Best Treadmills for Home Use in 2020
If you’ve enjoyed using them at the gym, have you considered buying one of the best treadmills?
Treadmills are some of the most used exercise equipment both at public gyms and home gyms. They help you get an excellent cardio workout and let you work your lower body.
Treadmills are an amazing investment for exercising at home. They are easy to use and are perfect for any fitness level. You can run or walk on them depending on your exercise goals.
Whether your goals are weight loss, building endurance, running indoors, interval training, or walking, treadmills offer a wide range of daily exercises.
Here are our top 5 picks for the best treadmills and how to make a buying decision you’re happy with.
#1 ProForm Smart Pro 9000 Treadmill
The state-of-the-art technology, smart features, coach lead training, strong platform, and durability is what makes the ProForm Smart 900 Treadmill our top choice. Features include:
- 40 built-in workout programs
- Large running belt
- Smart HD touch screen
#2 NordicTrack C 2950 Treadmill
The NordicTrack C 2950 is our favorite treadmill for the most advanced runner. It offers the best features in the industry. The large running bed, powerful motor, and built-in programs make this treadmill the top choice. Features include:
- 40 built-in workouts
- 22″ Smart HD touchscreen
- Reflex suspension system
#3 NordicTrack C 1750 Treadmill
The NordicTrack C1750 is the best treadmills with features. It comes with state of the art technology, is well priced, and provides the consumer with some of the best workouts. Features include:
- 12,000+ On-demand workouts
- Real-time performance stat tracking
- Smart HD touchscreen
#4 Sole F63 Treadmill
The Sole F63 offers the highest quality folding treadmill for its price range. With its large tread belt and 3.0 CHP quiet motor, the Sole F63 will carry any user through walking, jogging, or running. Features include:
- Cushion flex whisper deck
- Folding deck design
- Real-time statistics
#5 SoleF80 Treadmill
The SoleF80 is one of the top-rated treadmills for home use. It offers amazing features, specifications, and technology for its affordable price range! This treadmill was built with the consumer in mind. Features include:
- 9″ LCD screen
- Easy folding and storage
- Smooth track design
Editors' Choice: ProForm Smart Pro 9000
The state-of-the-art technology, programmed features, coach lead training, platform, and durability makes the ProForm Smart Pro 9000 Treadmill our top choice.
This treadmill offers a lot of bang for your bag and features that will help you with all your fitness goals.
Whether you are beginning to incorporate daily activity into your routine or you are an experienced runner, the ProForm treadmills will give you what you need. You can choose from the 40 onboard programs.
Also, iFIT access gives you access to more workouts and coach-led training to keep you motivated and challenged.
ProForm Smart Pro 9000 Pros
- 1 year iFit Coach Membership: Have you ever wanted to have a coach? This treadmill comes with a year membership of iFit’s coach membership.
- 10″ smart HD touchscreen: You can view your settings and workouts clearly on the large LCD screen.
- 40 built-in workouts: Not sure where to start? Bored with your current options? The built-in workouts can help take the planning out of your exercise.
- Accessory options: This treadmill has an integrated accessory tray, audio ports, a cooling air fan, and a tablet holder.
- Commercial motor: The 4.0 CHP (Continuous Horsepower) commercial motor is robust enough to last for years.
- Heart rate monitor: The grip monitor has a wireless chest strap to help you track your workout.
- Workout options: You have 12 speeds and -3 to 15% incline options to help boost your exercise.
ProForm Smart Pro 9000 Cons
- Heavy frame: The weight makes it difficult to transport from one place to another.
- Weight capacity: This treadmill only suits people up to 300lbs.
Best Value: SoleF80
The SoleF80 is one of the top rated treadmills for home use.
It offers impressive features, specifications, and technology for its affordable price range. SoleF80 Treadmill has the consumer in mind with a long lasting powerful motor, shock absorbers, built-in workouts.
SoleF80 Treadmill Pros
- 9″ LCD screen: The large display is easy to use.
- 10 built-in workouts: The workouts will help you push yourself to the next level.
- Extra features: This treadmill is Bluetooth compatible. It also offers USB ports, a tablet holder, and audio speakers.
- Folding and storage: This machine is easy to fold and store when you need to move it or have it out of the way.
