The JLL S400 Premium is a motorised folding treadmill utilising digital motor and soft fold technology for the ultimate combination of form and utility. This treadmill is an exemplary illustration of home exercise equipment done right. Topping our price chart by a considerable distance, for those who can afford it, the JLL S400 may be worth the stretch.
Two of the major downsides to home exercising are the potential for distraction before your workout begins and the lack of stimulation once it is underway. In a professional gym environment there is always something new to see or experience; music to put a bounce in your step, other patrons to measure your progress by, a choice of machines to keep things fresh…
The JLL S400 might not be able to whip you up a workout buddy but it does its fair share to stimulate in every other way that counts. Users have a choice of ways to pump out the tunes that make them move along the variable inclines and terrain replication which makes running the deck a three dimensional experience. When you’re through it can be easily folded and stashed away.
The JLL S400 Premium is a real runner’s machine. Throwing contemporary technology into the mix with a credible understanding of user demands and needs. Combining ease of use (the LCD display is bright and multiple programmes clear to follow) and a high quality finish with a broad gradient range to replicate the gym experience. While reflecting a home consumer’s needs through the sound absorption, soft close system and wheel transfer to minimise noise and maximise ease of storage.
Belt measurements: 135cm x 40cm
Folded measurements: 110cm x 70cm x 134cm
Features: 16 point cushioning - 20 levels of incline - 3 customisable programmes - 5.5” LCD display - Soft Drop Technology
Pricing: High end
We’ve previously addressed the additional bulk the addition of motorisation to a treadmill can create. The JTX Slimline (as its name might suggest) aspires to be the exception that proves this rule. Is it successful? Happily, yes. Despite its ability to fold flat, neat and compact, it still offers digital incline. Keeping user workouts variable and prolonging the machine’s lifespan as your fitness increases. It arrives preassembled too, so presents a genuinely hassle-free choice.
Belt measurements: 125cm x 41cm
Folded measurements: 157cm x 73cm x 24cm
Features: Genuine flat fold - Inbuilt speakers - Large running belt - 12 month warranty
Pricing: High end
The XM-Pro III has been commended by fitness magazines for its lightweight and compact build. Of our 5 choices today this is perhaps the best of both worlds option for a first treadmill experience or for older/injured users. It has the space saving qualities one looks for in a foldable motorised treadmill and combines them with a few of the higher spec functions we might expect at a loftier price bracket. All at an affordable price. There are some compromises in terms of finish and, under close scrutiny, it doesn’t have the aesthetic of mid range competitors. But a well thought out selection of gifts with purchase go some way towards compensating for this.
The XM-Pro III is unlikely to be the machine of choice for an experienced runner or committed gym bunny. It has limited scope when it comes to exercise programmes, only a single customisable option and three incline settings (good for the price) rather than the multiple settings increased endurance might demand. But no two treadmill users are alike and a multi terrain emulating, heart rate matching beast can be as off putting to some as it is essential for others.
For the home user looking to come back after injury, improve their general fitness or appease the conscience on their wrist by walking additional steps each day, the XM-Pro III is a sensible option. It sits at the lower end of its price bracket, offers several freebies to help you begin and enhance your keep fit regime and stores away simply. The hand controls are easy to operate and the screen clear to read. Reiterating that this is a fine machine for beginners and older users alike.
Features: 1100W motor - Built in speakers - Simple controls - Free eBooks and twist disc
Price: Mid range
It is evident with the X-Lite 2016 that we have taken a step down in price. Though still sitting in the mid range, like the machine above, we are now beginning to lose some significant functions. For starters the X-Lite has a fixed incline and a motor of just 750W. That immediately excludes a number of motorised treadmill users as buyers. Yet, as with the model above, it’s also going to make it just perfect for others.
Foldaway, compact treadmills are designed to fit neatly into our lives and interiors. Rather than taking over in the manner of more complex home exercise solutions. This machine benefits from a smaller footprint, lower running costs and, theoretically at least, fewer things to go wrong! The interval training programmes are pre-set and there is only one manual option. The machine’s smaller motor and deck are best suited to walking or a gentle jog. It is, in many ways, the perfect ‘teaching’ treadmill.
If simplicity and that ‘step on and go’ potential sound appealing then the X-Lite 2016 is the motorised treadmill for you. Considered as an entry level product it enables users to access the wealth of lifestyle benefits which regular walking or jogging bring, from the comfort of home, without any requirement to master overcomplicated digital drop screens or break out tools.
