Best Treadmill Brands

by SamPhillips

What are the best treadmill brands? With so many to choose from, it helps to know who makes the best treadmills vs. the worst.

Which Brands of Treadmills are the Best?

Who Makes the Best Treadmills Online...

Best Treadmill Brands 2012

If you've been looking for an easier way to keep fit and decided a treadmill is the best option, you're in good hands with so many new treadmills coming out from major brand names. But you might be new to the market and wondering which are the best treadmill brands?

Making a choice seems a bit daunting. If it's your first time shopping for a treadmill, or if you've simply had to retire your last model after years of use, you want to shop the best treadmills online (it's easier than ever to find a great value).

Some of the best brands of treadmills are:

  • Sole Fitness
  • Smooth Fitness
  • LiveStrong
  • Yowza Fitness
  • Precor
  • Life Fitness
  • Landice
  • PaceMaster
  • True Fitness

Let's take a look at some issues you need to consider before deciding on a treadmill.

Great Treadmill Models

From the Best Brand Name Treadmill Manufacturers
Life Fitness T5-0 Treadmill

Life Fitness T5-0 Treadmill, Designed specifically for the home, the Life Fitness T5-0 Treadmill fits perfectly into your active lifestyle. Easy, uncomplicated controls make ...

Only $3550.00
Nautilus T514 Treadmill

Ideal for toning up, managing your weight, and improving your cardiovascular health, Nautilus T514 treadmill is designed to help you move from the place you are to the place ...

Smooth Fitness 5.65 Folding Treadmill

Compact but solid, this feature-rich treadmill includes a dual-stage, soft-drop folding mechanism, deluxe sound system, and quick speed and incline buttons. The Smooth 5.65 ...

Smooth Fitness 7.35 Folding Treadmill

Featuring a gym-quality design, the Smooth Fitness® 7.35 treadmill is perfect for your routine. Heavy-duty aluminum side rails and an industrial-strength frame help put the ...

Schwinn 840 Treadmill

The Schwinn® 840 treadmill offers integrated heart rate programming, multi-color dual-screen consoles and an optimally cushioned running surface. And for added convenience, ...

Daytona Professional Grade Non-folding Treadmill

Introducing the New Daytona treadmill featuring Yowza's patented IWMTM (Intelligent Weight Management) software. The Daytona with IWMTM is a professional grade non-folding ...

Best Treadmill Brands on Amazon

Bowflex Series 7 Treadmill

Bowflex Series 7 Treadmill, motorized, computer-programmed and ready to go the distance in getting you fit! Get the low-impact, high-cardio workout benefits of a gym-quality ...

Only $1300.9
LifeSpan TR 1200i Folding Treadmill (2011 Model)

The LifeSpan TR1200i folding treadmill is durable, reliable, and loaded with valuable features, helping you walk, jog, or run with confidence in the comfort of your own home. ...

Only $1699.99
Schwinn 860 Treadmill

The Schwinn® 860 treadmill offers integrated heart rate programming, multi-color dual-screen consoles and an optimally cushioned running surface. And for added convenience, ...

Precor 9.33 Premium Series Treadmill

Bring home the natural feel of an outdoor run with the 9.33 treadmill. Its Integrated Foot Plant TechnologyTM mimics your stride, while the Ground Effects Impact Control ...

Only $2999.0
Sole F80 Treadmill (2011 Model)

The Sole® F80 treadmill boasts a continuous-duty 3.0 HP motor that delivers challenging speeds up to 11 MPH; the Cushion Flex Whisper Deck reduces impact on your joints by up ...

Only $1975.0
Sole F85 Treadmill (2011 Model)

The Sole® F85 treadmill boasts a continuous-duty 3.5 HP motor that delivers challenging speeds up to 12 MPH; the Cushion Flex Whisper Deck reduces impact on your joints by up ...

Only $2717.0

Considerations Before Buying a Treadmill

How to Choose the Right Treadmill

It's good advice to start off with knowing your overall needs before buying a treadmill. No, I don't mean, "I need a convenient place to run when it's raining/snowing/miserable outside, etc."

That's a given.

What I mean is what treadmill features matter most to you?

Some features to consider:


Impact resistance of the running deck.

How much do you need? Most treadmills of any quality are going to offer at least a cushioned deck, though it's often a feature missing from budget/cheap treadmills. Will that be enough or do you need more cushioning, like what the Yowza Daytona offers (a double protection: SwingArmTM shock absorber, and floating deck)?

Entertainment features.

If you're one who gets bored thinking of the prospect of running on a treadmill, you're far from alone. This is why the Smooth 9.65TV from Smooth Fitness is a great treadmill for 2012: it includes an integrated 10.5" LCD television. But maybe you just need a stereo and MP3 hookup? Many treadmills come with MP3 docking stations.


Is the treadmill quiet in operation?

The louder the treadmill, the worse off it's made. Better quality treadmills are quieter due to frictionless belt design (or less friction I should say), as well as strong motors that have plenty of power for the workout. Louder treadmills have higher friction, which cause the motor to work harder and burn out easier.


Size of Running Deck.

