If you have ever contemplated getting home a NordicTrack treadmill or a ProForm Elliptical cycle, you'd have wondered whether iFit is worth the price.
iFit is a cloud-based platform that offers interactive indoor training with any NordicTrack or ProForm equipment. It offers a great way to add variety and motivation to your workouts.
Not to mention, that there's a slew of other features that you can take advantage of with your iFit subscription. The question is, should you really pay for iFit?
It's a subscription-only service after all.
I have been using NordicTrack equipment at home for a few years now, and I've had my share of fun with iFit. Today, I am going to share my personal experience with iFit and my verdict on whether it is worth the price.
What is iFit?
iFit is a cloud-based fitness platform that connects you to a world of interactive fitness. From on-demand studio workouts, trainer-guided workout programs to virtual rides in scenic locations, iFit transforms a mundane, indoor workout into a fun and engaging experience.
You can use iFit with any NordicTrack or ProForm equipment that features Wireless+ technology. It also connects you to a massive, online community of like-minded fitness enthusiasts. The community vibe is a key selling point for the software and for any iFit-enabled fitness equipment.
You can even pick your trainers from iFit's ever-expanding library of experts and celebrity coaches such as John Peel, celebrity trainer Jake Norton, and running legend Heather Jenson.
The Best Bike for iFit - NordicTrack s22i
The NordicTrack s22i is a bestselling studio cycle from the brand's commercial range of exercise bikes. It was launched as a budget-priced alternative to the flashy, but pricey Peloton Revolution to cater for those in need of cheaper cardio equipment.
If you look beyond hype that Peloton thrives on, the NordicTrack s22i is a very strong performer, especially if all you're in for is a good dose of cardio after your workout sessions. It has a robust, user-friendly design and comes loaded with best-in-class, cutting-edge tech, at nearly 50% of the cost.
- Screen - 22" Rotating Smart HD Touchscreen
- Resistance - 24 Digital Resistance Levels
- Max User weight - 350 Lb.
- AutoAdjust - 10% – 20% Incline that can be trainer controlled
- Flywheel - Inertia-Enhanced Flywheel
- SMR™ Silent Magnetic Resistance
- Warranty – 10-Year on the Frame
Why I like it
The NordicTrack S22i is a sturdy commercial cycle that offers great value for money. It's constructed from industrial-grade steel, which offers excellent corrosion resistance. The max user weight rating is 350 lbs. So, you wont find it creaking or groaning even if you are a tall and heavy cyclist.
From the handles to the saddle, everything screams premium. The sitting position is ergonomic, has a great grip on the handlebars, and zero postural imbalance. When you want to get off the bike, the 22" touchscreen rotates 360-degrees. This means that you can view it from anywhere in the room. That's very useful for the new, off-equipment exercises that iFit boasts of.
Coming to iFit, the bike features iFit's new AutoAdjust™ Technology, which means that a trainer can control the incline or resistance of your bike remotely. The iFit Experience is amplified thanks to the stellar audio system and the HD Screen with improved graphic output.
A 30-Day iFIT Family Membership is included when you purchase the bike.
How To Use iFit?
The best way to use iFit is with one of the compatible NordicTrack or ProForm machines. I've had a lot of fun with iFit and the NordicTrack s22i in particular. That said, a lot of fitness buffs who do not own the equipment also want to use iFit.
To that end, the brand now offers a standalone app that you can use with any iOS or Android device. All you need to do is download the iFit app, connect it to your personal profile. That's it.
And for those wondering whether you can use iFit with any treadmill....the answer is a resounding YES. You can use it with any treadmill, stationary bike or elliptical to track your workout, create custom workouts and connect with trainers. You can use it on its own or in sync with the iFit-enabled equipment.
The only feature you will miss is the trainer-controlled resistance on the machines. But that's not necessarily a deal breaker, is it?
Does iFit Eliminate the need for going to the gym?
There's no denying that the pandemic changed the world forever. One of the outcomes of the increased restrictions brought about by the pandemic was that gyms downed shutters isolating people even further.
As a result, the focus shifted to interactive home workout programs that recreated the social experience of working out in a gym. iFit leads the pack. The company has made tremendous progress over the years to take your indoor workouts to a whole different level.
It has come a long way from its initial USP, that was studio classes and trainers who connected to your treadmill and told you what pace to maintain, and sometimes how long you should run on the treadmill. That was novel, but not especially useful beyond a point. Now, it has transformed into a platform that offers a whole lot more.
