Adam holds a Bachelor's and a Master's degree in Linguistics, and creative writing has always been his greatest passion. For more than 25 years he's been working for several well-known automobile and travel magazines as an editor and expert consultant, but when Adam started his writing path here, at WisePick, it turned out that he's capable of writing practically anything about everything.
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Last updated: June 27, 2021
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Your fitness goal may only be a treadmill away. Not only that, getting a new body, courtesy of a treadmill, only requires 30 minutes of your time a day. Now, it won’t happen overnight, but consistently working out on the best treadmill for walking will get you there and unveil a fitter, toned, more agile you. Read on to find out how you can achieve this using the faithful treadmill.
We’ve consulted fitness trainers, physicians and treadmill users on the most important features to look for in a perfect walking equipment. We’ve also considered treadmill’s size, so you’d be able to calculate the free space you need to exercise. Our thorough review includes all the parameters that will help you make the right decision: weight capacity, speed, tread belt dimensions and incline levels. These factors will help you choose the proper equipment for yourself or your elderly. Read on to find the perfect treadmill that can change your family’s lifestyle to the better.
With a weight capacity of 265 lbs., the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7917 can be used by just about anyone. Whether you’re new to the treadmill or wish to up your walking speed to the maximum, the wide 0.5-10 mph speed range caters for everyone’s speed needs. Only drawback is that it has no incline feature.
The walking surface is adequately cushioned to lessen impact on your feet and makes for very comfortable use. The walking belt measures 52 inches in length and 19 inches in width, a size that is sufficient for users of moderate height. The control buttons are large and the print on the interface is equally large, which makes operating the treadmill and reading your settings easy. The display is clearly visible, thanks to the built-in backlighting, and shows your speed, time, distance covered, and calories burned.
This treadmill uses a soft-drop mechanism to fold for easy storage. It’s quite heavy at 143 pounds, but a set of wheels on the rear end of the machine allow you to easily transport it so you can use it in different locations as needed or cart it away for storage.
It comes with a cup holder and a tablet holder that’s big enough for a small laptop. There’s an emergency safety clip that brings the machine to a quick stop if need be; important for preventing injuries.
The NordicTrack T 9.5S relies on the powerful DurX Commercial Plus motor, which runs on 3.5 CHP, ensuring efficient and noiseless operation. It has a weight capacity of 300 lbs. At 60 inches, the belt is long enough for tall users to walk comfortably. You can incline it up to 12 degrees for a more thrilling workout.
The treadmill is accessorized with an AutoBreeze Workout fan to keep you cool while you walk. The fan adjusts its speed automatically to match the intensity of your walk. The fan runs so quietly that, were it not for the breeze of cool air that hits you, you wouldn’t know it’s there.
It comes with an auxiliary music port and two 2-inch speakers that you can connect to a smart device for entertainment.
When you buy this treadmill, you also get a 1-year membership to iFit, which through NordicTrack Interactive, gives access to personal coaching, studio workouts, and trainer-guided workouts so you can stay on track with your fitness goals. This is purely optional, and you don’t have to sign up for iFit if you don’t want to. iFit will begin charging you after a year, but you can cancel your membership at any time.
At 78.5 x 36 x 59 inches, this is a bulky machine and requires ample space to set up. Make sure you consider this too when buying.
The EXERPEUTIC TF2000 is designed for people who are convalescing and seniors. As such, it is as user friendly as any treadmill can be. First, it has a low-height deck that’s only 5″ off the ground, which makes stepping onto the deck super easy for those who are slightly indisposed.
It also has full-length support handrails (measuring 49″) to enhance safety and improve your stability as you use the treadmill. Foam padding on the handrails keeps your hands comfortable as you walk.
Ten shock-absorbing cushions are added to the deck to reduce pressure on the legs, ankles, and knees, and this makes it possible for you to exercise for a longer duration at a time. The belt is 50 inches long by 16 inches wide and allows taller and slightly heavy built users to operate the machine comfortably.
Given its target customers, it makes sense that this treadmill doesn’t have an incline function. But even for customers outside the senior and recovering bracket, it is a practical machine that those who like exercising in comfort will enjoy using.
A highly visible LCD display shows the time, speed, distance, calories burned, and pulse. Transportation wheels make relocation easy.
It comes with 2 accessory holders where you can place your water bottle or energy drink. This is a solid treadmill, and it comes with a 5-year warranty on the motor, 3 years on the frame, and 90 days on parts.
