Evidence Based Research
Evidence Based Research
This article was written by one of our qualified writers, and fact-checked by our experts. The numbers in parentheses (e.g. 1, 2, 3, etc.) throughout the article, are reference links to peer-reviewed studies.
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9 Best Manual Treadmills Reviewed For 2021

Not having to deal with an outlet certainly has its advantages but that isn't the only reason why one may choose a no frills treadmill that is self-operated. See our top picks for this year!

We select products we think are useful for our readers. We may earn money when you click on links on this page. View our disclosure for more details.

In this review, we’ve recommended 10 quality manual treadmills and you’ll want to keep reading to learn about some of the advantages of going the self-powered route. 

Treadmills are one of the most commonly-used cardio tools in gyms and homes and nothing is going to change about that anytime soon. Most gym treadmills run on electricity and are preferred due to the many features that allow exercisers to maximize their efforts. 

But what about their manual counterparts that are self-propelled and operated without the need for electricity? Surely there are pros and cons but they’re worth talking about.

Some of the most notable benefits are that you can train without electrical power, use up less space, and have more money in your pocket (doesn’t sound too bad after all, eh)?

Top Manual Treadmills Ranked

  1. Fitness Reality TR1000 Manual TreadmillBuy here Editor’s Choice 
  2. Sunny Health and Fitness SF-T1407MBuy here
  3. ProGear 190 Manual TreadmillBuy here
  4. Exerpeutic 100XL Manual TreadmillBuy here
  5. Sunny Health and Fitness Asuna 7700 Hi-Performance Manual TreadmillBuy here
  6. Maxkare Manual TreadmillBuy here
  7. Stamina InMotion T900 Manual TreadmillBuy here
  8. Fitness Reality TR3000 Manual TreadmillBuy here
  9. Sunny Health and Fitness SF-T7723/SF-T7878Buy here

Editor’s Choice – Fitness Reality TR1000 Manual Treadmill

Fitness Reality Tr1000
Fitness Reality Tr1000

Fitness Reality is a solid brand, and we never hesitate to include its offerings in our product reviews. 

The TR1000 sounds like something out of a Terminator movie, but it’s just a simple and functional manual treadmill that is built using a high-quality design. 

It too has an LCD display for progress tracking and you can adjust the incline to 6 and 10 degrees. 

The cast iron flywheels make this a quiet operation which is desirable in any cardio machine and it folds up and rolls away for convenient storage. 

This is our top pick although don’t let that stop you from checking out the other top-notch options on this list too. 

Maximum weight recommendation: 230 lbs/104 kg

Product features 

  • Two cast iron flywheels 
  • LCD display 
  • Steel frame with powder coat finish
  • Long handles with foam grips
  • Deck length: 43 inches 
  • Foldable with wheels 
  • Deck width:  13 1/4 inches 
  • Dimensions: 47 x 23 x 51 inches (LxWxH)
  • Item weight: 49 lbs /22 kg

Pros

  • Slimline compact design
  • Incline adjustable 
  • Cast iron flywheels allow for quiet operation 
  • LCD display allows for performance and progress tracking 

Cons

  • Not ideal for running or heavier people
  • Few complaints about parts
  • Fixed incline/cannot walk flat

Who makes it 

According to the site, Fitness Reality products are a division of Paradigm Health and Wellness Inc located in Southern California. 

The company was founded in 2007 with the motto “Real People, Real Results“. 

Buy at Amazon


Sunny Health and Fitness SF-T1407M

Sunny Health Fitness Sf T1407m
Sunny Health Fitness Sf T1407m

Sunny Health and Fitness are a very popular and reputable workout equipment brand, making quality treadmills both electrical and apparently manual too. 

The SF-T1407M is a favorite choice for those looking for a manual cardio machine. It’s equipped with a digital monitor that tracks time, speed, calories burned, and has a scan feature to easily search for your data.

The dual flywheels allow the exerciser to dictate the difficulty of each session and it has a sweat guard to ensure smooth and long-lasting operation. 

The handlebars are fitted with non-slip grips which is highly preferred as it helps to maintain balance on the slight fixed incline walking surface. 

You can also fold up the treadmill to save even more space and the wheels are useful for easy storage. 

