The best treadmills vary in specs, but every model will help you get fitter, whether you're training for a new PR or just want to jog without venturing outdoors. While it might seem an expensive purchase, in the long run, having a treadmill in your home gym removes the need for an expensive gym membership. But which should you buy?
When finding the best treadmill for you, it's a good idea to think about the space you plan on using the treadmill in. Some treadmills are a lot bulkier than others and those that have a greater incline will require a good amount of space above you, so might not be best suited to garages.
If you're looking to walk while you work, check out the best under-desk treadmills here. We've also found the best exercise bikes for upping your cardio indoors.
It's also worth thinking about speed. Some treadmills will have slower top speeds than others depending on the model and price, so if you're training for the Boston Marathon, you're going to want to make sure your treadmill's belt can keep up with you. If you plan to use your treadmill for walking, this will matter less than if you plan to do regular sprint training.
Below, we've put some of the best treadmills on the market to the sweat test. We've looked at how easily they fit in the home, functionality, and added extras like classes and screens, to keep you occupied as you clock up the miles. All of the treadmills below have been run on for at least 30 miles, during a number of different sessions, including faster sprints, and slower, easy miles.
The best treadmills to buy now
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The Echelon Stride sits between treadmill categories — it's not cheap, nor high-end. In most categories, it’s just fine in terms of build, power and features. The Stride has fewer bells and whistles than more expensive treadmills; for instance, it doesn't have an HD video screen.
That said, don't let the lack of a screen put you off. With a max speed of 12 miles per hour, this should be fast enough to suit most runners — that's around a five-minute mile running pace. It's also got a 10% incline, and a 3% decline. With a smaller footprint than the Peloton Tread, the Echelon Stride has one major selling point — it folds for easier storage.
The Stride can be paired with a tablet running the Echelon app, which provides access to live and in-demand studio classes for a monthly fee. If you’re looking for a cheaper Peloton alternative, then the Stride plus the Echelon Fit app mostly fits the bill.
Read our full Echelon Stride review
Does the expensive Peloton Tread live up to the hype? We think so. It looks great, it doesn't take up as much space as some of the other treadmills on this list, and it's a pleasure to run on — the side knobs allow you to easily increase speed and incline, without trying to reach and touch a screen as you move. The screen itself is a massive 23.8 inches, allowing you to follow on-demand or live classes and track your progress, although you can't fully rotate the screen for your mat workouts like others on this list.
Where the Peloton really shines is in its workouts, with thousands of different running workouts to choose from. Whether you're hardcore marathon training, or just want to sing your lungs out to The Greatest Showman soundtrack as you clock up the miles, you'll find workouts to make treadmill running genuinely enjoyable on the app. The Peloton all-access membership will set you back an extra $39 a month, however, which on top of the cost of the treadmill itself, does make this one of the most expensive on the list. It's also worth noting — the cost of the Peloton Tread recently went up, as shoppers will now have to pay $350 for the delivery and installation of the machine, bringing the total price to $2,845.
The Peloton Tread won the best treadmill title in our Tom's Guide health and fitness awards thanks to its content — there are hundreds of classes for every level of runner at the swipe of a screen.
Read our full Peloton Tread review here.
If you've got the space for it in your home gym, this NordicTrack treadmill is an impressive piece of kit. It has an incline range of -3 to 15% to hit all your workout needs, and a top speed of 22km/h, which is around a four-minute mile pace, which should be speedy enough for most runners. The belt also folds up, so you can keep it out of reach of kids and pets when you're not using it.
During testing, we loved the option to join classes and keep fit on the iFit-compatible treadmill, although this does require you to have an iFit membership. The Commercial 2950 comes with a 30-day trial of iFit (normally $39), but you’ll need to renew that subscription every single month to take advantage of live classes, on-demand workouts, and other iFit extras. You can technically use the machine as a manual treadmill once this membership runs out, but that kind of defeats the purpose of the original investment.
On the run, taller testers still found the treadmill comfortable and were able to fully stride out, without feeling like they'd fall off. We were also able to easily adjust the angle of the screen to suit runners of different heights, but unlike the screens on the more expensive NordicTrack treadmills, it can't be rotated for other classes.
All in all, this is a fantastic machine if you've got the space for it and want to use it for virtual classes. If you're trying to decide between this one and the Peloton, we'd say the Peloton wins from a class perspective, however. If classes aren't your bag, there are probably cheaper options out there.
Read our full NordicTrack Commercial 2950 review here.
This is a beast of a treadmill — and the price tag reflects that. The Bowflex Treadmill 22 boasts a top-notch design and build, robust performance and many accompanying features. This high-end machine is as big and sturdy (or even more so) than what you’d see at your gym. The running surface is roomy and comfortable, while the huge 22-inch touchscreen makes viewing workouts a pleasure. Not only that, connect your streaming services through the JRNY app, and you can watch Netflix or Disney Plus while running.
Speaking of the JRNY app, it's required, though the treadmill comes with a two-month free trial. JRNY doesn’t offer live studio sessions or community features like Peloton, but it does have plenty of on-demand and adaptive workouts.
This treadmill has a top speed of 12 miles per hour, which is around a 4:59 minute mile pace, so should be fast enough for most runners.
