When looking for at-home workout products, your best bet is something that is multi-purpose. What we mean by that is you should look for something that maximizes your workout, minimizes your workout time and doesn’t take up a whole lot of space. Something that gives you a good cardio workout and at the same time, helps you to build muscle. One suggestion would be the Bowflex HVT. It’s an all-in-one cardio and strength training machine that many are praising online for its design and versatility.
It’s worth mentioning the Bowflex HVT because most home gyms don’t offer so may workout options built into one machine. When looking for an at home-gym to review, this one stood out as something people would enjoy using. It looked efficient, space-saving, unique, and fun. But is it all it’s cracked up to be?a
About the Bowflex HVT
“HVT” stands for “high-velocity training.” That means it’s fast. In fact, Bowflex claims that you can get your full-body workout done in only 18 minutes. And, they claim, the HVT provides a simultaneous cardio and muscle workout in that time. Basically, they claim you get two workouts in half the time it takes most people to do one. Does it sound outrageous? Maybe. But maybe they’re onto something.
Why Use a Two-In-One Workout Machine?
Two-in-one equipment can save you space as well as time. People who work out from home have to make room for their workout equipment. Maybe you have an elliptical or a set of weights or maybe even both. In any case, you know the struggle. A two-in-one workout machine like the Bowflex HVT minimizes the space required to store a full body workout setup.
How We Reviewed
When reviewing at the Bowflex HVT, we looked at the manufacturer’s specs and features. Then we consulted various online sources for professional reviews. We also looked at customer reviews. Finally, we compared the HVT to other types of multi-function home exercise equipment on the market today. There aren’t a lot of two-in-one workout machines, so our comparison products include some traditional cardio and weights equipment as well.
The Bowflex HVT
Bowflex HVT Machine (Discontinued)
- Provides whole-body fitness with Hybrid Velocity Training or HVT
- 3 pre-programmed workouts (sprint, circuit, and builder) direct you through a workout in as little as 18 minutes for maximum results
- Manual mode allows you to build your own workout from 50 unique exercises
- Syncs with free HVT app and workout videos (Apple iOS and android). Dimensions - 65.5 L x 46 W x 83 H inches
- Machine combines entire sets of cardio and strength workouts into one compact design that fits into most rooms
The Bowflex HVT promise is that it’s easy to use, an intuitive machine that allows for flexible workouts and great results. While the machine itself may be a little pricey for many consumers, regular usage of the Bowflex HVT is said to guarantee results. With just an 18-minute workout a day, those results should be fast.
What’s great about it
The name of the game is “intuitive design.” Don’t be fooled by its simplistic look; the Bowflex HVT has everything you need in a full body workout, and it’s easy for most users to sit down and learn. Adjusting the resistance or weight is as easy as turning a dial, and the machine comes with all the materials you’ll need to master it.The Bowflex HVT will appeal to beginners, as it comes with a number of training programs. You can adjust the equipment as your strength and stamina grow. Experienced gym users can customize their workout to fit their high-level needs as well.It’s a tall machine, standing at 83 inches. It’s slim, though, and can fit in just about any room. Unfortunately, this means that shorter users may have a harder time using it. Some of the pulleys hang at the very top, so only at a certain height can you get a proper shoulder workout.
What’s not so great
One downside is that you’d likely have to assemble the machine yourself unless you want to pay a $250 assembly fee. If something goes wrong, there is a 90-day assembly warranty. There is also a two-year warranty for all parts, electrical and mechanical alike. But if you need something repaired on your Bowflex HVT, more than likely you will have to ship it off to the manufacturer to repair, which many may find expensive and inconvenient.
Bowflex HVT: features and specs
The two-in-one Bowflex HVT system is a resistance-based exercise system. The workouts combine strength and circuit training to impart both cardio and muscle-building benefits. By combining both static and dynamic resistance exercises, this system works all of your major muscle groups. Four different workouts can help you to increase strength, endurance, speed, and power.
The Bowflex HVT at this moment has 105 reviews on the Bowflex website. Out of those, 94 percent of users recommend this product.
What customers like
A common thread amongst those who used the Bowflex HVT is that the product is both convenient and easy to use. Bowflex has a long history of convenient and safe at-home workout machines.
Users have experienced little to no joint pain or strain, due to the gentle resistance build. The amount of comfort users have with this machine means they can actually enjoy themselves while using it. The Bowflex HVT promises that you can get a decent workout in 18 minutes, and the majority of the customer reviews agree with this.