The LifeSpan TR1200-DT3 is a compact treadmill measuring only 63 x 28.5 x 7.25 inches. Few people with space limitations will pass this up. But a small footprint isn’t the only thing that’s impressive about this treadmill. It also has a powerful motor, a 2.25 HP unit that delivers enough power to sustain speed and intensity as needed. It’s designed as an under desk unit, and you can use it with any standing desk. Simply roll it under your desk and connect the console to begin walking.
The console is portable and includes an LED display that indicates time, distance, number of steps, speed, and calories burned. The console gives you a wide range of customizations, including switching to your preferred units of measure, alerts, and pausing and resuming the previous speed.
It has a high weight capacity and can comfortably accommodate a maximum of 350 lbs. in body weight. The belt step up height is reasonably low at 4.6 inches and heavier set users will not struggle to get onto the deck. The walking surface measures 50 inches by 20 inches, and this too, favors tall and heavily built users. The deck suspension comprises 6 independent compression shocks to minimize impact to the legs while walking.
It comes fully assembled out of the box and ready to use.
The XTERRA Fitness TR150 uses a 2.2.5 HP motor and supports speeds ranging from 0.5-10 mph. It features a sturdy steel construction and has a weight limit of 250 lbs.
Choose from 12 preset workout programs and enjoy versatility at every workout session. This includes preset speed settings that you can quickly select when you don’t want to spend time customizing your workout. You can also add your own programs by customizing the workout to your preferred intensity and speed. The incline feature adjusts to 3 levels, again, providing a way to vary your workout. You have to adjust the incline manually though, and it only inclines up to 2 degrees maximum.
The walking surface measures 16 x 50 inches (width and length) and is long enough for taller users to walk in comfort. The treadmill itself measures 63.4 x 28.75 x 51.4 inches, which is quite standard for treadmills, and doesn’t take up too much space. This is a folding treadmill. Simply pull the knob to fold or unfold and it will release the deck to allow that to happen. It also has wheels to help with transportation.
A large, 5-inch LCD screen provides a highly visible display of your numbers, including time, speed, distance, calories burned, and pulse.
It comes with a lifetime warranty on the frame, a 1-year warranty on the motor, and a 90-day warranty on parts and labor.
The GOPLUS Walking Treadmill is compact and can be easily stored under furniture. It’s an under desk treadmill that you can relocate as needed. You only need a standing desk under which you can plug the treadmill. You can move it with ease, thanks to the pair of wheels at the rear.
The treadmill supports up to 220 lbs. in body weight and offers a speed range of 0.5-4.0 mph. The belt measures 41 x 17 inches, an ideal size for users of average height. The entire treadmill measures 51.5 x 23.5 x 6 inches, so it takes up little space.
Choose from 3 built-in modes and 12 preset programs and enjoy a range of workout variations. Note that it does not have an incline mode so you will not be able to simulate a hilly terrain in your workouts.
A combination of eight rubber columns and foot pads are strategically placed along the walking surface to reduce vibration and stress on the legs while working out.
Control the LCD display monitor using the remote or via touch screen operation, a level of versatility that gives you the freedom to choose your preferred mode of operation. The remote control includes an emergency brake button that you can press in case of an accident that requires you to stop the treadmill instantly.
The Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7610 is powered by a 1.25 HP motor and supports up to 220 lbs. in body weight. The treadmill is set at a 4-degree incline by default, and because it has no incline feature, you cannot change this positioning. Some users may find this challenging, so it’s a good idea to try out the machine before buying just so you can know whether the workout intensity is okay for you.
The belt is 39 inches long by 14 inches wide, and while this is a good enough size for most people, users who are taller than 6 feet will find it a little too small. A combination of shock absorption and cushioning minimizes the impact on your legs, allowing you to exercise longer without fatigue.
It folds easily for storage, and the transportation wheels make it easy to move. The LCD display is clear and visible and shows your speed, time, distance, and calories burned. There is also a countdown feature which counts down the seconds to the start of the workout. A pause feature allows you to pause if you need to and resume at your previous speed and other settings. Also available is an emergency stop switch for when you need to abruptly stop the treadmill.
It’s easy to assemble and you can set it up on your own since it’s not bulky or extremely heavy.
Compact, lightweight, and user friendly, the ProGear 190 is a great choice of treadmill for a novice in treadmill workouts. It’s a manual treadmill and does not need an electric connection, so you can use it anywhere. You can move it with ease since it isn’t heavy – it weighs only 49 pounds. Plus, it folds in half and comes with wheels for easy relocation.
