The 10 Best Treadmills

Updated December 29, 2017 by Quincy Miller

10 Best Treadmills
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 42 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. If you want to enjoy the health and beauty benefits that come with staying in shape, but you don't want to have to deal with people on the street or at the gym, then having your own treadmill is a must. The options on this list are perfect for getting in a solid workout from the comfort of your own home — and you'll never have to worry about that weird guy taking the machine right next to you. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best treadmill on Amazon.

10. NordicTrack T 6.5S

If you can't decide between buying a high-quality treadmill and a brain-testing puzzle, the NordicTrack T 6.5S manages to be both. It offers a significant incline and the ability to target specific muscle groups, but good luck putting it together.
  • compatible with ifit
  • stable hand rails
  • poor support from company
Brand NordicTrack
Model NTL17915
Weight 198 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

9. Sunny Health & Fitness

If you're cancelling your gym membership to save money, this Sunny Health & Fitness is a budget-friendly option that lets you run as hard as you like. It does have a limited weight capacity, though, so it's best for those who are just looking to maintain their beach bods.
  • has a tablet holder
  • great for power walking
  • not ideal for taller users
Brand Sunny Health & Fitness
Model SF-T4400
Weight 122 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

8. Horizon Fitness T101-04

The Horizon Fitness T101-04 has a sturdiness that belies its sleek appearance, so you can pound the (virtual) pavement without it wobbling. It does emit a few loud beeps upon startup, though, which is a great passive-aggressive way to let everyone know it's time to get up.
  • generously-sized cupholders
  • motor adjusts speed immediately
  • exercise programs are boring
Brand Horizon Fitness
Model HTM0944-01
Weight 192 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

7. Exerpeutic TF1000

An intuitive interface makes the Exerpeutic TF1000 simple to program and to use, so almost anybody can get the customized workout they need without any hassle. Despite its small size, it supports users weighing up to 400 pounds, and it has extra-long safety handles.
  • speed controls on the handles
  • excellent for beginning exercisers
  • not made for running
Brand Exerpeutic
Model 1020
Weight 145.5 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

6. Schwinn MY16 830

The Schwinn MY16 830 features a media shelf to hold your tablet or smartphone, so you can, hopefully, forget you're running. It comes with 22 exercise programs and has the ability to upload data to MyFitnessPal, making it easy to track your progress over time.
  • usb charging port
  • allows for four user profiles
  • safety key falls out when sprinting
Brand Schwinn
Model 100518
Weight 223 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

5. Weslo Cadence R5.2

It's not the most high-tech option out there, but the Weslo Cadence R5.2 is a wonderful choice for anyone who just wants a workout and doesn't need something with more electronics than the space shuttle. It folds up nicely as well, making it great for apartment dwellers.
  • accommodates long strides
  • easy to move from room to room
  • screen isn't backlit
Brand Weslo
Model WLTL29712
Weight 119.7 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

4. LifeSpan TR1200-DT5

If you're looking to get a workout in while getting work done, the LifeSpan TR1200-DT5 is a treadmill desk with lots of space for your computer or papers. It has a cable management system to ensure you won't trip over any power cords, so you have no excuses for wiping out.
  • easy to assemble
  • table doesn't shake while in use
  • extremely quiet operation
Brand LifeSpan Fitness
Model TR1200-DT5
Weight 252 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

3. AFG Sport 5.5AT

If you and your partner are getting in shape together, the AFG Sport 5.5AT lets you store two different programs, so your settings aren't wiped out after every session. It's ideal for fostering competition, which is great if you're looking for something else to fight over.
  • built-in speakers and headphone jack
  • hydraulic assist for raising it
  • running deck is very roomy
Brand AFG Sport
Model HTM1102-01
Weight 211.6 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

