Best Folding Elliptical Trainers

Folding ellipticals are an ideal solution for having cardio workout equipment at home when you have a space limitation. You will come across ellipticals that meet your requirements and budget, but with one downside, they are too big for your small living space.

On the other hand, compact elliptical trainers do exist, but their size may not be enough. Folding elliptical trainers solve this problem. Folding elliptical trainers help you stay in shape even when there is limited space to place the machine.

The next challenge is this: How do you choose from the many collapsible models available today? To help you out, we’re giving you a rundown of the best options from the best brands. We did much of the legwork by looking at all the essential features, including fitness levels, quiet operation, preset workouts, digital screen displays, compact design, and more.   

So without further ado, let us look at the top folding elliptical trainers that are priced to provide immense value.

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Top 5 Best Folding Elliptical Machines for Compact Spaces

#1. Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i

Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i

Find out more on Amazon

The Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i tops our list of the best collapsible elliptical machines, and all it takes is one look to see why. It comes with a wide range of features that meet the needs of fitness enthusiasts of every skill level. Plus, it sports a compact design and requires minimal floor space.

This elliptical machine features a foldable frame, an 18-pound flywheel plus 18-inch strides. More so, it comes with a 7-inch high definition touch screen. The screen features web browsing capabilities and is also interactive with Google Maps.

The Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i has a wireless heart monitor, which also includes a Bluetooth chest strap. Conveniently placed controls on the handlebars ensure that you effortlessly adjust both the resistance and incline during workouts.

The 18-inch stride on this fitness trainer makes it most suitable for short people. Usually, the standard pace (or foot span) measures 20 inches. Also, the machine comes with 30 workout programs. The manufacturer has already pre-set these for you.

More so, the pre-loaded Google Maps are quite scenic. The device has videos from leading personal trainers as a bonus. In short, it has everything you could ever look for in an elliptical trainer and more, which is why we love this product.

Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i
  • 7-inch HD touch screen
  • Web browser-enabled monitor
  • It takes you around 15 minutes to assemble the kit
  • Extended warranty
  • The SE9i has 2-inch speakers that are compatible with smart devices
  • Once folded after use, the elliptical machine leaves a tiny footprint
  • All controls for incline and resistance are on the handlebars
  • It provides 30 exercising apps
  • It has a Bluetooth strap to help you collect pulse data via wireless connectivity
  • Experienced athletes will find the flywheel too light for their bodies

Here we have a video featuring SE9i.

NordicTrack Spacesaver SE9i...
  • At the touch of a button: Adjust your resistance between 24 different levels for a higher calorie burn using the convenient one Touch & Rag; controls.
  • Heart RATE training: find the right heart RATE zone for your fitness goals using the built-in heart rate sensors and included iFit bluetooth; Smart chest strap.
  • Wireless iFit Bluetooth chest strap, adjustable oversized pedals, 18 lb. Effective flywheel
  • 7" Smart HD Touchscreen, 30 Workout Apps, Auto Breeze Workout Fan, Integrated Quick Touch Handle Controls,
  • The Space Saver SE9i comes with a 10-Year Frame , 2-Year Parts , 1-Year Labor . Weight Capacity 325 Lb.

Last update on 2022-01-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

You May Like to Read: 5 Best Compact Elliptical Trainers

#2. AFG Sports 5.5AE

AFG Sports 5.5AE

Find out more on Amazon

Close on the heels of Nordic Track SE9i is the AFG Sports 5.5AE, a workhorse of an elliptical trainer in its own right. While it is not designed for the most intense workout conditions, it has a solid construction that can easily withstand weekly use.

With this product, you will definitely get the most value for your money, especially if you consider its reasonable price tag.

The AFG Sports 5.5AE mostly targets beginners seeking to start doing regular workouts. It comes with a lifetime warranty on its frame. The machine also prides itself on having a variety of workout levels not found in other ellipticals. It offers you five workout options, all pre-programmed.

The flywheel is light, at 14.3 pounds, plus its operation is not the quietest among other ellipticals. A Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) with three parts helps you keep track of your workout progress. You can see the speed, heart rate, time spent, and distance covered. At the same time, you can save your profile; other users can save theirs too.

On the downside, both intermediate and advanced users will find the flyweight too light. Besides, this elliptical has no options for adjusting incline levels. More so, at ten settings, it has few cardio resistance levels.

