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Best Step Machines (Reviews and Buying Guide) in 2021

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With health and fitness being so important to our well-being, it is essential that we make every effort to work out as often as possible to stay in top shape, both physically and mentally. However, gym memberships can be expensive and it’s often difficult to find the time to go. That’s where the best step machines come in so you can work out in the comfort of your own home.

These workout machines allow you to work your entire body so you never skip a leg, back or chest day again. We have a range of great options for all levels that offer convenience, high performance and excellent quality, whatever your fitness goals are for 2020 and beyond.

MaxiClimber The first patented vertical climber

Our top pick for the best step machine is the MaxiClimber, the original patented, intuitive, feature-packed vertical climber. This versatile machine is lightweight and easy to use for a full-body workout like you’ve never experienced.

It supports up to 240 pounds and its low impact reduces the risk of injury, while the companion fitness app lets you track and record your progress to see where you need to improve. It’s suitable for most heights, although the timer display may seem a bit low for some, but that’s a small price to pay for the convenience and performance you get from this vertical climber.

Top Pick
MaxiClimber The first patented vertical climber

Specifications

  • Versatile
  • Companion fitness app
  • Full body workout
  • Low impact
  • Supports up to 240 pounds
  • 90% assembled

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to use
  • Saves time going to the gym

Cons

  • Timer display may be too dim for some users

Sunny Health & Gymnastics step machine

If you’re looking for a workout machine that offers great value without sacrificing quality and results, the Sunny Health &; Fitness Twist Stepper Step Machine is perfect for those on a budget or lacking space.

The LCD display is easy to read, while the twisting action allows for an effective workout, and the handlebars are there to keep you steady during more intense sessions. Non-slip pedals and adjustable step heights help you progress. It’s a bit basic compared to our other picks, but for such a great price, you can’t complain.

Sunny Health & Gymnastics step machine

  • LCD monitor
  • Handlebar
  • Twist action
  • Non-slip pedals
  • Heavy metal construction
  • Supports up to 250 pounds

Pros

  • Adjustable step height
  • Low impact training
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • The machine seems a bit simple compared to other options

Gazelle Freestyle Step Machine by Tony Little

If you want to put the finishing touches on your gym and do it in style, the Gazelle Freestyle from Tony Little is the perfect addition and final piece of the puzzle to ensure you have a gym that will kick your ass every time you step in.

This home gym machine is stable and safe, with non-slip pedals and foam handlebars to keep you in place, while the smooth transitions make it comfortable to use. It supports up to 300 pounds, which is one of the largest capacities we’ve found, and if you ever need to create extra space, it folds flat for storage. It’s a little difficult to move around because of its size, so we hope you’ll find a permanent place for it.

  • Extra-wide, non-slip pedals
  • High-density foam handlebars
  • Folds flat
  • Fitness computer
  • Smooth transition
  • Supports up to 300 pounds

Sportsroyals Vertical climbers

If the Gazelle is only slightly out of your price range, the Sportsroyals Vertical Climber is another fantastic alternative that provides an excellent and satisfying workout. This improved design ensures better quality and includes 5 adjustable height levels, an LCD screen and wear-resistant pulleys for durability.

It is stable and provides a full-body workout that is as challenging as you want it to be. When you’re not using it, you can fold it up and store it until the next time, even if the thought of getting on it terrifies you again that’s exactly the point. However, while there’s a lot to like, the movement isn’t as smooth as other options, and it may take some getting used to. For more must-have fitness equipment for your home gym, check out our guide to the best exercise bikes.

Sportsroyals Vertical climbers

  • Provides a full-body workout
  • Durable construction
  • 5 adjustable height levels
  • Stable
  • LCD display
  • Supports up to 300 pounds

Relife Rebuild Your Life (en Anglais) Vertical Climber

The Relife Rebuild Your Life vertical climber features a durable frame and high-density foam handles. It also offers adjustable resistance and low friction to ensure a worthwhile workout every time.

