Personal fitness is tough in the best of times, and 2020 made it especially onerous, with local gyms and fitness studios closing down for most of the year due to social distancing requirements. But, even fresh into a new year, we continue to adapt. Some people have taken to outdoor activities like jogging and cycling, as well as working out at the local park. There’s been an explosion of at-home fitness products, including virtual reality-based exercise such as the Oculus Quest’s Supernatural. But if you have enough space, there’s nothing like running on a quality treadmill.
A treadmill helps you reach your cardio goals without leaving the house, and many modern models feature streaming video coaches to keep you motivated. When you compare the cost of the treadmill to the expense of an annual gym membership, even the most costly treadmills ultimately save you money over time.
No matter the type of treadmill you’re looking for, be it a budget pick or an ultra-expensive, premium model, here are 13 of the best treadmills you can buy for your home right now. Note, there are two models which we recommend, but are currently out of stock everywhere. We’ve decided to still include them on this list for your information, and we’ll update this page when they reappear online. For now, we’ve also included high-rated alternatives that you can order (or pre-order) right now.
Best Value Treadmill
Horizon Fitness T101
While you can certainly find less expensive treadmills, the Horizon Fitness T101 is the best intersection of price and features, making it an excellent value. It is a somewhat small treadmill at just 20 x 55 inches and powered by a modest 2.25 CHP motor, but it still offers the essential specs that even a beginner will probably want, such as speeds up to 10 mph and an incline up to 10 percent. Heart rate is measured through the hand grips, and a small cooling fan helps keep you from melting on hot workout days. There’s an easy to use command center console and Bluetooth connectivity that lets you play audio from your phone through built-in speakers. And the treadmill comes with about 30 pre-set workouts programs.
Despite offering all those basics, it still manages to fold up—similar to the way the ProForm SMART Pro 2000 folds up, though perhaps not as efficiently—so it can take up less space when not in use.
Best Upright Folding Treadmill
ProForm SMART Pro 2000
The ProForm SMART Pro 2000 is a deceptively large treadmill, heavy duty all around and equipped with a generously wide 22-inch running deck. But it doesn’t need to take up a lot of floor space 24/7, because when it’s not in use the Pro 2000 folds up for a much smaller footprint.
It’s a great choice for dedicated runners thanks to the beefy 3.5 CHP motor, ProForm’s ProShox Cushioning system and the fact that it has both an incline (up to 15 percent) and a decline (3 percent). Not a lot of treadmills offer a decline, so your runs can simulate hills better than most.
The console includes an integrated 7-inch LCD display that works with ProForm’s subscription-based iFit service, which delivers streaming, on-demand guided workout sessions. The app can actively control the settings on your treadmill, adjusting speed and incline to match the workout. There’s also an included heart rate sensor, cooling fan and integrated Bluetooth speakers.
Best Smart Treadmill
The Echelon Stride is a treadmill with a modern sensibility. Not only does it have a large touchscreen display with Bluetooth, but this foldaway treadmill folds up automatically at the press of a button, after which you can wheel it into any corner of the room where it’s out of the way. It’s not the most powerful treadmill you can find—it has a 1.75 CHP motor, for example—but the machine manages a top speed of 12 mph and has a maximum incline of 10 degrees.
Membership into Echelon’s on-demand fitness program is a core part of owning the Stride. You get access to live classes as well as streaming on-demand sessions, and you can compete on the leaderboard with your own social circle of family and friends. While the monthly fee is $40 per month, the price drops to as little as $29 per month if you commit to a two-year plan.
Best Compact Treadmill
Goplus 2 in 1 Folding Treadmill
Not everyone has a room dedicated to serving as a full home gym. If space is at a premium, the Goplus 2 in 1 Folding Treadmill does exactly what the name says. The handrail folds down so the entire treadmill folds flat and can be rolled under your bed or sofa.
It’s not especially large; the deck is 16 inches wide and 40 inches long, which makes it easy to store but a little cramped in daily use. And there’s no console on the top of the handrail; the compact and minimalist display is down at your feet, controlled by remote control. There is a stand for your phone, though, and a Bluetooth speaker.
GoPlus calls this a 2-in-1 treadmill because, with the handrail folded down, you can use it for walking or jogging up to about 2.5 mph. Raise the rails and you can run at a maximum of 7 mph, powered by the modest 2.25 CHP motor.
Best Treadmill For Big and Tall Users
Bowflex Treadmill 22
Bowflex recently launched the Treadmill 22, a smart choice for bigger folks looking to get into walking, jogging or running. The deck, which has Comfort Tech cushioning for softer impact, supports a maximum user weight of 400 pounds, which is also at the high end of what many consumer treadmills are equipped to handle.