At the end of the day, we feel that it has a wide variety of features that far outweigh its shortcomings. Therefore, we can say that it is a great buy, especially if earmarked for a low-impact workout. Here’s a rundown of all its product highlights:

AFG Sports 5.5AE
  • Multiple users can save their profiles on this equipment
  • The keys are light with a quick response to the touch
  • It has an LCD screen with three displays for viewing performance data
  • It comes with a shelf for placing your mobile device
  • The elliptical features a water bottle holder
  • A built-in sound system for playing your exercise-themed music
  • The frame has a lifetime warranty
  • The equipment has only one incline option
  • Ten resistance levels only
  • Some users will find the 18-inch stride too short
  • It does not have a wireless heart rate monitor

AFG Sport 5.9AE Elliptical, Gray
  • Tablet connected: use your tablet along with the AFG fitness app to control your elliptical, track your workout and monitor your progress (via Bluetooth 4.0)
  • Equipped with Bluetooth 5-watt speakers for wireless music streaming
  • Superior motion: our signature frame design ensures the optimal body position, the most natural movement and the Best overall fitness exercise experience for you
  • Built for performance: offering a deluxe 23lb flywheel, quiet-drive controlled power incline, and a heavy welded-steel frame, the 5.9Ae is ready for a serious workout
  • Includes a free chest strap for wireless heart rate monitoring

Last update on 2022-01-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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#3. ProForm Smart Strider 895 CSE

ProForm Smart Strider 895 CSE

Find out more on Amazon

The ProForm Smart Strider 895 CSE is another model that stands out in a market saturated with countless space saving elliptical machines. It is designed for low-impact workout sessions, ideal for newbies and serious fitness enthusiasts who want to stay on their toes even when at home.

It is slightly more expensive than some other folding models. Even so, it comes with a long list of extra features that justify its higher price tag.

The ProForm Smart Strider 895 CSE folds, making it easy to store when not in use. It features a 7-inch touchscreen and does not require a connection to a power source. Both iFit and Google Maps programs help with automatically adjusting the slope of the elliptical pedals to simulate the real terrain.

Also, the 895 CSE comes with 32 pre-set workouts. It features an 18-pound flywheel backed by 24 resistance levels. Moreover, the pedals have added padding. An 18-inch elliptical path with an adjustment option of 10 percent is another notable feature. Besides, this elliptical trainer has a flexible armbar.

ProForm Smart Strider 895 CSE

Thanks to the iPod-compatible speakers, you can play your audio tracks for added motivation during cardio training. Also, the machine has a water bottle holder and a fan. As an addition, the frame has a lifetime warranty while the parts have a three-year guarantee. Upon delivery, the equipment requires little assembly.

  • Minimal assembly required
  • The handgrips and pedals have paddings for an enhanced hold
  • It comes with 24 pre-programmed workouts
  • Controls are on the handlebars
  • The elliptical has 2-inch speakers that are compatible with any smartphone
  • It has a water bottle holder
  • It features a foldable design for convenient storage
  • Lifetime warranty on the frame
  • It has a weight capacity of 325 pounds
  • Its resistance system is too light
  • ProForm has a reputation for slow customer service

ProForm 895 Cse Smart Strider...
  • 18 inch stride length, soft grips upper-body workout arms; oversized, adjustable, cushioned pedals; 18 lb. Effective Inertia-Enhanced flywheel, 24 resistance levels
  • CoolAire workout fan, vertical SpaceSaver design, integrated tablet holder, ipod-compatible audio, rear-mounted Transport wheels, water bottle holder
  • iFit ready, 7 inch Full-color touchscreen display, 32 workout apps, EKG heart rate monitor with included wireless chest strap, commercial-gauge solid steel construction
  • Adjustable leveling feet, out-of-box easy assembly. 325 lb. Weight capacity. Lifetime frame and 3-year parts & 1-Year labor
  • Once you create your raving workout playlist, just plug your iPod or MP3 player into our built-in sound system

Last update on 2022-01-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

#4. NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i

NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i

Find out more on Amazon

NordicTrack makes another appearance on this list with the SpaceSaver SE7i. If you feel that the SE9i is too rich for your blood, the SE7i might be right up your alley.

It has a smaller display screen, but this slight downgrade makes it more affordable. Besides, it is a tradeoff that most people are willing to make, especially if it does not affect the overall performance very much.

The NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i has a small footprint making it ideal for small living spaces. You can assemble this elliptical in 15 minutes, unlike the tedious one or two hours that other ellipticals consume. It packs 22 resistance levels coupled with an 18-pound wheel.

Besides, the SE7i features a rear-drive motor that helps propel movement on cushioned pedals translating to a smooth drive. The 18-inch stride is ideal for individuals with an average to a short height. Both short and tall trainees will enjoy the exceptional ergonomic experience delivered by this machine.

NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i

This elliptical trainer has a 5-inch display unit with a backlight for viewing, among others, your speed, time, distance covered, and calories burned. The equipment also features 24 built-in workouts from certified personal trainers that you can access via the display unit.