Maximum weight recommendation: 220 lbs/99 kg 

product features

  • Dual flywheel operation 
  • Digital monitor 
  • Slight inclined walking surface 
  • Non-slip platform 
  • Non-slip handlebars
  • Transportation wheels 
  • Deck length: 42 inches 
  • Deck width 13 inches 
  • Dimensions: 49 x 23 x 50 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 46.7 lbs/21 kg

Pros

  • Compact design 
  • Lightweight 
  • Digital monitor allows you to track progress/easy scan feature

Cons

  • Not good for heavier people 
  • Not ideal for serious runners
  • No adjustable incline 
  • Cannot walk flat

Who makes it 

Sunny Health and Fitness has been in business for over 18 years and it’s still going strong, distributing household name health and fitness products. 

Buy at Amazon


ProGear 190 Manual Treadmill

Progear 190 Manual Treadmill
Progear 190 Manual Treadmill

Consider the ProGear 190 manual treadmill that offers a viable self-operated option at a lower price point. Although, we think all of our picks are within an affordable price range for many. 

The ProGear 190 manual treadmill has a steel frame, an LCD console, long foam handles, oversized rollers that make for a smooth and consistent operation, and there are two incline levels. 

The treadmill can fold up and wheel away. 

Maximum weight recommendation: 230 lbs/104 kg 

Product features 

  • Dual cast iron flywheels 
  • Digital monitor 
  • Steel frame with powder coat finish
  • Wide side rails 
  • Oversized belt rollers 
  • Deck length: 43 inches 
  • Deck width: 13 1/4 inches 
  • Long handlebars w/ foam grips 
  • 6 and 10 degree incline 
  • Foldable w/ wheels 
  • Dimensions: 47 x 23 x 51 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 49 lbs/ 22 kg 

Pros

  • Two-level adjustable incline 
  • Oversized belt rollers help w/ consistent and smooth functioning 
  • LCD display tracks progress and performance

Cons

  • Not ideal for serious runners or heavier individuals 
  • Cannot adjust to flat walking surface 
  • Few complaints about quality

Who makes it 

“Stay fit, spend less”… ProGear is a value brand that offers training equipment that’s affordable but still functional.

Buy at Amazon


Exerpeutic 100XL Manual Treadmill

Exerpeutic 100xl Treadmill
Exerpeutic 100xl Treadmill

Let’s just say the Exerpeutic 100XL is more spacious than other similar treadmills. It has a wider design with extra-long handles and it can even monitor heart rate during activity. 

The pacer control 8-level magnetic resistance offers more performance options to adjust the difficulty and it helps to stabilize for hands-free walking. 

It’s also capable of adjusting between three incline levels (8, 10, and 15 degrees), plus it has an LCD monitor with twin flywheels and an extended belt for superior operation. 

The longer deck is also a nice addition and ideal for a wider range of users. 

And, of course, a standard feature with many of the treadmills on our list of best manual treadmills is that you can fold it up and wheel it away when you’re done walking. 

Maximum weight recommendation: 325 lbs/147 kg.

Product features 

  • Twin 6″ diameter flywheels
  • 8-level magnetic tension pacer control 
  • 3-level incline adjustable 
  • Heart pulse pads 
  • Extra-long safety handles 
  • Foldable with wheels 
  • Deck length: 45 inches
  • Deck width: 16 inches 
  • Dimensions: 50 x 29 x 50 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 73 lbs/ 33 kg

Pros

  • Wider, compact design 
  • Heart rate monitor capability 
  • Extra-long safety handles 
  • LCD display offers performance monitoring and tracking 
  • 3 incline levels 
  • Supports up to 325 lbs/147 kg 

Cons

  • Not for running 
  • Few complaints about treadmill functions and operation 
  • Fixed incline design

Who makes it 

Exerpeutic Therapeutic Fitness is a Paradigm Health and Wellness brand that is a leading supplier to the industry. They’re committed to bringing unique and innovative products to the market and are trusted by many. 