And one of the best parts? It has an extra large, 22-inch HD touchscreen display that you can use to access hundreds of voice-coached workouts (with a JRNY membership) or stream movies and TV shows from your favorite apps. The machine inclines up to 20 percent and you can vary the speed up to 12 mph.
Another High-Rated Option: Sole F85 Treadmill
All of Sole’s exercise machines are known for durability and, with its heavy-duty steel frame construction that was designed to stand up to even the hardest workouts, the Sole F85 treadmill is no exception. Like the 3G Cardio treadmill, it has a 4 HP motor and a 400-pound weight limit. And even when you’re running at full speed, the Cushion Flex Whisper Deck reduces joint shock and impact by up to 40 percent so you get a good workout in without damaging your knees.
The speeds range from 0.5 to 12 mph and the large flywheel provides a consistent operation, no matter what your speed. The Sole F85 Treadmill comes equipped with a decent amount of technology too. It has a 10.1” screen, fully-integrated Bluetooth capabilities, and a USB port, so you can charge your devices while you exercise. When you’re done, the treadmill folds quickly for easy storage.
Also Great (But Currently Sold Out): LifeSpan Fitness TR7000i
LifeSpan’s Fitness TR7000i is a commercial-grade treadmill—you find this model in gyms and fitness centers, and it’s powered by a heavy-duty 3.5-hp motor. Mechanically, it has a lot to offer: a rugged all-steel frame, 15 levels of incline, speeds up to 12 mph and four independent compression shock absorbers under the deck to reduce stress both on the treadmill and your body. The running deck is a generous 22 x 62 inches and it supports runners and walkers up to 400 pounds.
The LCD display is simple; the 6.5-inch screen displays scrolling messages and has readouts for basic stats like time, speed and incline—so don’t expect to get integrated streaming coaching sessions with this model. But you can connect your favorite mobile fitness app because the treadmill can share its data with Apple Health or Google Fit via Bluetooth.
Best Splurge Treadmill
NordicTrack Commercial X32i
If you have the space and the budget, the NordicTrack Commercial X32i is an excellent splurge option. Although this commercial-grade treadmill is pricey, you’re paying for a machine that’s designed to stand up to daily pounding for years with users up to 300 pounds. It has a 4.25 CHP motor—significantly more powerful than most.
It comes equipped with an upgraded 32-inch LED touchscreen and includes both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity so you can connect it to any of your favorite mobile apps. And with an iFit subscription, you can take advantage of live workouts as well as pre-recorded options from places like Austria and Africa.
Also Great: Peloton Tread+ (4 to 7 week delivery)
You can’t round up the best home treadmills without including the Peloton Tread+. Peloton, after all, is responsible for popularizing subscription-based live classes in home exercise gear, and the Tread is a premium treadmill that costs over $4,000. (And unlike the slightly more modest Tread, you can actually receive a Tread+ in a few weeks. The Tread is backordered to March.)
Equipped with a massive 32-inch touchscreen, the Peloton Tread+’s on-demand and live classes definitely have a visceral impact. That said, the Tread+ can’t adjust its settings automatically in response to the speed and incline in the on-screen workout, which is a big oversight. But those settings are easy to make—rather than the usual spaceship-like buttons, the Tread+ has a pair of elegant dials for changing the incline (up to 15 percent) and speed (12.5 mph).
Best Treadmill With Guided Workouts
NordicTrack T 9.5 S Interactive Trainer Treadmill
Even though Peloton might be the treadmill you think of when it comes to taking classes—and it wins on sheer size of screen—the NordicTrack T 9.5 S is the treadmill you probably want to use to follow an on-screen trainer. And for a fraction of the price, to boot.
The 14-inch screen relies on NordicTrack’s excellent iFit app lets you choose from a library of 16,000 or so guided workouts set in beautiful locations. You also have access to studio workouts, yoga, cross-training and more. Want to run anywhere on earth? NordicTrack lets you with help from Google Maps. And the workout sessions can take control of the treadmill to dial in the appropriate incline and speed without your manual input. Meanwhile, you can connect your mobile device to the Bluetooth speakers to play your favorite music.
The treadmill itself is built around a 3.6 CHP motor and the belt is padded with NordicTrack’s FlexSelect Cushioning that helps simulate a real running experience while lowering the impact on your joints. You get a range of 12 percent incline and 12 mph speed.
Best Treadmill For Immersive Guided Runs
NordicTrack Commercial 2950
The name weirdly implies this is not a treadmill for the home—that perhaps it’s intended for commercial gyms—but this treadmill is commonly used in home gyms and is built for individuals and families. And because it’s a NordicTrack, it has familiar features, like the iFit app for workouts. But this treadmill comes closest to replicating the premium feel of the Peloton Tread with a large 22-inch LCD display.