2. 3G Cardio Pro Runner

The 3G Cardio Pro Runner perfectly balances the need for high-end features with a space-saving design. It's incredibly quiet and allows users to hit speeds of up to 12 MPH, so you can watch "The Walking Dead" while using it to see how long you'd last running from zombies.
  • one-touch elevation adjustments
  • speeds up and slows down quickly
  • built-in dual-speed fan
Brand 3G Cardio
Model Pro Runner
Weight 216 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

1. ProForm Pro 2000

It's not cheap, but the ProForm Pro 2000 does everything short of sweating off the pounds for you. It offers superior shock absorption, so arthritis sufferers or anyone needing a low-impact workout can stay in shape without having to be in traction afterwards.
  • perfect for serious runners
  • suitable for users of all sizes
  • lots of room for accessories
Brand ProForm
Model PFTL13113
Weight 320.7 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

More To A Treadmill Than Meets The Eye

At first glance, it doesn't look like a treadmill is that complicated of a machine. All you really see of it is the console, some posts, and a belt that wraps around a flat surface.

To put the complex construction of any given treadmill into perspective for you, we've provided this almost needlessly elaborate schematic of all the treadmill's parts.

This is, honestly, the other end of the spectrum, and it makes a treadmill out to be more intricate than it is at its core.

The heart of the treadmill is near the center of the image, where you see the main motor component which turns an internal belt, whose motion translates to the movement of large rollers. Those rollers move the big belt on which you run.

It's a pretty simple transition of energy from one element to the next, but the stronger the motor and the sturdier the rollers, the better the treadmill.

Judge Tread: Evaluating Your Perfect Mill

When I was in my teens, I would start almost every year with a resolution to get in shape. Too much refined sugar and simple carbohydrates kept me in a perpetual state of chubbiness, and those holiday months of hibernation, hot chocolate, and home-baked cookies didn't help.

So, every January, I'd roll the old treadmill out of the closet and set it up, hop on, and begin the long, tedious, suffering path toward fitness. By my junior year, with a little more commitment and a better eating plan, I finally got in the shape I desired.

The treadmill we had was perfect because it stored nicely enough that we never felt the need to get rid of it to save space. That allowed me to keep trying year after year until the habit stuck.

I'm not going to sit here and tell you that you're going to be the prefect runner, or that you're going to get the best results out of your treadmill within a certain amount of time.

A lot of your success here is going to depend on you, but if you get the right machine, not only will your chances of success go up, the likelihood that the treadmill will last as long as you need to establish good habits becomes greater, as well.

That decision comes down to your current level of fitness, your goals for yourself, and your space. If you can fit a big machine in your house or apartment, and you need that great top speed and steep incline just to break a sweat, then go for it.

If, however, you're really just looking to raise your heart rate a few times a week, maybe just to get a good, brisk walk in during the months of the year when it's too cold to go walking outside, a smaller, simpler machine might be perfect for you.

Oh, and don't forget to mention to your doctor any drastic changes in your eating or exercise habits. He or she might want to help you ease into it. After all, there's nothing worse than having to suspend your journey toward wellness to recover from an injury.

It's Always Been A Punishment

If you've ever heard anyone describe their workout as 'punishing,' it turns out they were making a specific historical reference, though they might not have known it.

Back in the early 1800s, a miller's son devised a form of effective punishment for idle prisoners. Based on the principal of the water wheel, the original treadmills were long, step-based wheel systems on which prisoners would be forced to climb.

Their climbing motion turned the heavy stones that ground grain in the mill. Hence the term 'treadmill.'

It was more than 150 years later that the first consumer treadmill hit the market in response to growing evidence of the need for exercise among Americans.

More recently, we've seen the incorporation of Bluetooth connectivity, built in speaker systems, and advanced statistic tracking, among other technological developments.

When the weather's nice, I still think nothing beats a good run outdoors, but when the weather's cold or rainy, and as the sun and the air get more dangerous to our health, having one of these high-tech treadmills in the home is necessary.

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Last updated on December 29, 2017 by Quincy Miller

Quincy is a writer who was born in Texas, but moved to Los Angeles to pursue his life-long dream of someday writing a second page to one of his screenplays.

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