Retirees might be off the hamster wheel of the workforce, but they should still walk into the golden years with a healthy mindset and regular physical activity.
Treadmills for the elderly can improve mental acuity, balance, and endurance while staving off more serious health issues like obesity and diabetes.
The CDC recommends 150 minutes weekly of moderate-intensity activities like brisk walking for those 65+.
Cold weather and summer heat can make outside walks challenging, so a treadmill for seniors is a wise investment in future health.
- What to Look for in the Best Treadmill for Senior Walking
- How Fast Should An Older Person Walk on a Treadmill?
- 9 Of The Best Treadmills for Seniors
- 1. ANCHEER Home Treadmill
- 2. Star Power Folding Treadmill with PitPat App Bracelet
- 3. Horizon Fitness 7.4 Treadmill
- 4. Weslo Cadence G 5.9i Treadmill
- 5. Sunny Health & Fitness T1479M
- 6. SOLE F63 Treadmill
- 7. OnTheMUV miniTREAD
- 8. Bowflex T10 Treadmill
- 9. Redliro Walking Treadmill with Long Handrail
- Final Thoughts
What to Look for in the Best Treadmill for Senior Walking
Safety should supersede any other amenity on a treadmill, as 28% of emergency room visits due to home workout injuries involved seniors.
Before jogging into the massive senior treadmill market, consider a few things.
- SAFETY ACCESSORIES: Items like a one-button emergency stop or a treadmill with long handrails can help avoid accidents.
- HEART HELP: A heart rate monitor attached to the device or paired with a mobile app should be a top priority.
- KIDS & PET PROTECTION: Seniors are likely to have companion pets and grandkids over for visits, meaning safety should be considered even when the treadmill isn’t in use.
- TECH TIE-INS: For tech-savvy seniors, interactive treadmills with video displays can turn a mundane walk into a hike around the Grand Canyon or a stroll through Paris.
- SIZING: Small treadmills for seniors help avoid a giant piece of equipment taking up living room space, especially in downsized homes.
- FREQUENCY: Lower-priced and compact models are appealing but could wear out more easily than a more durable model.
- COMFORT: Whether you need a matt with shock absorbency or grip-helping handrails, look for features that cushion and support your movements even when the user is sweating.
- FOLDING: Many treadmills will tout the ease of folding and storing, but if you can’t manually fold the device or use wheels to roll it into storage, you could end up with an unwanted piece of equipment taking up living space.
To see the full financial impact, you should also look at the initial or ongoing costs, like shipping, delivery placement, app costs per month, mat replacements, and motor oil.
How Fast Should An Older Person Walk on a Treadmill?
Fitness experts suggest a designated speed isn’t as important as how speed impacts an individual’s heart rate. As a guideline, start at the “brisk” pace for moderate exercise as described by the American Heart Association—2.5 mph.
If you’ve had a stress test done, ask your doctor what your target heart rate is and address any other fitness questions.
Seniors can also use other options to figure out their ideal heart rate, like trying to sing Happy Birthday during a workout and knowing when they’re winded, they’re moderately exercising.
Moderate physical activity is achieved when you’re working at 64% to 75% of your maximum heart rate. The equation is the same for seniors as anyone else – subtract your age from 220.
That’s your estimated maximum heart rate, not the target heart rate.
The safest way to gauge what’s best for a senior treadmill user, find a product that comes in increased speeds of 0.1 mph.
9 Of The Best Treadmills for Seniors
Consider the best value instead of the lowest price when looking for a treadmill. The initial price tag could seem high, but figure out the daily cost per day based on how much you will use it.
You’ll find even more elaborate models are far more affordable than a neighborhood gym membership.
1. ANCHEER Home Treadmill
Let go of guilt if you can’t go for long walks or runs solo or with the family pet. This treadmill is specially designed for the elderly and pets to get in their steps. Adult, Elderly, and Pet modes provide specific adaptions to each foot or paw prancing along. The long walking mat and comfortable padded handrails help you stay balanced.
The display deck can also be used as a walking desk.
- The built-in display is Bluetooth compatible with 12 fitness programs built-in
- Two cup holders provide spill-resistant access to hydration
- 5″ deck height always for easy steps off and on
- The weight limit is 265 pounds, lower than the standard 300 pounds
2. Star Power Folding Treadmill with PitPat App Bracelet
Enhance your fitness and socialization skills while tapping into your competitive side with this treadmill and fitness bracelet combo. Pair the PitPat app with the treadmill and your mobile device and unleash a virtual world of competition and interaction with other fitness enthusiasts.
You can skip standard workouts and play games with senior-specific training courses.
