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February 4, 2023

The 12 Best Treadmills You Can Buy in 2023, Tested by Fitness Trainers

The 12 Best Treadmills You Can Buy in 2023, Tested by Fitness Trainers

IF YOU’RE trying to get more cardio into your workout routine, you’re likely to put in some time in on a treadmill. Love it or hate it (some lovingly refer to it as the ‘dreadmill’), it’s actually one of the most diverse cardio machines you can use. Whether you prefer to log long miles, run sprint circuits, or throw on a weighted vest and crank up the incline, you’re going to burn some serious calories.

  • Best Overall Treadmill

    EXP 14i TreadmillNordicTrack

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  • Best Compact Treadmill

    TRX3500 Folding TreadmillXTERRA Fitness

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  • Most Durable Treadmill

    Treadmill 22Bowflex

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  • Best Treadmill for Walking

    Cadence G 5.9i Folding TreadmillWeslo

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  • Best Starter Treadmill

    Pro 2000 Smart Treadmill with 10” TouchscreenProForm

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  • Commercial 2450 TreadmillNordicTrack

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  • Most Versatile Treadmill

    Run CX TreadmillLife Fitness

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Maybe you have a running goal this year (like running your first half marathon or full marathon), or you’re trying to increase your daily step count (nope, you don’t have to hit 10,000 steps a day to lose weight). You might just like the ease of working out at home rather than hauling your butt to the gym. Either way, your body will thank you for the time spent getting your sweat on. And if you don’t have a treadmill in your home gym, but are considering adding one, we know that it’s no small investment. For the past five years, we’ve been trying and testing over 100 treadmills to narrow down our selection. On top of that, we also reached out to Men’s Health’s fitness editors and advisors like Deventri Jordan, as well as Garage Gym Reviews founder Cooper Mitchell, to weigh in on some of these picks, so you know these treadmills are the best of the best on the market.

Combining a deep knowledge of fitness brands and high-quality standards, we won’t steer you in the wrong direction. If you’re ready to make the investment and add a treadmill to your home gym, this comprehensive list will help you pick the best one for your needs. Here are the best treadmills to buy right now for 2023.

Best Home Gym Equipment | Best Cardio Machines | Best Under-Desk Treadmills | Best Exercise Bikes | Best Running Shoes for Men | Best Ellipticals

      Best Overall Treadmill


      EXP 14i Treadmill

      Dimensions79.9 x 35 x 59.25 inches
      Weight229 pounds
      Display14″ HD Smart Touchscreen
      Max speed12 MPH

      Best Compact Treadmill

      XTERRA Fitness

      TRX3500 Folding Treadmill

      Dimensions85 x 39.6 x 70 inches
      Weight336 lbs
      Display22″ HD Touchscreen
      Max speed12 MPH

      Most Durable Treadmill


      Treadmill 22

      Dimensions64.5 x 29 x 55.5 inches
      Weight118 lbs
      DisplayLCD Display
      Max speed12 MPH

      Best Treadmill for Walking


      Cadence G 5.9i Folding Treadmill

      Dimensions64.5 x 29 x 55.5 inches
      Weight118 lbs
      DisplayLCD Display
      Max Speed10 MPH

      Best Starter Treadmill


      Pro 2000 Smart Treadmill with 10” Touchscreen

      Dimensions79.9 x 35 x 59.25 inches
      Weight229 pounds
      Display14″ HD Smart Touchscreen
      Max Speed12 MPH

      Best Treadmill for Sprinting


      Runner Curved Non-Motorized Treadmill


      Commercial 2450 Treadmill

      Most Versatile Treadmill

      Life Fitness

      Run CX Treadmill


      Skillmill Curved Treadmill


      Commercial 1750 Treadmill

      What to Know Before Buying a Treadmill

      Buying a treadmill is a big investment—maybe not as much as buying a puppy or a new SUV, but there’s still substantial commitment involved. Here are a few things to consider before bringing home your first (or next) treadmill:

      Know the Dimensions

      Most home gym equipment takes up significant floor space. That’s doubly true for treadmills. Check the dimensions of any treadmill you’re currently shopping. Be sure to add at least 1-2 feet in every direction and three feet or more behind the treadmill (the area you step on) for maximum safety.

      One thing buyers also tend to overlook is the height. You’ll want at least 15” inches above your own height. So, if you’re 5’10” (70 inches), make sure your ceiling height is 85 inches or more to give you plenty of head clearance, especially if you’re planning to use your treadmill for running.

      Keep it Stable

      This might seem obvious, but double-check that all four points of contact under the treadmill are firmly in contact with the floor. Many home floors aren’t 100% level. You want to make sure that your treadmill is well-planted to minimize the risk of slippage, shifting, or tilting.

      Mind Your Neighbors

      Treadmills can—and often do—make a lot of noise, especially for your downstairs neighbors (if you live in an apartment) or housemates (if you live in a multistory house). If you think this might be an issue, consider a treadmill mat to help minimize the noise. As the name implies, they’re simple and usually affordable mats designed to deaden the sound and vibration underneath a running treadmill.

      Let the Experts Move It

      Moving a treadmill into a confined space, like a small bedroom or basement, can be challenging. Often, it makes sense to hire experts to do it for you. If you’re the handy type, you can opt to disassemble the treadmill. Start by moving, then reassembling the deck, then the uprights, then the console, in that order. Just be sure to allow the minimum recommended clearances we mentioned above.

      Be Mindful of Your Power

      Treadmills—especially large and commercial models—can draw significant power. If your home’s electrical setup allows, dedicate one circuit to just your treadmill. This will help ensure that other power-hungry devices potentially on that same circuit don’t blow a fuse.

      Unique Features

      Many modern treadmills offer a solid list of bonus features. Consider things like incline and decline to add variety to your workouts. Some add extra shock absorption to minimize the impact on your knees, ankles, and joints. The best treadmills also offer touchscreen displays with web-connected features like interactive, trainer-led studio classes. Just know that, in most cases, these require an ongoing subscription that could add up over the years.

      Learn the Safety Features

      Treadmills might not look all that dangerous and, when used properly, they’re some of the safest pieces of gym equipment. Still, some danger exists. Understand the safety features of the treadmills you’re shopping. At a minimum, you’ll want fixed handrails and a stable surface that ensures your feet are properly planted and your stride is reliable. Many modern treadmills also feature an auto-shutdown clip that immediately cuts power to the machine in an emergency.


      There’s no getting around the fact that treadmills aren’t cheap. Some of the best treadmills can run north of $5,000 while the most elite models, like Technogym’s Skillmill, cost as much as a used Toyota. But you don’t have to spend a small fortune to land a decent model. The best budget to mid-range models are priced between $1,500-$3,000. While that’s not chump change, it’s a worthwhile investment if you’re planning to integrate jogging or running into your regular fitness routine. One more piece of advice: While there are a few sub-$1,000 treadmills on our list that are decent, don’t expect them to last beyond five years or so.


      Because treadmills are such a big investment, budget and warranty go hand-in-hand. Many of the treadmill models we recommend offer a solid warranty of between three and seven years on parts, plus at least a one-year warranty on labor. This is totally reasonable, especially if you’re spending north of $2,000 on a new machine. You should expect that your treadmill’s frame and motor should both be warrantied for the life of the unit.

      What Is the Best Treadmill in 2023?

      The short answer is: It depends. Size, power, price, and the available space in your home are all considerations. The best treadmill for you is one that will fit snugly (but with enough safety room on all sides) and offer the features that line up with your fitness goals and routine—all at a price that you can actually afford. Some treadmill buyers are happy to make do with a manual (non-powered) model with an old-school screen and few features; others might not mind splurging on a Peloton with all the “fixin’s.” There is no one best treadmill, so it’s entirely your call.

      Should I Buy a Folding or a Regular Treadmill?

      The answer is all about space. If you have the real estate in your home for a regular, non-folding treadmill, the convenience of having it always “set up” and ready to go is usually worth the sacrifice you’ll make in floor space. If, however, you’re tight on overall space in your home or are planning to use your treadmill in a compact room, like a basement or garage, you may want to consider a folding treadmill that can be tucked away neatly when not in use.

      Which Is Better: A Treadmill Indoors or Walking Outside?

      Each one has its benefits. We get the appeal of a treadmill. It’ll never be too hot or rainy inside your gym. This comfort comes with a price, though, as a 2017 study from Real Clear Science says you may need to run 15 percent faster on a treadmill to reach the same level of exertion you’d achieve while running outside.

      The data found that the runners exerted themselves more on the track than the treadmill with just a 1-percent grade. And to equal the exertion of the track, they had to run on the treadmill 15 percent faster. Don’t feel bad if you still choose to run on the treadmill. Just run a little faster—15 percent, to be exact.

      Read more: Running Treadmills vs. Running Outside

      Is an Elliptical or Treadmill Best for Me?

      While treadmills and ellipticals are similar, they differ in a few key ways. Researchers at the University of Mississippi found that elliptical trainers provide the same cardiovascular benefits as treadmill running, without the impact on your joints. So they’re a perfect solution if you’re a runner who wants to stay in race shape without excessive pounding to your ankles, knees and hips.

      But a 2001 study in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise determined that the treadmill burns calories at the highest rate of any exercise machine. So if you’re looking for a cardio machine that’s easier on joints, an elliptical is your best bet. However, if you’re looking for a rig that can burn calories fastest, invest in a treadmill instead.

      Read more: Exercise Machine Guide

      What’s the Best Treadmill Brand?

      There’s hardly been a better time to shop for treadmills as there are at least a handful of premium, commercial-grade treadmill brands to choose from. Peloton, ProForm, Nautilus, and Bowflex are just a few of the best treadmill brands. The treadmills from any of these are high-quality, extremely durable, and offer more next-gen features than their competitors. On the downside, they’re also usually the most expensive. However, many offer free in-home trials so you can test them out before you fully commit.

      Should I Buy a Curved Treadmill?

      Maybe. It all depends on your personal fitness level and goals. Curved treadmills are non-motorized. They rely instead on you walking or running, and the belt being pushed backward manually with every foot strike on the sloped surface. While this might not seem as “fancy” or high-tech as a powered treadmill, this design has its benefits. For one, it forces you to engage more muscle groups because you are the driving force pushing the belt backward. By some reports, exercising on a curved treadmill burns 30% more calories over a traditional powered treadmill. Plus, you can run as fast as you like because the speed isn’t limited by the power of the motor.

      Read more: Curved Treadmills

      When Is the Best Time to Buy a Treadmill?

      While treadmills are typically pricey any time of year, there are a few key days to look for to save. They typically go on sale during the usual big holidays, like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Look for discounts on Memorial Day and Labor Day as well. But, the absolute best time to buy a treadmill is right now. January is when many treadmills go on sale as the best treadmill brands look to capture New Year’s resolution makers on the first of the year.

      How We Selected the Best Treadmills of 2023

      For the past 24 months, we consulted with Men’s Health‘s Fitness Director Ebenezer Samuel and Fitness Editor Brett Williams on the best treadmills for all types of use. They evaluated several treadmills from top fitness brands and tested their performance, durability, and special features. We also considered top treadmills that had high praise from reviewers on e-commerce websites we trust.

      Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., is the fitness director of Men’s Health and a certified trainer with more than 10 years of training experience.

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