There’s a one-year parts warranty to deal with any issues, and it positions your center of gravity better than other options to help you feel more secure. Unfortunately, the monitor leaves a lot to be desired, but if you have a pedometer or step-counting app, you can always use it instead. You might also be interested in some of the best curling bars on our list, so check them out.

Relife Rebuild Your Life (en anglais) Vertical Climber

  • Durable frame
  • High-density foam handles
  • Adjustable resistance
  • Low friction
  • One year warranty
  • Supports up to 260 pounds

Step Machine Buying Guide


Features to look for in step machines


Before finalizing your choice for the best step machine to bring into your home gym, check out these essential features to look for to make sure you find the right one for you.

Weight capacity – Weight capacity will help you determine the maximum weight each machine can handle, and this ranges from about 200 to 350 pounds. While the machines are mostly sturdy, it’s unlikely that you’ll want to risk putting too much weight on them, especially if they’re on the cheaper end of the scale.

Materials – Solid steel construction ensures durability, while rubber foot pads keep your feet secure as you walk. The toughest materials put you and others at risk, so you need to be careful about which materials you trust.

Fit – If you want to achieve your fitness goals, fitting your step machine is crucial. This allows you to measure how far you’ve come and ensured that you’re getting the most out of your stepper. Without adjustment, you may stagnate, and even if you don’t want to tear up, it’s important to keep increasing the tension levels when you get too easy.

Stability – The stability of the machine ensures a safe and enjoyable workout. So, having a machine with a solid and secure base will allow you to get out of your workout in the event of injury or damage to your surroundings. Even weight distribution is a must, which will allow you to feel more comfortable and make movements more natural.

Fitness Tracking – Machines with fitness tracking are a great way to check your progress and are great for anyone who keeps a workout journal. Most machines come with a fitness tracker, while others use a Bluetooth app to transfer data. However, be careful to look for a device that reliably tracks your fitness, and if you’re unsure, use your phone to check your stats.

Smoothness – One of the great things about step machines is that they are low impact, which reduces the strain and pressure on joints to decrease the risk of injury or ligament damage. This low impact is directly related to the smoothness of the machine. The less smooth the machine is, the more pressure is placed on the joints, which is not ideal for long workouts.

Size – Different needs require different sized step machines. If you’re looking for an under-desk leg workout, you don’t need a large vertical step machine. If you are looking to do a full body workout, you will need a large machine to do so. It all depends on your needs and goals to find the right size for you, but don’t forget to consider if it can fit in the workout area and if you can store it easily when not in use.

Portability – While you probably don’t need to move your step trainer around too much, portability is still important, especially if your home gym is more of makeshift workout space. A portable machine is easier to store, so if you want to take it to work or move, it’s easy to transport. Larger machines are often foldable to make portability more manageable.

Warranty – You’ll find different warranty periods for different brands, so think about how these warranties benefit you and how they match the price. If a machine seems too cheap to be true, it’s probably because there’s no warranty. Conversely, an expensive machine means you’ll probably get a better warranty.

Types of stepper machines


While all step machines can be useful, there are different types to target different areas depending on your goals. Here are the types of step machines you will come across.

Step Machines – Step machines are like mini elliptical machines and work by creating the motion yourself and using momentum. They help improve endurance and strengthen the muscles around the legs. Most offer handles for stability, as well as oversized footrests to hold you down.

Twist Steppers – Twist steppers are great for thigh workouts and some come with resistance bands to add an extra dimension to your workout. They are smaller than steppers and you can use them at home or under the desk at work to work out discreetly throughout the day.

Vertical Climbers – Vertical climbers are a combination of several machines designed to provide a full-body workout and target different muscle groups at the same time. They are great for building arm and shoulder strength, but also for training calves and thighs. Many climbers use these machines to improve their technique, but you can also benefit from them even if you don’t like climbing rocks. They are large but fold up for easy storage.

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