- Socialization with group events, themed workouts, and a live chat function
- Safety key lowers accident risks
- Quiet motor
- PitPat program offers incentive rewards where you can “earn money,” and membership costs (if any) are suspiciously not mentioned. Seniors should always be suspicious when giving any kind of financial information.
3. Horizon Fitness 7.4 Treadmill
With a sleek design that looks fit for a professional gym with the conveniences of home treadmills, you’ll love the hidden senior features that don’t make you feel like you purchased an “old person’s” treadmill.
The 22″ x 60″ extra-wide belt comes standard with three zones of shock absorption for every pressure point of a step.
With ten custom modes, beginning levels offer rewarding but easy workouts. RapidSync for runners intuitively keeps the heart rate at an optimal level.
- Pair with any fitness app with a USB port on the display panel
- Built-in fan
- One-touch FeatherLight hydrologic folding technology
- Short handrails
4. Weslo Cadence G 5.9i Treadmill
This treadmill is perfect for walkers. Look for a deal with a free trial of iFit, as nearly 6.5 million people use this popular fitness app. Comfort cell cushioning protects painful or arthritic joints. The four-foot mat length is helpful, especially in this compact model.
The biggest complaint from users is that this treadmill is hard to use for running, so walkers won’t feel the temptation to overdo it.
- Space-saving compact design with expansive technology options through the app
- Pulse reading through quick thumb pulse sensors
- It can be used with or without an app
- Two incline options must be done manually
5. Sunny Health & Fitness T1479M
Your footsteps, not electrical power, engage the mat of this basic and affordable model. Non-slip handlebars aren’t long, but they offer a good stable grip. The speed restriction on this is 0.1 mph, so it’s for simple walking powered by leg strength.
The small but mighty display still keeps track of time, distance, and calories burned.
- Control the speed and intensity using your own body instead of button controls
- Non-slip running surface and wheels that provide resistance are sweat guard protected
- Floor stabilizes keep this compact model from tilting or wobbling during workouts
- The manual-powered device could be hard for some seniors
6. SOLE F63 Treadmill
Cushion aching joints with the 18mm thick Cushion Flex Whisper Deck. The large console with big buttons makes it easy to see. Front heart-tracking handlebars offer mimic pushing a cart or stroller for comfort and familiarity.
Cooling fans, a tablet/device holder, and Bluetooth speakers come standard, along with a USB charging port. Speeds go up to 12 mph, and 14 incline levels are optional.
- Incline control on armrests
- Cooling fans, a tablet/device holder, and Bluetooth speakers come standard
- Allows for calm walks or intense workouts for all senior fitness levels
- The delivery weight is 254 pounds and will require help to move and assemble.
7. OnTheMUV miniTREAD
The miniTREAD is designed to be used while sitting. It can be used under a desk, kitchen table, or sitting outside. The device is the size of a throw pillow and is portable, weighing less than 25 pounds.
A large control display caters to poor eyesight with a simple bold-colored six-button display.
You can get the same heart-pumping and circulation-boosting workout without standing up.
- Easy, safe speed control starting at .03 mph up to 2.5 mph max
- Incline option up to 14°
- Any family member can use it
- Does not pair with any fitness apps
8. Bowflex T10 Treadmill
This durable treadmill helps heavy-weight seniors safely enjoy treadmill walking. This rugged and sleek Bowflex accommodates up to 400 pounds. Heart rate tracking can be done through the chest strap, hand grips, or Bluetooth armband.
The touchscreen adjusts to a user’s eye level and can be paired with the top streaming channels. The signature JNRY Experience™ includes 40+ virtual global destinations, trained-led videos, and virtual coaching.
- Incline and decline options from -5% to 15%
- SoftDrop technology folds safely for storage
- Warranty for parts, labor, and frame up to 15 years
- The JNRY Experience™ is required to use this device.
9. Redliro Walking Treadmill with Long Handrail
This affordable treadmill comes with long handles and a belt with extra layers of shock absorbency, offering better balance control.
Recuperating and rehab are easier with the built-in safety features, like automatic power disconnect in case of a fall and an emergency stop. Speed controls on the handlebars support balance throughout the workout.
The LED display shows heart rate (when holding both handles or connected to a strap), calories burned, distance, and length of time.
- Removable safety bars
- Quiet motor
- Speed controls at 0.1 mph increments
- No incline ability
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A treadmill for seniors is a great addition to a senior’s fitness plan, but you also don’t want it to end up being the most expensive coat rack you’ve purchased. Look for models with the safety features you need and the technological trinkets you’ll use.