Usually found on 'elite' brands like Landice, True Fitness and Precor, now some middle-range treadmills are coming out with over-sized running decks that exceed the 'standard' 20" x 60" deck you may be accustomed to. One brand in particular that pops into mind is Smooth Fitness, which seems to have added a few inches to the length and an inch or so to the width of that standard.


Number of Workout Programs.

Of course you'll need to have some variety, so make sure your treadmill comes with the variety that is going to keep you challenged as you get more conditioned and used to running.


Incline Features and Decline?

Most treadmills that are made for home use will not offer the ability to decline, with the exception of some from Precor or Landice (and you will pay dearly for it in the high cost), but you really should get an incline feature. This helps fight off shin splints and increases your intensity level (get more work done in less time).


Motor Size and Type.

By 'type of motor' I simply mean this: how is the horsepower rated? Is it continuous duty or CHP? If not, then the manufacturer may be trying to pull a fast one - the CHP motor ratings offer a more accurate measurement of power, and as a general rule: under 3 horsepower = a jogging or power-walking motor, 3+ CHP = a runner's treadmill motor. Anything under 3 horsepower may give you problems in the long haul, so be sure to check the warranty before deciding.


Warranty and Guarantee.

Naturally you want to be sure you get your money's worth, I wouldn't buy anything that offers a warranty under 3 years for parts and electronics, and even then I'd prefer 5 years or longer. For in-home labor, anything from 1 year on up is good, you can always buy a longer in-home warranty if you want (but I wouldn't).


Deck Material.

Many manufacturers are putting in reversible running decks which simply means that a technician (or you) can flip the running deck for maintenance purposes for double the regular life of the deck. Over time, running regularly on any treadmill will wear out the running deck, it happens, and they usually cost around $100-$250 to replace yourself. If you pay for labor, of course it can cost more per hour for installation.



This is where it's really up to you: do you really need a fan, iPod or MP3 sound system, colorful display, water bottle holder and the ability to fold up your treadmill? Every situation is different, it's something you need to consider of course.


Buyer's Tip:

Don't ever be lured by simply the eye-candy accessories and options...Things like a television may sound great, but is the treadmill a solid piece of fitness equipment? Will it last? Does it have a strong motor and come from a reputable company?

Simply having a water bottle holder or a free mat isn't enough - you want to look at the specs sheet first and customer reviews next, to be sure you're getting a real deal.

Good and Bad Treadmill Examples

Mostly Good Treadmills!

What Makes a These the Best Treadmill Brands?

Features of the Top Brands that Cheap Treadmills Don't Offer

I mentioned in the first module my quick list of the best treadmill brands:

  • Smooth FItness
  • Sole Fitness
  • PaceMaster
  • True Fitness
  • Yowza Fitness (especially for compact models)
  • Landice
  • Precor
  • Life Fitness
  • LiveStrong

I'll also add in LifeSpan, and only a few models from Schwinn (actually their 840 and 860 is about all I'd recommend).

But what makes these the best treadmill brands? What about brands like Reebok and ProForm?

Well having owned both a Reebok and a ProForm treadmill - I can say you should really save your money!

I'm a bit jaded with in-store brands (most of them anyway) because I get lured by low sticker prices. I have found the hard way that spending much under $1,000 is going to guarantee that I've just wasted a few hundred dollars (every single time in my case this has been proven true).

So I'd steer clear of budget treadmills.

The mid-range treadmill brands I've listed, with the clear exception of Precor, Life Fitness, True, Landice and PaceMaster which are club-quality and expensive brands, are all a better return on investment in my experience.

I have to be clear here: I sell treadmills on my website "" - but I am not an affiliate for all these brands.

I recommend and affilaite with brands I believe in and personally vouch for, but what I've discovered is that the uber-top-shelf brands, though they are great products, simply aren't going to give you the return on investment like a mid-range will.

Granted, a Landice can actually become part of your heritage, you can leave your lifetime warranty in the hands of your children when you pass away and they say they'll honor the warranty (that IS a good treadmill brand) - but you'll spend about $5,000 out the door.

That's a bit steep in my book.

So I recommend the mid-range treadmill brands as the best, since they give you a great value, warranty, features and overall solid treadmill for a reasonable price.

What makes these listed brands the best treadmill brands? They deliver the best product, the best value for your money - and they almost all have cult followings for a good reason: they're built to last.

A word of warning: I would highly recommend you stay out of the discount stores if you want a long-lasting treadmill. I won't name the store I used to shop at, but it's a big warehouse store here in America and they've lost my business...

The simple truth is that I have spent about as much on my so-called budget treadmills as I have on both a treadmill and elliptical machine from Sole Fitness - and you know what?

All the budget treadmills from ICON Fitness in particular (they own various brands like Reebok and ProForm, as well as Weslo, all of which I have owned and hated) are prone to constant problems, safety issues (in my case the treadmill belt would suddenly stop when I stepped on my ProForm, the motor burned out in my Reebok)...

They're well-marketed in discount stores and respectable shops - but they're one example of a brand gone wild in my book: they don't last. Keep your money and buy something from one of the best treadmill brands listed here, you'll thank me later.

Updated: 12/12/2011, SamPhillips
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