Best treadmills: 5 top buys to bring the gym into your living room

These are the best treadmills to meet your fitness goals – without leaving your home

woman testing out one of the best treadmills in her living room
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It's safe to say that after nearly 16+ months in quarantine, investing in one of the best treadmills is one of the most worthwhile purchases you can make. Not only does it alleviate any anxiety or fear consumed by (potentially) catching COVID-19, but it allows you to reach all of your fitness goals and potential from the comfort of your own homes. 

But for most users, finding the right at-home gym equipment means assessing three things: Your budget, your available space, and how you plan to use that equipment.

For serious runners that plan to use the treadmill frequently and heavily, durability and impact reduction takes center stage. If you're training for a long, steep hike in the mountains or running a hilly racecourse, a treadmill with extra incline/decline capability can help you prepare your body for that challenge. If you find yourself easily bored, interactive features become key. 

And of course, no matter what use you have in mind for the treadmill, a strong, smooth, and responsive motor and a reasonably cushioned running/walking deck are the essential key features to consider. 

Or maybe you want to learn how to create a home gym by adding in some of the best dumbbells; either way, you're going to need to start first with finding one of the best treadmills, and that's what we did. 

We've rounded up the five best treadmills on the market below for every space, level of expertise, and goal. 

The best treadmills

Best treadmills

(Image credit: Best Buy)

1. Proform 505 CST

The best treadmills: the essential choice for small spaces

Size: 188 x 94 x 154 cm
Incline range: 0-10%
Pre-set programmes: 19
Top speed: 0-18kph
Reasons to buy
+Foldable design saves space+The large display shows your workout stats+0-10% incline for hill sprints+The built-in fan cools you while running
Reasons to avoid
-Foldable design isn’t for everyone

You don’t need a large room to keep fit at home. The Perform 505 CST folds up to help save space – which makes it suitable for even smaller living spaces or bedrooms. The ProForm 505 also has lots of other selling points such as a handy display that shows your speed, how far you’ve run, and estimated calories burned.   

Speed settings range from 0-10 mph – which should be more than a challenge for most. There’s also a 0-15% incline to help replicate those hill sprints you used to do in the freezing cold outside.   

There’s also a CoolAire fan to keep you comfortable during your workout while things get a bit sweaty on the way to beating your PB. 

Best treadmill

(Image credit: Best Buy )

2. NordicTrack Commercial X32i

The best treadmills: A space-saving foldable treadmill

Size: 194 x 100 x 187 cm
Incline range: 0% – 40%
Top speed: 0 – 22 km/h
Reasons to buy
+Massive 32-inch HD touchscreen+0-12 mph speed settings+-6% decline – 40% incline for types of challenge+Built-in grip pulse monitors+Connect to your music playlists
Reasons to avoid
-Steep price

If you want to replicate that at-the-gym treadmill feel, look no further. The first thing you’ll notice about the NordicTrack Commercial X32i is the larger, 32-inch screen — which you’ll find easy to get lost in as you stream workouts with world-class personal trainers. 

These workouts are on-demand, so you can enjoy them whenever you want – they feature interactive technology – which means the trainer on screen can automatically adjust your machine’s speed, incline, and decline to mimic the gym class experience. 

Reflex Cushioning absorbs each stride so that you’ll feel less stress on your feet. On top of all that, you’ve got all the usual stat-tracking abilities, over 12,000 different workouts, and Google Maps technology so you can run in multiple locations across the globe. 

Best treadmill

(Image credit: Technogym)

3. Technogym MyRun

The best treadmills: a gym-quality runner for the home

Size : 176 x 78.5 x 126 cm
Incline range: 0-12%
Top speed : 20 km/h
Reasons to buy
+Gym-quality treadmill +Syncs with your tablet+Online workouts+TechnoGym curated music playlists+Adaptive running surface
Reasons to avoid
-Need a tablet to access some features

If the name TechnoGym sounds familiar to you: it probably means you’ve used at least one TechnoGym exercise bike or treadmill at your local gym. Like all TechnoGym equipment, the MyRun is a quality bit of kit. The build quality is exceptional, and so are the features.  

While not the cheapest on our list, the MyRun is a sensational treadmill for all levels. It syncs with your tablet for online workouts with actual trainers. 

Plus, you get to select your workout for the day — while the trainer offers guidance to help you get fitter at home.  

One feature we’re in love with is the ability to train anywhere in the world as your tablet screen displays natural and urban landscapes for you to get lost in as you train.  

An adaptive running surface adapts to the way you run to shield your joints. A max speed of 12.4 mph and a max incline of 12% should cater to most fitness levels. 

