Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer, unlike regular recumbent bikes, provide a full-body workout. While we usually get bored after 20 minutes of supine exercise, with the FreeStep recumbent by Teeter, you will hardly want to leave the machine.
The Teeter Freestep recumbent machine has a soft and comfortable adjustable seat to accommodate users of all heights. As far as the backrest goes, it’s well-cushioned, full, and it’s 3-position reclining adjustable. So, you can lean back and do a relaxed cardio workout or lean a bit forward and do a more intense home exercise.
The Teeter exercise machine offers a smooth linear stepping pedal motion. And since it’s not circular, it has less impact on the knees compared to recumbent bikes. The pedals are huge and anti-slip with safety edges to keep your feet in place. But what we like the most is the handlebars, they are vertically adjustable to allow all members of the family to do a low impact exercise regardless of their height.
This recumbent cross trainer by Teeter features a silent magnetic resistance that applies to the handlebars and the pedals at the same time. The fact that the resistance refers to the lower and upper body makes this machine much better than expensive similar recumbent bikes that offer resistance to pedal only.
Learn more in my complete review below
Product: Teeter FreeStep Recumbent Cross Trainer
Warranty: Frame 1 year / Parts 90 days
My rating: 9/10
Amazon Affiliate Disclosure: I may earn commissions from purchases made through links in this post.
FreeStep Frame construction
The Teeter FreeStep trainer features a heavy-duty frame made of steel tubing, designed to support users up to 300 lbs (136 kg). However, its construction integrates several ABS parts. For example, the covers of the drive system, the pedals, and several other small covers are non-metallic. But the machine provides durability and overall sturdiness, which compares to those of a light-commercial machine.
Most of the steel parts in the machine’s construction comes with a rust-resistant paint finish. The adjustable sections of the moving arms, as well as the seat adjustment post, feature a chrome finish.
The FreeStep cross trainer doesn’t have a huge footprint but does take approx. 54″L x 38″W (137 x 97 cm) of floor space. On top of it, the manufacturer recommends assigning a usage area of at least two feet all around the unit for ease of access and unhindered operation.
The unit is relatively heavy. With the frame completely assembled, it weighs approximately 110 lbs (50 kg). It also has a low center of gravity, most of its weight is under the user, which leads to superior stability. Plus, the rear base bar comes with adjustable stabilizers which have large rubber pads.
Despite its weight, the unit is not too difficult to relocate once it’s assembled. Its rear base also comes with transport wheels.
Last but not least, the casing of the drive system is molded at the front, featuring a gravity-type bottle holder. This support can accommodate most hydration bottles with no problem.
The Teeter FreeStep cross trainer features a seat designed for comfort. It does not have air-cell cushioning, but both the seat and the backrest have a contoured layer of high-density foam padding.
The bottom part is approx. 14″ (35 cm) wide providing plenty of contact surface, while the backrest has concave contouring, to cradle your back perfectly during exercising on the cross-trainer.
The seat post offers multiple adjustment positions. The post is at an angle, so its adjustments can accommodate taller persons better. This cardio trainer is designed to help users between 4’11” and 6’6″ (149 – 198 cm). Also, in case you’re wondering, the seat is at approx. 27″ (68.5 cm) above floor level when it’s at the lowest position.
One of the pluses of this trainer is the adjustability of the backrest. Many recumbent bikes or other cross-trainers do not have this feature. The backrest of the FreeStep offers three reclining positions. Its adjustment mechanism provides a durable lock, though, so that the backrest delivers a firm and healthy lumbar support.
The machine comes with two sets of handlebars, one mobile, one fixed. The mobile handlebars are directly attached to the pedal bars. Therefore, they continue to move for as long as you pedal.
They cannot run independently from the pedals. They feature curved grips with a thick layer of rubber foam for maximum comfort.
The moving arms offer double adjustability. First of all, they’re length-adjustable, each one offering three adjustment positions. And second of all, you can lock them in an outward setting or an inward setting. Therefore, you can diversify your workouts and focus on different muscle groups.
The fixed handlebars connect to the seat and are placed behind it and have small grips. The right grip integrates the resistance adjustment dial.
FreeStep Resistance system
The Teeter FreeStep recumbent cross trainer integrates a magnetic resistance system with manual action. This means it does not have an internal motor for resistance adjustment, the unit does not need a connection to a power source, and the console does not play any role in its resistance adjustment.
The machine’s resistance system consists of a magnetic brake which connects to the tension knob incorporated into the right grip of the seat. As you turn this knob, the magnetic brake moves closer or farther from the flywheel, this way increasing or decreasing the overall pedaling difficulty.
The resistance settings (are not marked) on the knob, but there are eight distinct levels. The maximum resistance output isn’t extreme, though.
