Proform has been one of the biggest names in home fitness equipment for decades. They make treadmills, ellipticals, recumbent bikes, upright bikes, and indoor cycles. As the brand is actually owned by Icon Fitness, it is manufactured by a company that is the largest in the world with a focus on home gym equipment. This size allows their brands to have a lot of “bang for the buck” as they leverage their size with vendors to keep prices down.
When considering a piece of equipment one of the first things we look at is the quality of construction. One of the first specs I like to look at when determining how quality the materials are in a particular unit is the maximum suggested weight that the manufacture recommends for the unit. The Proform 19.0 RE Elliptical has a maximum recommended weight capacity of 350 lbs. What I find when a unit has a recommended capacity of under 250 pounds, it tends to be built with an abundance of plastic parts including a decent amount of the frame. With over 300, you tend to see more aluminum and steel parts, and with at 350 pounds you start to really see high lots of high quality steel being used. Commercial quality. In fact, the only part that seems to be made of plastic that could be more quality on the unit is the cover for the wheel of the elliptical. Considering the 19.0 Elliptical is in the “under $1000 category”, the quality parts are impressive. The unit also comes standard with a 3-year parts and 1-year labor warranty.
Like many Proform units, the 19.0 RE Elliptical is jammed packed with features and programs…
- An adjustable stride length of 18-20 inches & power adjustable Ramp – These features allows you to choose the length of your stride and the incline, all on the fly. This is nice because in addition to allowing you to work specific muscles for periods in your workout, you can also emulate a walking, jogging, or running stride depending on your abilities as well as your desired workout. The power adjustable ramp allows you to change the incline on the fly as well.
- SpaceSaver design – Folding treadmills are pretty commonplace these days, but an elliptical that folds is a little rarer. The Proform 19.0 RE easily folds over to save you space.
- 28 workout apps – Never get bored, and get better results by using the included workout apps that are designed by certified trainers. Many units come with only a handful of apps but the ones I tested on this in it have a ton of variety so that you can do a true cardio workout one day and the next focus more on specific muscles doing more of an incline workout.
- 20 Pound Enhanced Flywheel – One way to “go cheap” on an elliptical is to use a less quality flywheel. The flywheel is important because it is what gives you balance and keeps your stride from getting off due to speed. The enhanced flywheel used by Proform on the 19.0 Elliptical keeps the pressure on so that your workout does not “give” from the inertia of your speed. If you have ever tried to ride a ten speed in gear 1 while going downhill, you know the feeling of the flywheel not being able to ‘Keep up”. The 19.0 RE has no such problem due to the quality of the flywheel.
- A few little extras – A dual-grip EKG monitor with a wireless chest strap, adjustable, oversized, and cushioned pedals, workout fan, water bottle holder, and transport wheels are all “little extras” that I like to see on a unit. Even though these seem small, studies have shown that some of these features are the ones most appreciated by end users.
Most Proform units are either iFit compatible (Needs to add a module) or iFit ready. The Proform 19.0 RE is iFit Compatible which means that you do need to purchase a wireless module separately. To me it seems like eventually all units will come with iFit ready, but Proform is in transition. I say this because even with iFit ready units, you still need to purchase a subscription (about $99/Year) and they are constantly running promos these days where if you buy the wireless module (Also $99) they GIVE you a year of subscription so really there is no financial difference. However, the entertainment that you can get from iFit is flat out amazing. Run scenic routes that you can set via google maps, get training from personal trainers such as Jillian Michaels, compete online with your friends, and even upload your results to watch your progress. The entertainment of iFit is really limitless. However, if you choose to use a third party app (and there are plenty of them out there) that will allow you to do perhaps only the entertainment you want (like run scenic routes for instance) The Proform 19.0 RE comes with a standard tablet holder which is a really nice feature that will allow you to mount your tablet device and use whatever app you want on a large screen.
Overall we are very pleased with how solid, quiet, and feature rich the Proform 19.0 RE Elliptical is. Again, when you consider that even home ellipticals have price tags that can get into the multi-thousands of dollars, the 19.0 RE is a great option for the budget minded consumer.