Bowflex Elliptical Review: Reinventing a New Routine

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You’re over the same old spin classes or running on the treadmill. You want to speed up the metabolism. And you want to see the effects of high-intensity interval training (HIIT). If you don’t want to go to the gym, your Bowflex elliptical will do the job instead. You don’t have to spend countless hours at the gym or running aimlessly on a treadmill to see results. Hiking up the intensity with interval training might be what your body’s been missing. That’s especially true if you’ve hit a plateau and aren’t seeing the results any longer.

There’s always some new fitness fad or crazy workout making its way around. And celebrities endorse them, making many believe they work. Fad diets and so-called “detox” products claim they will help you miraculously lose weight. Then there are the claims that gyms and equipment manufacturers make. It’s hard to know what to believe when it comes to fitness and reaching specific goals you set for yourself. The basic reality is this: If you want to see results, you have to do the work. And, if you can’t stand doing the same workout at the gym, it might be time to start something new. An elliptical trainer might be what your home gym’s been missing.

Free up that corner space in your den with the recliner you haven’t sat in for years. Make way for a new piece of equipment that’ll help you achieve your goals. The new year is right around the corner. Why wait? Your elliptical trainer can help you push forward your resolution a little earlier this year.

The Bowflex Elliptical Series

There are two Bowflex elliptical trainers available: the BXE216 and the BCXE116. Depending on your fitness goals and budget, each will benefit different users. Consumers must compare features, program settings, and intensity. Doing this allows you to find the best elliptical trainer.

Bowflex BXE216 Elliptical

The Bowflex BXE216 features a “burn rate” console and Switch Select Cushioning. It is Bluetooth-compatible and features 25 distinct resistance levels. Owners can set a challenging, or not so challenging, workout. A weighted flywheel helps increase stability and balance on the elliptical.

Furthermore, there are free connectivity options and real-time programs with this Bowflex elliptical trainer. Therefore, owners can quickly enhance their workouts or implement new training options daily. A high-speed, high-inertia drive system keeps the flywheel moving. The machine has a 400-pound user weight capacity.

Bowflex BXE116 Elliptical

The second of the two Bowflex elliptical trainers is the BXE116. It has a 7.5-inch LCD. It also has Switch Select pedal suspension technologies. The elliptical has an extensive program selection package.

Additionally, there are multiple resistance levels to select. Switch-Select cushioning helps increase muscle activation. It doesn’t place much pressure on the joints either. The cushioning ensures activation of the right muscle groups when working out. It’s compatible with iOS, and Android apps and workouts instantly sync after completion. The elliptical is Bluetooth 4.0 compatible, and the maximum weight capacity is 375 pounds.

Furthermore, there are free connectivity options and real-time programs with this Bowflex elliptical trainer. Therefore, owners can quickly enhance their workouts or implement new training options daily. A high-speed, high-inertia drive system keeps the flywheel moving. The machine has a 400-pound user weight capacity.

Bowflex Elliptical Trainer FAQs

If you’re shopping for a new elliptical, you’re bound to have questions related to comparing products. Warranties, financing options, and price, for example. Let’s take a look at what Bowflex is offering.

Warranties on Bowflex Elliptical Trainers

Both of the Bowflex ellipticals include excellent warranties. Owners also receive protection on parts and labor services. For both series, the warranty covers 15 years for the elliptical trainer’s frame. Additionally, a five-year warranty for mechanical parts and labor come with the treadmill. Last, a two-year warranty is available for work or services.

Bowflex elliptical trainer financing options

For those who buy the product with Bowflex, it’s possible to finance the purchase price. Through Synchrony Bank, consumers who pay the full amount within 18 months don’t pay interest. Additionally, Bowflex has great customer service with a 100-percent satisfaction guarantee. If within the first six weeks of ownership the customer isn’t happy, they can return it to Bowflex. Customers have to send the product back coupled with the return merchandise authorization (RMA) number for refunds.

How much is a new Bowflex elliptical trainer?

The Bowflex elliptical trainers are available through Bowflex as well as third-party vendors on sites like Amazon and eBay. The price is $1,200 to $2,000. Rates will vary depending on the model consumers buy and where they buy it. So, it’s essential to compare third-party sites before purchasing. Nevertheless, it’s important to note Bowflex might not warranty products bought through other vendors.

Our Review of the Best Elliptical Trainers

We compared the Bowflex elliptical series against other leading manufacturers. First, we considered usability. How many workout options there are, speed and resistance settings, and ease of use. We also look at the screen of the elliptical, and how easy it is to adjust workouts and settings. Next, our review focuses on user profiles, apps, and connectivity. Many people today want to stream and want to share workout metrics. The stride length and flywheel weight were also important aspects of our review regarding stability. Last, we compared the pricing, warranties, and overall construction of the ellipticals. We also include consumer ratings in our analysis. This information is key when it comes to judging customer satisfaction in a product.

