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Which portable treadmills are best?

A treadmill is one of the best ways to get a quick cardio workout, but many treadmills take up too much space in the home. Whether you’re a beginner runner looking to amp up your fitness routine or an experienced athlete needing to continue your year-round training, a portable treadmill is ideal for limited-space workout areas. 

If you’re looking for one that can reach a speed of up to 10 mph and comes with an iFit membership, NordicTrack T-Series Treadmill is your best bet.

What to know before you buy a portable treadmill


Generally speaking, portable treadmills offer a slower speed than most standard treadmills. Most portable treadmills can reach a maximum speed of up to 6 mph, while standard models can go up to 10 mph.

A portable treadmill is ideal for casual walkers and runners and older folks looking to add some exercise into their daily routine while not reaching high speeds. If you are a slow walker, a portable treadmill may be the best choice as you won’t need a standard model with a higher speed capacity.

Weight limit

Make sure you know the maximum weight limit allowed on the portable treadmill you’re purchasing. Most standard treadmills can accommodate up to 300 pounds. Portable treadmills are designed to hold much less, with some capping out at 220 pounds. Stay within the weight limit to keep your treadmill from wearing out early.


While a portable treadmill’s foldable design is convenient for a home with limited space, it does sacrifice speed. A standard treadmill is a better choice if you’re looking for one that can reach high speeds. A folding treadmill is one of the best options to store your fitness equipment and free up space in your home when not in use.

What to look for in a quality portable treadmill


Some portable treadmills can be tilted upward to mimic walking or running up a hill. While an incline can be set on a standard treadmill with the simple push of a button, on some portable treadmills, you may need to set it up manually.

Shock absorption

When it comes to running, one of the most important features to look for when choosing a treadmill is finding one that offers shock absorption. The less stress on your knees and joints, the better off you’ll be in the long run.

Bluetooth speaker

If you enjoy running or speed walking to your favorite tunes, be sure the portable treadmill you choose has a built-in Bluetooth speaker. While the quality may not be as good as an external Bluetooth speaker, it does allow for hands-free enjoyment.


When determining which portable treadmill is best for you, keep in mind the size of the treadmill both when it’s fully extended and while it is folded so you know it will fit in the room you plan to set it up in. You also want to think about the height clearance of the treadmill so your head isn’t hitting anything while you’re running or walking.

How much you can expect to spend on a portable treadmill

A portable treadmill can range from as low as $300 for one with a limited weight capacity to $600 for a model with Bluetooth capability, an incline and excellent shock absorbency. The more expensive the portable treadmill, the more features it will have.

Portable treadmill FAQ

Can you run on a portable treadmill?

A. Yes. Most portable treadmills are designed to accommodate lightweight running. Still, if you’re training for a marathon or are an aggressive runner at high speeds, you may want to consider getting a standard treadmill instead. Portable treadmills are typically lighter in weight, easier to move and less expensive than standard treadmills but come with fewer features and weaker motors.

How do you move a portable treadmill?

A. A portable treadmill can be moved easily by folding it up according to the manufacturer’s instructions and tilting it so its weight is on the wheels. You’re now able to move the treadmill about the room easily.

What’s the best portable treadmill to buy?

Top portable treadmill

NordicTrack T-Series Treadmill

NordicTrack T-Series Treadmill

What you need to know: Designed to hold up to 300 pounds, this treadmill can reach speeds up to 10 miles per hour along with a 0%-10% incline control.

What you’ll love: There are two sizes for the display, and you can request expert assembly once it’s delivered to your home. The treadmill weighs about 200 pounds and can be folded to save space.

What you should consider: While it comes from a trusted brand, this model has a higher price point.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top portable treadmill for the money

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7603 Electric Folding Treadmill

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7603 Electric Folding Treadmill

What you need to know: This treadmill has nine built-in user programs that are easy to see on the LCD screen.

What you’ll love: This treadmill has three manual adjustable incline levels and is easy to fold and transport. The soft drop system allows you to open and fold the treadmill carefully and easily.

What you should consider: The maximum user weight capacity is 220 pounds.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Weslo Cadence G 5.9i Folding Treadmill

Weslo Cadence G 5.9i Folding Treadmill

What you need to know: This customer favorite has a space-saving design and cushioned tread belt to reduce the impact on your joints.

What you’ll love: The iFit coach can store your fitness statistics for tracking, and it comes with a mountable option to dock to your treadmill. You can also monitor your heart rate with the thumb pulse sensors and manually adjust the treadmill inclines.

What you should consider: Some users found attaching the base to the frame cumbersome.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Kellie Speed writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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