Read more in our Bowflex Treadmill 22 review.
If you're looking for a treadmill to do hill sprints on, we've found it. The NordicTrack Commercial x22i is a beast of a machine — in fact, we recommend getting the tape measure out before you even think about installing it into your home. It's got a 40% incline, a -5% decline, and a top speed of 12 miles per hour, which is around a 4:59 minute mile pace, so should be speedy enough for most runners.
During testing, we were impressed by how high-spec this machine is — the 22-inch touchscreen is huge, the fans and cupholders are handy, and there's a set of sled grips to help you climb up those huge hills. The brand also has an x32i, which has a larger 32-inch screen, should you be blessed with the space.
While this treadmill is a joy to run on — the compact running deck is cushioned for a comfortable bounce underfoot as you run, the main drawback here is the size. Unlike other NordicTrack treadmills, the deck doesn't fold away, so you have to find a space to have it out permanently. The deck also sits 12 inches off the ground to accommodate for the incline — something to consider if you have low ceilings. We also found the touchscreen wasn't the most responsive, and the fact that the screen couldn't rotate was a little irritating.
It's a great treadmill, but we'd say unless you're bothered about hiking up virtual hills, there are cheaper, smaller options out there.
The Mobvoi Home Treadmill Incline is an affordable, easy-to-use treadmill, designed for home use. During testing, it was easy to build, and we were up and running, quite literally, in about an hour. The screen is pretty basic, and switches between distance, time, calories, and incline. We couldn't work out how to switch the treadmill between km and miles, and the buttons weren't all that responsive, but it did the job.
Impressively, the little treadmill has a top incline of 15%, which is great for walking workouts. The belt can also be folded up when you're not using it, making this handy if you're trying to install a treadmill into a smaller space and stop small children and animals from using it when you're not.
There are 25 different built-in programs you can use on the treadmill, although it's not all that easy to even find these. There's also nowhere to place a tablet, so you'll need to position the treadmill strategically if you want to follow classes.
With a top speed of 8.7 miles per hour, this treadmill won't be for everyone. It's not the most comfortable to run on, but if you're looking for a treadmill at home for walking and easy workouts, it's an affordable option.
Read our Mobvoi Home Treadmill Incline review
How to choose the best treadmill for you
When deciding on the best treadmill for you, there are a few things to consider.
What type of workout are you planning?
First, determine what kind of workout will you need — hard running, light jogging, walking, etc. If you are training for a marathon, you may want better shock absorption and a longer surface length. Meanwhile, walkers may find longer arms useful.
What is a good treadmill speed for you?
Most of the treadmills on this list have a top speed of around 12 miles per hour, which is around a five-minute mile running pace. This should be speedy enough for most runners, but if you're particularly speedy, you might want something quicker. Cheaper treadmills might also offer lower speeds, so it's worth checking before you buy.
What is a good treadmill incline for you?
If you're training for a hilly race, you'll want a treadmill that'll allow you to hike up those hills. Most treadmills with higher inclines demand a higher horsepower, so are likely to be more expensive.
How much space do you have?
There's also the subject of space. If you’re a city dweller with a small apartment, a folding treadmill could save a lot of space. Folding treadmills are also considered to be the slightly safer option if you're living in a house with small children or animals.
Does the treadmill have live classes?
There's no doubt about it, running on a treadmill can get boring, fast. Another important feature is the content that the treadmill offers, like pre-programmed exercises or live and on-demand studio classes.
What is the warranty on the treadmill?
Unlike the treadmills in your local gym, you'll want the one you're buying for your home gym to last you a while, so take a look at the warranties on the treadmills. The NordicTrack Commercial 2950 has a lifetime warranty on the frame and parts, whereas the Peloton Tread only has three years.
The more features you want, the more expensive the treadmill. Everyone has a different price point, so you may have to trade off some bells and whistles if you’re on a budget.
How we test the best treadmills
We test the best treadmills on the market by running on them! All of the treadmills on this list have been tested by the Tom's Guide team who have run miles on them. When testing, we look for how easy the treadmills are to run on, the top speed you can reach, as well as how quiet they are and whether they can be folded away. We also take into consideration the membership costs, and live classes on offer.
What are the best treadmill workouts?
So you're thinking of investing in a treadmill to up your training from home, but what are the best workouts to do to see results in your running? We've rounded up some of the best treadmill workouts for every type of runner here, including the best HIIT treadmill workouts, and treadmill workouts for beginners.
Of course, if you're not a runner, or you're looking for a lower-impact workout, treadmills can still be great. Walking at an incline of 2% or more has been found to burn more calories than walking on the flat, plus it engages different muscles in your legs. Looking for inspiration? We tried the viral TikTok 12-3-30 treadmill workout.
How much money should you spend on a home treadmill?
There's no doubt about it - a treadmill is definitely an investment. If you're looking to do serious mileage on your treadmill, it's a good idea to spend a bit more and invest in one that'll keep up with you. Like with all tech, you get what you pay for and cheaper options won't have the same build-quality or top speeds.
Is a treadmill good for losing belly fat?
Running is a great workout, and if you're looking to lose weight, it's a good form of exercise to add to your routine. Read more about how to lose weight by running here.