Best Treadmills In 2021
There are tons of reasons why you wouldn’t want to go out running. Bad weather, the fear of being judged, and potential injury spring to mind. So, you can either spend your money on a gym membership or cut out the middleman and just buy a treadmill. Sure, it’s going to cost you a bit more upfront, but that investment will be worth it when you’re in the best shape of your life, and you haven’t had to leave the house once! Here’s our list of the best treadmills on the market.
The Best Treadmill
When we started writing this buying guide, we knew the NordicTrack Commercial Series Treadmill would be our Best Choice product. Okay, it’s not the cheapest treadmill on the market and it’s going to take up a lot of space, but don’t let that put you off. If you can afford it, this is the only treadmill you’ll ever need. There are three models – 1750, 2450, and 2950 – which all have the same basic technology but have slightly upgraded features the more expensive you go.
We’ll cover the stats of the NordicTrack 2450. It has a 3.75 CHP DurX Commercial Plus Motor that operates quietly and cools itself while it’s running. The running surface is extra wide (22 inches) to accommodate different running styles and you can fold up this part of the treadmill to save space. Plus, it has a top speed of 12mph and uses Automatic Incline Matching Technology that adjusts the gradient in between 3% and 15%.
Now, onto the more exciting feature. With this treadmill, you get a one-year subscription to iFit. This allows you to access trainer-led workout programs through the 10-inch HD touchscreen. It’s like having a personal trainer on-call at all times. If you want to get the most out of your treadmill, this amazing piece of home gym equipment is the way forward.
22×60-inch tread belt
10-inch HD SMART touchscreen display
3.75 CHP DurX commercial plus motor
Automatic Incline Matching technology
Max speed – 12mph
1-year iFit subscription membership
- Weight309 pounds
Workout with personal trainers around the world
Impressive incline and max speed
Extremely sturdy frame
Valuable 1-year iFit membership included
Large and heavy
NordicTrack also makes a range of more affordable treadmills. The NordicTrack T-Series 6.5S is one of the best treadmills for under $1000. It can’t quite compete with the NordicTrack 1750, but it still has some impressive stats. The max speed is 10mph, it has a spacious 20-inch tread belt, and you can control the incline up to 10% using just one touch. It also has the same quiet and self-cooling motor technology, albeit in a slightly smaller motor. Plus, the EasyLift Assist makes it easy to fold up the treadmill after you’ve finished using it.
It doesn’t have an integrated screen, but you can connect your tablet or smartphone to the treadmill and use the iFit app. That means, with a bit of extra investment, you can still benefit from online training sessions, without ever having to leave the house. For more excellent options like this, check out our guide to the best curved treadmills.
22×55-inch tread belt
Compatible with iFit
5-inch backlit display
OneTouch incline and speed control
2.6 CHP DurX Smart Response Motor
Max speed – 10mph
- Weight193 pounds
Workout with personal trainers around the world
Easy to fold up
Easy to accidentally sign up to iFit
Some reports of motor failing
Horizon Fitness makes some of the best home treadmills in the business. Their Studio Series Advanced Training Treadmills are towards the more expensive end of treadmills on this list, but we think they’re well worth the investment. One of the big differences between this and a cheaper treadmill is the size and sturdiness of the frame. Made from aluminum plastic, it feels completely solid, even when you’re running at full tilt. Plus, the control panel and handles are so massive they have two storage compartments and a tablet holder built into the design.
Speaking of controls, the Horizon Fitness Studio Series Advanced Training Treadmill has so many, you’ll need a couple of days to get the hang of it. In addition to the buttons underneath the LCD screen, it has two joysticks that allow you to change the pace and incline easily while running. If you can afford it, we’d seriously recommend considering this treadmill – you’ll never have to visit a gym again. You may also like some of these amazing under desk treadmills from our list, so check them out.
20” x 60” running belt
LCD screen and control panel
Joystick incline and speed controls
Integrate tablet holder
Rapid sync motor and drive system
Quick-charge USB port
- BrandHorizon Fitness
- Model7.4 Studio
- Weight318 pounds
Feels completely stable when running fast
Amazing control panel and joysticks
Charge your phone whilst working out
The Nautilus T618 Treadmill is one of our favorite premium treadmills on the market. If you have a decent-sized budget and space in your home, this is one of the best products on the market.
