Treadmills can be a fantastic way to get in shape without leaving your home. They are simple to use, burn plenty of calories and help strengthen your leg muscles at the same time. The only problem is that finding the best treadmill for home use isn't easy! With hundreds of running machines on the market from a range of brands, you need to be careful when choosing.
To help make the process easier, we've listed our top treadmill reviews below. These running machines cover a range of prices, yet all provide excellent value for money. Make sure you read each of the reviews, as the best treadmill for you depends on your requirements, budget and preferences.
OUR #1 TREADMILL:
If you're looking for the best treadmill for home use, we recommend the NordicTrack T12.0. It's a highly stable running machine with 22km/h top speed, 10% incline and a range of features. The folding design also saves space.
OUR #1 BUDGET TREADMILL:
If you need a high-quality treadmill on a budget, the JLL S300 is one of the best options. It doesn't have the advanced features of pricier running machines, but still has a 16km/h top speed and 20 incline levels to increase workout difficulty.
What to Look for in a Treadmill
Before we get to the reviews, it's important to understand what to look for in a new treadmill. The best running machine depends on your fitness goals, so you need to know what to look for before you buy. Here are the most important considerations:
- Fitness Goals. Most households have more than one person who is going to use a treadmill, so it's important to consider everyone's goals. It's a big mistake to buy a cheaper treadmill to save money, only to find that it can't provide the workout you need after a few months of progress.
- Budget. Your budget is one of the most important factors when choosing a treadmill. Cheap motorised treadmills can cost as little as £150, but don't have the same range of speeds, features and durability of more expensive models. Make sure you have a price range in mind before you start looking.
- Manual or Motorised. Most people want a motorised treadmill, which means the belt is powered and moves automatically. If you're on a tight budget, a manual treadmill is "pushed" as you walk. They are very basic in comparison to an electric treadmill, but can provide a light workout at a fraction of the cost. Don't expect a difficult workout from a non-motorised treadmill though.
- Size. The majority of "full-size" treadmills have a similar width and length, but it's still important to check dimensions before you buy. Folding treadmills can be stored at around half the size. Keep in mind that you'll need to leave space at the end of the treadmill for safety. The length of the belt is also vital, with runners needing more space than people who just plan on walking. Taller people will also need a longer belt in order to run ergonomically.
- Speeds and Incline. The top speeds and incline of a running machine are an important consideration. If the top speed is too slow for your training, you won't be able to push yourself as you improve.
- Shock Absorption. Running isn't as bad for the joints as many people think, but repetitive strain injuries are more common when running on hard surfaces. Treadmills nearly always have a shock absorption system to help prevent this. Ideally, a the surface of the running machine should have some "give" without feeling spongy.
- Console. Another important factor is a treadmill's on-board console. Does it provide the features you need? Is it clear and easy to read? Advanced treadmills also often include extra features, such as an on-board fan or interval training programs.
- Built-in Programs. If you want a varied workout, a treadmill with pre-set programs can help you avoid boredom. Some treadmills even have heart-rate programs, which adjust the speed or incline depending on your current heart rate and targets.
- Interval Training. HIIT (high-intensity interval training) has become increasingly popular as it's a great way of improving fitness and burning calories. Some treadmills come with interval training programs so you don't need to manually switch between high and low speeds. If you're buying a treadmill for HIIT, make sure you know exactly which options are provided.
- Safety. A treadmill should include basic safety features. These include a belt that doesn't change speed in large jumps, comfortable hand grips and a safety key.
- Warranty. Purchasing a home treadmill is a big decision. It's also inevitable that a running machine will require some sort of maintenance in the long run. For this reason, look for treadmills with at least a year or two coverage for labour and parts. Ideally, the electronics, frame, motor and belt should all be included in the warranty.
Along with the features of a treadmill, it's also important to consider the reputation of the brand. Do they produce high-quality products? Is the treadmill likely to last a long time? Or have there been reports of unreliable motors or weak belts?
If you're feeling overwhelmed - don't worry! The above information is just to provide the background you need to make a good decision. Listed below are our top picks for a home treadmill to make it easy for you to get a great workout from home.