It has a weight capacity of 230 lbs., and with a 43 x 13.25 inch belt, it’s big enough for most people to walk on it comfortably. However, users who are 5’10” or taller may find the belt a little short and the handles a bit low for their height. Other than that, the handles are well-designed and long for enhanced safety. They’re also covered in foam padding for grip and comfort. Likewise, the side rails are wide for added safety.
The manufacturer uses oversized belt rollers to ensure that your walk is smooth and consistent. For a more challenging workout, you can incline the treadmill to 6 degrees or 10 degrees. This you have to do manually since the treadmill doesn’t have an automatic setting for the option.
The battery-powered LCD monitor is tiny, and without backlighting, it’s hard to read. You literally have to squint to see the readings, which indicate time, distance, speed, calories burned, and scan. Batteries for the monitor are included in the package.
Next, let’s look at the benefits of walking on a treadmill regularly and some workout programs you can try, whether you’re a novice to treadmill exercises or a seasoned treadmill user. Further in the section, we’ll see the various features you should consider when shopping for a treadmill for walking. We’ll also answer the most commonly asked questions about walking treadmills.
Benefits of walking on a treadmill at home
Having a treadmill either at home or the office means you can exercise at whatever time is most convenient for you. You can set your exercise hours and exercise multiple times a day if you like.
You no longer have to commute to a commercial gym to exercise. It’s a time saver.
You can exercise even when the weather is too harsh to go outside.
Treadmill walking allows you to stay fit, burn calories, and build leg strength without over-exerting your body.
Many treadmills come with fitness trackers that monitor miles walked, heart rate, and calories burned, providing an easy way for you to track your fitness level and progress.
With a treadmill, you decide and set the pace, duration, and intensity of your exercise.
Anyone in the house can use the treadmill without having to adjust its setup. You don’t have to adjust the height or change weights as with some other exercise equipment. It’s extremely user friendly.
Walking programs to try
For the 20s and 30s age group
At your age, your body can tolerate extreme levels of exertion, so make use of the incline feature to make your walk a little more challenging. You will need to increase the incline of your treadmill by 1% for one minute and then roll it back to zero for one minute before inclining it once more to an angle that’s 1% higher than before, then rolling it back to zero. Begin with a 5-minute warm up at 2.5 mph, and increase your pace to 3.0 mph. While still walking, incline the machine at 5% and walk for 1 minute, then lower it down to 0% for another minute. Incline it at 6% for a minute, and then lower it to 0% for one minute. Repeat with inclines at 7, 8, 9, and 10 percent, or go as high as your body can tolerate. Finish with a 5-minute cool down session.
For ages 40 and up
Go with a workout that ramps up the speed at intervals to push your body harder. This technique is also ideal for people in their 30s who have just started working out after a long period without exercising. For greater impact, incline the treadmill at 1%. Start with a 5-minute warm-up at 2.5 mph. Follow this with a 1-minute walk at 2.5-3.5 mph and increase it to 3.5-4.5 mph then bring it down to a 2-minute slow pace at 2.5-3.5 mph. Repeat this 7 times, and then do a 4- to 5-minute cool down at 2.5-3.5 mph.
Aim to walk for 30 minutes. If you cannot do all 30 minutes in one go, break your sessions into 5, 10, or 15 minutes depending. Start at a slow walking pace to warm up, say 1.5-2 mph, and maintain this for 5 minutes. Then increase the pace by 0.5 mph and maintain it for two minutes. Keep increasing your speed by 0.5 mph each minute until you reach a speed where your breathing becomes harder but you can still walk comfortably. Maintain this pace for 10 minutes. If it gets too hard, reduce the speed to a pace where you’re more comfortable. At the end of your session, reduce the pace gradually to 2.5-3.0 mph as you begin your cool down and take it down gradually.
Walking treadmill prices range from hundreds of dollars to $1,000+. Manual varieties are cheaper than motorized ones since they do not have as many components. Basic models of the motorized variety are cheaper than high-tech treadmills. The unwritten rule to bear in mind when comparing any two treadmills is that the more features a treadmill has, the more expensive it’s going to be.
Features to consider while buying the best treadmill for walking
Below are the features you need to consider when buying a treadmill for walking:
Speeds and programs
Treadmill walking speeds range from 0.5-5 mph, with the lowest speed being a slow pace. Mid-range speeds between 3.0 and 4.0 mph indicate a fast-paced walk, while 4.5-5 mph represents a fast walk. Speeds higher than 5 mph are for jogging and running. If your treadmill has these, it means you can use it for walking, jogging, and running. Your treadmill may also come with pre-installed programs. With these, you simply select a program and follow the workout.