One of the first things we noticed about the Nautilus T1618 is the control panel. It looks more like a spaceship’s control panel than a treadmill. Having said that, it’s surprisingly easy to understand. It has big green and red buttons to stop and start, everything is well-labeled, and the screen is laid out sensibly. The Bluetooth connectivity allows you to sync data with smart devices. The Nautilus Trainer 2 App makes this super easy and even lets you run alongside other users from all over the world. The 3.5 CHP motor powers the 20-inch tread belt along perfectly. There’s no lag in between different speeds and it feels positive at all times. We also like performance handrails. Not only are they comfortable, but they also have integrated incline controls. Our guide to the best exercise bikes features more quality machines for your home gym, so check them out.
20×60-inch tread belt
Compatible with Nautilus Trainer 2 App
Compatible with RunSocial App
Two x backlit LCD displays
3.5 CHP motor
Max speed – 12mph
- Weight200 pounds
Large running surface
Compatible with multiple apps
Impressive max speed and incline
Some reports of defective models
Have to pay for most of the app’s functionality
If you don’t have a lot of space, the dream of having a home gym can seem pretty far-fetched. There are no two ways about it – even folding treadmills are too big for most homes. Fortunately, the Goplus Folding Treadmill offers a solution. It works in two ways. You can use it as a traditional treadmill, with a handrail to hold onto. When it’s in this position, it can achieve a maximum speed of 7.5 mph (jogging pace), so it’s not as fast as a full-sized treadmill, but you can still work up a sweat. Alternatively, you can fold down the rise and save even more space. In this position, it only has a maximum speed of 2.5mph (walking pace). Some customers have placed it underneath a standing desk and used it to exercise while they’re working.
It’s also got space to hold your smartphone, a built-in Bluetooth speaker, and a small LED screen that provides workout metrics. If you need to save space, the Goplus Folding Treadmill is the way to do it.
16×40-inch tread belt
2.25HP Quiet Motor
Two operating modes
Max speed – 7.5mph
Fits into tiny spaces
Can fit under a standing desk
Low max speed
Low weight limit
The Merax Electric Folding Treadmill is one of the cheapest treadmills on this list. It’s not as high-tech as the products from NordicTrack or Nautilus but it still deserves a place on this list. The first thing to mention is the relatively small running surface, which measures just 15-inches by 43-inches. This is adequate space for a small runner, but it’s not suitable if you have a long stride or wide running stance. One thing we do like about the running surface is the turf-like texture they’ve used. You definitely won’t slip.
We were impressed by the control panel. It’s simple compared to high-end treadmills, but it’s very easy to use. You can easily select different running modes, use voice activation, control your speed, and even play music through the USB speakers. We also like the fact that it’s foldable. It’s not quite as space-saving as the Goplus Folding Treadmill but the small running surface makes it one of the smallest treadmills on this list.
15×43-inch tread belt
Multi-function LCD display
Max speed – 7.5mph
Nice running surface
Folds up small
Only suitable for small people
If you don’t feel like you need smart connectivity in your treadmill, you can save a lot of money. The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7515 is what we’d call an old-school treadmill. It has the ability to connect to Bluetooth, so you can play music through the speakers but that’s where the modern tech ends.
There are a couple of things you should know before you consider buying this treadmill. First, it has a relatively small running surface that measures 49.5-inches by 16.5-inches. This should be big enough to accommodate most runners, but if you’re a larger person, you should definitely try it out before you buy. The second drawback is the max speed of 8mph. That’s about the average jogging pace. So, if you’re an experienced runner, you might find it’s not fast enough for you. On the plus side, the control panel is super easy to understand. And, it has a pulse-grip, which gives you a rough idea of your heart-rate and body-mass index. For some full-body workout machines, check out our guide to the best dip stands.
16.5×49.5-inch tread belt
Max speed – 8mph
Body mass calculator
- BrandSunny Health & Fitness
- Weight121 pounds
Good exercise data
Not amazing quality
Next up is the MaxKare Folding Treadmill. It’s pretty similar in terms of both price and features to Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7515. The most noticeable difference is that it doesn’t contain Bluetooth speakers. We don’t think this will put many people off – who doesn’t have their own running earphones or speakers at home already? It’s got a slightly wider running surface (17-inches) but it can only withstand a maximum weight of 220lbs, which rules out the big guys. Apart from that, it’s pretty hard to tell the two machines apart.
One feature that really impressed us on this machine was the LCD display. It’s larger than you’d expect from a budget treadmill and gives you the option of choosing from 15 preset programs. This makes up for the lack of smart connectivity in this treadmill. You can also monitor your speed, time, calories burnt, distance, and heart rate. It’s not the best treadmill on this list, but it’s a solid product for the price.
17×53-inch tread belt
Max speed – 8.5mph
15 preset programs
Small running belt
Made from cheap plastic
When it comes to a product like a treadmill, there are so many different options to choose from and each one has a different price. We’re always looking for products that offer both amazing features and an amazing price. The Schwinn 810 Treadmill is just that. At $699.00 (at the time of writing), it’s one of the cheaper treadmills on this list, but you’d never guess that when you read the spec sheet. Plus, it’s made by Schwinn, one of the world’s oldest and best-loved bicycle companies, so you know it’s going to be a solid product.
This foldable treadmill has a 20” x 55” running belt that has a technology called SoftTrak deck cushioning to add some spring to each step. It has an impressive backlit LCD display that has a total of 16 workout programs and up to two user profiles. Plus, it can be connected to the Explore the World app, which allows you to take part in virtual races around the world. This might not be the most stacked treadmill, in terms of features, but it’s an amazing workout tool for the price.
20” x 55” running belt
SoftTrack deck cushioning
16 workout programs + two user profiles
Speeds up to 10mph
Soft Drop folding system
- Weight155 pounds
Amazing value for the number of features
Made by a reputable company
Impressive LCD display
Connects to Explore the World app
Bluetooth connection is confusing
Running surface could be longer
Sunny Health & Fitness is one of the leading brands in affordable treadmills. If you don’t want to invest thousands in home-gym equipment, a product like the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7603 could be just what you’re looking for. It has the same basic function as a professional-standard gym treadmill, but they’ve cut back on the features and size to make it affordable.
One of the most noticeable differences is the smaller running surface. Measuring just 49” x 16”, it’s only really suitable for those with a smaller stride length. It has a pretty simple LCD screen and a series of quick-touch buttons to adjust your workout. Plus, there are three different levels to adjust the incline. Of course, at the price, it doesn’t have Bluetooth connectivity or any corresponding apps to digitize your workout.
49” x 16” running belt
Three adjustable incline levels
- BrandSunny Health & Fitness
- Weight103 pounds
One of the cheapest treadmills around
Quick and easy to select workout mode
Compact and easy to store
Small running surface
Treadmill Buying Guide & FAQ
Features To Look For In Treadmills
Running Surface - Depending on your running style, you might require a wider running surface. When you run, try to tell if your feet are more than a shoulder’s width apart - this should give you an idea of the width you’ll need.
Motor - The power of treadmills is measured in horsepower, like a car. However, it’s more useful to look at the maximum speed to determine if the motor is powerful enough for you.
Cushioning - Most modern treadmills have cushioning underneath the running surface. If you suffer from ligament damage or any other knee, ankle, or foot problems, look for a treadmill with extra cushioning.
Incline - Being able to change the gradient of the treadmill recreates the effect of hill-training. It helps build calf muscles and takes your workout to the next level.
Control Panel - Lots of treadmill control panels look the same, but they can be full of hidden features that can optimize your workout. For example, the NordicTrack 1750 has a smart touch screen that provides user-led immersive workouts.
Foldable - Not everyone has the space for a home gym. Fortunately, some of the treadmills on this list can be folded flat to save space.
Maximum weight - Most treadmills have a maximum user weight of over 300lbs. If you are heavier than this, you need to carefully research each treadmill and find one that can accommodate you.
Types Of Treadmills
Curved treadmill - Curved treadmills use a concave running surface, which allows you to run on it without motor power. They’re not as effective workout tools, but because they don’t use electricity, they’re considered a greener choice.
Folding treadmill - Folding treadmills are perfect for people who don’t have enough space for a permanent home gym. You can usually fold the running surface up against the handlebars, which makes them easy to store.
Running treadmill - Most of the products on this list are traditional running treadmills. These are the machines you find in almost every gym around the world. They have multiple speeds, which are chosen from the control panel.