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Peloton Tread review

The Peloton Tread can help you achieve your health and fitness goals by pushing you to train harder and faster.

Image shows the Peloton Tread against a white background.
(Image: © Peloton)

Our Verdict

The Peloton Tread is a sleek and well-made treadmill that is designed to offer a satisfying running experience for all fitness abilities.

For

  • Huge array of live and on-demand classes
  • Crisp HD touchscreen
  • Compact
  • Modern design

Against

  • Doesn’t fold or decline
  • Expensive
  • No fan
  • Needs monthly subscription

Live Science Verdict

The Peloton Tread is a sleek and well-made treadmill that is designed to offer a satisfying running experience for all fitness abilities.

Pros

  • +

    Huge array of live and on-demand classes

  • +

    Crisp HD touchscreen

  • +

    Compact

  • +

    Modern design

Cons

  • -

    Doesn’t fold or decline

  • -

    Expensive

  • -

    No fan

  • -

    Needs monthly subscription

The Peloton Tread is a smart treadmill that comes with an HD touchscreen and thousands of live and on-demand classes. It’s more expensive than a lot of similar machines at $2,495 plus tax (includes shipping, delivery, and assembly) but you’re not just paying for the name – you’re paying for quality.

You can access guided running classes via the Peloton app ($39/month, available on Android and iOS), as well as strength training, yoga, stretching and HIIT workouts. Not a fan of group-style classes? Choose from a variety of scenic walks, runs or hikes and go at your own pace.

Peloton Tread: Key Specs

Dimensions: 68" L x 33" W x 62"
Weight: 291 lbs
Tread belt size: 59" x 20"
Max user weight: 106 lbs - 300 lbs
Display: 23.8” 1080p HD touchscreen
Speed: 0-12.5mph
Incline: 0 to 12.5% grade (no decline)
Warranty: 12 month limited warranty
Workouts: Live and on demand classes via Peloton app
Other features: Bluetooth 5.0 compatibility, Tread Lock (prevents unauthorized access), 16 GB internal flash storage, front-facing stereo speakers, 2.2 Channel with rear-facing woofers, USB-C charging port, 3.5mm headphone jack 

Membership to the Peloton app allows you to live stream Tread classes and watch hundreds of on-demand workouts in your own time. You can track your progress on the live leaderboards, view performance stats and connect with other Peloton members or friends. You can cancel your subscription after one year but will lose access to all the content.

One of the highlights of the Peloton Tread, aside from its minimalist design and compact size, is the crisp graphics and bright display. The touchscreen is super responsive and fast and the intuitive incline and speed dials are discretely situated on the left and right handrails respectively. This means you can speed up or turn your road into a hill without having to slow the flow of your workout.

The belt also has a red centerline to help with alignment, and we found it kept us running in a straight line during longer sessions.

Another great feature of the Peloton Tread is it’s really quiet. We used a decibel counter to track various workouts and were impressed by the relatively low noise levels throughout (more of this later). This is a well-designed and high-performing treadmill that will delight runners old and new.

Peloton Tread: Set up and usability

Image shows a side view of the Peloton Tread against a white background.

(Image credit: Peloton)

The Peloton Tread weighs 291 lbs so it’s a little heavy to move around. We recommend making space for it before it arrives and positioning it near a power point. Peloton treadmills include expert assembly in the price so you don’t have to worry about putting it together yourself.

As you’d expect, The Peloton Tread is a slick and compact machine with an ergonomic design and premium feel. The carbon steel sturdy frame makes the treadmill feel safe and secure, with minimal vibration or excessive noise.

It’s really easy to use and has intuitive controls that work well during a run or workout. The speed and incline dials are on the right and left handrail respectively, and you move them forward to increase the speed or incline, and back to decrease it.

Image shows a closeup of the belt of the Peloton Tread.

(Image credit: Maddy Bidulph)

The Peloton Tread has a 59" x 20" standard running belt, which is well made and springy. And unlike most treadmills, the Tread doesn’t have a front base so you can run the whole belt. The red centerline in the middle of the belt is a nice touch and helps you to run in a straight line.

The treadmill has several safety features including an emergency stop button and safety key, stop-sensor technology in the belt, and ‘Tread lock’: a four-digit passcode that users must enter before the belt will unlock. This also comes into play after ten seconds of inactivity.

At the beginning of each class, the instructors also have a big spiel about making sure your sneakers are double knotted and there are no obstacles, kids or pets nearby.

Peloton Tread: Design and display

Peloton has fast gained cult status for its high-end, state-of-the-art machines and the Tread is no different - it looks and feels luxe, with its signature black and red design.

The tread deck doesn’t have shock absorbers or cushioning (unlike the Peloton Tread+) so it feels similar to running on the sidewalk. There’s space for two drinks bottles and a tray to put your phone or other items. It’s too small for a tablet but with the HD screen you shouldn’t need one.

Image shows the display on the Peloton Tread, displaying a range of classes.

(Image credit: Maddy Bidulph)

It’s the crisp graphics and minimalist touchscreen that’s the big draw on the Peloton Tread, especially as most of the functionality is hidden within the display so there are hardly any physical buttons on the dash apart from the emergency stop and the safety key. Even the speed and incline dials are on the handrails rather than the console to keep the design simple and fuss-free.

