite boring.
Especially, over time.
On the other hand, they also bump up the price.
Bottom line is that when we look for cardio equipment we want to make sure it can make us work up a sweat whenever we'll use it.
That's the whole point of owning cardio equipment.
The Schwinn 470 can deliver, and it does so in many ways.
Be it its perimeter weighted flywheel, the 25 resistance levels, the 10-degree incline ability, or the 29 workout programs.
Overall, it's a sturdy, feature packed, well built elliptical that can help you achieve your fitness goal by turning your workout to a fun routine you'll actually be looking forward to do.
If you really want an elliptical at this level, your main concern would be your budget.
Check current price here.