SAN DIEGO, Calif. (June 21, 2016) – Ohio University releases the results of a new study comparing training on an ElliptiGO elliptical bicycle, which emulates the running motion, with run training. Findings revealed that training on the ElliptiGO bike produced similar physiological and subjective results in trained runners as compared to running over a 4-week training period.
The study, commissioned in 2016 by ElliptiGO in partnership with Ohio University, was focused on determining what runners can do to maintain run-specific fitness and performance levels without incurring further injury. The importance of finding this cross-training solution is critical to the running community for several reasons, including the following:
- Up to 79% of runners experience a running-related injury in a 1-yr period. (van Gent, et al., 2007)
- Runners’ bodies incur impact forces equal to 2-3 times their body weight.
- Repetitive impact has been linked to high injury rates in runners. (Hreliac, 2004)
Over the course of two separate 4-week training periods, the study compared ElliptiGO-only training (ET) and run-only training (RT), matched for intensity, volume and terrain. The male and female participants recruited were highly fit, trained runners between the ages of 19 and 26 and with an average of 9.25 years of running experience. The training, which was randomly assigned to each participant, was representative of a typical in-season distance running program aiming to improve 5,000 meter performance. Participants performed both training periods in a cross-over design and completed identical testing sessions initially, following ET, and also following RT.
The research gave evidence to four major findings.
- Reduction of lower body soreness resulted with ElliptiGO-only training compared to Run-only training.
- Equal improvements in Ventilatory Threshold (easy running) pace between ET and RT regardless of which training period was completed first.
- Both groups maintained their level of VO2Max, Respiratory Compensation Point (hard running), Running Economy and 5,000 meter Time Trial Performance.
- Enjoyment and perceived effort levels between the two groups were similar between ET and RT throughout the 4-week training period.
Researchers suggest the trained runners who used the ElliptiGO bike experienced similar physiological and subjective results as compared to only running due to the bike’s low-impact, run-specific nature. Researchers also noted that those with minor running pains did not experience these while riding the ElliptiGO bike.
“We have been excited to report the findings of this study since first learning of them,” said Bryan Pate, CEO and co-founder of ElliptiGO, “The ability of the ElliptiGO elliptical bike to replicate run-specific fitness has application for injured, injury prone, healthy and even former runners. Now, more than ever, runners can get the stimulus and results they desire, without the additional impact stresses that can cause injury and sideline athletes. We hope these results help coaches and runners of all abilities train smarter and reach their goals.”
The study is published by the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research (The Official Journal of the NSCA). You can download an ahead-of-print article as well as an infographic highlighting the key findings of the study.
ElliptiGO is the San Diego-based company that created the world’s first elliptical bicycle to deliver a fun, comfortable and effective workout experience that inspires people, improves their lives and revolutionizes fitness. Combining the best of running, cycling and the elliptical trainer, ElliptiGO bikes provide a strong cardiovascular workout that eliminates impact on joints and allows people to get out of the gym and enjoy the outdoors. Elliptical cycling is an effective way to build fitness without aggravating injuries, and it is great for everyone from the health-conscious to the elite athlete. The full line of ElliptiGO bikes is distributed through specialty running, cycling and fitness retailers nationwide, on Amazon.com and through the ElliptiGO website.
 van Gent, R. N., Siem, D., van Middelkoop, M., van Os, A. G., Bierma-Zeinstra, S. M. A., & Koes, B. W. Incidence and determinants of lower extremity running injuries in long distance runners: A systematic review [Review]. Br J Sports Med, 41(8): 469-480, 2007.
 Hreljac, A. Impact and overuse injuries in runners. Med Sci Sports Exerc 36(5): 845-849, 2004.