I have an elliptical machine, for over 5 years now. It's still in a good state I think. I mean it still works perfectly. But I have a question.
I was reading about butt workouts on a bodybuilding site the other day, and it said sprinting is really beneficial for the butt. Since I don't like running in public, let alone sprinting, I figured I could sprint on the elliptical. I tried it. The fastest I could go was like 82 rpm. The workout I'd read about recommended sprinting for 10 seconds max, 8 times, taking a 1 minute break between sprints. It sure gave my butt a work out let me tell ya.
But I'm worried about the machine. I mean I only tried this once, and of course the machine didn't have any problems. But in the long run, do you think this could damage it? I mean it's not a low quality, really cheap machine, but it isn't really all that sturdy either, and like I mentioned, we've had it for a few years already.
IMO workouts are best with variety. Are you talking about HIIT? Whether or not you are, I don't think it should hurt your machine. It's meant to be used & if it's not a cheapo one, it's not meant to be used for "gentle exercise".
Is it shaking a lot? I think you're over-thinking all of this
I say go for it. Just check the machine every week to make sure you don't have any loose bolts or screws. You should be tightening the parts regardless.
I do squats on the elliptical. Just squat down and keep spinning while holding onto the handles. It BURNS. But it's a good thing :) Mainly targets your upper thights but it also gets your booty toner.
Anything that is "uphill" like walking on a treadmill will also work your butt. So will climbing stairs. But never underestimate the normal squat. That is nothing but targeting the glutes.