A FreeStep trainer is a machine made for light or mid-range level cardio training, focusing more on comfort than on the resistance output. But you can still benefit from an excellent cardio workout, maintain a good cardiovascular shape, and even shed some pounds.
The first aspect that we’re going to focus on here regards the pedals and the pedaling motion. The Teeter FreeStep cross trainer has a set of extra-large pedals made of durable ABS material.
They have a ribbed surface to reduce foot slippage, and a tray-like design with borders to prevent your feet from sliding off sideways. They do not have any extra cushioning, but the pedaling motion generates minimal impact anyway.
As opposed to elliptical trainers, the pedaling motion does not describe an ellipse. It’s similar to the movement produced by a stepper machine. But with a backward tilt, and of course, with the comfort of being seated. Also, the stride is approx — 13″ (33 cm), offering a satisfying range of motion for most users.
The weight of the internal flywheel is not specified, but considering the overall weight of the machine, it should weigh between 15 and 25 lbs (7-11 kg). It’s designed to deliver a steady motion and a consistent momentum.
It allows a reverse movement as well, but since the pedals don’t have straps and their design setup requires you to press on them, reverse pedaling is somewhat awkward.
Like most recumbent exercise bikes or elliptical trainers with a magnetic resistance system, the internal drive system uses a poly-v belt. Due to this fact, the drive train does not need any lubrication. Also, the usage of the machine is whisper-quiet.
The machine’s “console” is a basic fitness console. It does not offer any preset programs, does not have Bluetooth, sound system, or other fancy features, and is not compatible with any online fitness apps. However, it does offer the possibility to track your time, distance traveled, your current pedaling speed, and the calories burned.
The console unit uses imperial units for the display of speed and distance. In other words, these workout metrics are shown only in MPH and miles. It does not offer the possibility to select metric units (km/h and km). It also does not have a pulse reading function. Therefore, if you need to track your pulse during your workout, you will have to use a separate device.
The console is straightforward to use. It uses two AA (1.5 V) batteries, which (are included). It’s one-button covers all of its functions. It starts up when you begin pedaling, and will automatically turn off if it doesn’t detect any activity on the bike for a few minutes.
By pressing the button repeatedly, you can select any of the metrics (time, distance, speed, calories) to appear on display, or you can choose the Scan Mode, which automatically rotates all the parameters. Also, by pressing and holding the button, you can reset all the values to zero.
The top section of the console features a small shelf that can serve as a tablet holder or phone holder. However, it does not have any USB ports to connect your device to it.
FreeStep Assembly and Maintenance
The machine’s internal mechanisms are pre-assembled. Also, most of the frame parts are pre-assembled as well. Therefore, you only have to attach the rear base stabilizer, the pedals, the seat, the backrest, the front bar that serves as a support for the console, and the moving handlebars.
This may take more than an hour; however, the whole task isn’t too complicated. The manual provides step-by-step assembly instructions and well-drawn schematics, and all the tools needed for it (are included).
Maintenance doesn’t require much. The internal mechanism doesn’t need any lubrication. For maintenance, you’ll need to wipe off any sweat that may fall on the frame after your workout and periodically check for loose bolts and parts.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Assembled dimensions: 54L x 38W x 52H inches (137L x 97W x 132H cm)
- Assembled weight: 110 lbs (50 kg)
- Stride: 13″ (33 cm)
- Weight capacity: 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Resistance: Manual magnetic, eight levels
- Console: Time, distance, speed, calories burned, scan mode
- Warranty: Frame 1 year / Parts 90 days
- Durable frame – can support users up to 300 lbs;
- Adjustable stabilizers on the rear base;
- Transport wheels on the rear base;
- Both mobile and stationary handlebars;
- The mobile arms are length adjustable and can be locked in an upward or inward position;
- Foam-padded seat and backrest;
- Reclining backrest with three positions;
- Adjustable seat – can accommodate users up to 6’6″;
- Quiet magnetic resistance system;
- Eight distinct tension levels;
- Large pedals allowing a different positioning of your feet;
- The front bar can serve as a footrest bar if you want to exercise using only the moving arms;
- Fitness console that can track time, distance, speed, and calories;
- Tablet holder included;
- Bottle holder included;
- Fairly easy to assemble;
- Little to no maintenance required.
- The resistance levels (are not marked) on the adjustment knob;
- No pulse reading function;
- Doesn’t have any preset programs;
- No online connectivity.
Teeter FreeStep Summary
The Teeter FreeStep is a recumbent cross trainer featuring a manual magnetic resistance system and a sturdy frame. It offers superior micro-adjustability; the seat post has several adjustment positions, the backrest reclines, and the moving arms are also adjustable.
The machine is designed to provide maximum comfort and a minimum workout impact for your joints and back, which makes it an excellent choice for recovery training or elderly users. It’s great for a low-impact, full-body cardio workout, muscle toning, stamina development, and weight loss.
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