Proform 505 CST Treadmill Review

In 2016, Proform 505 CST was resigned with an alluring sleek look with slight additions to the prior model. It is considered as one of the most favored home treadmills with a reasonable price tag, yet durable, sturdy and convenient to use at home since Proform is a renowned brand and set behind its products.

It’s a beginner level treadmill exclusively manufactured for walkers to mild runners to shed extra pounds of weight, to maintain or to improve their cardiovascular health. However, it’s not for intense exercisers or marathon racers.

Furthermore, it has tremendous features like 12 workout programs that inspire you to challenge yourself and beat your desired goals. Whether its perfect body shape, muscle toning, vigorous heart, building stamina, or working out as a starter for more intense workouts. The space-saver optimized folding design and the broad range of preset workout programs make it a leading choice for home use.

In this review, I’ve wrapped all the aspects of Proform 505 CST, such as its standout features and benefits that make it one of the finest fit for home use for beginners to intermediate users. Some limitations and weaknesses are also there, but they are minor and not a dealbreaker for the price.

Let’s delve in ……ProForm PFTL60916 505 CST (2016 Model)

Proform 505 CST Treadmill Features and Benefits

Motor

The 2.5 CHP motor, which runs the machine, is smooth, sturdy and long-lasting. What makes it stand out is its self-cooling drive system, which grants you to perform prolonged workout sessions at relatively high intensities without heating the motor so high, which eventually extends the life of motor. It can adapt the speed and incline changes just in few seconds.

It’s reasonably quiet while operating and doesn’t annoy your ears, so you’ll be able to enjoy your music, TV show without much struggle. However, your weight and exercise regime may make a little buzz.

In short, it’s not the most powerful motor but surely a satisfactory option for home use.

Speed

The track can run at a peak speed of 10 miles per hour (6 minutes mile), which might be challenging for several users like beginners and senior exercisers. However, this speed does not seem efficient for serious runners.

Speed buttons are placed in such a manner that you can change between the settings with one finger without breaking your tempo by pressing Quick Digital Buttons – 1 to 10 to match your specific fitness objective.

Moreover, if you require slight increments rather than one complete mile, you can benefit from the arrow keys to make 0.1 or 0.5 mile changes (say 5.2 or 6.5). Though it’s a little feature, most people will find it useful.

Incline Percent

Even a little incline turns a boring workout into a challenging experience and promotes faster calories burn and improves muscle toning.

Proform 505 CST has an electrical incline that takes the deck up to 10%, which you can adjust either with Quick Incline Control Buttons from 1 to 10 or arrow keys.

You should use the keys to try different combinations of speed and incline to make your own workout programs for maximum results.

Running Area and Dimensions

Running area is one of the most concerned features of a treadmill. Although Proform 505 CST is constructed for small exercise spaces, it still has an adequate running space 55″ x 20″ (L x W) to walk or run comfortably. People under 6 feet should enjoy long strides without the fear of falling off the belt even while running.

However, taller people (more than 6 feet) may feel confined while running on it. But walking should be convenient for them too.

When this treadmill is fully assembled, its measure 61″ high x 36.5″ wide x 73.5″ long that makes it suitable for use at homes.

User Weight Capacity

If you weigh 325 pounds or less, you can walk and run on the machine confidently. This high weight support is close to gym quality treadmills and clearly defines the quality of treadmill itself.

Folding Design

Just like other home treadmills, Proform 505 CST also has a folding design. The deck might be a little heavy to lift, but you could probably do it yourself quickly and easily.

The track folds upward, and the length reduces to almost half, keeping the width same. However, the deck stands several inches high above the dashboard.

Moreover, the machine has transport wheels to move it out of the way for a clutter-free space. But, it’s better to place the treadmill where you wouldn’t have to fold it often.

Workout Programs

Walking or running on the treadmill would be boring if you don’t have any specific goal to hit. Proform considered this aspect and did a great job of adding 18 built-in workout programs that are developed by certified personal trainers, so you’re under the eyes of experts. The programs are divided into four basic categories that are

  • Calorie Burn
  • Intensity
  • Incline
  • Speed

So, this collection of workout programs provides a diversity of challenges to anyone serious about physical fitness and health. Also, it’s a great idea to do your exercise regime when you have a target to achieve.