The smudge-resistant screen with a bright resolution has front-facing stereo speakers and an 8-megapixel camera with a privacy cover for video chats with friends. Content loads quickly and the touchscreen is super responsive and easy to navigate.

There’s a USB-C port on the back so you can charge your device in the front storage tray. It’s missing a fan, which we certainly would have welcomed during the longer endurance runs. The deck doesn’t fold up into the console, but it’s fairly compact. 

Peloton Tread: Features

Peloton has made its name for its world-class instructors and motivating classes, and the Tread has been given the same treatment. 

There are no pre-programmed workouts but a Peloton subscription via the app will give you access to thousands of live and on-demand classes, you can track your progress against other members via the on-screen Leaderboard, and try different training programs like bootcamp, intervals, walking or running, and monthly challenges. 

Choose a class by instructor, distance, time or music genre, or opt for Just Run (manual mode, basically) or Scenic Run.

Really, it’s the huge array of classes that makes Peloton Tread so appealing. Sure, you can use the treadmill to simply improve your running speed and style, but you’ll never get bored with the classes on offer here. The instructors are really engaging and motivating and it helps to create that class atmosphere. You can customize your workouts by ‘your instructors’ so if you find someone you like, you can do more of their workouts.

The Peloton Tread has Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity, and speeds of up to 12.5 miles per hour. It has an incline range of 0-12.5% (no decline option), and key metrics include output, pace, speed, distance, total elevation and calories. There is no decline on the Tread, so it’s close to the floor (8” step-up height). This means it’s a good option for anyone with limited mobility as it’s easy to get onto. 

Peloton Treadmill: Performance

Image shows the bottle holder on the Peloton Tread.

(Image credit: Maddy Bidulph)

The Peloton Tread feels comfortable and springy to walk and run on, despite being a bit smaller (59” x 20” belt) than similarly priced treadmills. The red alignment strip on the deck is a nice feature. It’s visually appealing and helpful for running in a straight line.

It’s really easy to start and stop, and the emergency button gives you a couple of seconds of slowing down the pace before coming to a halt. Because there is no decline on the Peloton Tread, this treadmill is probably better suited to people who want to build endurance and improve their running speed. Obviously, the wealth of live and on-demand classes make this a good choice for people who like structure, to work out in a group or have a competitive side (thanks to the leaderboard).

So how noisy is the Peloton Tread? It has a 3 Horsepower DC motor and is relatively quiet especially when walking. Aside from the noise from any music or the instructor speaking, all you can really hear is the sound of your own feet. 

We tested the Tread in a number of scenarios: on a 1-mile walk, the noise level was 65 decibels (dB) – about the same as a conversation in an office. During a 2.5-mile jog at leisurely pace, with some inclines and different speeds, it rose to 78 dB. This is about as noisy as a washing machine.

During a 2.5-mile run at max speed, the noise level was 88 dB – akin to a food processor. We also tried the 20-minute advanced HIIT run workout 

Should you buy the Peloton Tread?

Whether you are new to running or want to improve your speed, the Peloton Tread treadmill can help you achieve your health and fitness goals by pushing you to train harder and faster. 

Yes, it’s expensive and you’re probably paying for the name as well as the quality. But we love how every little detail has been thought out, from the simple and modern design down to the minimal touchscreen (most of the buttons are built into the display so it’s a fuss-free interface). 

There’s no doubt that this is an awesome-looking, high-performing treadmill that comes at a premium but more than delivers on style and functionality.

If this product isn’t for you

On a budget? The Famistar W500C portable folding electric treadmill is an affordable starter machine, coming in at just $599. It doesn’t have an incline and can only get up to 6.2mph so this is best suited to people who want to use a treadmill for walking or jogging. It includes an inbuilt USB port and audio jack with speakers.

The Proform 900 is a good, mid-range treadmill ($1299) with a touchscreen console, powerful 3.0 CHP motor and an in-built cooling system. What’s more, you can fold it up to stow it out of the way, and it has advanced shock absorbers to help protect joints during a workout.

The NordicTrack Commercial 2950 treadmill is similar to the Peloton Tread in price ($2,999) and it’s one of the most high-tech machines available. With a big touchscreen and an impressive library of live and on-demand classes via the iFit app, it also has a wide decline to incline range (-6 to 15) so is great for mimicking hill runs. 

If you're still undecided about which brand of exercise machines to choose, we've written up a comparison of Peloton vs Echelon.

Maddy Biddulph

Maddy is a freelance journalist specializing in fitness, health and wellbeing content. She has been a writer and editor for 22 years, and has worked for some of the UK's bestselling newspapers and women’s magazines, including Marie Claire, The Sunday Times and Women's Health. Maddy loves HIIT training and can often be found working out while her two young daughters do matching burpees or star jumps. As a massive foodie, she loves cooking and trying out new healthy recipes (especially ones with hidden vegetables so the kids eat them). Maddy is currently completing a diploma in Level 3 personal training and can’t wait to help other busy mums like her feel energized and confident in how they look and feel.