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Top 5 Best Rated Max Trainers

Model Rating

Our custom rating considers the Max Trainer's features, specs, warranties, and 100's of user & expert reviews, to save you time!


Resistance is what determines calories burned per stride. The more levels, the more precisely you can control the difficulty.


Max Trainer Programs help guide you automatically during your routine so you don't have to change any settings manually.


The Display refers to the screen you'll look at to monitor workouts. If it is backlit, then will be easier to read in low light.


The warranty is an important part of your investment. The longer the warranty, the longer you can get free/discounted repairs.

List Price

Suggested retail price, including shipping. Typically higher than the price you'll pay with promotions.


This link goes to the best price we've found online, including shipping (with coupons & sales).


Max Trainer M9

Rating: 98%
20 levels
410-inch HD Touchscreen3 years frame and parts. labor 90 days$1999See Best Price

Max Total 16

Rating: 95%
20 Levels
JRNYFrame: 3 Years
Parts: 3 Years
Electronics: 1 Year Labor: 90 Days
$2,499See Best Price
3 bowflex-max-trainer-m6-compact-size-16-resistance-levels-integrated-heart-rate-monitor

Max Trainer M6

Rating: 94.5%
16 Levels
5 (4 pre-programmed workouts + manual mode), can use JRNY App to unlock trainer-led content5" Dual LCD/LED color screensFrame 2 years, Parts 2 years, Labor 90 days$1,499See Best Price

Max Trainer M7

Rating: 89.0%
20 Levels
11 Workout ProgramsBacklit Dual Mode LCD/LEDFrame and Parts 3 years, Labor 90 days1999See Best Price
5 bowflex-max-trainer-m3-with-2-workout-programs-with-8-resistance-levels-monitor-heart-rate-with-chest-strap

Max Trainer M3

Rating: 88%
Manual2 Workout ProgramsStandard LCD/LED1 Year$1,199See Best Price

Meet The Family: A Max For Every Budget

Bowflex Max Trainers are built by Nautilus—a company based in Vancouver, Washington. The Max Trainer family has long tradition of excellence in the field, with a a number of great models over the years, including the M3, M6, M7, M8, M9, the Max Total, and now the Max Total 16. Each can supply a full body workout with a good range of resistance levels and most can still be found online as used models. But these days, Bowflex has narrowed down new production to the M6, M9, and Max Total 16, choosing to focus their technology on these three. The goal of this guide is to lay out the specs of each model past and present, and let readers determine which machine, new or used, best deserves a place in their home

Sale Prices and Summaries

At first glance, the Max Total 16, M9, and M6 Max Trainers appear to be very similar. The biggest difference is in the screen size and resistance levels. Here are quick summaries of each machine, including the best factory-direct sale prices so far. Click on any machine name for a detailed review.

Max Total 16

Coming in to replace the Max Total at the top of the brand’s lineup, the Max Total 16 starts at $2,499 and comes with one year of the Bowflex JRNY Fitness App free, a Bluetooth armband heart rate monitor, and free shipping. This model sports a 16-inch console and touchscreen. Measuring 49.3″ x 30.8″ x 65.7″ at a machine weight of 155.4 pounds, the unit can support up to 300 pounds. The Max Total 16 features six-grip handlebars with embedded heart rate sensors, Bluetooth speakers, and 20 levels of resistance. The machine has a warranty of 3 years on frame and parts, as well as 90 days for labor.

M9 Max Trainer

Priced online at $1,999, the purchase comes with one year of the Bowflex JRNY Fitness App free, a Bluetooth armband heart rate monitor, and free shipping. The M9 Max Trainer comes with a 10″ interactive console and HD touchscreen. Measuring 49.2″ x 30.5″ x 65.1″, the unit offers 20 levels of resistance and four-grip handlebars. Additional features include Bluetooth speakers, a built-in media shelf, and built-in heart rate sensors in the handlebars. The machine has a warranty of 3 years on frame and parts, as well as 90 days for labor.

M6 Max Trainer

The M6 is mid-priced at $1,699 and also comes with one year of the JRNY Fitness App. It’s the best-selling Max Trainer,  as it offers the best value for the majority of shoppers/fitness fans. This model is superior to the old M3 in several important ways, and is relatively close in specification to the now discontinued M8, all while undercutting its sticker price by a decent margin. A few advantages of the M6 include cushioned pedals, more personalized resistance with 16 levels, and Bluetooth connectivity for sending exercise data to mobile apps. It can monitor heart rate wirelessly and with contact sensors. The whole-machine warranty is for two years.

Discontinued Models

M8 Max Trainer

No longer in active production, the M8 is a great buy for those seeking a used model. The M8 is larger than the M3 and M6 but still qualifies as a compact fitness machine overall. Compared to the M6, it provides more training guidance, supports twice as many user profiles, features better pedals and handgrips, and allows more precisely tuned resistance with 20 settings instead of 16. As a discontinued model, any used machine would have to be checked in terms of warranty.

