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NordicTrack FS9i Review

Quick Summary

Treat yourself to three fitness machines in one! As the top model in NordicTrack’s unique FreeStride Trainer Series, the new FS9i combines a super-adjustable stride with the lineup’s biggest display screen for workouts and the web. Key specs include a maximum 38” stride path, a 10” touchscreen with web browser and iFit Coach, and incline/decline for the pedals. Get the details from our full NordicTrack FS9i review below.

Our Rating

Rating: 92.8/100. The NordicTrack FS9i FreeStride Trainer is among the most flexible elliptical machines on the market. Allowing stride paths up to 38″ long, it’s designed to fit anyone’s natural gait and let people of all heights take shorter steps or long glides to train their muscles differently. In effect it’s a very low-impact elliptical trainer and stepper, and it’s also advertised as a treadmill alternative.

Other special features on the FS9i are incline/decline and a 10″ web-enabled touchscreen. The touchscreen has an Android browser and a direct link to unlimited iFit Coach workout programs.

Pros:

  • Very low impact (Gentle to joints)
  • 38″ adjustable stride for multiple lower-body workout styles
  • Has moving handlebars for upper-body exercise
  • Power incline range of -10% to +10%
  • SMR™ Silent Magnetic Resistance
  • iPod-compatible with built-in speakers
  • 10″ touchscreen with high definition
  • Enabled for iFit Coach workout programs and fitness tracking
  • 38 workout apps
  • Web browser included
  • Shelf for a tablet computer or smartphone
  • Wireless chest strap included for heart rate monitoring
  • Water bottle holder
  • Transport wheels

Cons:

  • Upper-body ergonomics might not be ideal for smaller trainees
  • Costs more than standard NordicTrack ellipticals with comparable resistance

Introduction

The NordicTrack FreeStride FS9i is a deluxe home fitness machine for cardio with light to intermediate strength training. With a pedaling range of zero to 38 inches, it lets you train with any step length. It also lets you adjust resistance and incline. By changing the settings you can get the exercise effects of a treadmill, stair climber or elliptical with very little stress put on your knees and other sensitive joints. This unique cross-trainer provides a 10” touchscreen, a 20-pound drive, 26 resistance levels and automated incline/decline.

Workout Programs

Benefit from the expertise of a certified personal trainer! The FreeStride Trainer FS9i is stocked with 35 professionally designed workout programs. Organized by workout goal, they can help you efficiently train for calorie burn, intensity and performance.

For unlimited workout variety a subscription to iFit Coach Plus is sold with the machine. iFit Coach Plus members each get three customized workout program suggestions every day! You can virtually train along Google Maps routes and get scenic views on the 10” touchscreen, plus iFit Coach produces high-def video workouts with personal trainers. These videos are filmed in beautiful outdoor settings, and the scenery moves at your pace as with Google Maps workouts. For Google Maps workouts you can design or choose from unlimited routes. For high-def video workouts, the iFit Coach Library has hundreds of options.

With iFit Coach you can also design new basic-style personal training workouts anytime by adjusting speed and incline lines with the FS9i touchscreen.  

FreeStride Trainer Features

The highlight of a NordicTrack FreeStride Trainer is its 38″ stride. The adjustable stride lets the FS9i deliver the effects of a stairstepper, a full-body elliptical trainer and a treadmill. It operates even more smoothly than a traditional low impact elliptical too, thanks to NordicTrack’s “floating on air” belt system that replaces metal rails.

The FS9i’s control center is a full color 10″ touch screen. It not only shows workout programming but also lets you browse the web. Other entertainment support includes a tablet computer holder and compatibility with iPod. The console has an MP3 player port and 3″ speakers from Intermix Acoustics.

The NordicTrack FS9i has a center drive design. Compared with typical front drive elliptical trainers it makes it easier to keep a good posture during workouts. The center drive design also helps keep the FreeStride Trainer’s footprint small; the FS9i measures just 68.4″ L x 28.5″ W, which is rather compact considering that it can serve as a treadmill.

For accurate heart rate monitoring a wireless heart rate chest strap is included.

A water bottle and workout fan are also integrated with the trainer.

Warranty & Guarantee

NordicTrack FS9i warranty includes:

– Frame: Lifetime

– Parts: 5 Years

– Labor: 2 Years

NordicTrack sells its FreeStride Trainer with a 30-day money back guarantee.

Conclusion

The FS9i is NordicTrack’s top-of-the-line FreeStride Trainer. It costs more than a regular elliptical trainer with comparable resistance, but it far surpasses “regular” in terms of versatility. If this trainer fits your budget, then it’s hard to pass up! The many combinations of stride length, incline and resistance make it easy to target-tone your muscles while being good to your heart… and with iFit Coach Plus you can virtually experience a new outdoor path every day.

For a cheaper alternative, see the FS7i. It has a lower selling price and, unlike the FS9i, doesn’t require an iFit Coach Plus membership. You can train with a regular iFit Coach membership or just use built-in programs.

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