Radical Bike/Elliptical Machine Mashup Delivers Zero-Impact Road Workout

Photos: ElliptiGO

The ElliptiGO is a mashup of a bike and an elliptical machine that delivers an impact-free alternative to running—and a heart-strengthening cardio workout—without jarring your joints into submission or relegating you to doing your training within the four walls of your local gym, next to the endlessly stair-climbing soccer moms.

With three styles designed for your choice of basic fitness, cross-training on hilly terrain, or racing and endurance events, the ElliptiGO was invented by former Ironman triathlete, Bryan Pate, after being told to take it easy on his knees after years of racing. Rather than give up his passion, he teamed up with Brent Teal, another Ironman and a mechanical engineer, to figure out a way to get the same workout as guys whose knees could stand the pounding of a two mile run, or who could put up with getting saddle sore from a half-day bike ride.

They decided the traditional bike needed to evolve into something more, and needed drastic changes in technology. They used computer sims to test frame stress and do motion studies on the elliptical mechanism to see what would happen if you put elliptical “pedals” onto a bike-like frame. Along with chain-driven gears that allow you to coast, and brakes that let you stop—so you don’t go flipping over the handle bars going down a hill or when you come to an intersection.

The result is a cross-trainer that allows you to hit the road for miles, without the risk of joint damage. And elite marathoners and triathletes are making the ElliptiGO a part of their daily training regimen. No word on if Spandex shorts are still a requirement.


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