So, if you are a stay-at-home workout enthusiast, and you've got one of those compact exercise machines handy, then iFit definitely has all the tools you need.
Who are iFit trainers?
The trainers in any cloud-based fitness platform play a vital role in determining the popularity. After all, you want to be under skilled eyes regardless of whether you train at home or in the gym.
The iFit platform has constantly expanded its database of trainers, often recruiting celebrity trainers who command a massive fan following on social media. It now offers 180+ certified personal trainers with different areas of specialization, allowing you to find the right trainer for your workout needs.
While there are many who deserve a mention here, I can think of John Peele, the former NCAA Division 1 Football player, Alex Gregory a professional rower, Elyse Miller a top Ace-certified trainer, Casey Gilbert a Division I track & field hurdler, & Kelsey Sheehan, a certified Pilates & TRX trainer.
These are the best trainers you will find on any platform available today.
Are the iFit trainers worth it?
Absolutely! Regardless of your fitness level or your ideal fitness, all you need is a competent guide to get started. That's where the iFit trainers come in. I started working with John Peele and then expanded to include other top names from their roster.
As a result, I have started to step off the exercise bike and explore newer fitness avenues. I tried TRX, Yoga, Pilates chair, running and several other essential fitness exercises at home in the past year. I attribute that to the guidance and motivation I received from iFit trainers.
What are iFit Destination Workouts?
iFit Destination workouts are a series of workout sessions shot on location in some of the world's most stunning locales. From Mount Everest in Nepal to Blue Ridge Carolina, Costa Rica, Colorado, England, France, there's no dearth of breathtaking views and trainers to help you work out in style.
All you need to do is choose your destination, select your workout type and get started. Many of these are complete programs that span days. So, it keeps getting progressively challenging as you go along.
For instance, the Everest Base Camp trek recreates the terrain and the difficulty by altering the incline/decline (if you have an incline treadmill) and resistance on compatible machines.
Is the iFit destination workout worth it?
I feel that destination workouts are a huge motivating factor that adds variety and eliminates boredom. What's remarkable is that there are destination workouts for a wide range of activities.
Cycling, running, Yoga, Strength training, hiking, rowing machine workouts for weight loss...name it and you have it.
What is iFit Coach Plus?
iFit launched the iFit Coach program a few years ago as a more personalized solution for fitness buffs who seek one-on-one training as opposed to group classes.
Coach Plus is the top-tier program that allows you to pick your trainer and get trained under them, anywhere and any time. For instance, you can subscribe to Coach Plus and train in your own backyard gym. Your coach will train you remotely and you can complete your workout in the gym.
Is the iFit Coach Plus worth it?
The benefit of Coach Plus is immediate availability to a fitness professional who knows how to train. It's as good as having access to a personal trainer in your chosen activity.
I have been working out for years. But I was limited to a few calisthenic workouts, weight training and cycling. With Coach Plus, I was able to expand my horizons and try other fitness activities as well.
What are iFit Challenges?
Fitness challenges are group workouts where you join like-minded fitness buffs for a short duration of time (typically 30 days) to accomplish specific fitness goals. They are a rage on social media and there's good reason too.
Challenges keep you motivated since you are not doing it alone. The 'healthy competition' aspect ensures that you try harder and achieve your fitness goal faster than otherwise. iFit offers a series of challenges each month. Athletes who complete the challenges are celebrated on the iFit community leaderboard.
There are 3-month long challenges too for those who wish to work out for longer time spans. If you are not comfortable with 30-day challenges, then there are 14-day challenges too.
Are the iFit challenges worth it?
Oh absolutely! Any time that boredom creeps into your workout routine, hop on to a challenge. Not only is it a great equalizer and crushes any lofty, self-inflated fitness view you might have about yourself, but it is a great community to be a part of.
I have been a part of several challenges on iFit and have even been featured in the top 3 athletes to complete a few of them. Was totally worth it.
What are iFit Classes?
iFit classes give you access to the complete repository of iFit classes. From yoga and cycling to HIIT and Zumba, there's no dearth of variety in the library of workouts.
iFit has invested heavily in building this library and has an army of instructors to present these workouts. There are studio classes, Destination workouts, Live workout sessions, Mindfulness classes, Cooking, Yoga, and Google Maps classes to name a few.
Are the iFit classes worth it?
iFit Classes are THE reason why the iFit platform stands out. Simply put, there are thousands of workouts with varying level of intensity in terms of duration and difficulty. That's a lot of variety and you can try your hand at a different workout every day.