Buy at Amazon


Sunny Health and Fitness Asuna 7700 Hi-Performance Manual Treadmill

Sunny Health Fitness 7700
Sunny Health Fitness 7700

This certainly won’t be the last product on our list from Sunny Health and Fitness. They do offer a bigger selection of manual treadmills than most and Asuna 7700 is another one that we can recommend.

It’s built a little differently with the ability to handle more high-performance activities and a wider range of exercises. The machine offers 8 levels of adjustable resistance, incline capability, dual flywheels, non-slip handles, and a device holder which is a nice touch. 

You can adjust the incline and the 7700 Asuna has a soft drop design to prevent slamming of the deck when opening up. 

This is an exceptional manual treadmill that you can not only use for cardio, but it’s also great for speed, strength, and agility work. So yes, unlike many other manual options, you can run. 

You can also do total-body workouts using this incredibly durable machine. 

It also folds up and wheels away. 

The Asuna 7700 is pricier than the other options on this list of best manual treadmills. However, it is built for more intense training. 

It can even handle heavier users which is a big plus!

Maximum weight recommendation: 440 lbs/199.5 kg

Product features 

  • Dual flywheels 
  • Sweat and slip-resistant multi-grip handlebars
  • Heavy-duty steel frame 
  • Soft drop deck 
  • Adjustable incline 
  • Deck length: 49 inches 
  • Deck width: 19 inches 
  • Dimensions: 56 x 30.5 x 56.5 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 165.3 lbs/ 74 kg

Pros

  • Great for faster-paced and higher intensity cardio 
  • Can be used for running (although not as good as electric treadmills)
  • Handles heavier users up to 440 lbs/199.5 kg
  • Adjustable incline 
  • Multi-grip handles allow for more grip options

Cons

  • Pricer than others 
  • No digital display 
  • cannot walk flat

Who makes it 

Sunny Health and Fitness has been in business for over 18 years and it’s still going strong, distributing household name health and fitness products. 

Buy at Amazon


Maxkare Manual Treadmill

Maxkare Manual Walking Treadmill
Maxkare Manual Walking Treadmill

Maxkare offers some decent products too and we think their folding treadmill will fit right in. 

It has similar features to many of our other picks such as an LCD display with scan, time, speed, distance, and calories to help with your fitness goals. The non-slip walking surface helps with safety, as do the foam handlebars.

It’s a lightweight machine at just 46.2 lbs and is easily portable thanks to the fold-up design with wheels.

It’s one of the more affordable options on our list but still has a lot of great features that you’d want in a manual treadmill. 

Maximum weight recommended: 242 lbs/109 kg.

Product features 

  • Dual flywheels 
  • LCD display 
  • Foam grip handlebars 
  • Non-slip running belt 
  • Dimensions: 50.16 x 20.04 x 45.09 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 46.2 lbs/20 kg

Pros

  • Light and compact design 
  • Adjustable incline 
  • LCD display shares performance data 

Cons

  • Few complaints about electronics function 
  • Not ideal for running
  • No flat platform level option

Who makes it 

MaxKare is an ecommerce retailer serving customers in Home Comfort.” 

They sell a variety of items from different categories including health and fitness products. 

Buy at Amazon


Stamina InMotion T900 Manual Treadmill

Stamina Inmotion Manual Treadmill
Stamina Inmotion Manual Treadmill

Another very affordable option, the Stamina InMotion T900 manual treadmill is a no-frills option with the typical dual flywheels, fitness tracker display, two incline levels, and more of the standard features. 

It’s very lightweight and small and is ideal for easy cardio sessions. Because of this, it can be used almost anywhere.

This treadmill is also easy on the wallet!

Maximum weight recommendation: 225 lbs/ 102 kg

Product features 

  • Dual flywheels 
  • Two incline positions 
  • Steel frame design 
  • Textured non-slip walking surface
  • Foam handrails 
  • Skid-resistant rubber floor protectors 
  • Fitness monitor for performance display 
  • Deck length: 41 inches 
  • Deck width: 12 3/8 inches 
  • Dimensions: 47 x 22 x 47 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 50 lbs/22 kg

Pros

  • Lightweight, portable, and compact
  • Fitness monitor displays performance 

Cons

  • Few complaints about functionality and features 
  • not ideal for running and heavier people 
  • No flat surface 

Who makes it 

Stamina was founded in 1987 so they’ve been around long enough to know what’s good and what’s not. Its mission has always been to offer innovative and affordable products for customers. 