Which are the Best Treadmills of 2021?
|Name||Folding/Non-Folding||Top Speed||Max. Incline||View Price|
|Homcom Motorised Treadmill||Folding||10km/h||0%||View Price|
|Opti Easy Fold Treadmill||Folding||13km/h||15%||View Price|
#1 BUDGET TREADMILL
|JLL S300||Folding||16km/h||12%||View Price|
|BH Fitness Pioneer S1||Folding||16km/h||12%||View Price|
|JTX Sprint 5||Folding||18km/h||12%||View Price|
|NordicTrack T12.0||Folding||22km/h||10%||View Price|
|Life Fitness T3 with Go Console||Non-folding||19km/h||15%||View Price|
|NordicTrack X9i Incline Trainer||Non-folding||20km/h||40%||View Price|
Best Budget/Cheap Treadmills
Cheap treadmills are often for people who want a light workout without spending too much money. They are foldable treadmills that often have a low top speed and basic onboard consoles. For this category, we try to choose models that are sold for under £600 (some considerably less than this), but prices vary regularly so we can't guarantee the current price.
1. Homcom Motorised Treadmill
If you're looking for a basic treadmill for walking and light jogging, the Homcom could be a great option. It's a relatively small treadmill with a folding design to save space - and it's also available for a highly affordable price.
The Homcom has a basic console that displays time, distance, speed and calories. You can also use it to adjust the speed, which ranges from 1-10km per hour. This isn't enough for running, but is the perfect speed for walking or light jogging.
Aside from the console, the running machine comes with an adjustable belt and a handrail.
If you're looking for the best treadmill for walking that doesn't cost a lot of money, the Homcom is a great choice. It's easy to assemble, compact and perfect for walking or light jogging - but if you want to do fast jogs or sprints you'll need a more expensive model.
2. Opti Easy Fold Treadmill With Incline and Bluetooth
The Opti Easy Fold Treadmill is still targeted at beginners, but it's a big step-up from the Homcom (in both price and features). This makes it better suited for people who want to do jogging rather than just walking.
It has a maximum speed of 13km/h, so it provides more room for improvement. In addition to the speed, it also has an incline option to add greater difficulty to your run. Unlike many cheap treadmills, the incline levels can be adjusted electronically, rather than manually.
The console display shows statistics such as distance, speed, pulse and time. 16 pre-set running programs are included with the machine, but there's also a manual mode for setting your own pace and several countdown modes.
Other features include a maximum user weight of 110kg, folding design and an auto stop system. The Opti Easy Fold also includes built-in speakers and the option of connecting an MP3 player via bluetooth.
Overall, the Opti Easy Fold is an excellent budget treadmill for walking and light jogging. It's not suitable for heavy usage or intense training, due to the 13km/h maximum speed, but for basic workouts it does a great job.
3. JLL S300 Folding Treadmill
The most expensive treadmill in our "budget" section is the JLL S200 folding treadmill. While it's pricier than the other two models, we think it provides great value and is much better suited to jogging and more intense workouts.
With a maximum speed of 16km/h and 20 incline levels, the S300 provides a lot of room for increasing workout difficulty. It also has a slow 0.3km/h starting speed and 0.1km/h increments which improves safety and comfort. This top speed and incline combination is what you'd expect from a more expensive treadmill, which is one of the reasons why we're impressed by the S300.
The LCD monitor displays the basic statistics you would expect, including heart rate, distance, speed and time. There are also 15 pre-set programmes, including three that can be customised, and built-in speakers with MP3 connectivity. We especially like that the JLL comes with a heart-rate program with automatic running speed adjustment.
Unlike the cheapest treadmills, the S300 is built with a cushioning system to help reduce impact on the knees. It's also a foldable treadmill that has wheels for moving around the home. Importantly, JLL offers a two year warranty for labour and parts, along with 5 years coverage for the motor and lifetime coverage for the frame.
There are a few downsides to the JLL though. As you would expect from a budget model, it's not the most durable, although it should be able to handle daily workouts. The maximum incline is also relatively low compared to more expensive models.
Even so, if you're looking for the best treadmill for under £500, the JLL S300 is our top pick. The combination of 16km/h top speed, incline levels and pre-set programmes means it can provide plenty of variety in your workout. We also like the cushion deck system for more comfortable running.