Other specs include a 2-inch speaker system where you can plug and play music from your devices. Also, the elliptical features a fan that adjusts to your workout speed. The frame has a warranty of 10 years, with two years for the parts and one year for labor.

NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i
  • The elliptical equipment folds easily for storage and saves on space
  • It features 24 built-in workouts for variety in routine selection
  • The 5-inch backlit display makes it easy to read your workout statistics
  • It has a tablet holder conveniently located above the display console
  • The incline has an adjustable rate of up to 8-degrees.
  • At 5 inches, the display unit is small compared to other ellipticals in the foldable category
  • Nordic has models with a higher incline than that in the SE7i

NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i Rear...
  • 30-Day iFIT Membership Included; Stream live & on-demand workouts on your equipment with Global Workouts & Studio Classes; Elite trainers adjust your equipment ($15 value)
  • 5-inch Backlit Display; Easily view and track important workout metrics as you train in the comfort of your home; AutoBreeze Workout Fan keeps you cool and comfortable through low-impact exercise
  • 22 Digital Resistance Levels; With iFIT, your trainer auto-adjusts your elliptical; Adjustable Power Ramp allows you to train at an incline; Adjustable stride is perfect for multiple users
  • Vertical SpaceSaver Design; Easily fold your elliptical for compact vertical storage when not in use; Upper Body Grips offer a total-body workout; SMR Silent Magnetic Resistance for quiet exercise
  • 325-pound total weight capacity; Protected with a 10-year frame warranty, 2-year parts warranty, and 1-year labor warranty; 67” H x 32” W x 80” L

Last update on 2022-01-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

#5. Horizon Fitness Evolve 3

Horizon Fitness Evolve 3

Find out more on Amazon

The Evolve 3 comes with a one-step foldable frame and a three-step easy assembly. You do not require professional help to set up this elliptical trainer in your home. The Evolve 3 features 32 pre-set workout programs with an automatic resistance control. It also has an 18-pound drive wheel.

Its ergonomic design is excellent, plus the machine is ideal for beginners. For enhanced progress monitoring, the elliptical machine has a 5.5-inch LCD screen with a backlight. Among the components, you can keep track of are:

  • Speed
  • Distance covered
  • Time spent
  • Heartbeat rate, and
  • Calories burned
Horizon Fitness Evolve 3

It comes with ViaFit software that is compatible with most mobile devices, plus you can also connect to your social media accounts. This trainer is also iPod-compatible thanks to the aspect that comes complete with a connection dock and a set of speakers for audio-enhanced exercising.

Grip sensors placed on the handlebars ensure that you monitor your heart rate effectively. Besides, Evolve 3 has a water bottle holder and a rack for holding your tablet. The manufacturer provides a lifetime guarantee on the frame, three years on parts, and one year on labor.

Horizon Fitness Evolve 3
  • Lifetime warranty on the frame
  • Easy assembly of the equipment in three steps
  • It is foldable and has a small footprint for convenient storage
  • Added specs such as iPod dock and speakers for audio
  • It has a water bottle holder
  • ViaFit software for fitness tracking online
  • It has a computer rack for holding your devices
  • Presence of pulse readers on the handlebar grips
  • It has an interactive video player that comes at an extra cost
  • It does not feature wireless monitoring for the heart rate, an aspect that is available in other elliptical trainers
  • There is no incline feature

Horizon Fitness 7.0 AE Elliptical...
  • ADVANCED FEATURES & PERFORMANCE: Smooth, durable elliptical with a durable, rugged frame for performance. Enjoy intuitive controls, app integrations and Bluetooth connectivity for your devices, all powered with Horizon's exceptional design.
  • SMART, BLUETOOTH CONNECTION: Bring your fitness classes, music, and entertainment to your workouts with advanced Bluetooth speakers. Smart fitness technology pushes data to your favorite tracking apps. No subscription or membership required.
  • CONVENIENT CONTROLS: Quickly shift between 20 levels of resistance and incline with one-touch keys and handlebar controls. Includes device holder and rapid-charge USB port to power your cardio workouts.
  • TARGET & TONE WITH INCLINE: Get enhanced workout variety and target your glutes, hamstrings and calves with up to 20 levels of resistance. Adjust the resistance and incline effortlessly. Transitions are swift, smooth, and comfortable.
  • DURABLE, ERGONOMIC FRAME: Lifetime warranty on the Six Star non-folding frame. Designed to maintain ideal body position and maximize comfort. The heavy-duty 23-pound flywheel and advanced pulley system deliver smooth, consistent motion.

