Thinking of buying the Roger Black Gold cross trainer? We wanted to find out whether this popular budget trainer is really worth the money – here’s our full review.
- 1 Design and Type
- 2 Stride Length and Smoothness
- 3 Flywheel Weight
- 4 Resistance and Incline Settings
- 5 Built-in Workout Programmes
- 6 Maximum User Weight and Stability
- 7 Other Features
- 8 Who Should Buy It?
- 9 Final Verdict
- 10 Roger Black Gold Magnetic
- 11 Pros
- 12 Cons
Clearly, the Gold has a few interesting features, but we wanted to look at some additional factors to see how it compares to other budget cross trainers. Is it difficult to set up? Is it sturdy enough for challenging workouts? And most importantly, is it reasonably priced? Here’s what we found.
Note: This is a review of the Gold Magnetic cross trainer, not the similarly named Gold 2-in-1. For more information about other Roger Black cross trainers, click here.
Design and Type
The Roger Black Gold is a rear-wheel drive machine with a fairly standard design. It comes with hand grip pulse sensors and two sets of handlebars – one stationary and one movable – so you can vary your workout style.
Like most cross trainers, the Gold doesn’t fold, so you should ensure you have adequate storage space for it in your home. It does come with transport wheels, however, so it’s easy to move should the need arise. Unlike cheaper models, the cross trainer is mains powered, so you won’t have to purchase batteries to use it.
The Gold comes with a bright blue light LED display, which provides feedback on basic statistics such as time, speed, pulse, calories burned, and distance. Sadly, there’s no option to view Watts, which is the best measure of workout effort.
Be aware that the Roger Black Gold will occasionally display inaccurate data on the monitor, so if a data point seems off, you may not be doing anything wrong – it could just be a glitch.
Stride Length and Smoothness
The stride length on the Roger Black Gold is approximately 35.5 cm.
While this stride length isn’t adjustable, and isn’t as long as pricier option, it should be comfortable for tall users who want a light or moderate intensity workout.
The Roger Black Gold comes with a 6 kg flywheel. Flywheels on cross trainers for home gyms tend to weigh between 6 kg to 9 kg, with 6 kg being typical for a budget cross trainer. Machines with heavier flywheels can accommodate more intense workouts, which indicates that the Gold isn’t designed for the toughest workout.
Choosing a cross trainer with a lighter flywheel is a smart idea for those who aren’t regularly engaging in intense exercise, however, and the Roger Black Gold may be a good fit for those users. But for those who are hoping to build their endurance and challenge themselves on their cross trainer, a machine with a heavier flywheel is usually a necessity.
Having a lighter flywheel means that the Roger Black Gold doesn’t run as smoothly as machines with heavier flywheels, which could affect the quality and enjoyment of your workout.
Tip: Want a cross trainer with a heavier flywheel for more intense workouts? Check out our list of the best cross trainers.
Resistance and Incline Settings
This cross trainer is electromagnetic, and it gives you the option of selecting from 16 different resistance settings. Similarly priced cross trainers generally provide the same number of resistance settings.
The Roger Black Gold doesn’t give you the option to adjust the incline, which may be a disappointment for those who find that increasing the incline gives them a better workout. But if increasing the resistance is enough for you to challenge yourself during a workout, the lack of an incline option shouldn’t be a problem.
You can adjust the resistance electronically. While some cross trainers on the lower end of the budget price range require users to make manual adjustments, changing the resistance electronically is much more convenient, especially if you want to switch it up in the middle of a workout.
Built-in Workout Programmes
The Roger Black Gold provides twelve pre-programmed workouts. These programmes give you the option of feeling like you’re working out on a wide variety of terrains, including Valley, Mountain, Hill, and Plateau.
You can choose your workout based on a specific fitness goal, such as Fat Burn. If you want to mix things up and challenge yourself with a surprise workout, you can select Random. Users can also choose the manual project and set up the type of workout they want each time.
In addition, you can complete the Body Fat workout, which offers a specific programme based on your body fat profile. Like most other cross trainers, it comes with a target heart rate programme option as well.
Maximum User Weight and Stability
The maximum user weight is 125 kg, which is the norm for budget cross trainers. Taller, heavier users should feel comfortable using the Roger Black Gold.
One drawback of the Roger Black Gold is wobbliness, which becomes more noticeable at higher speeds. A wobbly cross trainer can make it difficult to focus on your workout and feel comfortable using the machine.
It is recommended that users occasionally tighten the bolts after regular use. However, this doesn’t always solve the wobbling issue, which tends to be more noticeable as you increase the intensity of the workout. Therefore, this may become frustrating for those who prefer intense exercise.
Some budget cross trainers don’t come with a water bottle holder or tablet holder, but the Roger Black Gold includes both. If you have a favourite workout playlist or enjoy watching Netflix while exercising, this will be a perk.
It doesn’t have smart connectivity or a USB outlet, but machines that do come with these capabilities generally cost quite a bit more, and these features don’t have any real impact on the quality of the workout.
Who Should Buy It?
The Roger Black Gold is definitely designed for lighter workouts. Those who want to stick with a more intense exercise routine will require a sturdier machine, as the wobbliness will prove too distracting.
Furthermore, the comparatively light flywheel means that users can only reach a certain level of intensity with their workouts. Those who want to burn more calories or work with more resistance will have to select a machine with a heavier flywheel. But the light flywheel makes it an appropriate choice for novices and those who are just looking to get moving a few times a week.
The Roger Black Gold does require quite a bit of extra effort to assemble. You may need an extra set of hands to help you set it up, and it can take quite a while. However, this is the case for many budget cross trainers with in-home assembly, so this issue is certainly not unique to the Roger Black Gold.
The wide range of programmes means that it’s easy to find a workout routine that suits you, and if you feel like mixing it up later on, you’ll have a variety of selections. Plus, the combination of water bottle and phone holders make it possible to stay both hydrated and entertained as you exercise. It may not have the same fancy features or reach quite the same performance level as the higher end cross trainers, but overall, the Roger Black Gold is still a solid choice for an affordable price.
Although the Roger Black Gold is probably not the right cross trainer for serious athletes, anyone who enjoys light to moderate intensity workouts should consider this machine. There is enough variety in the programmes and resistance settings to keep things interesting, and it also includes convenient features like the phone and water bottle holders.
This model may wobble a bit over time, but this problem is common with budget cross trainers, and with proper set up and maintenance, it may not become an issue. All things considered, the Roger Black Gold is a great addition to a home gym at a reasonable cost, and the drawbacks are minimal.