Best Mid-Range Treadmills
Mid-range treadmills are built for more serious workouts than budget options. They are still usually folding running machines, like the Reebok ZR10, but have higher top speeds, sturdier designs and more advanced consoles. For this category, we've looked at treadmills in the £600-£1200 range - although prices change regularly so we can't guarantee the current prices.
4. BH Fitness Pioneer S1 Folding Treadmill
The BH Fitness Pioneer S1 is a folding treadmill that's designed for both beginners and intermediates. It's a solid running machine with a cushioning system and a relatively large belt, so it's a significant step up from the budget treadmills above.
It has a top speed of 16km/h via the 2.75 CV motor, which is enough for reasonably fast jogging (although you'll need a non-folding treadmill for full-on sprinting). The Pioneer S1 also has a 12% maximum incline to add more difficulty to your workout and electronic buttons for adjusting both speed and incline.
The belt itself is designed with a 6 dampeners. This reduces impact through the ankles, knees and hips, which may help prevent injury. It also comes with a back-lit console, with 12 exercise programmes to choose from, 3 user profiles, and built-in hand pulse grips.
As a mid-range treadmill, the Pioneer S1 comes with several features not included on most cheaper options. There's a built-in fan, which is great for workout comfort. There's also a body fat test, transport wheels and tablet holder. Sadly, there's no option to connect an MP3, and the S1 doesn't include a built in fitness test or the ability to connect to fitness apps.
One thing to note about the Pioneer S1 is that it's not a lightweight treadmill. With a packaged weight of 62kg, you'll need help assembling and moving the machine (although the transportation wheels make it easier to move when folded). On the plus side, assembly is straightforward due to the simple instruction manual.
In summary, the Pioneer S1 is a great treadmill that's available for a very reasonable price considering its features. If you're looking for the best treadmill for weight loss, or just want to have the option of indoor running at home, the S1 is one of our top recommendations.
5. JTX Sprint-5 Folding Home Treadmill
If you're looking for a high-quality treadmill with a lot of scope for workout intensity improvement, the JTX Sprint-5 is one of our favourite options. With a 2.5HP motor and a variety of workouts, this is a solid running machine that's great for getting in shape.
The Sprint-5 has a top speed of 18km/h and a smooth belt drive. This means it's a better option than budget treadmills for people who need faster jogging from their running machine. The incline goes up to 12%, which is useful for adding extra difficulty, although it obviously can't match the simulated hills of incline treadmills.
To improve the comfort of the machine, the Sprint-5 comes with the company's CushionStep running deck. This is effectively a sprung suspension system, which can reduce running impact by up to 30%. There's no option to adjust the hardness though, which can be useful feature if you want to mimic the feel of a road.
The Sprint-5 comes with a console that shows a variety of statistics. 43 pre-set programmes are available, including heart rate programs to keep you working in the right zone, and there's the option of creating custom programs too. Along with the hand sensors, there's the option of using a Polar pulse strap for monitoring your heart rate, although this needs to be bought separately.
A word of warning though - the Sprint-5's 18km/h top speed probably isn't fast enough for advanced runners, although it's a great all-round treadmill. It's also a relatively heavy treadmill (77kg), so it's best to designate a place for it and leave it there.
Despite these drawbacks, the JTX Sprint-5 is one of the best treadmills in its price range. With a high-quality belt, cushioning system and variety of programs, it's a joy to use.
6. NordicTrack T12.0 Folding Treadmill
As we move towards the high-end of the "Mid-Range" category, we have the excellent NordicTrack T12.0. As you would expect from a model of this price, it's a durable and high-quality treadmill that's great for more intense workouts.
With a maximum speed of 22km/h (3HP motor) and an incline of up to 10%, the T12.0 can provide a great workout to all runners. While it's not fast enough for flat-out sprinting, it can cope with fast jogs and the incline can significantly add to the difficulty. The strong frame also means you'll feel safe using this treadmill right up to the top speed.
The 7" HD touch screen console is another area that the T12.0 significantly improves on cheaper models. It comes with a variety of built-in workout apps, so you can customise your training sessions. There's also iFit connectivity, so you can tackle a new workout each day, track your progress, and even mimic your favourite routes via Google Maps (although you'll need a separate subscription for this).