Last update on 2022-01-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Our Verdict and What Did We Find Out about folding Elliptical Machines?

We noticed that most users loved the Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i. The fan, touch screen, and ease of assembly are some of the strong points that users pointed. However, it is massive, and you might need an extra pair of hands when offloading it from the delivery truck. Also, some people felt that the instructions provided on the user’s manual were scanty and should have more detail.

Regarding the AFG Sports 5.5AE, we found out that it did not pose any issues with the assembly. Besides, users considered it stable owing to the bulkiness. We realized that indeed, it runs quietly during a workout even though you need a mat to protect your floor from damage. However, user support from the manufacturers is wanting.

Moving on to the ProFrom Smart Strider 895 CSE, we found out that users experienced hitches with customer service at ProForm. The company needs to improve on this. Also, some stated that the display kept going on and off. You might need a little help from a techie. Nonetheless, we noted that users love the digital display, plus the resistance is sturdy.

The NordicTrack SpaceSaver SE7i comes with most of its parts pre-assembled. However, we discovered that some of the parts needed tightening. To get the best out of the product, you need to check that all components work fine. You might have to re-assemble it all over again. More than that, we found out that the elliptical machine is not only big but also bulky.

Finally, on the Horizon Fitness Evolve 3, we found out that it is effortless to use this elliptical trainer. Besides, customer service is on point. The service team responds very fast to queries. However, users reckoned that you need to set the machine on Energy-Saver mode. Otherwise, it might wobble a bit and generate some noise during operation.

Also Read: Best Elliptical Machine Under $2000

Buying Guide For Compact Elliptical Machine:

We settled on the Nordic Track SpaceSaver SE9i as our folding elliptical of choice. It is a high-end model, foldable, and easy to store when you are not using it. However, that is not the central aspect since all the other five models have a similar feature.

All the same, the SpaceSaver SE9i is easy to assemble, you only need about 15 minutes. Other elliptical trainers can take up to two hours tops. The SE9i has an excellent ergonomic design plus an adjustable incline, and a wide array of resistances make it ideal for all types of trainers.

However, the SE9i is pricier in comparison to the other four models. The price affords you benefits such as a 7-inch HD console. Through this display, you can surf the web, watch videos on YouTube, and simulate picturesque landscape views.

We hope that we have proved helpful information in our guide. Out of the five options, you can find something that will interest and help meet your body fitness objectives.

What to look for in a Folding Elliptical Machine

  • Folding design

A shortage of space should not discourage you from achieving your workout objectives. Folding trainers, as seen from the above review, will save you on space. Some of the equipment available can even take half the area you had designated for your gym. Take measurements, if you must, as this will give you an insight into how much room the equipment will utilize.

  • Weight

Folding ellipticals weigh much less than the other comparable non-foldable designs. Besides, they are compact equipment that you can move with ease from the storage to the training area and back. Also, while checking on the component’s weight, be prepared to sacrifice on a few specs.

  • Price

Ellipticals that fold retail at a price range that most trainees can afford. However, going for an elliptical on a tight budget may result in an item that does not have the product guarantees offered in pricey models. Nonetheless, with proper research, you cannot miss out on an elliptical that meets your expectations.

  • Performance

Numerous issues come to mind when you gauge the expected output of a folding elliptical machine. You need to ask yourself whether the equipment yields high or low impact workouts. At the same time, carry out some investigations on the brand reputation. Also, compare the product guarantees on the frame, parts, and labor.

  • Features

An excellent way to find the best folding elliptical is by listing the features. Start by identifying what you would like your dream equipment to have. Also, make an allowance for specs that you may not need. For instance, if you need to keep hydrating your body while exercising, the equipment must have a place for holding your water bottle.


By living in a small house or apartment, you do not have the luxury that comes with having a generous space for physical training. Fortunately, you can get the best of the available space by purchasing foldable elliptical equipment.  You can either keep it at the corner of your living room or fold the machine to half the size.

Most trainees assume, falsely, that a folding elliptical machine does not have the stability as the non-folding variant. Since the equipment has a collapsible frame, one can understand why such a concern arises. To avoid and overcome such doubt, do your homework extensively.

Regarding size, make sure that you measure the space where you intend to have the cardio equipment. Stride length, the space between the front and rear pedals, is another crucial aspect. Go for a stride length of between 18 and 20 inches.

About Gaurav Dhir

Gaurav Dhir, B. Tech, PGDCM is an engineer and MBA by training. A fitness aficionado, Gaurav follows a strict diet and exercise regimen to keep himself vigorously active. He loves playing sports and being outdoors. Gaurav is responsible for the health and wellness of 4 generations including his son, elderly parents and very elderly grandparents.