As part of the Cardio Core collection of crosstrainers, the Yowza Fitness Bonita Elliptical Trainer combines a compact and lightweight frame design with an attractive console interface and wide variety of workout programs.
Also representing one of the lowest priced ellipticals from Yowza, this review aims to provide you with all the information you need to help decided if this is the best choice for your own cardio workouts.
If you’ve experienced running on an elliptical before, or have already started doing some research into the best model to buy, there are probably two key handle designs that you’re used to seeing – stationary and moveable.
The moveable handles are often ergonomically designed to recruit a wider range of back and shoulder muscles, but will almost exclusively follow a linear range of motion, much the same as the foot pedals.
What makes the Yowza Fitness Bonita model so unique is the addition of moveable handles, but with a horizontal range of motion, pivoting around a central point that’s popular among Cardio Core machines.
Although this does tend to have less of an impact on your biceps and back, the horizontal pivoting rotation in front of your body is actually an excellent way to tone your abs / obliques, and develop your core strength.
Deciding against the glide rail feature that has made the Sole Fitness ellipticals so instantly recognizable, Yowza have instead opted for a lower level of ongoing maintenance by relying on more of a free flowing range of motion.
This also has a drastic impact on the weight of the machine, making it more than 200 lbs lighter than many higher priced models.
The actual stride measures a maximum of 18 inches in length, and is completely reversible. This is ideal if you’re interested in switching between workout intensities, or are looking to train and tone areas of your calves, glutes, quads, and hamstrings with a range of motion they won’t have adapted to.
One final design feature worth mentioning is the SureFit pedal system. Much like the moveable handles, each pedal pivots around a central support point, which is cushioned by a set of buffers in order to reduce stress on your ankles while you run.
Yowza Fitness Bonita Elliptical – Features Summary
- Patented Counter Rotational Core motion and built in fixed “ramp-less” incline
- 18″ roller-less elliptical motion that is reversible
- IPod docking station and Hi Fidelity speakers
- Sure-Fit self-pivoting pedals
- Wireless heart rate receiver
Stability and transport
One of the fastest growing trends amongst home elliptical trainers is the addition of base levellers.
Although they don’t require much in the way of design, they can also prove incredibly important if you are limited with the locations you can get the elliptical setup.
While there are some models that simply rely on the rotation of the rear stabilizer bar end caps, designs like the Yowza Fitness Bonita elliptical and models in Precor’s Precision series instead opt for completely separate levelling feet.
Whereas Precor position theirs at the front of the machine, Yowza decided to place theirs at the back.
This is partly because the Precor’s Precision ellipticals don’t have transport feet or a front base stabilizer the same way the Bonita does.
This brings us onto our next benefit – transport. With the base levellers compensating for any slightly uneven ground while your workout, at the end of your training you might need to move the machine to somewhere that gives you a little more space.
To make this easier, the Bonita Elliptical has a large transport handle moulded into the rear of the base frame, with the transport wheels we mentioned earlier at the front.
Having a frame weight of just 125 lbs (considerably lighter than some ellipticals we’ve reviewed) also helps make this process easier.
Display console design
Despite including several useful features, such as the iPod docking station and Hi Fidelity speakers, it certainly feels like more focus has been placed on entertainment than the quality of your workout.
This is unfortunate, but the display console really is too far behind similarly priced designs, such as the E35 from Sole Fitness, to really give it much of a positive review.
Although we weren’t expecting any form of app integration or performance tracking, it would have been useful to have a few of the same quick-select resistance buttons, as well as some button functions that let you quickly select your desired workout.
Instead of this and in spite of the Yowza Bonita Elliptical having such a large and clearly backlit LCD screen, the amount of workout feedback is also fairly basic.
There are some exceptions though, such as displaying your rotations per minute (RPM) using a dial rather than just another number.
However, RPM isn’t exactly a metric you’re probably going to be too bothered about tracking, and this dial may have been better used to display the number of calories you’ve burned.
That being said, you can still stay updated with your current workout program, resistance level, RPM, distance, time, and speed to name a few.
For increased accuracy of these feedbacks, the built-in computer also allows you to enter your height, age, and bodyweight.
By combining this basic information with the EKG hand pulse sensors, you can then start taking advantage of any one of the 10 preset workout programs and various customised workout profiles.
Preset workout programs
Wide exercise variety and difficulty level of workouts are both important parts of ensuring any new elliptical you buy remains effective as long as possible, meaning you won’t be looking to upgrade in 6 to 12 months time.
The preset programs can be applied to a variety of specific fitness goals, including improving your endurance, burning more calories, and reaching a pre-determined distance or time goal.
YouTube video showing the Yowza Fitness Bonita Elliptical in action:
Ease of assembly
Another important factor you may need to consider is how easy the elliptical is to assemble, as well as the quality of customer service, availability of replacement parts, and coverage offered by the warranty.
A quick glance through the user manual shows that Yowza Fitness have certainly been comprehensive with their parts list and exploded diagrams, which not only includes the parts you need to put together, but also what went into the parts that are already pre-assembled.
While we would question the importance of knowing how many M5X22 screws went into the build process, it does have the benefit of making parts instantly identifiable in case they need replacing further down the line.
To save time and simplify the whole process, the majority of the assembly has actually already been done for you by the time you get everything out of the packaging. This includes the entire base frame and console upright support.
For attaching any remaining components, the manual includes detailed exploded drawings, full text explanations, and drawings of the parts you’ll need to complete each step.
Once you have the base stabilizers attached, the console upright simply slots into place, leaving very little else to do.
The entire process shouldn’t take much longer than 30 minutes from the time you have everything laid out on the floor, to when you can start your first workout. This is similar to what we’ve seen with other elliptical trainers in Yowza’s collection, including the Miami, Navarre, and Islamorada.
What’s covered by the warranty?
- Frame and motor: Lifetime
- Electronics: 2 years
- All other parts: 2 years
- Labor: 1 year