Training from the comfort of your home is often seen as a luxury, something that can only be achieved provided you’ve got a lot of space available to you.
Most treadmills are far too large to fit in an average sized home.
Are you looking for an excellent cardio machine that doesn’t take up a lot of space? A vertical climber is the ideal solution.
In this article we will be exploring 5 of the best vertical climbers available, we’ll be assessing them on their value for money, how durable they are, and how efficient they are.
This will help you to make an informed decision when it comes to picking the best vertical climber for your home.
In a Hurry? Here is our top pick:
Quick answer – The Best Vertical Climbers 2020
- Relife Rebuild Your Life (Editor’s Choice)
- Total Body 2-In-1 Magnetic Exercise Bike Fitness Machine
Reviews – The Best Vertical Climber Machines
The first vertical climber on our list is the MaxiClimber.
MaxiClimber are a company that specialise in vertical climbers and accessories such as a weighted vest that can accompany their machines.
The first thing that stands out when you look at the MaxiClimber is the lovely colour scheme. Black and red with grey metal.
The MaxiClimber comes 90% pre-assembled, which anyone who has any experience with home gym equipment will immediately appreciate!
The MaxiClimber vertical climber takes up very little space, it is very similar in size and shape to an ironing board! It’s fairly durable, with a max weight capacity of 240lbs.
Compared to the competition this is pretty decent, but larger customers may want to take a look at #4 on our list, which can hold 330lbs.
The climber has a personal workout timer attached to it, making it easy for you to keep track of how long you have been training (or how much longer you have left to go).
Another excellent feature are the isometric non-stick grips. Not only do they look cool, but they’re great for helping you avoid slipping even while sweating up a storm.
MaxiClimber even comes with a free app that you can use to create training programs that suit your needs.
The app has a particularly good HIIT program that will help you burn as many calories as possible in short, powerful bursts.
The app also provides a free diet, as well as a 21 day training plan. Everything you need to burn fat and improve your cardio fitness!
- Easy to set up with multiple demonstration videos to help you
- Space-saving design
- High quality fitness and nutrition app comes with machine
- Isometric non-stick grips will improve comfort and grip throughout your workout
- Max weight capacity of 240lbs
- Timer is placed quite low on machine, making it difficult to read while training
2. Conquer Vertical Climber
The thing is, the Conquer Vertical Climber is almost identical to the MaxiClimber in design.
While the MaxiClimber has a slightly better weight capacity (240lbs rather than 220lbs), the Conquer vertical climber is actually slightly more durable.
It uses a chain rather than a cable, which increases its lifespan as chains are unlikely to break or fray over time (though it must be said that the MaxiClimber has a very long lifespan anyway).
The storage ability of the Conquer vertical climber is impressive, when not in use you can fold it up so that it only takes up a fraction of the space that it takes up when in use. This will be really useful for anyone who has very limited space in their house.
Sadly, the much lower price does mean that a lot of the bells and whistles that you get with the MaxiClimber are absent.
There is no cool app, no electronic timer, and it is nowhere near as aesthetically pleasing.
But if you’re looking to lose weight and build your cardiovascular fitness on a budget then this is absolutely the right choice for you.
- Best value for money
- Durable, with a steel frame
- Folds away after use
- Not particularly pleasing to the eye
- No cool features
- 220lb max weight capacity is the lowest out of all five vertical climbers
3. Relife Rebuild Your Life Vertical Climber (Editor’s Choice)
The first three vertical climbers on this list all look identical at first glance (the fourth one on this list is very different to the others), making them quite hard to differentiate.
It’s only when you take a proper look that you can start to see what makes each one unique.
MaxiClimber benefits from being the most well-known, with a clever design, awesome app, and great customer service.
Conquer benefits from being great value for money, no nonsense, durable, and easily folded away. Relife benefits from being the most well-made vertical climber around.
It folds away smoothly, has an abrasion-resistant sliding cable which makes it the most durable, and having a really good system for increasing the resistance to make the exercise easier or harder based on your needs.
The foot pedals have even been designed to suit a more natural running gait by incorporating a unique tilt design.
We’ve given the Relife Rebuild Your Life Vertical Climber a 5/5 because for this price we really don’t know what more we could ask for!
This is a seriously good piece of kit that would grace any home gym.
- Great value for money
- Very durable
- Tilted foot pedals
- Abrasion-resistant sliding cable will outlast the competition
- Folds away nicely
- Lifetime Warranty
- Weight capacity of 260lbs
- We can’t really think of anything!
4. Total Body 2-In-1 Vertical Climber
This penultimate vertical climber is a little different from the others, in fact it’s a lot different!
This is a 2-in-1 machine which combines both a vertical climber and an exercise bike.
Amazingly, it manages this while still being a great space-saving exercise machine.
If you and a partner both want to train at the same time, then one of you can be using the exercise bike while the other uses the vertical climber.
How great is that?
It can still fold away easily after use, though it of course will take up slightly more space than the other vertical climbers.
It offers eight levels of resistance, which is really impressive. The machine offers a digital display screen that tracks your distance travelled.
It also gives you a rough estimate of the number of calories you’ve burned, as well as your speed and time.
The bike isn’t anything special, which is to be expected.
Think of the bike as an add-on to a really good vertical climber rather than the other way round. But it is durable, runs well, and will really appeal to couples who want to work out together.
Considering the fact that you are actually paying for two pieces of fitness equipment in one, the price is very reasonable.
- Folds away after use
- Two people can train at the same time
- Eight levels of resistance
- Display screen measures distance travelled, calories burned, speed, and time
- Excellent value for money
- Exercise bike is nothing special
- Vertical climber is not as good as the previous entries
5. Sportsroyals Vertical Climber
The first thing that stands out when you take a look at the last vertical climber on this list is the very large LCD display.