With an easy and fun to use workout machine, it’s easy to stay consistent with it. Thus the promise that you’ll be seeing results in a matter of weeks appears quite reasonable.
What customers didn’t like
Some of the lower rating reviews focused on the difficulty of assembly. While Bowflex offers onsite assembly from a professional, it does cost $240-$260 extra. That’s troubling for some, as is the price of the unit itself. The Bowflex HVT is a bit more than most home gym machines, so if something goes wrong or a piece needs a replacement, it can be quite disheartening.
Pricing and availability
The Bowflex HVT is available on the Bowflex official site, as well as Amazon. The price listed on each page is the same: $1,699 to $1899. Purchasing from either website comes with the same equipment and warranty protection plans: the standard two-year warranty, the three-year protection plan, which costs $129 to $149; and the five-year plan for $169-$189. But if you need assistance with assembly, you must order from their website.
You can also find a used Bowflex HVT for $1,400 to $1,600 on Amazon.
Other Home Exercise Options
While the Bowflex HVT is a great product, there are other workout options as well. It may be difficult to find a two-in-one product like the HVT, but you still have plenty of products to choose from that offer combined exercise forms and the promise of good results.
Total Gym Fit with Cyclo Trainer
Total Gym Attachable Cyclo Supportive Trainer with Digital Monitor Progress Tracking Display for Home Workout Exercise Machines, Black
- Revolutionary attachment that offers a variety of ways to safely train for a total body workout routine
- Designed to improve cardiovascular fitness while strengthening your legs, glutes, and abs
- Protects your joints while providing a low-impact workout in a short amount of time and fully supports your back for a comfortable exercise at any fitness level
- Equipped with adjustable pedal feet straps that allow you to comfortably secure your feet
- Includes battery-operated digital monitor to track time, speed, distance, and resistance level; batteries included
The Total Gym is a lower-tech option for a full-body workout. It’s basically an incline bench with attachments for weights exercises. You can use this equipment to do bodyweight and gravity exercises like incline situps. Additionally, attachments allow you to work your muscles at up to 12 different resistance levels. The FIT is the latest model. To add a cardio element to your Total Gym workout, you can buy the Cyclo Trainer.
The Total Gym Fit has an overall customer rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars on the manufacturer’s website. A lot of customers found it to be good value for money. Others, however, were disappointed in the difficulty of setup. The Total Gym Fit will run you about the same as the Bowflex HVT — between $1400 and $1800 if you buy the Cyclo Trainer attachment.
Exerpeutic 1000XL High Capacity Magnetic Elliptical
Exerpeutic Heavy Duty Magnetic Elliptical with optional Bluetooth App Tracking
An elliptical isn’t an all-in-one. However, the right elliptical can give you an upper-body workout while you’re doing your cardio. The Exerputic 1000XL works your arms and upper body, as well as your cardiovascular system.
What’s great about the Bowflex HVT is that it is zero impact. But it’s not the only one. The Exerpeutic 1000XL High Capacity Magnetic Elliptical is one of those machines you’d want if you want a comfortable, pain-free workout. That means no stress on the joints, hip, knees, or ankles.
The Exerpeutic 1000XL is only $198 to $209 with $79 to $99 assembly if you’re interested. Walmart customers gave this elliptical a combined 4 out of 5 stars.
ProFrom Smart Trainer
ProForm 695 Cse Smart Strider 695 Cse Elliptical
- 18 inch stride length, soft grips upper-body workout arms, oversized, adjustable, cushioned pedals, 18 lb. Effective Inertia-Enhanced flywheel, power adjustable quick incline
- 20 resistance levels, vertical SpaceSaver design, integrated tablet holder, ipod-compatible audio, rear-mounted Transport wheels, coolaire workout fan
- iFit ready, round watts LED display, 24 workout apps, EKG heart rate monitor, commercial-gauge solid steel construction. Footprint- When this elliptical is fully assembled, the height by width by depth dimensions are 65 x 32 x 80 Inches
- Adjustable, oversized leveling feet; water bottle holder, out-of-box easy assembly
- 300 lb. Weight capacity. Lifetime frame Warranty, 2-year parts, and 1-Year labor Warranty
The SMART HIIT Trainer is the ultimate cardio workout, involving the movement of climbing stairs with the intense motion of boxing. The idea is that it works out your upper and lower body at the same time.