- Heart rate monitor: This machine comes with a heart rate monitor for fitness tracking.
- Strong motor: The 5 CHP motor will keep you running.
- 10 built-in workouts
- Track design: The track has a two-ply belt for durability and stability.
SoleF80 Treadmill Cons
- Limited workout variety: This machine doesn’t have as many workout options as other exercise equipment does.
- Short side rails: The rails may be harder for tall people to use.
Best Features: NordicTrack C1750
Want a treadmill that makes you workout smarter and harder? Then the NordicTrack C1750 is the perfect treadmill for you.
It comes with the most state-of-the-art technology, and it is well priced. It gives you dynamic workouts, virtual experiences from around the world, and built-in programming.
You can choose from speed training, interval training, calorie burning sessions, and heart rate controlled options.
This treadmill also has one of the most powerful and quietest motors in the industry.
NordicTrack C1750 Treadmill Pros
- 10″ Smart HD Touchscreen: The screen lets you control workouts and view your programs and stats while you exercise.
- 12,000 + on-demand workouts: This machine comes with thousands of workouts. With interactive workouts, personal trainers can control your machine’s settings in real time to help you get the best workout. The global terrain option lets you run routes from across the world. The machine even provides cross-training options off the treadmill.
- EKG grip pulse: Check your pulse while you exercise with no extra fitness tracker needed.
- Folding option: You can fold this machine if you need to make it smaller.
- Multiple users: You can store four profiles on the machine.
- Runners Flex cushioning: This technology reduces the impact on your joints and helps you feel like you’re running on a road instead of a machine.
- Tablet holder: You can put your tablet on the machine to watch or listen to your favorite media.
- Workout controls: You have 3-12 MPH speed controls and go from -3 to 15% inclines.
NordicTrack C1750 Treadmill Cons
- Difficult assembly: You’ll need more than one person to put it together. We recommend paying for professional assembly if you don’t have someone to help.
Best for Serious Runners: NordicTrack C 2950
Running treadmills need to have higher standards than a walking or jogging treadmill because of the greater impact involved. Also, as a serious runner, you have more features to consider.
If you’re serious about exercise, consider the NordicTrack C 2950. With its 4.25 CHP motor, large running bed, and a cushioned deck that absorbs each stride, this is our favorite treadmill for the most advanced runner.
NordicTrack offers the best features in the industry. The C 2950 has 16,000+ on-demand workouts with the iFit membership and over 40 built-in workouts.
NordicTrack C 2950 Treadmill Pros
- 22″ smart HD touchscreen: The size of the screen makes watching workouts or adjusting settings simple.
- Built-in workouts: You won’t get tired of your exercise routine with the 40 built-in workouts.
- EKG Grip Pulse: This treadmill will monitor your pulse while you work out.
- Reflex Cushioning: This cushioning makes running feel more natural and comfortable.
- Smart response drive system: This technology is the latest in fitness tech. It has a 4.25 CHP Durx motor. It also offers reduced vibration and is self-cooling.
- Training options: Coaches can control your machine’s incline, decline, and speed while you run. You can also go on a global run to explore new places. If you want more, you can get total body training workouts.
NordicTrack C 2950 Treadmill Cons
- Heavy materials: The sturdy frame makes it harder to transport without help.
Best for Walking: SoleF63
The Sole F63 is the highest quality folding treadmill and is the best treadmill for its prices range.
With it’s 3.0 CHP quiet motor and large tread belt, the SoleF63 will carry any user through walking, jogging, and running.
The Sole F63 comes with 10 built-in programs and an app that allows you to connect to your Fitbit or another fitness tracker, My Fitness Pal, and other training apps.
SoleF63 Treadmill Pros
- 3.0 CHP motor: This motor provides a range of speeds including the challenging 12 mph top speed.
- Folding deck design: You can fold this machine without any trouble.
- Heart rate monitoring: You can use wireless chest straps to check your heart.
- LCD screen: View real-time workout data as you exercise.
- Power incline: You can inline up to 15%.
SoleF63 Treadmill Cons
- Limited built-in workouts: Other machines come with more than 10 options.
- Training level: This machine is not suitable for a serious runner.
Top 5 Health Benefits of Using a Treadmill
Treadmills are one of the favorite types of equipment for public gyms and home gyms because of the health benefits they offer.