Such an extensive offering suits everyone from beginners to athletes and fitness buffs of all levels.
What is iFit Data Tracking?
iFit data tracking is a digital logbook where you enter your personal details, fitness goals, workout data and monitor your progress. The interface is easy to use with attractive graphs to track health metrics.
One of the conundrums that fitness enthusiasts face with tracking fitness data is lack of cross-platform compatibility. iFit eliminates this allowing you to track and export your fitness data from Apple Health™, Garmin® Connect, Google Fit™, and Strava.
Regardless of the device you use to monitor fitness, iFit will fit into your life and give you a complete picture of your workouts.
Is the iFit data tracking worth it?
Data tracking is the cornerstone of any fitness routine and iFit does a phenomenal job in this aspect. For me, tracking fitness metrics has always been an important activity, but the problem with my preferred fitness apps (the likes of Lose It! app, Samsung Health and My Fitnesspal) was they were device-specific. I also had a hard time picking the best tracking device for my progress, ended up sifting through several fitbit models and scouring other brands too.
iFit has solved this by being cross-platform compatible. That said, if you are not looking to monitor your progress, are a recreational fitness buff and do not want to maintain a digital log for future use, you can probably skip this. You are not going to miss much.
Is iFit Worth it? My Personal Review
It was in 2018 that I picked up the NordicTrack s22i and since then, iFit has become an inseparable part of my daily workout routine.
I have been using iFit for over 36-months now and it has played an instrumental part in my fitness journey. From using the iFit classes to challenging myself in all kinds of workouts, to improving my weight goals, iFit has been vital in achieving my fitness goals. Like for instance, I have gone from getting rid of belly fat to creating a nice set of 10 pack abs.
I have tried several workout programs and stick to 3-5 of them on iFit, but that's just me. You can download as many workouts as you want and pick up whichever ones suit your fancy.
During the pandemic, most of my friends stopped exercising using the lockdown as an excuse. But iFit with its massive repository of workouts kept me going and always introduced new workouts and challenges. I never got bored and continued to stay in shape during the rough times.
Even now, when gyms have reopened, I continue to use iFit for workouts. The classes are fun and the variety in the library is ridiculous.
As an athlete, keeping track of health metrics is important, but what's even more crucial is to visualize your progress and that's something iFit excels at. The interface is smooth and it is very satisfying to see an increase in the metrics every time. This began as a routine and remains so even today.
What are the benefits of ifit?
If you are still on the fence about buying an iFit subscription, here are the differentiators that may convince you to subscribe.
iFit has a record-breaking number of workouts with varying types, intensity and difficulty levels. This is the chief reason why iFit works for one and all, regardless of their fitness level.
There's cycling, running, strength training, Yoga, Pilates, TRX, Zumba and HIIT.
These iFit workouts are divided into different categories that align with your fitness goals. From losing weight to muscle-building to cardiovascular fitness, and flexibility, you can pick goal-specific workout programs.
The programs are designed in such a way, that even if you join a program mid-way, you will never feel overwhelmed or left out. You begin with the fundamental workouts and gradually up the ante.
iFit is especially useful for time-crunched people. With thousands of exercises, you can find a workout of any duration to fit into your schedule.
This is unlike other fitness apps that only offer limited sessions and expect you to be in the gym for hours at a stretch.
This is one of the best features of iFit. iFit coaches are skilled, experienced and certified in different sports and fitness areas. They are always available to offer tips, advice, and guidance when you need them.
Whether it is the workout intensity or the duration, the coach will let you know what's best for your specific fitness level. These workouts are designed for you, based on your fitness level.
You can also take part in Coach-supported challenges that motivate you, keep you focused and help facilitate faster results.
The Community Vibe
iFit is not just about workouts and metrics. It is also quite social. There's a vibrant community of like-minded fitness enthusiasts who offer support, advice, and guidance to other members. If you are stuck, confused or just want somebody to push you harder, the community is always there for you.
It is also a great way to discover new workouts, learn different techniques and have fun!
You will never get bored of iFit!
You can choose from thousands of workouts, pick up the ones you like, and completely personalize your experience. You can choose programs shot on location in some of the best fitness destinations in the world. These include scenic trails, gorgeous beaches and swanky studios.
Each workout is unique and so is your experience with it. You can connect it with Google Maps and explore the route ahead of the workout. iFit will automatically adjust the incline and decline, depending on the terrain in real-time. It's as good as running on a real trail.
