Best exercise machines to lose weight: Water rowers, ellipticals & more

Looking to shed excess pounds? The best exercise machines to lose weight will help you do exactly that

Best exercise machines to lose weight, rowing machine used by amputee athlete
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It's tricky to know which are the best exercise machines to lose weight. Not only this, but deciding which type of machine best suits your needs and will fit nicely in your home are also things to consider. 

That’s why I’ve compiled a list of the best exercise machines from every category out there to help you decide. So no matter what your apparatus of preference, be it an exercise bike, treadmill, cross trainer, multi-gym or rower, you’ll be sure to know which is worth the investment for the sweat-drenched years ahead.

Oh, and if you want to save on your fit kit, check out our guides to the Black Friday fitness deals, Black Friday elliptical deals and Black Friday treadmill deals for the best bargains. 

How to choose the best exercise machine to lose weight for you

There are three key questions you should ask yourself when it comes to selecting the best exercise machines to lose weight for you...

How do you want to work out?

The first thing to consider is what kind of workout you enjoy the most. This will help determine the right type of machine for you. 

For instance, if running is your bag then a treadmill is the obvious choice. Prefer something that’ll put a little less stress on your joints? Then opt for an elliptical (or cross trainer) machine. 

How quickly do you want to lose weight?

Another factor is how tough of a workout the machine will provide. If you’re looking to lose weight fast, then a cardio-based, calorie-busting machine such as an exercise bike is going to suit you best - especially if you’re a cycling fan! 

However, if you’re happy to slim down over time, burning fat at a slower rate while at the same time building muscle, then I’d recommend a multi-gym machine. Offering resistance-based training (any form of exercise where you lift or pull against resistance), you won't shed the pounds as fast, but over time you’ll add mass to your muscles, which - in turn - encourages fat loss and a leaner body composition. 

How much space do you have to work out?

One other thing to think about is the space that you have at home. Not many of us are lucky enough to have a dedicated gym space in our humble abodes, so it’s worth considering how much spare room you can dedicate to an exercise machine - this could play a big role in which device you go for in the end. 

A rowing machine, for example, might provide a great total body workout but it will take up the most space. Ellipticals a close second, followed by treadmills, then multi-gyms and, lastly, exercise bikes, which tend to be the most compact home gym equipment. That said, some machines (but not many) are foldable - making them much easier to store away when not in use.

The best exercise machines to lose weight you can buy right now

Best exercise machines to lose weight - Sole elliptical machine

(Image credit: Sole)

1. Sole E95

The best elliptical machine for losing weight

Specifications
Dimensions: 69 x 157 x 211cm
Foldable: No
Flywheel weight: 13kg
Resistance levels: 20
Reasons to buy
+Wide range of resistance+Adjustable stride
Reasons to avoid
-Assembly can be tricky-Not foldable

The E95 by Sole is a popular choice for the average person looking to buy an elliptical or cross trainer, touting smooth operation, customisable settings and a heavy (17kg) flywheel. While this sounds like a negative thing, it actually isn’t. Being the key part of any elliptical, this piece of equipment controls how smooth the machine feels during use - so the heavier the flywheel, the smoother and quieter the machine will run due to the additional weight helping it spin more efficiently.

Another highlight is the onboard computer, which boasts a decent-sized 9-inch LCD monitor and built-in Bluetooth speakers. This is another feature that makes this machine feel much more like a commercial-grade offering, just without the price tag to match. A great value and high quality machine.

Not convinced? Check out more of the best elliptical machines.

Best exercise machines to lose weight - WaterRower rowing machine

(Image credit: WaterRower)

2. WaterRower Natural Rowing Machine

The best rowing machine for losing weight

Specifications
Resistance: Water
Foldable: No
Digital display: S4 power monitor
Reasons to buy
+Stunning design+Natural feel+Easy storage
Reasons to avoid
-Basic computer

One thing is for sure, rowing machines aren’t generally the most attractive-looking pieces of equipment in the gym. Not only are they bulky, cumbersome and quite heavy, but they never really live up to your home decor standards. Well, until now. 

The WaterRower is a modern, minimal piece of machinery which is nothing short of a piece of art. Made from sustainably-sourced ash and honey oak wood, it serves up some gut-wrenching resistance from a transparent drum full of water that sits just under the footrests. 

As for features, it has an S4 performance computer tracking your stroke rate, speed, distance and time in units.  It can also be hung on the wall if you’re tight on space. A well-designed, unique and robust rowing machine that will help with your weight loss goals, and is a dream to use.

Want more options? We've rounded up the best rowing machines.

Best exercise machines to lose weight - Life Fitness multi-gym

(Image credit: Life Fitness)

3. Life Fitness G7 Multi Gym

The best multi gym for losing weight

Specifications
Type of movement: Cable motion
Removable bench: Optional
Dimensions: 124 cm x 177 cm x 211 cm
Reasons to buy
+Comprehensive workout+Massive weight stack+Gym-quality
Reasons to avoid
-A little on the large side

When it comes to a multi-gym, you ideally want a professional-grade setup for private use, featuring hefty weight stacks, fully adjustable pulleys and the option of a malleable bench that hits several incline and decline settings. And with the G7, you get all that plus a few extras, such as a chin-up bar and an all-encompassing system that has the ability to workout almost every muscle group in the body. 

Built to last for many years, this strong and robust system includes free installation, a training DVD, an exercise book with over 60 workouts, and a host of pulley attachments to ensure you hit every muscle during your set. A top notch bit of kit that has everything you need for resistance training and will stand the test of time. 

Best exercise machines to lose weight - MyRun treadmill

(Image credit: MyRun)

4. Technogym MyRun

The best treadmill for losing weight

Specifications
Dimensions: 176 x 78.5 x 126cm
Speed range: 0-20km/h
Incline range: 0-12%
Reasons to buy
+Gym-standard build and features+Smart looking+Compact
Reasons to avoid
-May be too compact for some-Certainly too pricey for many

If you’re looking for a high-class piece of machinery which doesn’t just fit the bill in terms of build quality, but looks stylish too, then look no further than the MyRun by Technogym. This is the creme de la creme of treadmills - but comes with a price tag that might make you say ohh la la.

In my eyes, it’s worth every penny. It's a super smart piece of tech, making it a firm favourite with runners who take their hobby very seriously. There’s a built-in HD screen offering a breakdown of run data, Zwift support, and the ability to sync up to a tablet via a built-in Bluetooth connection. Above all else, its belt that adapts to the way you run and absorbs impact to reduce the risk of injuries without sapping power. This treadmill has it all, and then some.

Not the running machine for you? Check out more of the best treadmills.

Best exercise machines to lose weight - JTX exercise bike

(Image credit: JTX)

5. JTX Cyclo-5

The best exercise bike for losing weight

Specifications
Dimensions: 128 x 61 x 105 cm
Resistance: Magnetic
Max user weight: 150kg
Reasons to buy
+Affordable but well built+Compatible with smart apps+Good resistance range
Reasons to avoid
-'Upright' riding position doesn't suit everyone

It might not be the fanciest exercise bike out there (Peloton and Wattbike, for instance, really do put this to shame in terms of looks) but if you’re in the market for a decent quality bike that doesn’t cost the earth, the JTX Cyclo-5 is the one. 

Available in either standard mains powered or 'self powered' options (the latter referring to resistance created by peddle pushing), this upright bike does the job for most casual home riders. While those more serious lycra-clad riders might want to look past the Cyclo-5, it’s still a great value bike for anyone looking to lose weight, offering a good range of resistance levels and some added smart features to keep your interest piqued well after purchase.

Ready to pedal? See more of the best exercise bikes.