Treadmills offer several health benefits.
1.) Heart Health
Treadmills can help you make sure your heart is in good condition. Doctors say that regular aerobic exercise lowers blood pressure and improves blood circulation by strengthening the heart.
Exercise also lowers bad cholesterol (low-density lipoprotein) and raises good cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein).
While you should always talk to your doctor before exercise programs, particularly if you have a heart condition, treadmills will help most people keep their heart in good condition.
2.) Joint Health
Regularly activating your lower body muscles will help give them strength and flexibility.
Because of the design of some treadmills, running on one can be less stressful on your joints.
If a treadmill is still too much on your joints, consider using an elliptical machine.
3.) Mental Health
Have you ever heard the term “runner’s high?”
Exercise releases endorphins that can help you feel better mentally and emotionally. Some runners experience euphoria after they’ve been running for a while. You can experience than on a treadmill in the comfort of your own home.
4.) Weight Loss
Many people want to use treadmills to help them lose weight. Running for 20 minutes at 10 km/hr will burn 229 calories. Because the treadmill will be nearby instead of at a gym, you are more likely to exercise.
Plus, you don’t have to worry about bad weather or your safety around roads on a treadmill.
5.) Bone Density
One of the best ways to strengthen bones is to exercise them over time. With a treadmill, you can start walking and build up to longer distances and faster speeds.
3 Types of Treadmills
Not all treadmills are the same. Get to know the types of treadmills to find the best option for you.
1.) Non-Folding Treadmills
Non-folding treadmills are the traditional option. They are almost always in gyms.
They are the sturdiest of all treadmills because they have stronger frames.
Non-Folding Treadmills Pros
- Best Motors
- Better stability
- Higher weight capacity
- Sturdy frames
Non-Folding Treadmills Cons
- Most expensive
- Not easily transportable
- Take up more floor space
2.) Folding Treadmills
This type of treadmill offers the same functions as a non-folding treadmill. However, the frame allows for easier storage.
Folding Treadmills Pros
- Easy storage
- Easily transportable
- Less expensive
- Requires less floor space
Folding Treadmills Cons
- Lower weight capacity
- May wobble and shutter while running
3.) Desk Treadmills
This treadmill type has a lofted desk positioned above the treadmill to allow people to walk while working.
Desk Treadmill Pros
- Increases your daily activity
- Increases concentration and alertness while working
Desk Treadmill Cons
- Not an option for everyone
- Takes up a lot of floor space
- Walking & working takes some time to get used too
Manual vs. Motorized Treadmills
Treadmills come in two standard varieties: manual or motorized.
Each will provide a different workout. Much more effort is put into a manual treadmill while motorized treadmills offer better features and programming.
Older manual treadmills were mostly the same. However, the new designed curved-belt manual treadmills in Crossfit gyms help users expand up to 30% more energy.
Pros of a Manual Treadmill
- Burns more calories per mile
- No electricity needed
- Stronger lower body workout
Cons of a Manual Treadmill
- Lack of features and pre-set programs
- Less sturdy
- Manual inclination has to be adjusted when you’re not on the treadmill
- Straining against the belt can cause more stress on your joints
Pros of Motorized Treadmill
- No straining
- More workout features and options
- Speed and incline is adjustable
- Suitable for long training sessions
Cons of Motorized Treadmill
- Electricity is needed
- Motorized treadmills have a higher price point
- Not as safe as a manual treadmill
Treadmills are a big investment. Before you buy one, consider the following factors:
- Your budget
- How much space you have
- How you will use it (for example, walking, running, jogging, interval training)
These factors can help you decide what the best option will be for you. After you know these answers, you can decide which features you want.
Here are some of the top treadmill features to consider when buying a treadmill for your home use.
A treadmill needs to withstand high impact and be heavy duty enough to stand your weight. The frame and motor also need to last.
Although folding treadmills tend to be a bit less sturdy than a non-folding one, the quality and make of the frame should always be a priority.
A treadmill shouldn’t shake when you run or walk on it.
If you want to be more confident in the quality, look for a motor warranty and lifetime frame warranty.
Generally, a maximum incline found on most treadmills is 15%. On average, treadmills have anywhere between 10-15% incline.
