The Maxi Climber is a vertical climber machine that claims to help you burn more calories per hour than an exercise bike, and double that of a treadmill.
But can these claims be verified? How often should you be including these workouts in your regular fitness routine to see the best results?
In this Maxi Climber review, we take a look at the unique design features and low price point that have quickly made this one of the bestselling stepper machines on Amazon.
If can’t visit the gym as frequently as you want to, try combining your gym membership with home fitness equipment.
Using your bodyweight as a form of resistance is one of the most challenging ways to get an effective workout. But unless you have high enough indoor ceilings to support a power tower with pull up bar, you’ll struggle to train your back and biceps effectively.
This is one of the reasons why the Maxi Climber is proving so popular. It allows you to engage all major muscle groups using only your bodyweight.
The adjustable solid steel frame and isometric grips offers a much wider range of motion than conventional stepper machines. The price considerably is also much lower than some of the other vertical climbers on the market.
Your upper body muscles are engaged to a greater degree than commercial Stairclimber machines, as the Maxi Climber combines bodyweight training with a cardiovascular workout.
Maxi Climber workout routines
As such a unique piece of equipment, it can be difficult to decide on the best way to actually use it.
That’s because you’re experiencing a resistance and cardiovascular workout at the same time. But it’s probably not going to be challenging enough to support the traditional 3 sets of 10 reps, as you might perform with free weights.
Instead, the motion is continuous throughout the duration of your session. This maintains almost constant tension on your legs and arms.
Maxi Climber themselves recommend relatively short workouts, performed more frequently, with sessions as short as 10 minutes each.
How frequently you perform these 10 minute sessions is entirely up to you. But if you start at 3 times per week and gradually build up to 6 times per week, then you should start to get a feel for which frequency gives you the best results.
Display console and workout feedback
Honestly we weren’t expecting anything special from the console feedback, and the fact that you can scan between step count and calories burned (questionable accuracy) is something we’ve found to be available on most of the steppers we’ve reviewed from the likes of Sunny Health and Fitness.
If money isn’t an issue then machines like the Bowflex Treadclimber offer significantly more feedback metrics, such as elevation, distance, time, speed, and heart rate.
The positioning of the console on the Maxi Climber could also be improved. Even with some of the shorter height settings, your eye line is a long way away from the screen, which is hidden away in a recess without any form of backlight.
In summary the console’s only real use is for if you want to check your step count at the end of a workout, to be used as a measurable goal target for future workouts and performance monitoring.
As seen on TV
One of the main claims Maxi Climber make on their website and on TV is that you can burn a higher amount of calories than using a stationary bike or treadmill over the course of one hour. This is something we would look to question.
Firstly, there’s no link to any scientific studies to back this up, and no mention of any test conditions. What resistance was the bike at? What was the speed of the treadmill? Were the test groups asked to perform a particular type of workout e.g. steady-state or HIIT?
Also, there’s no mention of the method of measurement used to monitor how many calories were burned on the Maxi Climber.
With elliptical trainers and treadmills at this price range we may just about be seeing one or two models accepting user profile data. This is important because it allows you to enter your bodyweight, age, and sometimes gender, which is information that needs to be taken into account when calculating the number of calories burned.
However, even with this information stored in the console of these machines, the reading won’t be 100% accurate. There are simply too many physiological factors that influence the reading.
No stress on lower body joints
The claim about putting no stress on the lower joints of the lower body is much more meaningful. Not least because it’s backed by the founder of Total Physical Therapy, Dimitry Polyakov.
Dimitry is a fully certified orthopedic and sports medicine trained physical therapist, with a 20 year career of clinical orthopedic treatment for professional athletes. This is the kind of approval we would look for before buying a machine like the Maxi Climber.
It’s also something we would agree with, as the motion itself is very smooth and your feet are in constant contact with the foot supports. All of this helps to prevent any jarring motion and reduce the impact on your ankle / knee joints.
What do the Maxi Climber reviews say?
For a piece of equipment that’s received so much media attention, we’re always keen to check the customer reviews. We like to make sure sentiment is still positive once people start buying and using it in their own workouts.
The Maxi Climber has already managed to climb its way to the top of the bestsellers list for stepper machines. It’s not just the quantity and speed with which Maxi Climber reviews have appeared, but also their average overall rating.
One look at the rating distribution shows most people are happy with the quality and performance of the Maxi Climber.
There are very few ratings in the middle of the range, and the number of 5 star ratings far outweighs the number awarded just 1 star. But we still wanted to put together a complete list of pros and cons, to maintain our perspective as an unbiased review.
- Easy to assemble, with the majority of the setup already completed prior to delivery
- Small footprint due to the vertical design
- Provides a full body workout
- Compact folding design
- No need for heavy weight stacks or plates to create the resistance
- Comfort grip handles
- Stable frame design supports users to 220 lb+
- A fraction of the price of similar climber equipment
- Lightweight frame makes it easy to move around if needed
- Ideal for quick workouts when you’re short on time
- Console doesn’t provide much in the way of accurate feedback
- Console is poorly positioned for keeping track of feedback while you’re actually using the machine. You can only see your totals if you stop the workout.
Maxi Climber Review Summary
As we conclude our review we're left with quite mixed opinions on the Maxi Climber as a piece of home fitness equipment.
The use of upper body muscle groups no doubt burns more calories than your standard stepper machine, with very little impact on your knee and ankle joints. But there's no way to increase the resistance, meaning there will be a noticeable difference in the lifespan of the machine between people with different physical fitness levels.
Having a vertical design that folds down to such a compact size is also incredibly convenient for home workouts where space may be limited, and there's also not many similar options available at this price range. Most StairMasters or the Jacob's Ladder retail for between $3000 and $5000, so for less than $250 it certainly feels like you're getting good value for money.
Even the collection of customer review ratings sets it apart as one of the highest rated step machines on Amazon, and one of their bestselling designs.
Overall, if you need a stepper for quick, affordable, full body workouts, Maxi Climber is certainly your best option.
Product dimensions (extended): 22" (W) x 36" (L) x 79" (H)
Product weight: 34 lbs
Weight capacity: 240 lbs
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