The other vertical climbers on this list only have a very small display (if any), which makes it difficult to read while exercising. There is no such problem with the Sportsroyals vertical climber.
This may be the most durable vertical climber on the list too, with a max user weight capacity of 300lbs, an integrated design through welding, and non-slip suction cups that provide extra stability.
The pulley is designed to be wear-resistant, which should massively improve the durability and shelf-life of this machine.The climber is also easily folded away after use, folding up better than any of the others.
This is an excellent vertical climber.
- Large LCD Display
- Folds away easily
- Max weight capacity of 300lbs
- Highly durable
- Easily the least aesthetically pleasing vertical climber on this list
- Pedals are not the best
Buying Guide – How To Choose The Best Vertical Climber?
Now that we’ve mentioned the five best vertical climber machines that are on the market, we thought that it would be a good idea to detail what it is exactly that you should be looking out for.
So here are some simple guidelines for you to follow.
What to Look For:
Budget for the life cycle of a vertical climber
No fitness equipment lasts forever, the more you use a product, the more wear and tear it will go through.
There are many factors that can influence how long a piece of equipment lasts.
How well it is made, how simple the design, how you will be using the product (treadmills will last longer if you only walk on them as opposed to sprinting flat out), and the durability of the materials.
Vertical climbing is quite a low impact exercise, which means that the machine should last you quite a few years, even with above average use.
The better the quality of product, the longer it will last. Which is why the upfront cost of a vertical climber may be a bit misleading.
The Relife Rebuild Your Life vertical climber may seem quite expensive at first but if it lasts you for five years of near-constant use, then the price per use is going to work out much cheaper.
Whereas buying the cheapest vertical climber may come back to haunt you if it collapses into rubble after ten uses.
Pay Attention to the Max Weight Capacity
While it is important to pay attention to the durability and stability of a product, it isn’t always obvious how well a product is made just by looking at it online.
This is why things like the max weight capacity are quite useful.
If a company is confident that their product can withstand a 260lb person (like the Relife Rebuild Your Life vertical climber) then it stands to reason that their product is going to be slightly more stable and durable than a vertical climber with a top weight capacity of 200lb.
This isn’t always the case, but it is a good rule of thumb.
Is there a Lifetime Warranty?
Not always a necessity, but if a company has a lifetime warranty on their product you just know that they have confidence in it.
The Relife vertical climber has a lifetime warranty on it, which goes to show why it is so highly thought of.
We’ve shown you five excellent vertical climbers in this article, each one is well worth considering.
The MaxiClimber model is the most well-known vertical climber and benefits from being a big company. This means that their customer service will be really good, you can rely on their product, and that they’ll give you great value for money.
The Conquer vertical climber is almost identical to the MaxiClimber but without the bells and whistles. This is ideal for people who are on a budget or would rather spend their money on other pieces of equipment while still owning a great vertical climber.
The Total Body 2-In-1 vertical climber is perfect for fitness couples, particularly ones with limited space in their houses for multiple pieces of fitness equipment. A great choice for training together in your living room while watching TV or listening to music together.
The Sportsroyals vertical climber is one of the most durable on this list, with an excellent display, and is very easy to fold away, probably the second best machine on this list.
Finally, we have the number one rated vertical climber on our list: the Relife Rebuild Your Life – best vertical climber overall. It has a lifetime warranty, an excellent max user weight capacity, it is a great price, and folds away easily. This vertical climber ticks all of the necessary boxes and will deliver a quality workout. Well worth considering.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How do vertical climbers work?
A: A vertical climber is designed to recreate the movements required for mountain climbing, but at a faster pace. Real mountain climbing is obviously a lot slower, as is abseiling on a climbing wall. In those scenarios you are carefully picking where to place your hands and feet and it requires a lot of isometric tension.
A vertical climber recreates the movement but allows you to perform it at a much faster rate. You’ll get an excellent core workout, more-so than you would on most cardio machines, but you’ll also be able to train both aerobically and anaerobically depending on your goals.
Your legs and arms work in tandem, as your right arm travels up your right leg also travels up. Simultaneously, your left arm and left leg will travel downwards. Then your left arm and leg will travel up while your right arm and right leg will travel downwards. Once you get the hang of things you’ll be able to travel at a very fast rate.
Check out this video to learn more about how do vertical climbers work:
Q: What muscles do vertical climbers target?
A: The main muscles that are worked during this exercise are your glutes, your hamstrings, quadriceps, and calves will also work hard. In your upper body you’ll probably notice your upper back, arm, and shoulder muscles working.
The muscles that make up your core (abdominals, obliques, lower-back muscles) will also get a substantial workout. Vertical climbers are pretty much a full body workout, though your chest muscles won’t be worked too hard.
Q: Which is better HITT or LISS when it comes to vertical climbers?
A: HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training, while LISS stands for Low Intensity Steady State. You’ve probably heard of HIIT before, it involves training at maximum intensity for very short bursts, usually sub-30 seconds. Often as short as 15 seconds. Followed by a short rest. HIIT is very popular because it can burn a lot of calories in a short period of time.
LISS may not be a familiar phrase to many of you, but it basically just means long cardio sessions. Running a 10k race is basically a LISS session. You maintain an even pace for a long period of time, which allows you to burn a lot of calories and improve your cardiovascular fitness.
Both HIIT and LISS have their place, and both can be implemented well on a vertical climber. You can either perform short, sharp HIIT workouts, with 30 seconds of all-out effort followed by 30 seconds of rest, repeated several times in a row, or you can set a more sedate pace and train for as long as you can.
If we had to pick one, we’d say that vertical climbers are marginally better suited to HIIT. Because they are full-body, you’ll get a lot out of extremely intense, powerful periods of training followed by short rests.