By Vienna Miller

The Nautilus treadclimber (now called the Bowflex Treadclimber) is one of the most popular incline trainers on the market today. (Incline trainers are similar to treadmills but the design emphasis is placed on incorporating higher inclines into the machine.)

The big advantage of a Treadclimber is that you can burn 2X the calories in a single workout as compared to walking on a treadmill.

Is it a good value for you? Here’s what you need to know before buying:

What Is It?

A Treadclimber is a hybrid treadmill / stair climber. It has two dual treadles (as opposed to one used in treadmills) that lift to meet each step as you walk. If you’ve seen the infomercials, you know how cool this looks.

The advantage is that you are walking on an incline (hence the term ‘incline trainer’) and burning more calories than you would on a treadmill. Note however that you’re also doing more work so if you’re new to exercising, give yourself some time to adjust to the higher fitness level.

What Options Do You Have?

Nautilus Treadclimbers come in 5 different models, ranging from the TC1000 ($1599) up to the monster TC6000 ($3399).

Main differences between the models include warranty length, console options and design (more advanced as you go up in price), maximum walking speeds, heart rate monitors and unit weights (heavier unit weights mean more stable feeling machines).

The most popular model is the Bowflex TC 5000 ($2299) – probably because it has a ‘Best Buy’ rating from Consumer Guide, a lengthy warranty, advanced console and extra program options.


Nautilus Treadclimber Reviews:

Treadclimbers rate fairly well with experts and users. The lower end models (TC 1000 and TC 3000) on average rate around 3 out of 5 stars and the higher end models (TC 5000) rate around 4.5 out of 5 stars with users at epinions.

The Treadclimber TC 5000 was also given a ‘Best Buy’ rating by Consumer Guide. And Consumer Reports says:

“The TreadClimber offers excellent aerobic exercise with less joint impact than you would get on a treadmill.”


– Burn More Calories in Less Time

You can burn up to twice as many calories in 30 minutes as a treadmill at the same speed.

After 22 different research trials, researchers found that:

> TreadClimber users burned 321 calories in 30 minutes at 3 mph.

> Treadmill users burned only 150 calories in 30 minutes at the same speed

This means you can lose weight faster and get a more effective workout in less time.

– Lower Impact Workout

Walking on a Treadclimber causes less impact on the joints and ligaments than several other exercise machines, including running on a treadmill.

This gives you less chance of injury – especially if you’re a frequent exerciser and concerned about the strain on your joints.

– Better Body in Less Time

Who has time to spend slogging it out in a gym for hours, dieting like mad and straining to lose 1-2 pounds a week?

Some tread climber users lose up to 5 pounds a week – which makes a huge difference in the way your body looks and feels. This is a huge encouragement to continue towards your goal.


Probably the number one complaint about these machines is that they take a long time to assemble. So if you’re not the handy type, grab a friend who’s good at putting things together and bribe them with a pizza and beer to help you set up the machine when it comes.

Also realize that the higher end models are built with a higher grade of construction so they will probably hold up a lot better over the long term than the cheaper units – especially with the hydraulics.

And finally, with top speeds of around 4.0 MPH, these machines are not appropriate for running. If you’re looking for a machine for running, consider a high end treadmill instead.


The real beauty of the Nautilus Treadclimber is it’s ability to get you excited about working out. Let’s face it – it’s a cool machine. Plus it gives you faster results than most other machines which will continue to motivate you to keep you using it. And for those who don’t have much time to exercise, this may be the machine to help you get more done in less time.

Because incline walking also helps build muscle as well as burn calories, you’re actually increasing lean muscle mass. This gives you a faster metabolism and you continue to burn calories post workout – even while you sleep. So for many people – a Treadclimber is well worth the money.

About the Author: Vienna Miller writes for Treadmill Reviews – a consumer oriented website focusing on the home treadmill marke twith brand reviews & ‘Best Buys’ to save thousands on your treadmill. For more information, reviews and ratings of Nautilus Treadclimbers visit the Nautilus Treadclimber Review page.


Permanent Link: