Top 10 Best Treadmill Buys

Selecting the best treadmill for your body and your budget can be a daunting task.  I’ve worked in the fitness equipment industry for the over 17 years and have helped thousands of individuals in purchasing the right treadmill. I’ve put together my top ten list to assist you.

There are countless models priced from a couple of hundred dollars to in excess of $5,000.  The quality varies from dirt cheap manual machines to commercial grade for the home. To assist you in narrowing down the field I’ve suggested 10 of the best treadmill values from $600 to $5,000.  You really do not want to pay less than $600 for a treadmill, unless you plan to use it for a coat hanger.


1. ProForm 400c – $599

The ProForm 400c is a decent budget treadmill designed primarily for walkers and individuals of moderate weight.  Many people who purchase this treadmill will use it for running.  I wouldn’t recommend it because machines at this price range do not have the quality to withstand the abuse of running. Furthermore, the shock absorption really is not designed for runners.  Warranty coverage – 25-years motor, 1-year parts and labor.  All ProForm and NordicTrack treadmills are iFit compatible, which allows your treadmill to communicate with the Internet.  You can create customized workout programs, upload your stats to your account, and simulate running trails through Google Maps.

2. LifeSpan Fitness TR200 Compact – $699

Are you spaced challenged? Well the LifeSpan Fitness TR200 is your answer.  It is a compact 30.5” by 51.5” by 60.5” inches.  When folded it is only 13.5” tall. However, in the pursuit of a very compact design you compromise on motor power and length of the deck. This treadmill should only be used by walkers.  That said, this is one of the better compact treadmills out.  The TR200 is ideal for people in apartments with limited space.

3. Smooth 5.65 – $999

The Smooth 5.65 treadmill has been out for several years and has proven to be a low maintenance machines, which is evident in the industry leading lifetime motor, 5-year parts and 2-year labor warranty.  They couldn’t offer that kind of coverage if there were consistent service issues.  I would rate it for walkers and joggers.  You will often find the 5.65 on sale for less than $999, or with some upgraded delivery special.

4. ProForm Pro 2000 – $1,299

The ProForm Pro 2000 offers a fairly powerful 3.0 continuous duty HP motor, and you get a lengthy 60” running surface.  This treadmill can handle walkers, joggers and runners, in addition, to multiple users.  However, if you are planning to train for a marathon you will want to upgrade.  What makes this treadmill a standout is that it received the highest rating from a leading consumer magazine in the folding treadmill category.  Warranty coverage – lifetime motor, 5-years parts and 2-year labor.

5. NordicTrack Commercial 1750 – $1,499

The NordicTrack Commercial 1750 treadmill offers not only impressive specs like a 3.5 HP motor, and a 60” running surface, it also has features designed to motivate and entertain you.  For example, it includes iFit live, as mentioned above. You also have a decent speaker system with an MP3 input.    Furthermore, you get a 7” full color LCD touch screen Google Android Tablet Display. In addition to giving you brilliant feedback while you exercise, you are also able to access the Internet. One other feature worth noting is that you can  decline the deck.  By declining the deck you can simulate going down hills.  You are also able to target additional lower body muscles. Warranty coverage – lifetime motor, 5-years parts and 2-year labor.

6. Smooth 7.35 – $1,499

As with the Smooth 5.65, the Smooth 7.35 treadmill has a very good service record, which is also reflected in the  7-year parts warranty.  This is the longest parts coverage at this price range.  Treadmill repairs can be very costly, besides the fact they can interrupt you workout routines.  Dependability is definitely an important factor when choosing a treadmill.  The Smooth 7.35 is engineered to handle walkers, joggers and runners.  In fact, it offers an extra long 62” treadbelt, which can handle the long strides of a runner, particularly when doing interval training.

7. Sole S77 – $1,699

Sole is known for building durable running machines, and the Sole S77 is a perfect example.  It is designed and engineered specifically for runner.  You get a powerful 3.5 HP motor and an extra wide 22”x60” treadbelt.  You will find that the shock absorption is stiffer than many other treadmills. That is because runners often prefer a more solid push-off.  Furthermore, the Sole S77 is a non-folding treadmill, which adds to the stability of the machine, giving you a very stable and solid feel. Warranty coverage – lifetime motor, 5-years parts and 2-year labor.

8. NordicTrack X9i Incline Trainer – $1,999

The NordicTrack X9i Incline Trainer is not your typical treadmill.  The deck has the ability to incline up to a heart stopping 40 degrees, while it also declines to 6 degrees.  Although people do buy the X9i for running, you will find that you can get the same cardio benefits of running by just walking at a steep incline.  And in the process you limit the stress and strain to your joints that comes with running.  The NordicTrack X9i comes with a 10” full color LCD touch screen Google Android Tablet Display that allows you to get the full impact of iFit Live, in addition to being able to access the Internet.  It is also features a 62” walking/running surface.  Warranty coverage – lifetime motor, 5-years parts and 2-year labor.

9. Landice L7 Pro Sports Trainer – $3,599

The Landice L7 Pro Sports Trainer is commercial grade for the home.  It is built like a tank and can take any abuse you want to throw at it, which is evident in the lifetime parts warranty (1-year labor).  This is a treadmill that you could pass on to your children.  When Landice claims the user weight limit is 400 lbs., they mean it.

10. Precor 9.35 – $4,999

The Precor 9.35 treadmill may just be the best residential treadmill on the market.  It utilizes many of the same components found on their commercial models, so like the Landice L7, it is extremely durable.  However, the 9.35 has features that give it more finesse.  For example, it has the Integrated Footplant Technology (IFT).  Every runner has a unique pattern of accelerating and decelerating. Through the IFT the treadmill registers your speed, “checking the motor speed up to 710 times per second”. Based on your speed the treadmill adjusts the speed of the belt to match your natural movement. This results in a reduction of stress and strain to you joints.

So if you are in the market for a treadmill, first determine what your fitness goals are, and your price range.  And from there this list can help you to find that perfect treadmill for your body and your budget.

If this list is not thorough enough you can get over 100 detailed treadmill reviews at

Fred Waters

Fred Waters has worked in the fitness equipment industry for the past 17 years, and was formerly V.P. of marketing for Smooth Fitness. He offers his recommendations and advice on purchasing treadmills and elliptical trainers on his web sites.

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