I, a Non-Peloton Fan, Gave Peloton Tread a Pounding

I, a Non-Peloton Fan, Gave Peloton Tread a Pounding

Peloton’s new treadmill, the Tread, is coming to Australia, and now we know the price and availability of the device.

Last week, I was able to go hands-on with the Peloton Tread, a device that has been on the market overseas since 2021 and is only now coming to Australia. As someone whose never used a Peloton device before, I had no idea of what to expect, but I did have assumptions that the $60 per month membership fee, on top of what is already a very expensive piece of hardware, would likely be out of my budget.

But… Look, I get it. I get it now. I understand Peloton and I’m now Peloton-pilled. And all it took was Peloton putting me in a big VR chamber with the Tread.

This was all for setting the tone and giving it a nice theme pre-workout, but let’s not dive too much into the chamber (though you can read more about it on the Data Arena website).

Image: Gizmodo Australia / Zachariah Kelly

Before I start talking about the Tread, do know I never had a go of Peloton’s fitness bike. I don’t know if it’s a good option as a piece of fitness tech, and the most fitness tech I typically use day-to-day is my Nintendo Switch Ring Fit and my Google Watch. I’m in the midst of a fitness kick at the moment and I’m trying to lose between 10 and 20 kilograms.

So that’s me as far as I go fitness-wise. How would I rate my experience with the Peloton Tread?

Image: Peloton

First impressions with the Peloton Tread

It freakin’ rocked.

I gave two training sessions a go with the Tread. The first was an unguided run around Western Australia, without any commentary, following a forward-facing camera on an Outback trail (there were many sessions available like this in other locations). With only the inbuilt music playing, I could go at my own pace and challenge myself as I saw fit, though if I wanted, I could enable an instructor.

So I got a little quirky with it. On the left, there’s a dial that allows you to adjust the incline of the device, in case you want to test yourself a bit against mountain-like terrain. On the right, there’s a dial that adjusts speed. The maximum speed was fairly outside of my comfort zone, but I did manage to find a speed that I was comfortable with. I experimented with the incline and changed it up whenever I felt like doing something a bit different.


Let’s give the #peloton #tread a go. #fitness #tech #uts

♬ original sound – Gizmodo AU

Actually, I’ll admit it: at one point I did fly off. I didn’t hurt myself or anything, but I was flung off the Tread and onto my feet behind the machine. From this point on, I was using the magnetic pants clip that disables the machine if you fall off.

The second session involved one of Peloton’s personal trainers (via the display in a recorded session) running me through a beginner’s running course, with varying speed levels and inclines throughout (that I would manually switch to, but your incline can be automatically switched during the session). The instructor encouraged me to do different running and walking types, flexing different parts of my body as I went, but ultimately I was more satisfied with the Western Australia run. I kind of enjoy my own solitude, even in virtual capacities, and loved the vast beauty of the Australian landscape. I’m glad that Peloton was able to give me that, although if you want to feel involved with an instructor and other Peloton users, you can join live workout sessions at specific times.

My ability to grip the sides was perfect and the tray below the display made for a great phone, keys and headphones holder (along with a water bottle holder in one of two slots).

The build quality, from what I could tell, was also quite impressive. It’s a very sturdy device and I can’t imagine a piece flying off easily from an accident (though I only got to play with it for about half an hour).

But let’s also touch on the display and the user interface, which makes up at least half of Peloton’s all-access subscription offering.

The display of my Western Australian run. (Image: Gizmodo Australia / Zachariah Kelly)

Interaction with the Peloton display was fast and fluid. It was easy to navigate, with a wide variety of sessions to do, across various fitness levels. The screen is gorgeous, and in-session you’re shown pretty much everything you need, including speed, incline, distance travelled and time remaining.

You can also high-five other people currently working out at the same time as you — those icons on the right side of the screen make up a ‘leaderboard’ for the session, and tapping your fingers on the icons sends over a virtual high-five to encourage fellow Peloton users to keep going. I thought this was pretty neat too, like a web-based encouragement without the need for a photo, voice or text.

Unfortunately, though, I think Peloton’s ecosystem is a bit too closed-in. I know it’s an expensive device with a steep subscription that offers a very deliberate experience and assortment of features, but you can’t use anything external with this device (except headphones). It has an inbuilt music library that you can sync to your Spotify library, but that’s kind of where it ends. I would love to be able to watch some Netflix or Disney+ while working out on this thing, or perhaps listen to my Spotify music directly through it, or even use the display to interact with my smart home devices.

No, sadly the display is limited to the Peloton services only, which isn’t offensive or anything, but is quite limiting if you want to do something outside of the walled garden.

Additionally, the camera above the display doesn’t do anything at this stage, but Peloton did say that features involving it were being worked on.

So overall, I think I liked the Peloton Tread. For the price, it’s a bit steep for me as an individual, but if I were able to afford this and its pricey monthly subscription, I think I could get a lot of value out of it if I ran every day, in place of a gym and adjacent to my Ring Fit.

I don’t think it’s wise to think of the Tread as something that’s going to be the game-changer for your workout, but it’s definitely a capable device. Whether or not it works for you, I think, is a very individual question, so I would recommend giving this thing a go at a Peloton showroom first. Unfortunately, these are limited to Bondi Junction (NSW), Martin Place (NSW) and Westfield Doncaster (Victoria).

peloton tread
Image: Peloton

Peloton Tread Australian pricing and availability

The Peloton Tread is priced at $4,445 in Australia (including delivery and setup), and will be available from February 16.

Keep in mind that, in order to use the device, users must be subscribed to the Peloton All-Access subscription, which costs $60 per month in Australia.

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