They’ve also worked with major brands and are a name well-known in the industry.

Buy at Amazon


Fitness Reality TR3000 Manual Treadmill

Fitness Reality Tr3000
Fitness Reality Tr3000

Our top choice was also from this brand and we couldn’t leave this one out (that’s the reality)!

The TR3000 is an impressive machine that is, of course, equipped with a monitor and by now you’ve probably realized this is a common feature among the products reviewed today. 

It also has a heart rate system, 3 levels of adjustable incline (8, 10, 13 degrees), and 8 levels of magnetic tension to adjust the difficulty and help with stability so that users can walk hands-free.

Maximum weight recommendation: 325 lbs/ 147 kg 

Product features 

  • Dual flywheels 
  • LCD display 
  • Heart pulse pads 
  • Pacer control 8 levels of magnetic resistance 
  • 3 incline levels 
  • Foldable w/ wheels 
  • Extra-long handrails 
  • Deck length: 45 inches
  • Deck width: 16 inches 
  • Dimensions: 50 x 31 x 50 inches (L x W x H)
  • Item weight: 73 lbs/33 kg

Pros

  • Wider and longer walking surface than most 
  • Adjustable incline 
  • Includes heart rate pads
  • Has 8 levels of magnetic resistance
  • LCD Display allows for performance data monitoring 

Cons

  • Does not adjust to flat position 
  • Few complaints about quality/functionality 
  • Not ideal for running and heavier users 

Who makes it 

According to the site, Fitness Reality products are a division of Paradigm Health and Wellness Inc located in Southern California. 

The company was founded in 2007 with the motto “Real People, Real Results“. 

Buy at Amazon


Sunny Health and Fitness SF-T7723/SF-T7878

Sunny Health Fitness Manual Treadmill
Sunny Health Fitness Manual Treadmill

And last but certainly not least, we have the Sunny Health and Fitness SF-T7723 or SF-T7878 manual treadmill/S. 

It’s a beast of a self-powered machine that is rugged and has some great features including 16 levels of magnetic resistance, dual flywheels, a large running space, and multi-grip handrails.

Note: The SF-T7723 comes fixed at a 13.5% incline and the SF-T7878 has three levels of manual incline and heart rate pulse sensors. 

Be sure that you check the description before ordering to ensure you select the correct model with your preferred features as several things are different. 

Product features 

  • Dual 11lb/4 kg flywheels 
  • Adjustable magnetic resistance 
  • Multi-grip handrails 
  • Non-slip handlebars 
  • Soft drop system 
  • Heart rate pulse sensors (only on SF-T7878 model)
  • Adjustable incline (only on SF-T7878 model)

Pros

  • 16 levels of magnetic resistance 
  • Heavy-duty frame designed for high-intensity exercise
  • Multi-grip handrails allow for more grip versatility and comfort

Cons

  • Not adjustable to flat walking level 
  • Few complaints about functionality

Who makes it 

Sunny Health and Fitness has been in business for over 18 years and it’s still going strong, distributing household name health and fitness products. 

Buy at Amazon


How Do Manual Treadmills Work? 

Manual treadmills are operated by human power; which means there are no quick-start buttons or anything of that sort (it’s up to you to get it going).

So, you’ll need some drive, and by that, we mean leg drive.

When you walk on the treadmill and the belt starts moving, this subsequently powers the flywheels and the momentum allows you to maintain the desired pace. 

The belt will only spin as fast as you want it to, although, to a certain extent, as most self-powered treadmills don’t move as fast as motorized ones and aren’t ideal for running or faster-paced sessions.

But most manual treadmills are designed with the deck at a slight and fixed incline which makes it easier for users to get going and keep going once they start, due to gravitational forces. Not to mention, many of the machines on this list of best manual treadmills can be set to a higher incline.

Although, many do not like the fixed incline and would prefer to have the option to walk on a flat surface. 

Many self-powered treadmills and especially the newer options use magnetic resistance. This adds extra resistance and allows users to easily adjust the level of walking difficulty, makes for a smoother walking experience, and helps to keep the machine more stable (ideal for hands-free walking).