M7 Max Trainer

The M7 features enhanced dual mode LCD/LED displays, commercial grade handles, and aerogrips with burn rate and resistance level adjustments. With 11 built-in workout programs and 20 levels of resistance, the machine is Bluetooth-compatible. Measuring 49″ x 30.5″ x 65.5″ the unit weighs 148 lbs. Like other members of the Bowflex family, the M7 comes ready to work with the JRNY Fitness App, although its simple enough to park the machine in front of a smart television and ride to whatever pleases the user.

M3 Max Trainer

The Bowflex M3 was the entry-level model of the group, and although no longer in active production, is still available as a used model online. It has the same maximum force as other Max Trainers, but only eight settings for customized resistance while the others have 16 or 20. The M3 also has less variety in terms of built-in workout programming. Its lone guided routine is the classic Bowflex 14-Minute Max Interval Workout). This unit supports wireless heart rate monitoring.

Calculating the likely daily cost, we figure the M6 is the best value. For most shoppers, the M6 Max provides a sufficient mix of training programs, resistance settings, and buyer protection. The resistance levels offered by the M9 might be higher, but for even above-average users, the M6 is plenty. It’s also a hot item right now meaning service and parts shouldn’t be a problem at all, as they might be with discontinued models.


Max Trainer Video

See a Max Trainer in action with this Bowflex commercial.

Why Are Max Trainers So Effective?

You might be wondering, “What’s so great about Max Trainers? Why should I buy one? What will it bring me?”

Well, let’s take a look at some of the benefits of a Max Trainer.

Zero Harsh Impact

First and foremost, you won’t get the harsh impact on your joints that comes with so many other machines. Since your foot stays in contact with the pedals at all times, your weight never comes down on your joints like it does when running on flat ground or a treadmill. Your joints will thank you for using a Max Trainer. This provides the obvious benefit of exercising pain free and reducing the risk of injuries. Less stress being placed on joints essentially means less risk for overuse injuries, osteoporosis, and even stress fractures over time. That’s is a huge plus for anyone who is serious about their workout sessions. Beyond that, let’s not forget about the other benefits.

First, you can exercise harder. When you aren’t in pain or discomfort, you can give 110% in each and every workout session.  This means more calories burned and more fat loss. On top of that, you won’t get as fatigued because your body won’t have to deal with this stress during exercise. So you might be able to exercise longer on a Bowflex Max Trainer. It’s no surprise that we often hear of people using a Max Trainer once, and immediately shopping for one to add to their home.

Upward Motion

What’s harder: walking on flat ground or walking uphill? Obviously walking uphill is significantly harder, and will almost always give provide a better workout—that’s what the Max Trainer delivers. It mimics the action of going uphill or stair climbing. This ensures that you not only experience a fantastic calorie burn, but also strengthen your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves as well. The machine this all without the knee strain you’d get from climbing stairs.

If you want an intense workout, the max trainer will deliver.

Moving Handlebars

When you hop on the treadmill, you have one place and one place only to put your hands. Putting them there actually detracts from the workout.

Not with a Max Trainer! The handlebars move as you do. Since these handlebars also offer added resistance, this increases your calorie burn and ensures that you are working upper body.

The handle bars on the Bowflex Max Trainer support multiple grip positions, allowing you to hold onto them in a way that provides maximum comfort while also ensuring the best ergonomic position.

Interval Training

One of the hottest methods of working out right now is interval training. This involves alternating between very high intensity bouts of exercise and active rest periods done at a lower intensity.

This type of training is ideal for those who are looking to boost their metabolic rate, leading to better fat loss results. It’s also good for those who are looking to save time in the gym. Since an interval training session only lasts 15-20 minutes, it’s far more time efficient than doing a moderate intensity cardio workout that’s 30-60 minutes long.

The problem that many machines run into with interval training is that they don’t get to the pace of the high intensity interval fast enough. So by the time you are exercising at that level, the interval time is almost over. Treadmills especially suffer from this issue.

Thankfully, this isn’t an issue with a Max Trainer. This machine adds intensity in mere seconds simply by increasing the resistance or increasing the speed. You won’t have to wait 10 seconds to get up to full incline like on a treadmill, leading to a more efficient session.

Furthermore, this machine can also challenge you in speed and resistance, providing more options during interval training sessions.

All the Bowflex Max Trainer machines come with an interval training option built in, so you can just select this option and get on with your workout worry free.

The calorie burn achieved from interval training is unlike anything else. With most machines it’s quite challenging to burn 600 calories per hour. With the Max Trainer, you may burn that in just 30 minutes through interval training sessions.

Miscellaneous Max Trainer Perks

If you opt for a Bowflex Max trainer, there are some additional perks that you’ll want to know about.

