Bowflex Max Trainer M6 Review and Recommendation

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Thank you for taking some time to read this Bowflex Max Trainer M6 review.  Bowflex has been around for a very long time, designing high-quality workout equipment and the M6 meets that standard. If you are looking for a great way to get in shape and build endurance in as little as 14-minutes per day, the Max Trainer M6 from Bowflex might just be the machine for you.  The M6 is a great elliptical machine that will help you save both time and space!

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Bowflex Max Trainer M6

Bowflex has been innovating for over 30 years.  They have a myriad of products that include home gym systems, cardio equipment as well as other strength building products.  You are sure to find exactly what you need to get in great shape with products from Bowflex.

You may also want to check out my guide for some tips on purchasing an elliptical before you take the plunge.

If you have been searching for Bowflex Max Trainer M6 reviews, let’s not waste any more time and get right to it.

Bowflex Max Trainer M6

With the M6, Bowflex has taken a stair climber and an elliptical and merged them into one awesome calorie burning machine.  The upright orientation means it takes up less space in your home or office than a traditional elliptical, yet gives you a killer workout.  This is the most popular Max Trainer that Bowflex sells and for good reason.

As far as aesthetics go, the machine itself has a very sleek, modern look. I love the color combination of gray, and black, I just think it looks really cool.  It definitely makes a statement and honestly would look great in your living room even if you have guests over.  You would certainly have a conversation piece to talk about.

Functionally, the M6 trainer has been designed with a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) type workout in mind.  If you are not familiar with interval training, I can explain that further.

Interval training is based on short periods of high intensity followed by longer rest periods. So you work your butt off for a short period of time at a high resistance level, and then you rest, at a lower resistance level, yet still moving your body. Then you do it all over again, and again, and again.

What this does, is it elevates your heart rate and then brings it back down.  Doing this over a specified period of time can burn a lot of calories, and you keep burning calories long after you are done working out.  I love this type of workout because it keeps your body guessing, and my how time flies.

The 14-minute workout

So, here is the scoop on the 14-minute workout.  The Max Trainers have been designed with a high-intensity workout option.  This workout option is a 14-minute pre-programmed workout with different interval levels.  You workout like crazy for 25 seconds, then you rest for 80 seconds.  As I explained above, you are still pedaling during this “downtime,” but just enough to catch your breath.  You do this sequence (high intensity/low intensity) for 14-minutes.

You can adjust the intensity level of the 14-minute workout and the resting period.  The folks I spoke with at Bowflex did recommend that if you are just starting out, you probably want to start off on a manual mode until you work up to the 14-minute calorie incinerator.  This, of course, depends on your current fitness level.

If you are new to working out or have been away for a while, you will want to start off slow. If you are a workout fiend, you can probably handle the higher intensity.  That is one really nice thing about the machine though, you have a lot of options, especially given all the programs available.  You can choose a longer or shorter workout, whatever fits your needs.  You can change the workout on the fly very easily with the touch of a button. The console makes it super easy to increase your time, or level of resistance, with the controls at your fingertips.

One more thing I should mention is that if you should always check with your doctor before you begin an exercise program.

User profiles

You can also set 2 user profiles, meaning you can already have set up the Age, Gender, Weight, Height, etc. so you don’t have to do that every time you use the Bowflex Max Trainer M6.  User profiles are a nice little time saver that you will really enjoy.  I am all about saving time, so I think user profiles are a great addition to any workout equipment.

Max Trainer M6 console

The LCD display is intuitive and easy to use on this extremely popular model.  As you can see in the image above, the buttons are centrally located and the display has nice big numbers that are easy to read. The older I get, the more I like displays that are big and easy to read.


  • Backlit display
  • 14-Minute interval program
  • 16 resistance levels
  • Water bottle holder
  • Media/tablet holder fits a variety of device sizes
  • Heart-rate monitor
  • Max Intelligence platform-enabled


  • Max user weight – 300 pounds
  • Minimum ceiling height – User height + 15 inches
  • Unit weight – 148 pounds
  • Height – 65.5 inchesMax Trainer M6
  • Width – 30.5 inches
  • Depth – 49 inches
  • Warranty: 2 years


  • Easy to read and use display
  • It’s portable!
  • Smart, intuitive design
  • Upright orientation takes up less space
  • Bowflex offers special financing
  • 2-year warranty


  • There is no fan to cool you down
  • It’s a little bit pricey but worth it

Max Trainer M5 vs. Max Trainer M6

Bowflex recently updated the Max Trainer series.  The Max Trainer M5 has been replaced with the Max Trainer M6. Mechanically, they’re very similar.  The main difference is that the M6 has a new console. It has some other minor tweaks and a nicer display, but the main deal is that the new console works with the newly released Max Intelligence app-based coaching platform.

The main new component is the new subscription coaching platform couldn’t directly interact with the M5 so, Bowflex updated the M5 with the new console.  The M5 was also about 6 years old, so Bowflex gave it a facelift.