Best treadmill

(Image credit: JTX Fitness)

4. JTX Sprint-7

The best treadmills: A extremely capable all-rounder that checks every box

Size: L196cm x W93cm x H153cm
Incline range: 0-15%
Pre-set programmes: 43
Top speed: 20kph
Reasons to buy
+43 programs+Connect to your running apps+Built-in speakers+Folding design
Reasons to avoid
-Still bulky even when folded

A great all-rounder machine that is suitable for anyone – and it folds up. 

The JTX Sprint-7 is dead-easy to set up and use, and we like the way it slowly folds down when you’re ready to begin your workout. It has a quiet motor and 40 programs to suit your preferred workout style.  

A cushioned deck makes things easy on your joints as you move, so you know you’re getting a comfortable but challenging workout thanks to a 12.4 mph top speed and a hilly 0-15% incline.  

The control buttons are larger in size, making the JTX Sprint-7 easy to use for all the families. A 7-inch display shows you all the crucial running stats, or you can sync your tablet and run routes from all over the world. 

Best treadmill

(Image credit: Domyos)

5. Domyos Treadmill Run 100

The best treadmills: A great budget treadmill that also folds up

Size : 156 x 76 x 115 cm
Incline range: 0% to 3%
Pre-set programmes: 30
Top speed: 14 km/h
Reasons to buy
+Foldable design+Good price+30 pre-set programs+Quieter than most treadmills at full speed+Connect to your music playlists
Reasons to avoid
-Not one for athletes

The Domyos Treadmill Run 100 is a great starting point for beginners and casual runners. It’s not too expensive compared to more full-featured models that are compact and can be folded when not used. 

A top speed of 8.6 mph and a manual incline of 3% will provide more than enough of a challenge for all but the most cardio-hardened trainer. 

Plus, you’ll find 30 programs created by a Domyos coach to get your blood pumping and your fitness levels rising. 

How do I know I've found one of the best treadmills?

Best treadmills

(Image credit: Technogym)

With so many treadmills to choose from, it can be tough to pick the best treadmill for you. If you’re a beginner at running on the best treadmills, you may not need an expensive model.  

But if you’re already super serious about running, you’ll want a treadmill that’s going to help you smash your personal bests while keeping your fitness up. And that means lots of resistance and incline settings for that uphill sprint feeling and the ability to track your progress over time.  

And then there’s the middle ground – you run a little, but you want something that gets the job done. We’ve got you covered. 

Just remember – you don’t have to spend big to get the treadmill you want. 

What to look for in one of the best treadmills?

Belt size 

The gold standard for runners is a 22"x60" tread belt – enough space to accommodate almost any stride. You'll see shorter and narrower belts on budget-priced machines or those meant more for walking and jogging than full-out running.

Motor size 

Treadmill motor size is measured in continuous horsepower (CHP), and in general, bigger is better. A stronger motor is more likely to offer fast, smooth speed transitions and steady belt movement.

Incline settings 

Motor-adjust incline capability of up to 15% is pretty standard on mid-range treadmills nowadays, with budget models sometimes offering lesser motor-adjust options or manual adjustments. Increasingly, mid-range and high-end treadmills also offer limited decline capability to simulate the feel of running down a slight slope.

Entertainment options 

If you're willing to pass on high-tech entertainment options like HD touchscreens and interactive workouts, you can save a lot of money on your treadmill purchase. But if it's those entertainment features that motivate you to run or walk, don't skimp here – getting the right interactive add-ons could be the difference between actually using your treadmill or turning it into an expensive coat rack.

Other specs to consider

Of course, there are other practical considerations to keep in mind, like how much space the treadmill takes up in your home gym and whether it folds for storage. Most mid-price and budget-price home treadmills do fold up like one side of a drawbridge, freeing up a significant amount of floor space when they're not in use. 

But don't shoehorn that machine into a tight corner just yet: When the treadmill is in use, you'll need some extra space to the side and rear of the machine, so you can get on and off it and as a safety buffer on the very slim chance of a stumble.

Brittany Romano
Brittany Romano

Brittany Romano joins Future as their U.S. Shopping E-commerce Editor, residing on the Upper East Side in New York City. Originally hailing from Connecticut and a graduate of New England College, Brittany started her career as a fashion market assistant at Marie Claire, later joining AMI, where she designed a highly profitable commerce vertical. Noted for her award-winning content, she's covered everything from celebrity beauty hacks to the most lavish home decor; Brittany has maintained her penchant for the finer things in life. 

If a genie granted Brittany one wish, it would be for Kelly Wearstler to bring her vision to life and transform her living space, but until then? You'll find Brittany continuously evolving her chilled-out sophisticated style, shifting her attention to eclectic pieces (with a hint of retro), grounded by a rich understanding of history, focused on functionality, luxury, and quirkiness.

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