Currently available for £2699.00 from John Lewis
NordicTrack X22i Incline Trainer Review
NordicTrack has always been a company that innovates. It was NordicTrack that came up with the idea of a ski-machine and they’ve been bringing new ideas to the market ever since. With a seemingly ingrained habit of producing home exercise machines with a little extra, we thought it would be good to take a look at their flagship X22i incline trainer to see just what a top of the line Nordic model is like.
Assembly of this incline trainer is not any more difficult than a normal treadmill but for the size and weight of it. In terms of sheer bulk, the X22i is a bit of a beast. Weighing in at 138kg (304lbs) this incline trainer has a footprint of 183 x 101 x 178 LWH making it both slightly wider and taller than their Commercial range of high-end treadmills. It’s only just a little shorter too. The good news here is that as long as you have space, assembly won’t be a problem no matter even if you don’t know what a screwdriver is! That’s because all authorised resellers of this machine provide a free assembly service. It’s not that they’re being generous in particular but rather more because this machine is just too big to expect the end user to manoeuvre it into position and assemble it and it’s far better to let a professional do it.
Once installed this is an impressive looking machine. It’s chunky, it doesn’t move when you try to shake it and there’s an enormous 21.5″ touch-screen display that makes this model look state-of-the-art. It’s good-looking and it’s impressive looking. One thing to remember here is that treadmills can fold, saving a good deal of space if needed, whereas the X22i, being an incline trainer, does not fold. You’ll need around a foot of space all the way around this machine to use it safely so a good bit of space is required to house this machine properly.
In terms of performance, there’s a gigantic 4.25 continuous-duty horsepower motor that pulls like a steam train. It’s quiet too and doesn’t make a fuss, happily delivering all the power that’s needed to make this creation run smoothly and quietly. Being an incline trainer, the base of the unit is set higher up from the floor than a traditional treadmill so when you step up onto the deck there’s a feeling this is an action of consequence. In turn, the spacious deck and easy-to-reach, chunky handlebars, along with that oversized screen on the console provoke a sense of security that allows you to immediately turn your focus to the display in front of you. In short, it feels great before you’ve even started jogging. This is an impressive machine that echoes the sort of thing you’d find in a respectable gym.
Unlike previous generations of incline trainers the X22i benefits from a decline function as well as an incline function with the range being a truly mountainous -6% to +40%. The 55cm x 152cm running area, which is generous even by oversized traditional treadmill standards, combined with the way that the console delivers the workouts (more on that in a moment), further increases the positive experience of using this machine as an incline trainer. NordicTrack has also completely eliminated an issue that was to be found on old models which resulted in the belt slipping if the machine was simultaneously set to a high incline level and a low speed. This was one of the first things we checked during testing and can confirm that this is simply no longer an issue no matter the weight of the load, the speed or the incline. This drastically improves the experience over old models as when the deck is set to a 40% incline level, it’s a rare thing to have the speed setting at anything but low!
The X22i isn’t just very good at being an incline trainer. It’s also very good at being a treadmill. The deck size is a match for any domestic running machine on the market and the cushioning employed here is Nordic’s ReFlex system which has proven it’s worth over and over. We also find truly impressive 2.5” front and rear rollers given the task of keeping things rolling smoothly and making sure that noise levels are kept to a minimum while also increasing the lifespan of the machine. With a top speed of 22kph (13.7mph) not only is it capable of stretching even the fittest and fastest runners but it does so with aplomb, seemingly never noticing it’s being asked to work.
Workouts are delivered via that opulent 21.5″ full-colour screen and it’s that screen that’s allowed NordicTrack the freedom to move completely away from the idea of preset programs with flashing graphs, which are, let’s face it, very dull. Instead, there’s a selection of more than 50 HD video workouts and also a map based workout that’s updated daily. The maps are large and clear to see and there’s an icon showing your location but you can also zoom down to street-level in many places. But it’s the videos that really shine here. Led by pro personal trainers who run with you through exotic locations encouraging you and motivating you as you run the course. The incline/decline changes automatically to match the terrain that you’re running through making the whole experience immersive. The videos are fun and engaging and are divided into various categories such as cardio, weight loss and so on, just like traditional programs. It’s possible to get access to more than 400 of the videos by subscribing to iFit for about £100 a year. iFit also gives you access to a large number of other features such as personal training programmes, dietary advice, races against other iFit members and lots more.
Other features include a wireless heart rate receiver, pulse grips, music port, stereo speakers, accessory tray and a cooling fan that actually does a pretty good job. The X22i is covered by a lifetime frame, 10-year motor and 2-year parts and labour warranty.
There’s really nothing not to like about this machine. It simply ticks all the boxes as both an incline trainer and a treadmill. It’s not just gadgets either. This is a high-quality piece of equipment that does what it does in a way that makes you smile. It’ll keep you motivated and entertained and judging by the build quality it should last a long, long time.
If you want a top of the line running machine you could hardly do better than the NordicTrack X22i without going up to full commercial level, and even then we're yet to be convinced that it would be much better than this. This really is that good. Yes, it's reflected in the price, but there's no doubt that what you get for your money is excellent value. This is a terrific machine that's easy to recommend if you've got the space for it and don't mind investing a significant sum into your training programme. It will make you smile inside just a little bit every time you get on it...
NordicTrack X22i Specifications
- 4.25 HP DurX™ Commercial Pro Motor
- 0 – 22kph (0 – 13.7mph) speed range with 1-Touch™ speed button
- -6% – 40% incline range with 1-Touch™ incline/ decline button
- Console with a touch display of 21.5″ full-color visibility
- Console feedback: incline level, vertical gain, vertical loss, elapsed time, calories burned, calories per hour, distance, speed, a track representing 400m (1/4 mile), pace and heart rate – this all available on several modes displays, each appears depending on what you select
- Adjustable ReFlex™ cushioning
- Programs: Manual mode, access to 50+ video training and a daily updated map based workout, plus 1-year subscription included on iFit® Coach (each program requires Wi-Fi connection)
- Heart rate measurement via Dual EKG pulse grips and Bluetooth® Smart wireless receiver (chest belt included)
- Additionally: Compatible Music Port for iPod®/mp3 and two 3” speakers, tray, Dual AutoBreeze™ adjustable workout fans
- Conveniences: 2.5” precision machined and balanced non-flex rollers and transportation wheels
- Dimensions of running deck: 55cm (21.7’’) x 152cm (59.8’’)
- Product weight: 138kg (304.2lbs)
- Max. user weight: 135kg (297.6lbs)
- Dimensions (L x W x H): 183cm (72’’) x 101cm (39.8’’) x 178cm (70’’)
- Mains power supply
- Warranty: Lifetime frame, 10-year motor, 2-year parts, and labour (if registered within 28 days of purchase)
NordicTrack X22i Incline Trainer - Console / Display Unit
Currently available for £2699.00 from John Lewis
Also see our Treadmill Comparison Table
Whilst every effort is made to give you accurate information we cannot guarantee the technical specification. Models change on a regular basis and may differ slightly from the above review. We recommend you contact the retailer if you have a question regarding technical data. Please read our Legal Disclaimer