The new M6 also has fewer pre-set programs built-in, aside from the app.  While the M5 had 9 programs, the M6 has 5.  Some of the programs became repetitive with the introduction of the app.  For example, the Fitness Test program turned into a full-blown fitness assessment which is now available to both the free and subscription-based users of the app.

So, with that, Bowflex has headed in a new AI(Artificial Intelligence)-driven direction, that has an app walk you through workouts to fit your specific goals.

Max Intelligence App

Speaking of the new app, Bowflex now offers a paid app subscription that has a lot of great features. Included with the paid for subscription:

  • Dynamic Coaching (Max speaks directly to you, motivating you through workouts
  • Customized workouts (personalized daily workouts designed for your fitness level)
  • Premium video workouts (trainer led videos recommended based on your fitness level)

The Max Intelligence App will connect real-time to your workouts, so it’s always up to date.  You will need a device, whether it is your phone, or tablet to connect to the app.  Your device will be your screen for the customized, or coach-led workouts.

If you have the ability to connect your phone or tablet to your TV, even better, you can watch the videos on the big screen.

Through Bluetooth, the Max Trainer will connect to your app and update your progress.

You can still use your Max Trainer without the app so not to worry if you don’t want to invest in the app right now, you can always purchase the app down the road.

How much does the Max app cost?

Well, I am glad you asked.  The subscription is $14.99 per month, or an annual subscription is $149.

You can still use the app without a subscription as well, with access to free workouts, videos etc.  But the app lets you access even more content.

Bowflex Max Trainer M6 Review


Okay, I have to break some news to you…you do have to assemble the Max Trainer M6.  Bowflex recommends two people to put it together and I agree since it will take about 1-2 hours to assemble.  There is also the option to pay for on-site assembly if you want to, but where is the fun in that?

I think building it is part of the fun, but not everyone shares my enthusiasm for construction.  So again, you can opt for the complete in-home assembly service if you wish.

On the bright side, tools are included with the Max Trainer M6, but you will need a box cutter.  The set comes with an Allen wrench and a regular wrench to help you through the process.

Bowflex also recommends a workout area of 97 inches by 74.5 inches and be sure you include the height of the users.  The minimum ceiling height should be the user height + 15 inches.

One tip I have you will need to make sure you have a power source to plug the unit into the wall.  So, when you are building the unit and getting it all set up, make sure you have a plugin that is accessible.


I love the fact that you can tilt the M6 onto rollers and move it wherever you want it.  Portability is great if you have company coming over and need the space, or just want to get it out of the way.

Bowflex does recommend that you use 2 people if you are going to move the machine.  It does weigh over 140 pounds, so this is probably not something you will want to do often, but the option is available if you need it, which is nice.

Once you do move it where you want it, there are levelers which will stabilize the machine, and these are located on the bottom of the frame.  You can adjust these levelers to make sure the machine is sitting flat and solid on the floor.

You may also want to invest in a Machine Mat, which is a non-slip mat that your machine can sit on, helping to protect your floors. Adding a mat would be a great idea if you have hardwood floors and you want peace of mind to protect them.

Foot pedals

The foot pedals are large, stable, and aerodynamic.  A lot of different sized feet will comfortably fit in the pedals.


The static handlebars include heart rate handgrips so you will be able to monitor and keep track of your heart rate.  The M6 is also compatible non-coded chest straps which means the signal will be transmitted via radio wave, not Bluetooth.

The dynamic handlebars are meant to help you get that full upper body workout. These handlebars move up and down as you pedal.  These handles are hockey stick shaped, so you can hold onto them on top or bottom, whichever works best for you.  Try mixing it up and alternating between the upper and lower grips.

Resistance fan

You will also notice there is a giant fan at the base of the unit.  This fan is what controls the resistance of the Max Trainer M6.  One thing to note is that you will not feel the breeze you are producing unless you are pedaling backward.  So as long as you are going forward, you won’t have a bunch of wind blowing in your face.

Very popular model

The M6 is the most popular Max Trainer from Bowflex, and you will certainly notice that there are over six thousand positive reviews on the Bowflex website.  I have chatted with the customer service representatives online, and they have been knowledgeable and very helpful.  So I have had a very good experience with the chat feature on the website.

Comparing the Bowflex Max Trainer models

Bowflex offers three different models in the Max Trainer line.  Below is a basic chart of the major differences in the models.

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Bowflex Max Trainer comparison chart

I have also posted reviews on the other Max Trainer series ellipticals including Max Trainer M3 and Max Trainer M8.


Bowflex offers a 2-year warranty on the frame, mechanical parts, electronics, and 90 days on labor.

The owners manual includes meal planning tips and suggestions, as proper nutrition is extremely important to any exercise program.