To do so, there are direct keys on the console for each category. Moreover, treadmill adjusts its speed and incline level automatically for the selected workout program without you to set them manually. Though you can do that if you have your own priorities or medical recommendations.

iFit Live Compatible

Besides 18 preset programs, this treadmill is also compatible with iFit – an advance digital training program that connects you to the online world and offers you an unlimited variety of exercises to work on.

It’s the only way to create your profile on the machine that you manage online to keep record of your daily progress. Speed and incline adjust themselves automatically to mimic the real landscape. However, iFit is paid and you’ll need to create an iFit account (charges apply).

Luckily, if you’re not willing to pay for iFit, you can bypass the iFit activation by pressing the iFit button for a few seconds (15 to 30 seconds) and start using the treadmill.

Display Screen

To keep an eye on how well you’re performing during your workouts, there is a 5 inch screen with light that displays all the necessary information including time, current speed, distance traveled, incline level, vertical distance, calories burned and heart rate. The screen is sufficiently wide and bright enough to see the stats effortlessly.

Heart Rate Monitoring

For your heart rate monitoring, there are EKG grip pulse heart rate sensors built into the transversal bars. To track your heart rate in real-time, you’ll have to grasp the sensors for a few seconds and reading will be displayed on the screen immediately.

This feature enables you to stay in your best heart zone for accomplishing your fitness and weight loss goals. It’ll be beneficial to people facing any heart conditions.

Proshox Cushioning

Proform 505 CST is constructed with Proshox Cushioning that makes your landings softer and smoother on the deck as compared to outdoor hard surfaces.

So, you feel less strain on your joints such as knees, ankles, feet and back. This low impact empowers you to perform longer sessions with faster recovery time.

Balanced Rollers

Two 1.9 inch non-flex balanced rollers move the tread belt back and forth. They decrease tension and provide smoother running on the belt. So, you don’t tremble or feel unnecessary vibrations with minimum wear and tear.

Audio Compatibility

To make your workouts a little entertaining, Proform 505 CST has a built-in sound system consisting of two 2″ Intermix Acoustics speakers. The audio system is compatible with your iPod or MP3 player via the auxiliary audio port.

So, you could enjoy your favorite tunes without worrying about tangled earphone wires or earbuds that fall off of your ears. Though the sound quality doesn’t beat any dedicated sound system, it’s acceptable.

Integrated Tablet Holder

If you love to watch TV shows, seasons a lot, you would like to keep your tablet or smartphone right in front of you. A tablet holder comes with this model, so you can enjoy your exercise and entertainment simultaneously.

Water bottle Holders and Storage Cubbies

Proform 505 CST has two rightly placed water bottle holders, so you don’t need to get off the track to grab your drink or water. Moreover, there are storage cubbies to put your phone, extras and face cloth.

Stop Button and Safety Key

Just like other treadmills, Proform 505 CST also has a STOP button to pause your workout. And, for safety purpose, it has a magnetic key for a quick stop just in case you start feeling dizzy and tremble. This feature comes handy for older citizens.

Maintenance

Talking about maintenance, it comes pre-lubricated and doesn’t require any lubrication for at least a few months. However, just in case you feel it’s not working smoothly, it is advised to lubricate it using only high quality lubricants under the belt. Moreover, you should keep it clean and dust shouldn’t get into its interior, so it could work properly and last longer.

Warranty

One best thing about Proform 505 CST is that it comes with a lifetime frame warranty, 25 years motor warranty and 1 year parts and labor warranty (on amazon, not on official website). It is remarkable to see such warranty package by a reputable brand at reasonable price, especially the lifetime warranty on frame is a deal maker.

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Some Limitations or Flaws

Assembly Can Take Time

The reason to place assembly under this heading is that it can take up to 2 hours to assemble it completely. However, the instructions with clear pictures in the manual are straightforward to follow and if you’re great at tightening bolts and nuts, it is possible to reduce time near to 1 hour. Moreover, it’s better to get the help of another person if it looks heavy to you.

