When it comes to the best under-desk treadmills, one brand that often sits at the top of every roundup list is WalkingPad. The brand has a unique selling point — its treadmills physically fold in half, making it easy to stow them underneath the couch, or in the corner of your office. But if you’re trying to decide which WalkingPad treadmill to buy, these little folding treads can all start to look very similar.
Luckily, we’ve tested three of the most popular models on the market — the WalkingPad P1, the WalkingPad C2, and the WalkingPad A1 Pro. Below, we’ve taken a look at the pros and cons of each treadmill to help you work out which is the best fit for you and your home office. You won’t be able to run on any of these treadmills — they all have a top speed of around 3.5 miles per hour, which is around a 17-minute mile running pace. If you are looking to move your training indoors, we’ve found the best treadmills for indoor running here.
WalkingPad P1 vs WalkingPad C2 vs WalkingPad A1 Pro: Price
Let’s start by breaking down the prices of the different WalkingPad options. The WalkingPad A1 Pro, which costs around $599, is the most expensive model, with a brushless motor, and a higher power. That said, it still has a top speed of 6 kilometers per hour, which is around 3.5 miles per hour, so definitely not suitable for running.
The WalkingPad P1 ($449) and C2 ($499) are around the same price point, but at the time of writing, you’ll find the C2 on sale, making it slightly cheaper.
The WalkingPad C2 also has a brushless design, which makes the C2 and the A1 Pro slightly quieter than the P1. There’s not a huge amount of difference, but the P1 is definitely a little louder, which is something to consider if you have neighbors that work from home, or you plan on using the treadmill when the rest of the household is asleep.
The WalkingPad P1 is similar in size and design to the WalkingPad A1 Pro, but it doesn’t have a screen, so you won’t be able to look down and see your distance walked and calories burned. The WalkingPad C2 does have a screen, but it’s slightly smaller and slightly lighter than the other two treadmills.
Winner: WalkingPad C2 — if you’re on a budget and looking for a WalkingPad, the C2 is the model to buy as although it’s around the same price as the WalkingPad P1. The WalkingPad C2 also comes in a number of different colors, which is fun if you’re looking for a treadmill that you won’t mind leaving out.
WalkingPad P1 vs WalkingPad C2 vs WalkingPad A1 Pro: Specs
|Row 0 - Cell 0
|WalkingPad A1 Pro
|47 x 16.5 inches
|47 x 15.7 inches
|47 x 16.5 inches
WalkingPad P1 vs WalkingPad C2 vs WalkingPad A1 Pro: Design and use
As mentioned in the intro, all of the WalkingPad treadmill models share one design feature — they fold in half. When reviewing all three WalkingPad models, we were impressed with how small the treadmills are when folded, and how easy they are to stow under the bed when they aren’t being used. That said, don’t expect to be carrying any of these treadmills up and down the stairs all that frequently — despite being able to fold in half, they are heavy, each weighing around 60 pounds. They all have two wheels at the front of the machine, allowing you to wheel them, but they aren’t as light as they might look on the adverts.
Once it’s in situ, however, all you need to do is unfold the treadmill and plug it into the wall, and you’re ready to walk. A word of warning — you do have to use some force to fully unfold them, and we did worry at first we’d snap the belt when testing.
All three WalkingPad treadmills are comfortable to walk on, although there are some differences. The WalkingPad A1 Pro and the WalkingPad P1 have the same sized belt that measures 47 inches long, and 16.5 inches wide. The WalkingPad C2 has a smaller belt of 47 inches long and 15.7 inches wide. This might not sound like a huge difference, but it does feel a little smaller, and if you’re especially tall, you might want to go for the larger option. Compared to the WalkingPad A1 Pro and the WalkingPad P1, the WalkingPad C2 feels a little flimsier — it’s got a thinner plastic border between the edge of the belt and the edge of the treadmill, although the belt didn’t feel too narrow when walking.
All three treadmills have the same automatic and manual settings. In the manual setting, you use the KS Fit app or the treadmill’s remote control to increase or decrease speed. This is pretty straightforward — and once you get the hang of using the remote, you can toggle speed without looking. In the automatic setting, the belt speeds up or slows down depending on where you position yourself. Walk closer to the front, it speeds up; walk closer to the back, and it slows down. According to Kingsmith, the automatic setting is designed to let you walk without using the remote control. It’s an odd user experience, though, and we found it took a lot of getting used to. You have to walk 1km at 2.5 km per hour to “unlock” faster speeds in automatic mode, which feels slow. Plus, if you slow down too quickly, the belt will simply stop.
Winner: WalkingPad A1 Pro — all three treadmills are pretty similar in design and similar to use once set up, however, if we had to pick one to use regularly, it would be the A1 Pro. As mentioned before, the lack of the screen on the P1 and the noisier brush motor makes the A1 Pro superior, but it’s also slightly wider than the C2, which does feel a little flimsier underfoot.
WalkingPad P1 vs WalkingPad C2 vs WalkingPad A1 Pro: App
All three WalkingPad treadmills can be controlled via their respective remote, or by using the KS Fit app. When reviewing all three WalkingPad treadmills, we found the app feels overly simple, and overly complicated at the same time. When you first log in and sync your machine, you can browse different weekly challenges and goals, and after each walk, you can sync all your data to the app.
You can also use the app to control the speed of the treadmill, should you misplace the remote. However, we found the app to be a little glitchy, and it took us a while to work out how the different pre-set modes worked.
One of our testers wrote, “My first walk on the WalkingPad A1 Pro was synced just fine. During my second walk — where I tested the experience of toggling between the manual and automatic settings — the app only registered a single walk of 0.15 km even though I did a total of 1 mile over multiple “walks.” I gave the app the benefit of the doubt here, since I was switching back and forth a lot. Things only got worse, though. My third and fourth walks didn’t appear in the app at all. I initiated the third walk with the remote, but my phone was in my pocket, so I thought the app and the WalkingPad A1 Pro would sync. No dice. For my next walk, I made sure to manually sync the app and the walking pad, and then I started and stopped my walk using the app; I didn’t even touch the remote. Still nothing.”
If you’re not bothered about recording all your walks precisely, or you’re planning on using the treadmill with one of the best fitness trackers, then don’t let this put you off. If, however, you’re a stickler for stats, and you hate it when your tech doesn’t seamlessly sync, the KS Fit app is annoying.
WalkingPad P1 vs WalkingPad C2 vs WalkingPad A1 Pro: Verdict
When it comes to which WalkingPad to buy you’ll need to answer three questions — do you want the treadmill to have a screen, do you plan on walking when others are sleeping/live in an apartment where your neighbors might pester you about noise, and are you particularly tall.
If you’re looking for a WalkingPad that won’t look out of place if it’s folded up under your desk, you want a screen to see your stats, and you want to spend less than $500, the WalkingPad C2 is the treadmill for you.
If you’re not bothered about a screen as you plan on using a fitness tracker, or just moving as you work, and you’re on a budget, the WalkingPad P1 is the best pick. Finally, if you want the best WalkingPad experience, go for the WalkingPad A1 Pro.
All three will let you walk as you work, and fold them away when you’re not using them. All three WalkingPads also work best when paired with one of the best standing desks. Not convinced? Take a look at the other best under-desk treadmills on test here.
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Jane McGuire is Tom's Guide's Fitness editor, which means she looks after everything fitness related - from running gear to yoga mats. An avid runner, Jane has tested and reviewed fitness products for the past five years, so knows what to look for when finding a good running watch or a pair of shorts with pockets big enough for your smartphone. When she's not pounding the pavements, you'll find Jane striding round the Surrey Hills, taking far too many photos of her puppy.