The incline feature on a treadmill provides a more challenging workout, forcing you to walk as you would when going up a hill. Not all treadmills have an incline function. When you incline the treadmill, you simulate a hilly terrain. Most treadmills allow you to incline up to 12-15 degrees. A few can incline several degrees higher than this. On the other hand, some treadmills can only incline at a 1- or 2-degree angle.
Some treadmills are longer than others. Some are wider than others. Ensure you have enough space to fit the treadmill and leave room around the machine for access and safe operation. The size of the belt is just as important as the overall size of the treadmill. Since you’ll be using the machine mainly for walking, you don’t need an overly long belt, but it should measure at least 48 inches. If you’re taller, the belt should be at least 50 inches long to accommodate your longer stride.
The best treadmills offer a lifetime warranty on the frame. Some extend this to the motor, and others give a guarantee that’s close to a lifetime warranty on the motor. The NordicTrack T 9.5S is an example. It gives a lifetime warranty on the frame, 25 years on the motor, and 1 year on parts, a little short on parts but as good a deal as any. In contrast, the XTERRA Fitness TR150 offers a lifetime warranty on the frame, a 1-year warranty on the motor, and a 90-day guarantee on parts and labor. The EXERPEUTIC TF2000 gives a 5-year warranty on the motor, a 3-year guarantee on the frame, and a 9–day guarantee on parts.
A number of treadmills have short warranties. For example, GOPLUS Walking Treadmill and ProGear 190 come with a 1-year warranty, with the latter throwing in a 90-day guarantee on parts. To benefit from the manufacturer’s support over a considerable period, choose a model that’s guaranteed for an extended period.
If you’re exercising in a room where space is limited, choose a foldable treadmill so you can fold and store it away when you’re done exercising. Your room stays uncluttered, your movement inside the room is unobstructed, and you can just bring out the treadmill when you want to exercise.
Many treadmills come with plenty of accessories, some functional, others for entertainment. If you enjoy your workouts better when combined with entertainment, choose a treadmill with a TV screen that you can connect to your cable, Bluetooth, a music port, or a USB port that you can connect to your smart devices for audio and video entertainment.
If you or someone who will be using the treadmill is recovering from illness or elderly, consider a treadmill with handles. EXERPEUTIC TF2000 has full-length handles that are closed on both ends to ensure that your hands won’t slip off and make you vulnerable to falling.
Where possible, choose a treadmill with an emergency stop plug that can instantly stop the treadmill in an emergency, such as when an accident happens.
Some treadmills come with preset programs that you can use for your workouts. If you’re new to using a treadmill, these can prove useful as you get accustomed to using the machine, and you can use them as a guide to customizing your own workouts in the future.
Wet a clean cloth with a hot water and antibacterial soap mixture and use it to wipe sweat, dust, and any spills off the treadmill after each workout. Vacuum the area around and under the treadmill regularly to remove all the dust that could clog the motor. Occasionally, say, every 6 months, open the treadmill cover and vacuum around the motor to keep it dust free.
If you place the treadmill directly on the floor, it will damage the floor because it is quite heavy. To protect your floor, place a heavy duty mat like this one underneath the treadmill. It should be made from an anti-slip, rubber-like material to keep the treadmill from moving. It should also absorb vibration and reduce the noise coming from the treadmill.
When used incorrectly, a treadmill can cause serious injuries, sometimes fatally. When you step on the deck, keep your feet on the rubber strips, not on the belt. And always do it with your shoes on. Always begin your workout at a slow pace and increase your walking speed gradually. Do not get off the treadmill while it’s running. Avoid using your phone while on the treadmill as it can be distracting and puts you at risk of an accident. Ensure that the emergency stop plug is within reach, and if possible, clip it on your workout clothes where you can quickly press it in case of an accident.
Our top choice is the Sunny Health & Fitness T7917, a treadmill that stands out for its high weight capacity, the smooth folding mechanism and rubber wheels, the heavily cushioned belt for maximum comfort, the highly visible LCD monitor and large control buttons, and the emergency safety clip.
The NordicTrack T9.5S takes the second spot, thanks to its powerful motor, long belt, wide incline range, the auto fan, the entertainment accessories, and its lifetime warranty. We like that it allows you to connect to iFit for personal coaching and access to trainer-led workouts.
Our third best treadmill for walking is the EXERPEUTIC TF2000, an easy to use, comfortable treadmill that is perfect for those who like to work out in comfort. Features that stood out for us include the shock-absorbing, heavily cushioned deck, the full-length non-slip handrails, and the low-height step up deck. We also like how quietly it runs.