Today is my birthday–so I’m going to share with you the one thing I want for a present, in hopes that I get it.
I heard about this contraption a while ago, when I was texting someone who had volunteered at a bicycling event in Portland. She told me about a strange bicycle called the ElliptiGO and, because I was in front of my computer, I googled it. Cue rock music.
A month or two later, this bike thing made it into the Sunday Oregonian–a coworker told me about it. There’s a pretty interesting story behind it.
This gent named Bryan Pate was an ultramarathon runner who, sometime in 2005, started feeling the burn in his hips and knees; they couldn’t take the impact of running any more. And he couldn’t quite get used to bicycling, so at the gym he trained on an elliptical. But he missed the outdoors and wanted to combine the two. He went to his local Mechanical Engineer, Brent Teal (they’re friends) and told him about an idea he had.
Teal used to live in Eugene before he got a degree in Mechanical Engineering back in 1996. Now he lives in California, where Teal and Pate run this business together. The bikes sell for $2,199 apiece, but they’re pretty capable machines.
The specs say you can make it up a 20% incline in first gear very easily. In eighth gear, you can hit 25 miles per hour. You can run at 25 miles per hour. The fastest runner in the world can run about 23.
As you may know, ellipticals are designed to burn fat more effectively by working the largest muscle groups in your body. As a result, the ElliptiGO burns about 35% more fat than a bike.
I’m not too sure about how easy getting started would be on these things, since the workings that make it go are kind of high off the ground, but once you get going it’s supposed to be easier. Because you’re upright you have a better view of your surroundings, and you won’t be putting a ton of weight on your hands and wrists (carpal tunnel crisis averted).
In my search for videos and information about this bike, I found a similar invention. I’ll say it’s the aquatic counterpart to the ElliptiGO. It’s called the AquaSkipper. Looks pretty cool, but harder to learn.
I’m not too sure about that jackhammering motion. My gut says I would not be too happy about that after a while.