Comparison Table

Where To Buy
Bowflex BXE216 Elliptical

Set, track and monitor your progress throughout your fitness journey with the free Bowflex Results Series app

Buy on Amazon

Bowflex BXE116 Elliptical

Burn more calories and stay motivated with the Bowflex Results Series BXE116

Buy on Amazon

Nautilus® E618 Elliptical

Sync with free downloadable RunSocial App and run through 19 locations with 27 routes alongside people from all over the world in real time

Buy on Amazon

Sole E35 Elliptical

Elliptical machine provides challenging cardio workout, supported by blue, backlit LDC display that helps you track essential training data

Buy on Amazon

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Use your tablet along with the AFG fitness app to control your elliptical, track your workout and monitor your progress (via Bluetooth 4.0)

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The Bowflex Elliptical Trainers

Bowflex has two elliptical trainers. When comparing the top ellipticals, consumers should consider both options and their capabilities.

Elliptical Trainers

Bowflex BXE216 Elliptical (Discontinued)

  • 11 Pre-Programmed Workouts
  • 25 Resistance Levels
  • High speed, high inertia drive system with a perimeter weighted flywheel for easy start up and smooth, consistent workouts
  • Dimensions: 77" L x 31" W x 70" H || Weight: 263 lbs || Weight limit: 400 lbs
  • Adjust pedal angle for comfort or for additional muscle activation

This elliptical has 25 resistance settings and is Bluetooth 4.0 compatible. Owners can connect with the Bowflex app as well as third-party workout apps. There are 11 workouts, and a long 22-inch stride length allows owners to maximize mobility. The Switch Select Cushioning system enables users to adjust the pedal angle when completing circular rotations.

Using Bluetooth connectivity allows users to sync their workout online once they finish instantly. This app allows you to keep track of previous workouts and metrics. Additionally, it enables owners to compare their past results and track their progress on the elliptical.

One reviewer indicates the elliptical is easy to set up. The app and Bluetooth connectivity also allow owners to get the most out of their workouts and monitor progress. Another reviewer mentions issues with the Bowflex elliptical trainer not starting. This customer had to return one machine and the second one still has glitches at times.

The BXE216 is $$$ to $$$. The average rating is 3.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon, which is a bit low considering the investment required.

Elliptical Trainers 2

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Bowflex BXE116 Elliptical (Discontinued)

  • 9 Pre-Programmed Workouts
  • 25 Resistance Levels
  • High speed, high inertia drive system with a perimeter weighted flywheel for easy start up and smooth, consistent workouts
  • Dimensions: 77" L x 31" W x 70" H || Weight: 263 lbs || Weight limit: 375 lbs
  • Adjust pedal angle for comfort or for additional muscle activation

The BXE116 also has Bluetooth 4.0 compatibility and syncs with the Bowflex app. It has a smaller screen than the BXE216, at just 7.5 inches. The suspension technology allows owners to have full control of their foot direction when rotating the pedal. Additionally, the heavy flywheel helps maximize intensity throughout the 22-inch stride distance.

The Bowflex elliptical trainer has nine workout options and 25 resistance level settings. It also operates with RunSocial and other third-party fitness apps. Plus, it has a substantial maximum user weight capacity of 375 pounds.

In one review, the customer suggests the elliptical is solid and sturdy. Putting it together is easy. The quality construction and finish will last for years. Although the elliptical is stable, this reviewer notes issues with the electronics. Problems with the apps and console detract from the quality frame and finishes of the Bowflex elliptical.

The 116 elliptical is $$$ to $$$. The average rating is 3.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Why Bowflex?

Before investing in a Bowflex elliptical trainer, you should know the good and bad attributes about it. There are several great selling points. There are, however, some drawbacks worth mentioning as well.


  • 25 resistance level options
  • A heavy flyweight wheel and max stride length of 22 inches
  • User weight capacities of 375 and 400 pounds
  • Connectivity with multiple fitness apps and free entertainment options
  • Bluetooth 4.0 compatibility
  • Multiple user profiles
  • 9 or 11 workout options on the 2 elliptical trainers


  • Stride isn’t adjustable
  • They don’t have many program settings
  • Mixed reviews about Bowflex customer service
  • Customers complain of problems with electronic components
  • High price point

Competing Elliptical Trainers

Bowflex is an industry leader in home gym equipment. However, there are other brands to consider purchasing as well. These are a few to compare against the Bowflex ellipticals.

Nautilus E618 Elliptical

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Nautilus E618 Elliptical Black, One Size

  • Your purchase includes One Nautilus Elliptical Trainer E618
  • Elliptical dimensions: 27" W x 73" L x 67" H | Item weight – 210 lbs. | Weight Capacity: 350 lbs. | Ceiling height clearance – Consider the height of the tallest potential user, and add 21 inches minimum
  • Raises or lowers the incline from 0-10 degrees at the touch of a button
  • Bluetooth connectivity, syncs with Nautilus Trainer 2 App and RunSocial App allowing you to run through 19 locations with 27 routes alongside people from all over the world in real time
  • 29 programs: preset programs for heart rate training, interval training, and weight loss as well as customizable training options | Wireless heart rate chest strap is included (in addition to the contact hand grips) to monitor heart rate


This elliptical features Bluetooth connectivity. Owners can sync it with the Nautilus 2 App to see workout metrics immediately on iOS or Android devices. The elliptical also has a 22-inch stride length and a weight limit of 350 pounds. It connects with RunSocial. Therefore, users can choose from 27 routes and 19 locations to connect real-time with others.

