Author: William Turinske, Sr. Store Manager


The “Skinny”….

  • “Best” is not absolute, it’s specific to you and your needs, sometimes budget.
  • Exercise Equipment comes in all types, sizes, and can serve various purposes
  • You always get what you pay for with Equipment (no matter the savings)
  • Individual reviews “carry” substantially more weight than website reviews

The Ever Elusive Answer to the Question… “What is the best…?”

Let me start out by saying I’ve been at 2nd Wind 10 years, and that I hear this question every day, so I’ve had many opportunities to ponder the answer…

I think what most people want, is something that burns the most calories in the shortest period of time… Aka. “How can I speed this process of losing 30 LBS - as close as to immediately as possible.” If I had that potion, I’d be somewhere tropical sipping endless Mai Tais because I wouldn’t have to worry about calories, and I’d be rich.

So… After all this time, the best answer I can give to this very popular question starts with “It all depends..” The skill I have gained through many repetitions, is that I know how to get down to brass tax to find out what the best is FOR YOU SPECIFICALLY. Let me explain by way of examples.


Example 1)

Q: My trainer friend loves the rower, she has a Concept 2, and she recommends I get one… But I really love to run, as a matter of fact I just ran the hot chocolate 15k!!

What’s a better calorie burn, the rower or the treadmill?

A: If you have the space (treadmills take more space, and are more noisy), getting something closer to what you like doing (treadmill-running)is the best piece for you. The answer to that question dramatically changes, if there are space limitations in the home and/or individual physical limitations (especially knees with impact)... Then the answer can be just the opposite.

Example 2)

Q) I had hip surgery 6 months ago, in post-op physical therapy they had me on a NuStep and I made almost a full Range of motion recovery… I’m thinking about continuing my program at home, is that the best?”

A: Congratulations! It may be, but if you made a full recovery, you may be ready for a piece of equipment that is more fitness oriented vs rehab oriented… The difference between a recumbent elliptical like an Octane XR6xi or Nustep T4r and Physiostep LXT is mainly range of motion (“full” or “limited”). In this case the Octane recumbent elliptical is probably the best piece, whereas if you only made a 60% recovery - the Physiostep or Nustep would be the best…. All good pieces!

Example 3)

What is the best deal?

The answer is a lot like “the best calorie burner”.

First off let me say, and I know it sounds hokey, but the best deal is ALWAYS the one you use the most. A $400 Treadmill you hate and never use is a much worse deal than one that is $2000 that you use 5 days a week. Mainly because you are achieving your fitness goals and increasing your chances of living longer.

Don’t get me wrong, there are great prices to be had on equipment, but that doesn’t mean the lowest price equipment known to man.

If all you have is $400 to spend on a treadmill or elliptical, that’s cool, we will find you the best possible piece for that dollar amount… Probably purchasing a used piece would be the way to go, whatever that one is, is your best deal.

On the other side of the spectrum, if you want to buy a Lifespan TR7000i, new, and you want the best deal…. it will never be $400… perhaps a floor model at $2999 (from $3999) that would be a great deal.

Long story short, a “deal” is all relative.

Oh! And Don’t be fooled by bloated Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) Tags on entry level name brands at the Big Box Retailer... When you see a price tag that says the price was $2,499, Now $999 (Save $1,500), the reality is you’re buying a $999 piece of equipment, and no product was EVER sold at $2,499 or anywhere close to that… Sorry for being a buzzkill.

This one has great reviews, should I get that one?

Internet Reviews are as abundant as equipment is, there’s maybe even more reviews. This has been causing a condition that I like to call “Buying Paralysis” by “Over Analysis” since 1999 :).

The thing you have to realize about reviews is they can be bought, and many are, then heavily promoted on google and other search engines. It’s one man/woman’s opinion typed out on a web page, whether he or she is paid or not, no different than any other man or woman’s opinion face to face verbally…

The exception is the cumulative reviews on a product by individuals, people that actually bought the product, but even that has come under scrutiny, as “fake” reviews have been discovered on very popular retail sites. Ultimately though, if you get enough reviews positive and negative, from individuals, they are probably legit.

Which product do you buy?

A name brand that you know, like, and trust that didn’t make the consumer magazine?


A name brand that you don’t know, you’re ok with the feel, but has great reviews in that same magazine, or the “best” reviews?

I know what I would chose. Bear in mind, there’s no wrong answer!

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