By virtue of the fixed incline this treadmill is best suited to users looking for light to moderate regular exercise rather than those aspiring to peak fitness and a huge body overhaul. It is a well priced, modest, utilitarian machine with everything you need to get started on the road to a positive change. With transfer wheels, a compact design and smaller deck it stores discreetly too.
Features: Towel rail - Water bottle holder - Fixed incline - 8 pre-set programmes/1 custom
Pricing: Mid range
Treadmills aren’t just for running, folks. In the Fitbit gazing age in which we live, we are all increasingly conscious of the connection between movement and better bodily health. With a maximum speed of 10kph, an onboard computer to give your pedometer the night off, and a surprisingly robust build, this little treadmill that could would be ideal for anything from a pleasant evening stroll in front of your favourite soap to a lengthy power walk in time to the speediest songs your iPod can muster. A walk in the countryside is all well and good but on a cold, dark evening there’s no place like home.
This cheerfully straightforward folding treadmill is primarily for those who enjoy a slower pace of life. Whether you are building strength and stamina in the aftermath or an injury, moving more to earn your sofa time or working to maintain mobility as you age, this is a reliable machine to accompany you on the journey. True, it is unlikely to transform you into Usain Bolt but, with free eBooks to offer guidance, it IS an affordable way to take the first step towards a fitter you.
Folded measurements: 54cm x 60cm x 124cm
Features: Water bottle holders - Incline adjustment - 600W motor - Backlit LED screen
Pricing: Mid range
Regular and proper use of a treadmill in the comfort of your own home can be a rewarding and accessible way to keep in shape. The advantages of a healthier lifestyle are multiple and the workout a treadmill offers is considered to be highly beneficial to bone health, stamina and heart health.
Each of the machines we have explored has their individual advantages but our victor is the JLL S400 Premium. This is a case where less isn’t more. The extra features, multiple custom options, smooth, quiet transitions and breadth of incline make it fit for a full spectrum of body types and abilities and more than justify the greater financial commitment.
In an ideal world gym memberships are a wonderful thing. A financial commitment to your health and fitness which will pay dividends with each visit you make. But this is not an ideal world. All too often the reality is that we are time and cash poor. After a long day at work - the working day bookended by darkness through the winter months - or a tiring day in the home, a schlep to the gym for a workout can seem a tiresome prospect.
These days there are other options. Home exercise equipment has enjoyed an evolution over recent years, leaving behind the expense and heft of machines past, to become a realistic and appealing option. One such increasingly popular home exercise alternative is the motorised treadmill. Motorised treadmills are recognisable from their use in commercial gyms. Though technology may have advanced their features, their user friendly appeal endures.
A motorised treadmill as you would expect comes with a built-in motor. What this means, in practical terms, is that the the belt revolves around itself as the individual walks or runs along the treadmill’s deck. As opposed to manual models which require the momentum of the user’s paces to start up and continue to power motion. The primary benefit of this is that one is able to simply step aboard and go.
The intensity of your workout is then dictated by the chosen speed setting. Incline options further enhance the level of challenge - replicating the effort of walking or running on a gentle gradient or hill (depending on the incline percentage). The inclusion of a motor will add additional weight. It is for the user to decide whether this is an advantage to them, based on personal priorities, but in terms of stability for runners or taller users it can definitely be a selling point.
Technology has been a gift to the home exercise market. A large proportion of mechanical treadmills are equipped with dedicated programmes. Allowing novice users the security of guidance through their fitness regime and those more experienced to chart their progress and adjust routines accordingly. Heart Rate Programmes are another innovation. Functions which match the intensity motion to your optimum heart rate.
There are pitfalls to safeguard against before committing to this type of machine. The first, crucially, is the elevated price. Those mod cons don’t come cheap. If you are working with a lower budget for your foldable treadmill it may be worth considering the higher end of the self-powered chart in addition to motorised versions. The next is storage. The 5 machines we are assessing are all foldable BUT they are demonstrably bulkier than their non-motorised peers.
Finally, and crucially, where you will locate your machine is absolutely key. An electronically powered motor will needs mains power to run. Will you be able to put your treadmill close enough to a power point. Or safely run an extension cable beside it? Battery powered motorised treadmills are also available but with either option do be sure to factor those additional running costs into your bottom line.
As with any home exercise equipment do consider the age, height, weight and exercise expectations of all potential users. A taller user will need a larger treadmill deck to workout on. An older or injured user may struggle with too steep a gradient on the deck. A heavier user will need the added security of a heavier machine to safeguard them. Check out the home cross trainers here.