Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber – An In-depth Review

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In this post, we will take a closer look at the Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber.  These two innovative machines have some very unique features, and deciding which one to buy can be quite challenging.  Bowflex offers some excellent workout equipment, so let’s compare these two units and see which one is right for you.

Both of these machines share some similar features but are also very different, so let’s get to it.  First of all, how about we get started with some basics?

What is a Max Trainer?

Bowflex has combined the calorie-burning of a stair climber with the smooth, gliding motion of an elliptical trainer in one innovative machine.  Max Trainer has an upright orientation and takes up less space than an elliptical and a lot less space than a treadmill.

The unique design of the Max Trainer helps you get a great workout in less time with very low-impact.   Steppers by nature burn a lot of calories, combined with the full-body aspect of an elliptical, makes a Max Trainer an excellent calorie burner. You can get a serious workout in as little as 14 minutes.

There are four models in the Max Trainer series. We’ve reviewed Max Trainer  M3, M6, and M8 and the new Max Total. Also, for those interested we also did a comparison of the Bowflex Max Trainer vs an elliptical machine.

What is a TreadClimber?

The TreadClimber is a 3 in 1 machine designed for walking.  What makes it a 3 in 1 machine?  Well, I am glad you asked.  The 3 in 1 design combines a treadmill, stepper, and an elliptical trainer, let me explain.

The TreadClimber is similar in concept to a treadmill in that it has a platform and belt that you walk on.  Whereas a treadmill has one big platform for walking or running, the TreadClimber has two independent belts, or treadles, one for each foot.

When you walk forward, the treadle lifts to meet your foot, and you get the added benefits of a calorie burn with a stepper. Combine this with the smooth, gliding motion of an elliptical machine, and you have a great walking workout.

Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber – Functionality

Both machines share some commonality, with the combination of stepper and smooth motion of an elliptical.  Machines in both series have built-in workout programs and many other customizable features.  The base model M3 Max Trainer is pretty bare-bones when it comes to tech and overall features.  The higher-end Max Trainer models have a ton of built-in options, including virtual coaching.

Functionally, both lines offer a great work out and burn calories efficiently; it just really depends on the type of workout you are looking for.

Designed for walking, the TreadClimber is an excellent machine for focusing on your lower body.  Max Trainers are designed for a full-body burn as your upper body is heavily involved as well.

Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber – Price

Both machines have similar price points.  As I mentioned earlier, the M3, the entry-level Max Trainer is substantially less expensive but does lack a lot of features of the higher-end models.  You can still get a great no-frills workout though with the M3.

Aside from that, the Max Trainer and TreadClimber are very similar in price. The top of the line Max Total is the most expensive of all the models but comes with a built-in touchscreen and many other features.

Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber – Size

As far as the amount of space required to house one of these units, the TreadClimber is slightly larger in length and width than a Max Trainer. That is one of the significant advantages that Max Trainers have over other machines, like ellipticals and treadmills.  The upright orientation of a Max Trainer has always been an excellent selling point.  You can pack a serious workout into a small space.

Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber – Calorie burn

Both of these machines are designed to burn calories at a faster pace than other, traditional workout machines, something Bowflex takes a lot of pride in.  The TreadClimber and Max Trainer series burn up to 2 and three times as many calories respectively compared to other machines. With the same amount of effort, you burn more calories, pretty cool, huh?

At the end of the day though, if calorie burn is what you are after, the Max Trainer is where it’s at. The TreadClimber does a great job at burning calories while walking, but you will burn more calories with Max Trainer in the same amount of time. TreadClimbers give you a great experience and are fantastic for what they do.

I do want to note that the max speed on the TreadClimber is approximately 4mph, which on an incline is no joke.

TreadClimber is best:

  • If you enjoy walking, this is an excellent machine for you
  • You want a machine that is low (or even no) impact on knees, hips, etc.
  • You are interested in focusing on lower body exercise
  • You like to walk on a treadmill, but want a space-saving machine
  • A more leisurely way to workout, but you can still go pretty fast and workout with an incline
  • Gives you a great option if you live in a place with bad weather and you still want to walk a lot

Max Trainer is best for:

  • Folks who want a serious full-body kick your butt workout
  • You are interested in improving overall fitness level in less time
  • You want a really intense workout
  • You are interested in gaining muscle AND losing weight

Conclusion:  Bowflex Max Trainer vs TreadClimber

As you can see, both the Max Trainer and the TreadClimber have taken elements from other, more traditional exercise machines and combined them into a new innovative unit.

Bowflex has a long history of designing exercise equipment that is intended to help you get more done in less time.

Deciding which Bowflex machine to buy can be difficult since there are so many excellent options. With the TreadClimber and Max Trainer, it really comes down to what your fitness goals are. If you want a full-body workout that will help you build muscle and burn a lot of calories in a short time, Max Trainer is your best option.

If you are in the market for a more leisurely workout and are trying to maintain a certain fitness level, or you love to walk, a TreadClimber might be the one for you.  Catching up on the latest shows while you walk for miles is not a bad option in my opinion. Maybe you are just starting to workout, or you want to get back in shape, the TreadClimber could be a great place to start.

If you are interested in more information, you can use the links below to check out these models on the Bowflex website.

Compare Bowflex TreadClimbers

Compare Bowflex Max Trainers

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