If it’s still not acceptable, you can hire the expert assembly to do all the hassles if it is offered in your region. But, paying extra would be unhappy when you’re already paying for the machine.

Manufacturer Defects

It’s very common to see manufacturer defects for almost all treadmills at this price range. Sometimes, parts arrive broken. So, warranty plays a vital role in making your final choice.

Moreover, the customer service falls into gray area because some buyers got instant fixes while others complained of long wait times. Again, it’s a common problem with most treadmills, and should only affect a fraction of buyers.

No User Profile

Sadly, Proform 505 CST doesn’t allow its users to create their profile or create custom programs by putting height, weight and age. However, this feature doesn’t work accurately, even on those treadmills that do have it. Also, there is no way to export your workout data except the iFit that requires a paid account.

Others

A few other things that you should know, however, they are not flaws, still are worth mentioning just in case you want to buy Proform 505 CST, are

  • It has no air fan for user
  • It doesn’t come with a wireless strap for heart rate monitoring. But, according to the user manual, it can get connected to a wireless chest heart rate monitor that you buy separately.
  • The deck only goes upward, there is no negative incline.

At a Glance

  • Motor: 2.5 CHP
  • Speed: 0 – 10 mph
  • Incline: 0 – 10%
  • Running Area: 55″ L x 20″ W
  • Dimensions: 73.5″ L x 36.5 W x 61″ H
  • Weight limit: 325 lbs.
  • Machine weight: 203 lbs.
  • Workout Programs: 18 build-in
  • Warranty: Lifetime on frame, 25 years on motor, 1 year on parts and labor
  • Foldable
  • iFit compatible

PROS:

  • Best value for the price
  • A great treadmill for beginners and intermediate users
  • Durable, reliable and easy to use
  • Quick digital incline and speed control are handy
  • Weight support is pretty high – 325 lbs
  • The machine is equipped with helpful additional features such as 18 built-in workout programs, heart rate monitoring and cushioning.
  • iFit compatibility and tablet holder are an extra pluses
  • Compact and folding design allows you to save space
  • Impressive warranty package especially lifetime on frame and 25 years on motor
  • Easy and straightforward assembly

CONS:

  • Running area might be a problem for taller and giant users (more than 6 feet)
  • No wireless heart monitoring and cooling fan
  • Might be little noisy
  • Little heavy to assemble and may require 2 people to assembly taking up to 2 hours
  • You can’t save or input user information like age, weight, height
  • Customer service is reported to be slow to respond

Bottom Line

In a nutshell, Proform 505 CST has all the features that most people look for in a treadmill, yet it’s affordable. The track runs at a maximum speed of 10 miles per hour, inclines up to 10 percent and has a 2.5 CHP motor that can easily adjust settings within a few seconds.

The machine comes equipped with 18 programs and buttons on the console are clearly laid out. The dashboard has two conventionally placed water bottle holders and shelves to hold your drinks and magazines/books, respectively. An additional tablet holder is attached to the top of the console enabling you to enjoy your favorite Netflix season or TV show like TheEllen show, Friends or Game of Thrones, to name a few.

The 55 long track and 325 pounds weight capacity accommodate most walkers and runners, however, not so good for over 6 feet taller runners. The warranty is probably the best in this price range. Like other quality treadmills, the belt or deck folds up to save space when not in use, giving you some extra room.

Moreover, the ability to change settings effortlessly during workout mean there is no break in the total workout experience. It is something that both an amateur athlete and a serious road runner would find impressive for a comprehensive running workout.

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does it require iFit subscription to start the treadmill?

In simple words, “NO.” You wouldn’t have to subscribe to iFit to turn on or to use the treadmill, you can do it without iFit. For the first time use, just hold the iFit button for 15 to 30 seconds and wait for the beep, the machine will be activated and ready for use.

2. How loud is it?

As compared to other treadmills, it’s not so loud, but relatively close to quiet treadmills. Actually, it’s the belt that makes little noise due to friction, but the motor is fairly quiet. However, it doesn’t hurt your ears or irritates other family members when you run on it.


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