Incline Treadmill Vs Incline Trainer

The incline treadmill and the incline trainer have similar functions, but there are actually a lot of features that separate them. An incline treadmill is just a regular treadmill when used on the incline settings. An incline trainer is a treadmill built specifically for incline training. There are a few key differences between the two, but since they have similar functions, which one is better? That answer is based on a few different components which are listed below for your consideration.


Before we talk about the benefits of each, here is a list of the differences between the two:

  • Most regular treadmills will incline to about 15%, an incline trainer can go up to 40%.
  • Incline trainers tend to have more decline capabilities than standard treadmills.
  • Incline trainers have a more powerful motor, which can make for a more comfortable experience.
  • Incline trainers can be more expensive, but usually come with a lot of features.

Calorie Burn

The biggest consideration people usually make when choosing workout equipment is how many calories it can help burn. With this in mind, the amount of calories burned is always dependent on the intensity and length of the workout, but there are different types of ways to burn calories that can take less time.

It is amazing how many more calories are burned on an incline. The body has to work extra hard against gravity and it can burn a lot more calories in the same amount of time. At a 40% incline, the body burns as much as 5x the calories!

Walking at a 0% incline at 2 mph for 20 minutes burns 74 calories. At the same speed with 40% incline it burns almost 400 calories! That’s a lot more efficient and can drastically reduce the length of workouts. This can be good for people with busy schedule, or who want to get more out of their workouts.

Now, a treadmill can be set at an incline, but most treadmills max out at about 15%. So an incline trainer is definitely better for scorching calories in a shorter amount of time.


Many people go to the gym to train for events such as a triathlon or a 5K. Both machines can be incorporated into a workout to train the body, but the best machine to be used depends on the type of event you are training for.

Both machines work well when training for a 5K or other types of outdoor running. They both have the feature of being able to incline, but for the most part, all the incline and features needed for these events are on a treadmill. Both treadmill and trainer workouts increase endurance.

An incline trainer is good for specific events, such as hiking and biking. It does a better job at strengthening and toning the body since it has a higher max incline. This is helpful when it comes to cross-training.

All things considered, you can achieve many of the same goals and benefits on both types of machines; but, it you ever decide to kick your training up a few notches, you may wish you had purchased an incline trainer. They just as capable and more at providing a grueling, calorie burning, muscle building workout as a standard treadmill.