There are 29 customizable program settings. A dual-track LCD shows all essential workout details. There’s a media shelf on the elliptical too. It has a total of 25 resistance levels owners can set when working out. Additionally, it features an inertial drive system and weighted flywheel. This design helps maximize intensity when working out. It has built-in speakers and a fan to keep you comfortable while working out.

Easy setup and several workouts make this an excellent elliptical. In this review, the customer also suggests the flywheel design and inertial momentum helps to maximize results. Another reviewer, however, notes their experience wasn’t that good. They had to return three machines because of defects in construction.

The Nautilus elliptical is $$$ to $$$. The average rating is 3.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Nautilus E618 Elliptical

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SOLE Fitness E35 Commercial Indoor Elliptical, Home and Gym Exercise Equipment, Smooth and Quiet, Versatile for Any Workout, Bluetooth and USB Compatible

  • The E35 features fluid natural motion provided by a whisper quiet drive system. Functions in both forward and reverse motion. The combination of a heavy 25 lb. flywheel and a high gear ratio not found on comparable models means an extremely smooth feel with plenty of resistance at the top end for a challenging workout.
  • The E35 also has a power incline feature for additional resistance as well as variable positions. The ramp angle is fully adjustable from 0 to 20 different incline levels, allowing users to target and work all major lower body muscle groups, as well as handles for upper body workouts. It also has stationary handlebars with built-in pulse sensors for heart rate monitoring. A heart rate chest strap is included for highly accurate wireless monitoring.
  • The unique foot pedals were designed in collaboration with a leading physical therapist and sports enthusiast. Sole engineers designed a 2-degree inward slope to the foot pedals which reduce ankle and knee stress. The four rear wheels ride on heavy duty rails, providing a smoother, more stable feel and reducing side-to-side foot pedal motion.
  • The E35 now includes an integrated tablet holder so you can use your smart devices to watch shows or follow workout routines. Also included is a USB port for charging and Bluetooth Audio Speakers so you can listen to music.
  • Not everyone walks the same; for this reason we have made the pedals articulating/adjustable to fit the way you walk. The E35, E55 and E95 all include foot pedals that have level adjustment features to them, which helps to reduce the numb toe effects and sore Achilles tendons helping users to focus less on being uncomfortable and more focused on achieving goals.

This elliptical has 10 workout settings, including two heart rate and two custom options. It has a built-in EKG heart rate monitor and works with wireless heart rate straps as well. The stride length is adjustable, from 20 to 22 inches. The elliptical trainer also has a high user weight capacity, reaching up to 375 pounds.

It has a 7.5-inch LCD and scrolls workout metrics on the screen throughout the workout. This elliptical also syncs with the Sole fitness app. Owners can see their workout details and track their progress quickly. The console has a built-in fan, water bottle holder, and speakers. The substantial 15-inch footbeds make it easy to keep feet flat on the base to prevent injuries.

In one review, the customer indicates this elliptical is the same as commercial-grade equipment. It is similar to products you’ll find at the gym. Another reviewer suggests that the elliptical trainer is noisy while operating.

Sole’s elliptical is $$$ to $$$. The average rating is 4.2 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Nautilus E618 Elliptical

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The elliptical trainer is compatible with smart devices and quickly syncs with the AFG fitness app. This feature, along with the Bluetooth 4.0 compatibility, allows users to track progress. The elliptical trainer also has a Bluetooth five-watt speaker built-in. Therefore, owners can stream their favorite music and connect their MP3 player while working out.

The elliptical has a 23-pound flywheel and quiet-drive control settings. The steel frame is going to last for many years after purchase. Consumers will receive a free chest strap so they can monitor their heart rate while working out on the elliptical. This system has a 20-inch glide path and 20 resistance level options. USB charging ports make it easy to connect tablets to sync workouts with the app. This elliptical also has 43 programs and 20 incline adjustment levels. The maximum user weight is 325 pounds.

In one review, the customer indicates the elliptical is easy to put together. You can feel the quality and sturdy frame the moment you step foot onto the footbeds. In another review, the customer indicates the machine makes a loud banging noise each time the flywheel turns. The quality of the elliptical trainer is subpar compared to similarly-priced products.

This final elliptical trainer is $$$ to $$$. The average rating is 4.3 out of 5 stars on Amazon.

Which Option Is Right for You?

Although the list of features seems impressive, the Bowflex ellipticals don’t have the best user reviews. Because of this, you should consider some alternatives. The Sole E35 Elliptical has the best reviews out of these products. It has an LCD screen and an adjustable 20 to 22-inch max stride distance. The adjustable stride length is a nice feature that Bowflex ellipticals don’t offer. There are 10 programs and custom setting options too. The maximum user weight capacity is 375 pounds. Fifteen-inch pedals and a fan help ensure you’re comfortable when working out.

The Bowflex series of products are excellent for many consumers. And, some of the other equipment the company sells might suit your home gym. However, it’s not the best option in the elliptical department. The Sole elliptical is a superior alternative for those looking for the best product available.

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