Conclusion: Bowflex Max Trainer M6 Review

Elliptical machines are extremely close to my heart.  I have been dealing with back problems most of my adult life and had a pretty severe back injury in 2015.  I was dealing with a blown disc and a sprained SI joint.  I was not able to work out for close to 6 months while I was recovering.

When I was finally able to hit the gym again, my chiropractor advised me to start on an elliptical.  This would be a low impact, full-motion workout to help me get started on building a strong core and recover some of the functional movements I had lost or was needing to build.

So with each one of my workouts, I start out with about twenty minutes on an elliptical, or stairclimber.  I work on getting a good sweat going before I hit the weights.

Anyway, I hope you have gained some valuable information from this review, and if you would like to take a closer look, click the image below.  You will be redirected to the Bowflex website where you can browse and make a purchase if you are ready to do so.

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If you are interested in looking at other great elliptical trainers, check out my elliptical buyer’s guide.

Bowflex Max Trainer M6
  • Available Features - 95%
  • Functionality - 95%
  • Design - 95%

14 thoughts on “Bowflex Max Trainer M6 Review and Recommendation”

  1. Nice review of the M5. It seems like another solid product from Bowflex. I love the design because it has a smaller footprint than most equipment of the same category.

    I have been eyeing for a home gym equipment as I am on early retirement. I clicked on the link looking for the price but it was not listed. I would love to know the price of this unit.

    Thanks for the information.

    • Thank you Den, I appreciate your comment. The upright orientation of the M5 definitely saves space over other equipment, you have that right. As for the price, this model is $1,599 USD. I will look into that link you mentioned, the price is certainly an important consideration. Thanks again, I appreciate you stopping by.

  2. Wow Steve, what a top class review!

    All the info needed is right here, I like the bluetooth connectivity shows where technology is heading now.

    I love interval training think it is a great way to stay in shape, not seen this machine before but may well be interested now.

    Will get saving!

    • Thank you Andy, I appreciate you stopping by. Yes, there is a lot to like with the Bowflex Max Trainer M5. Please let me know if you have any other questions, I am here to help.

  3. Wow, Bowflex has been around for so long! Seems like they continue to pump out new and innovative machines. I had a teacher in high school who used to joke about getting “buff” with his Bowflex…lol. They’ve come a long way since then! I think the app and Bluetooth connectivity is an exciting feature. I didn’t know Bowflex had an app!

    • Thanks for your comment Ryan, I appreciate it.  Yes Bowflex keeps coming up with innovative products as you said.  This Max Trainer has some great features, Bluetooth is definitely one of them. Let me know if you have any questions, or need any help with these machines.  Thanks again for stopping by.

  4. Thanks for this review! I worked an apartment gym and I’ve seen stair climbers and ellipticals, but I have not seen them merged together. This is a very descriptive review so I really appreciate it. I like that you compared a different models to give an idea on what’s different and better. I will definitely need to check this out later down the road.

    • Thanks for stopping by. Yes,I like the comparison as well, I think it’s nice to see the differences all in one place.  I appreciate you leaving a comment, thank you. Let me know if you need any help down the road.

  5. The Bowflex sounds like a fantastic workout machine. The company has built a strong reputation and positioned themselves up near the top of the industry. Personally, I don’t use elliptical machines much, although I have at the gym. You can spend a lot of days in the gym for the price of buying your own machine. That’s why I don’t have one. Also, I’m an avid cyclist and I’m always out riding my bike.

    • Glad to hear you are very active Grant.  Bowflex is definitely a leader in the industry. You can spend a lot of days in the gym for the price, you are correct, but for some people, this is a great solution.  I appreciate you stopping by to leave a comment.  

  6. This looks like it would be a big improvement over the Gazelle Supreme that has been in my living room for years. I love the Gazelle, but I’ve been thinking about upgrading to something that has built-in workouts and a variety of training options. I am getting bored just doing everything manually and coming up with my own workouts.

    Thank you for sharing your information about this option!

    • I have seen the Gazelle Supreme, one nice thing about it is you can fold it up.  I know what you mean though about getting bored and the Bowflex M5 will really help with that.  There are a lot of different options and resistance levels to keep you engaged.  When people get bored, a lot of times they will stop working out all together.  Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment I appreciate it.

  7. I keep leaning toward the bow flex. Lord knows I have seen so many commercials on this. I just need to bite the bullet and get one. I like the 14 minute workout. Is this easy enough to move from one room in the house to another? Or is it best I pick it’s location, and leave it there. Thanks!

    • Hello, thank you for stopping by today. Yeah, I know we have all seen the commercials, they are very prevalent.  As for moving the machine, that is one thing I really like about the M5. Bowflex has incorporated roller wheels into the frame, so it is portable.  You tilt the machine forward onto the wheels and then you can move it.  I don’t know that I would make a habit out of moving it, since the machine does weigh about 140 pounds, but the option is definitely there.  Thanks again for taking some time to read this review.  Let me know if you have any more questions.  


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