We recommend a treadmill that can go a min of 10% or higher.
Some treadmills also offer decline of up to -3%. This decline helps simulate outdoor running better.
The noise level of a treadmill is dependent on the quality of the motor, sturdiness of the treadmill, size of the tread rollers, and lubrication of the rollers.
A quieter treadmill will often be higher quality. Plus, you don’t want the noise of the equipment to get in the way of your home theater or sound system if you like to watch shows or listen to music while you work out.
Although built-in programs are not necessary, treadmills that offer integrated programs and workouts provide a better overall experience.
The built-in programs provide workouts for beginner to the advanced runners.
We recommend looking for treadmills that have a minimum of ten built-in programs. These options will keep you motivated and challenged as you increase your fitness levels.
Look for a wide range of programs from walking, jogging, running, and interval training. Some more advanced treadmills also offer cross training to help you maximize your workout potential.
The running surface (tread belt) is one of the essential features to consider when researching treadmills.
The more space you have to run, the safer you’ll be:
- The minimum standard is 48″ belt size.
- The average on the market offers 55-58 inches.
More serious runners should consider a treadmill with a running belt of 58-60 inches.
Thicker belts are quieter and more durable. Consider treadmills that are two-ply or four-ply.
A treadmills control panel should be within reach and simple to use.
We strongly recommend that each user follow the safety guidelines of the treadmills they purchase. We also recommend using the safety catch or key at all times.
On average, a treadmill should be able to reach 10mph.
More advanced runners will want a treadmill that can reach 12mph. Some commercial brands can go faster.
Expert Tips for Buying a Treadmill
Because buying a treadmill is a significant investment, consider these buying tips.
Consider Your Budget
Your budget will help you choose the best treadmill for your price range. Make sure that you get the highest quality treadmill within your budget.
A reasonable high-quality treadmill will likely cost between $1000-$1500
Look for Programming Extras and Smart Functions
Think about how you want to use the treadmill. Possibilities include:
- Interval training
Knowing how you will exercise will help you find the right option for you.
Look for treadmills with built-in programs that meet your goals and workouts you enjoy doing. If you like using various apps or websites, consider a treadmill that allows the ability to link to apps
Measure the Space
Treadmills look a lot smaller in a store than they are.
We recommend taking measurements of the home space where you’ll store the treadmill.
Try It Before You Buy It
Treadmills are a significant investment. The last thing you want to do is buy one that you don’t enjoy. You don’t want a hundred to thousand dollar investment.
When you shop, wear comfortable clothing and running shoes. Spend at least 10 minutes on each treadmill to get an idea of what the treadmill is like to use.
Pay Attention to Convenient Extras
Some treadmills come with convenient features like:
- Audio plugs or speakers
- MP3 compatibility
- Phone holders
- Tablet holders
- USB plugs
- Water bottle holders
Frequently Asked Questions
Many people have questions when they go to buy a treadmill. Here are some of the most common things people want to know.
How Accurate Are the “Calories Burned” Numbers?
The calories burned displayed on the treadmill is an estimated number based on time on the machine. Everyone burns calories at a different rate.
Running at 5mph (or higher) 0.63 x body weight in pounds equals net calories burned per mile
Walking at 3mph 0.53 x body weight in pounds equals net calories burned per mile
Is Treadmill Running Easier on Your Body Than Running Outside?
Running on a treadmill is less stressful on your joints than running outside.
However, it doesn’t condition the shock absorbing musculature of your lower body like running outside does.
What Shoes Should I Wear on the Treadmill?
We recommend that you wear running shoes. The same shoes you would wear to run outdoors should be worn on a treadmill.
What Size of a Motor Do I Need?
It’s important to look at the treadmills CHP motor.
CHP = Continuous Horse Power, meaning the power the motor has continuously going through the machine instead of HP, which is the power measured at its peak.
Treadmills can vary between 2.25-4.5 CHP:
- Treadmills used for walking: 2.0 CHP or higher
- Treadmills used for jogging: 2.5 CHP or higher
- Treadmills for running: 3.0 CHP or higher
Getting one of the best treadmills for your home gym can help you work out more consistently and get the benefits of those aerobic exercises.
Use this buying guide and our top picks to help you make a decision you’ll be happy with.Read More