Today the Treadmill Sensei feels old! The family and I spent the day at DisneyLand and all of the walking really wore me down. I’m just not the nubile young Sensei I was in the past. It was the last day of the Christmas DisneyLand set up and Mrs. Sensei wanted the see it before they took everything down. As always, it was a blast but tiring.
Due to the huge amount of emails I get here at the DOJO from readers looking for help, I’m going to try to answer a few here on the blog every day. If you send in an email and don’t get a response, drop back by here and you may find your questions answered right here on the website. Also keep in mind that if you send in an email it may be published on the web. If you don’t want your email publicized then make sure to let me know.
The first question of the day is a common one, Sole vs Smooth.
I just read your very helpful treadmill blog. I was wondering what your opinion is on Smooth treadmills. I was considering buying their 5.25 and 6.25 model and also Sole F63 and F80. I am very confused, though I think I have narrowed it down to these 4 choices. My family will all use it. My husband and I are both about 190 lbs (he’s about 6 feet tall and I am much smaller) and my 3 teenaged kids, too. If you could help me choose, I’d really appreciate it.
Happy New Year! -Reb
Thanks for your note! I get a lot of questions about comparing Smooth and Sole treadmills – they are the two leading companies when it comes to higher quality consumer equipment. From a quality standpoint you can’t go wrong with either company. Their reputations are well deserved.
In regards to your specific questions of the Smooth 5.25/6.25 versus the Sole F63/F80, the units are all very similar in specs and even warranty. The Smooth 6.25 has a larger motor than the rest, but the Sole units have the edge in running area. If you’re looking for the best bargin then the Sole F63 treadmill wins just about every time. The reason being that it’s the same unit as the Sole F80 with a consumer grade console on it. It does have a shorter warranty, but most retailers will be able to give you an extended warranty for 2 years at around $100 which still beats the price of the other units.
All of the treadmills you mention, Smooth and Sole, will work well for your 6′ husband to run or jog on (even running should be comfortable for him, but marathon training may be out because the decks are a little short for extremely long strides). They are also all sturdy machines which will hold up to teenagers.
I’d suggest the Sole F63 treadmill as the best bet at under $1500 right now, but you should be happy whichever way you go.
Take care and Happy New Year to you and your family!
-The Treadmill Sensei