You can, therefore, up the intensity of your training which can be especially ideal if the goal is to increase your cardio fitness and lower-body development, burn more calories, and do more challenging workouts using a variety of exercises such as bear crawls and sled pushes for instance. 

10 Best EMOM Workouts to Burn Fat and Get Fit

How To Choose The Best One For You

Before you decide on a treadmill, make sure that you’ve checked all your boxes to ensure that it meets your needs. 

Here are some things to consider. 

Resistance type

As mentioned, many of the newer manual treadmills use magnetic resistance, although some don’t. We already described the advantages of using magnetic resistance and it may be worthwhile choosing one with this option although, your budget will determine which you choose and they are a little costlier.

You could also just opt for the basic manual flywheel operation where you’re set at a slight incline and move faster or slower to control the walking pace.

Size/deck

Manual treadmills are smaller and more compact than motorized ones which is good because you won’t need as much space. But this also usually means a smaller platform. 

We mentioned that most manuals aren’t ideal for running but that’s not only due to manual belt speed; deck length is also important. 

A short deck is not ideal for running and if you do plan to move a little faster, then you might want to consider a treadmill with a longer deck. 

A common recommendation for a good running deck length is at least 45″. 

But then you may want to choose one of the higher-end models that can support jogging and walking. 

Maximum weight recommendation

Because most manual treadmills are lighter than motorized ones, they aren’t as robust or stable but they still do the job. However, many do not support people much heavier than 200 lbs/90 kg or so although some are built to hold 400+ lbs/181 kg. 

We made sure to include this information along with each of our picks. 

Other features

You’ll notice that many of the manual treadmills are equipped with a fitness performance monitor that has a scan feature and tracks distance, speed, calories, etc. This is a nice feature but not totally necessary, just a nice accessory.

Then there are other possibly ideal features to consider such as longer handlebars, multi-grip handlebars, adjustable incline capability, heart rate pulse monitors, device holders, and more.

Do you need all of these features? Not necessarily. But many would prefer to have them and for some, they can make things easier and more convenient. 

Differences Between Manual and Motorized Treadmills

So there are the obvious differences between the two such as the lack of power needed to use a manual treadmill whereas the electric-powered ones plug into an outlet. But there are many more differences.

Manual treadmills 

Manual treadmills are usually smaller, more compact, and lighter than their motorized counterpart. 

They also tend to have fewer features/accessories, cost less, and may be safer regarding the speed of the belt because when you stop, the belt also does just as quickly. Although, due to the smaller and lighter frames of manual treadmills, you still have to be careful when using them. 

It may also sometimes be more challenging to maintain a constant speed using a manual treadmill whereas electric treadmills have the ability to set and adjust speeds.

But manual treadmills certainly have their place.

Motorized treadmills

Motorized treadmills are typically larger and heavier than manual ones. 

They usually have more features and accessories such as heart rate pulse sensors, speakers, Bluetooth capability, LED screens with w/ built-in workouts and data monitoring/tracking, a shock-absorbing deck, cup, and device holders, and more.

Consequently, they cost more on average depending on the model and are often better suited for running activities. 

Although, some are better for running than others that are made specifically for walking.

Related: 12 Best Treadmills For Walking Reviewed For 2021

But then you have more machinery to deal with which is certainly worth it if you’re serious about running and prefer the features of a motor-operated treadmill. 

Wrapping Up

There you have it, our list of the best manual treadmills that we could find on the market currently. As you probably noticed, there is some variation between the models but there were also a lot of similarities too. 

But consider your budget and hopefully, we covered enough about the different options so that you can choose the best one for you. 

Manual treadmills certainly have their advantages such as not needing electricity, saving lots of space, and maybe even saving a few bucks (depending on the model you fancy)!

If you have any questions or want to leave a comment, leave them below. Also, check out our review of the best rowing machines for 2021!

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Ash, ACE, MSc
Ash, ACE, MSc
Ash is a Certified Personal Trainer through the American Council on Exercise (ACE). She holds B.A. in biology from Rutgers, and M.S. in Exercise Science (Kinesiology) from CBU.

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