It’s that display which is likely to make you fall in love—it’s hard to choose a guided run in the iFit app and not be mesmerized by the beautiful, real-world trails on the giant display. Want something simpler? There are 40 on-board workout programs as well. Either way, the app can take control of the treadmill to change speed and incline to match the terrain, which helps to make you forget about the passage of time during your morning workout.
This treadmill isn’t just beauty, either. Built around a 4.25 CHP motor, it has one of the strongest motors of any treadmill you are likely to consider for your home, particularly anywhere near this price point. It can get up to 12 mph, inclines 15 percent and declines up to 3 percent.
Best Self-Powered Treadmill
Assault Fitness AirRunner
While they monopolize the floor at most gyms and tend to be the go-to choice for home exercisers as well, motorized treadmills are not the only way to get in your morning run. Manual treadmills have a lot of advantages over the motorized variety, and the Assault Fitness AirRunner is one of the best and most popular. Don’t mistakenly think that manual treadmills are necessarily cheaper, though; the AirRunner is priced at the top end of the treadmill market.
Most runners who use the AirRunner end up loving it, though. The curved deck contributes to a more comfortable, ergonomic run, and the heavy duty, high-capacity construction is solid and feels indestructible, far more stable and rigid than a typical treadmill. Running on the AirRunner also feels more natural than on a motorized tread, and burns more calories for the same length of workout. It supports a maximum weight of 350 pounds, so it’s great for users of almost any size, and the lack of a motor means you’re in the driver’s seat; there’s no practical maximum speed.
The AirRunner includes a digital display to report your stats—remember, you set the pace by your running, not a dial on the control panel—and it supports Bluetooth for tracking your heart rate.
Most Popular Treadmill
Nautilus is a respected brand that has a wealth of experience making exercise gear, and the T618 demonstrates that with a solidly built treadmill that should stand up to many years of use. It has a 3.5 CHP motor and something that Nautilus calls its Rebound Cushioning System, which softens your feet’s impact in front and helps propel your kickoff at the back. All together, it adds up to a quieter mechanism that redirects your body’s force to a more energetic workout. You can take it up to 12 mph and simulate hilly runs with an incline of up to 15 percent.
The treadmill doesn’t have the sort of large LCD display which appears to be all the rage these days, but the digital controls are large and easy to use, which is important when you need to make adjustments in the middle of a run. It comes with a wireless heart rate chest strap as well. The system uses Bluetooth to sync with the Nautilus mobile app which includes an “explore the world” feature — you can go on a virtual jog at dozens of locations around the globe, and the first-person video adapts to your running speed.
Bottom line: The Nautilus T618 hits all the right notes and is consequently very much in demand, which is why it often goes out of stock.
Other Treadmills You Can Buy Right Now
The following treadmills aren’t necessarily our top picks, but they’re highly-rated options that are available for purchase right now. If some of our favorites are out of stock and you don’t want to wait, you’ll be happy with any of these machines.
What to Look for When Shopping for a Treadmill
There are countless treadmills to choose from—how do you know which is best for your workout and your home? It’s a mechanical system that will need to absorb a lot of physical punishment on a daily basis, so it needs to be sturdy and rugged, for example. But there are a lot of other factors as well.
It’s best to start by considering your budget; in general, the more money you can invest in a treadmill, the more durable it will be. For example, any treadmill that costs less than $1000 is probably not going to last for more than a couple of seasons; the motor and belt simply won’t be resilient enough. But starting around $1500, many treadmills offer the same kind of reliability and features you’ll find in professional models that you’ll find at a gym.
One critical specification to consider is the motor’s CHP—the continuous horsepower rating—which should be no less than 2.5 if you want to use it routinely for running. A treadmill that lists a lower CHP (or avoids referring to CHP entirely and only tells you its peak HP), is more likely to burn out prematurely.
You’ll also want to consider factors like shock absorption, cushioning, and overall noise level in addition to the actual running specs: How fast can it go, does it incline, and can it decline as well? Also make a note of the maximum weight rating—is it suitable for everyone in the house who might want to use it?
One of the hottest trends in home exercise gear these days is subscription-based workout classes, and many treadmills offer this feature as well. Some models come with large LCD displays that let you immerse yourself in online coaching sessions and workouts, but beware: That requires an ongoing commitment each month. And other special features are worth considering too. Larger displays are more immersive, and some classes are live, while others only offer pre-recorded sessions. And the most immersive treadmills can be controlled remotely in real-time by the instructor. Otherwise, you’ll need to adjust speed and incline manually throughout the session in response to instructions from the instructor.