HIIT stands for “High-Intensity Interval Training,” which means that the course of workout requires you to put forth 100 percent effort for short periods of time, multiple times in a row with brief recovery periods between each set. If you’re looking for quick results, the ProForm Smart HIIT Trainer could be the work out machine for you.
The design of this elliptical is a bit different than others, in that it moves at a height of 10 inches and five inches forward, which burns more calories than standard ellipticals. It also moves incredibly smoothly and is great on your joints.
Amazon customers give this unit 3.5 out of 5 stars. Positive reviews praised its effectiveness, ease of use, and gentleness on joints. Negative reviews cited poor product quality and poor customer service.
Octane ZR8000 Smart Zero Runner
Octane Fitness ZR8 Zero Runner, Silver
- Walk, jog or run with zero-impact to your body
- Aircraft-grade aluminum legs for ultra smooth motion
- Performance grip feature allows users to focus on additional core stability
- Self-powered and whisper quiet
- Monitor the health of your stride with stride tracing data
If you have money, as well as calories, to burn, then you might have a look at this sleek, space-age piece of equipment. But it will cost you –between $8,000 and $11,000. Though it’s specifically a cardio machine, there is a wide variety of resistance levels that can help you to work your large muscle groups as well.
Only available by special order from their website, the Octane ZR8000 Smart Zero Runner bills itself as the “future of cardio.” This state-of-the-art design looks like it would be at home on a space station. It offers the same kind of work out you’d get from an elliptical but with absolutely no impact on your joints.
The appeal with this one is its sleek design, as it is a space-saving modern design that doesn’t involve a belt, deck, or cord. Just like previous entries on this list, it comes with a display that shows necessary workout information. But on top of that, it was web-browsing capabilities, built-in training videos, and a USB port for charging any devices you may need with you.
Regarding the workout itself, there are 15 different resistance levels and 11 built-in workout programs to choose from. Not only is it a zero impact training machine, but it’s also completely silent. There’s no grinding or halting and no impact on your joints whatsoever.
It’s only available through Precor, and, understandably, consumer ratings are thin on the ground.
Body Champ New Trio Trainer
Body Champ 3-in-1 Home Gym, Upright Exercise Bike, Elliptical Machine & Recumbent Bike, Trio Trainer Exercise Machine Plus Two Upper Body Options, Silver, BRT7989
- MULTIFUNCTIONAL DESIGN: With a patented 3-in-1 design, this Trio Trainer can function as an elliptical trainer, upright stationary bike, and recumbent bike. Save space and get all the cardio training you love with this multi-function exercise machine.
- PLUS TWO: In addition to its patented 3-in-1 design, this home trainer features 2 additional upper-body stance options. It comes with 3 different sets of integrated handlebars to choose from: pro cycle, dual action, and wraparound.
- HASSLE-FREE TRANSITIONS: The innovative design of our Trio Trainer provides effortless transitions without the need to dismount or adjust equipment. Easily adjust the magnetic resistance to customize your workout to your needs for a total gym experience.
- FLUIDITY FLYWHEEL SYSTEM: The smooth magnetic-encased flywheel system provides an ultra-quiet motion so you can work out early in the morning or late at night. Check and re-tighten nuts and bolts once a month to prevent loose riding and noise issues.
- PERFECT FOR HOME GYM: Because it provides so many workout possibilities, it is perfect for your home gym setup. The transport wheel makes this home gym machine easy to transport and store when not in use. Deluxe faux leather stitched seat/back pads adjust both horizontally and vertically.
As an all-in-one training machine, the New Trio Trainer is an elliptical cardio trainer, seated and upright bike. These are decidedly the three most effective cardio machines, so you’re getting the best of the cardio workout world. Not to mention it has three different integrated handlebars: U-shaped, dual action, and wraparound. The built-in display comes with 21 different programmable exercise options. Also, the training programs keep track of your progress, as well as heart monitoring software.
Granted, this machine doesn’t offer muscle-building exercises. However, if you’re looking for a cardio machine that does not just double but triple duty, look no further.
You can find it on Amazon for between $350 and $450.
The Bowflex HVT: Yay or Nay?
There’s a lot of cardio equipment on the market, and if you’re looking for weight equipment, the choices are countless. But if you’re looking for something that does both, there’s only one Bowflex HVT. It’s a unique way to address all of your fitness needs with a single unit. And, for what it does, the price is quite reasonable as well.
Do you have a favorite all-in-one? Let us know in the comments!