Bowflex JRNY Fitness App Membership

New Max Trainers are sold with between one and 12 months of the JRNY app free. This interactive fitness program provides interactive coaching using AI systems, more than 50 virtual locations through which to stroll, and numerous video workouts organized by skill level and need. Anyone seeking High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) need look no further as customized workouts are a big drive here. After the 6-month trial is up, subscription costs $14.99/month, but don’t fear. The JRNY app actually comes with a number of free workouts, primarily HIIT and manual in nature.

Home-Friendly Size

Some fitness machines out there are far too large for most home gyms. With a Bowflex Max Trainer, this won’t be an issue.

These machines were specifically designed for use in smaller spaces, requiring less floor space than both treadmills and elliptical trainers. The M8 is slightly larger than the other two models, but still works for most spaces.

These trainers are also quite quiet to use. They are virtually silent, so you can use them at any time of day without worrying about waking up family members.

Possible Drawbacks

Like most things in life, there are always a few drawbacks.

Here are the few to note.

  • Expense: While the Max Trainers may seem to be same price as some higher end treadmills and ellitpicals, don’t be fooled. The issue here is that they don’t come with as long of a warranty package. So if your Max Trainer breaks, you may spend quite a bit repairing it. Delivery also costs $100 and if you want it assembled, that will be another $250. So make sure to factor in those costs before making a decision. These are great machines, but you will pay for that quality.
  • Cardio Challenge: Finally, these machines are challenging. Beginners or those who are not in very good shape may find them too difficult. Those with pre-existing heart issues will want to be careful as interval training can put quite a bit of stress on the heart. Be sure to speak with your doctor before embarking on interval training.

Common Questions About Bowflex Max Trainers

Q: Are there Max Trainer coupon codes or sales?
A: Yes, online discounts are common. To see the best Max Trainer deals (sales and exclusive coupon codes) click here.

Q: Do Max Trainers really burn a lot of calories in just 14 minutes?max-trainer-calorie-burn
A: Yes. You should also allot time to stretch for warming up and cooling down, but Max Trainers are more than twice as efficient as treadmills, ellipticals, and steppers. This is partly because they work the whole body, take advantage of upward motion, and are zero impact. For the maximum workout, those 14 minutes should be spent specifically with interval training, not simply training at a constant pace. Max Interval workout programs can automate your machine’s intensity for a well-designed training session. You’ll burn more calories per minute of exercise, plus your metabolic rate will spike for many hours after your workout.

Q: Are these machines difficult to assemble?
A: For most owners, the Bowflex Max isn’t difficult to assemble. The printed manual and a two-minute YouTube video are straightforward. Some steps do require two people to keep the machine steady. You will also need a 13 mm wrench, an Allen wrench, and a Philips screwdriver. Including the time spent on unpacking and organizing the parts, assembly could take about an hour. Fortunately, most US residents can pay $169 for pro assembly instead of doing it themselves.

Q: What if I’m not ready for intense cross training?
A: Max Trainers are built for intense interval training. They let you run at high speed without repetitive impact. With the eight weeks of DailyBurn training included with purchase, most people can work up to an intense 14-minute interval workout. But if you’d rather train at lower speeds, consider a Bowflex TreadClimber instead. TreadClimbers have steep inclines to naturally boost your metabolic rate.

Q: What’s included with the Max Trainer warranty?
A: Each factory-direct Max Trainer is packaged with a standard parts warranty for the whole machine. The M3 has one year of coverage, while the M6 has two and M8 has three. Each model has a standard 90-day labor warranty as well. Paying for extended warranties on parts and labor could be wise. For example,  you can extend the labor warranty on the M8 from 90 days to three years for $139.

Q: How is the machine powered?
A: The Max Trainer plugs into a wall socket with an AC adaptor.

Q: How is Bluetooth used with Max Trainers?
A: Consoles for the units have Bluetooth connectivity. This lets you wirelessly send your workout data to the free Max Trainer 2 app for iOS or Android. The Max app can sync with Apple Health and other third-party fitness apps, making it almost effortless to track your workout activity and results. Apple Health and other fitness apps also have calorie counters, workout planning calendars and other features to help maximize your progress.


The Max Trainer lineup is a excellent choice for intense total-body training with minimal risk of injury. Benefits across the series include speedy calorie burn, cardiovascular endurance, and muscle sculpting/strengthening. The M6 is especially appealing because of its console, which have diverse programming and Bluetooth, and a solid number of resistance levels. To get the best price, check out our coupons and deals page.

List of Max Trainers by Review Score

The following models aren’t featured on the “Top 5 Best max trainers” chart but are still worth a look.

6 bowflex-max-trainer-m8-20-resistance-levels-dual-mode-LCD-burn-rate-displayed-on-main-console-with-smart-tech-max-intelligence-software

Bowflex Max Trainer M8

Rating: 87%
Price: $2,299 - Best Price: $1,999

Read Review »

7 Bowflex max total

Bowflex Max Total

Rating: 83%
Price: $2,799 - Best Price: $3799

Read Review »