The 45cm x 152cm belt is designed to be comfortable, smooth and supportive. The Runners Flex cushioning system absorbs much of the shock of running without feeling too spongy, which helps protect your joints. As the name suggests, you can also fold it away to save space.
One thing to keep in mind is that the T12.0 is a heavy machine. It's not a running machine you'll want to move often - although the folding design partly makes up for this. On the plus side, it comes with convenient extras, such as a tablet holder, workout fans, and EKG pulse handlebars.
While the NordicTrack T12.0 can't quite match the advanced features of gym treadmills, it can provide a similar quality of workout for a much lower price. With its solid design, range of programmes and relatively quiet operation, it's one of the best treadmills for home use.
Best Premium Treadmills
If you're looking for a gym-standard treadmill for your home, a premium running machine is your only option. These can feature both folding and non-folding designs, and are built to be solid and stable even at high speeds. They also usually have advanced consoles with a wider range of programmes and features. The best treadmills for home use in this price range cost more than £1000, while truly gym-standard treadmills can cost considerably more (over £10,000 in some cases).
7. Life Fitness T3 with Go Console
The first non-folding treadmill on this list is the Life Fitness T3. It's a high-quality and comfortable running machine that's perfect for intense home workouts - especially if you're prone to joint pain. The Go console is also a bonus.
Aside from being an attractive treadmill, the T3 is a powerful running machine with a 3HP motor. This allows for top speeds of up to 19km/h and an incline of 15%. While the top speed is slightly lower than models such as the Horizon T4000, the 19km/h is enough for anything but sprinting and the 15% incline is higher than most mid-range treadmills.
One of the best features of the Life Fitness T3 is the FlexDeck shock absorption system. The company estimates that this reduces joint impacts by nearly a third compared to other treadmills, which can make a big difference if you have painful knees or ankles.
The T3 also comes with the Go console. This has 13 pre-set programmes, along with two user profiles and an energy saving mode. Programs for fat burning, heart rate goal and a race mode are included.
As you would expect from a non-folding treadmill, the T3 isn't a lightweight running machine. The full weight is 111kg, so it's not easy to move. The maximum user weight is 159kg though, which is heavier than many folding treadmills.
The Life Fitness T3 is one of the best treadmills for home use. It has a solid, durable design, a range of programmes and comfortable belt. It's not cheap, but if you want a gym-style workout from your own home, it's one of our top recommendations. It's also one of the best treadmills for marathon training, as it's able to withstand intensive training and has a 15% maximum incline.
8. NordicTrack X9i Incline Trainer
If a steep incline is high on your list of priorities, an incline trainer is your best bet. The NordicTrack X9i is one of the best incline trainers, yet also comes with a decent top speed for regular training.
The stand-out feature of the X9i is its maximum incline of 40%. This is very steep compared with most treadmills, which are usually limited to 10-20%. It can also generate a decline of up to 6%. If you want to train for hill running, or just need a tough workout at home, the X9i is a great choice.
Unlike lower quality incline trainers, the X9i doesn't sacrifice running speed. With a maximum speed of 20km/h, it provides plenty of scope for increasing the intensity of your workouts. The running machine also comes with "Reflex" cushioning which reduces impact on joints.
Another impressive feature is the 7" HD touchsreen console which allows you to take part in interactive workouts led by professional trainers. The X9i can connect and sync with iFit, although you'll need a separate subscription for this once the included subscription runs out. Other features include speakers for an MP3 player, tablet holder, and dual fans to keep you cool.
The biggest drawback to the X9i is its price. The RRP is £2199, although it's often available for much less than this from online retailers. Even so, if you're looking for the best treadmill for incline running it's our top recommendation.
Buying a treadmill is a big investment, but can provide a safe and effective way to lose weight and get fit from home. It's vital to choose a high-quality running machine though. A poor-quality treadmill is likely to be unstable, uncomfortable to run on and may not be able to cope with the workouts you need.
In this article, we've listed our top picks for the best home treadmill in the UK to help you make an informed decision. While the right option depends on your budget and workout goals, each of these models provides great value for money.
If you have any questions about choosing a treadmill, please let us know in the comments! We try to reply to all messages.