How much does iFit cost?
iFit costs $180/year for an individual subscription when billed annually. That's the one I have been using. $180 a year is dirt cheap when compared with my gym membership, the cost of driving to the gym and back, not to mention the time wasted in commuting.
That's an unbeatable deal when you look at it this way. They also have a family plan at $369/year. If you want a monthly billing model, it's $39/month for the family plan.
Is an iFit Membership worth it?
I would recommend it without even batting an eyelid. It's a no-brainer for me folks. Even after pitching iFit against Peloton, I came to the same conclusion that iFit takes the cake as the better well-rounded option of the two.
Recommended Gear Powered by iFit
As I mentioned at the onset, to enjoy the complete benefits of using iFit, you need an iFit compatible machine that allows your coaches to connect remotely with your device.
To that end, I have curated a list of the top products for iFit. These recommended products are carefully chosen based on my personal experience with them.
#1 - NordicTrack RW900 - Best Rowing Machine for iFit
The NordicTrack RW900 is a bestselling indoor rowing machine that landed the PC Mag's Editor's Choice Award in 2020. This feature-rich rower brings home the 22" rotating touchscreen, 26-resistance levels, remote connectivity with iFit Trainers and the ability to store up to 4 profiles for the family.
Rowing is a compound, full-body workout. It works out all your muscle groups, including the biceps and triceps. Not to mention that it is a terrific cardiovascular exercise too. The RW900 gives you a top-of-the-line machine that does not cost an arm and a leg either.
#2 - ProForm Pro 9000 - Best Treadmill for iFit
The ProForm Pro 9000 is the top-selling treadmill from ProForm for good reason. It is an iFit enabled machine that lets you run on a 20" and 60" running deck featuring multiple layers of cushioning.
iFit trainers can match the terrain thanks to the -3 to 12% decline to incline on the ramp. You will get an immersive experience as it features the 22" Full HD rotating screen with an integrated heart rate monitor.
When not in use, it can be folded and tucked into a corner of the room. And just like the famous Nordictrack space saver treadmill, this one too saves space without compromising on function.
#3 - NordicTrack Commercial 14.9 - Best Elliptical for iFit
The NordicTrack Commercial 14.9 features an 18.5" stride length and a 32 lbs. inertia enhanced flywheel to take your cross-training and endurance workout to the next level. It's definitely a notch above the stamina in-motion elliptical, which is smaller, but works great for in-office use.
This commercial-grade elliptical comes at a consumer-grade price point. It features 26 resistance levels, industrial-grade steel construction, oversized cushion pedals, and a 14" Smart HD touchscreen. There's a 20% incline, in addition to the progressive resistance levels too.
With iFit training, you are going to experience a whole new world of fitness.
#4 - ProForm Studio Bike Pro 22 - Best Recumbent Bike for iFit
I own the NordicTrack S22i. But a close buddy wanted an iFit-enabled bike that does not cost as much as the S22i. After a lot of research, we settled on the ProForm Studio Bike Pro 22.
This bike brings the best of iFit under $1500 to your home. It features a robust steel frame with excellent lumbar support, padded handlebars that support multi-positions. There are 24 digital resistance levels to choose from with a massive 22-inch Full HD touchscreen for your iFit workouts.
It features the same Silent Magnetic Resistance (SMR) that's generally available on top-end bike models. So, the machine stays as silent as a mouse even when you ramp up the resistance many notches higher.
A look into using iFit with Your Machine
Ideally, you want to buy an iFit-enabled machine that syncs seamlessly with your iFit account. But if you already own a machine and it's not iFit enabled, how do you connect it to iFit? There are several ways.
For starters, you can just connect your existing machine to the internet (provided that it is designed for interactive training) and log on to iFit Web. If the machine is Android enabled, you can download the iFit app onto it and start training. You'd still miss out on Coach Plus and remotely controlling the digital resistance. But other than that, you'd be able to use all other features.
If you log on to Reddit, you can find data conversion charts for most brands to iFit. A reason is that iFit programs have 1-7 levels of resistance whereas some brands, like Bowflex feature 100 incremental resistance levels. That's just gimmicky by the way. If you compare the charts, you'll discover that iFit level 5 is level 75 on the Bowflex C6.
If it's neither, then you'll need an iPad or a tablet where you can download iFit and use it to stream your workouts.
iFit Web Platform vs. iFit App
In case you missed it, I mentioned the iFit Web Interface and the mobile app. That's because both of these, despite offering the same content, have some key differences with accessibility and ease of use.
Pros of Web Platform
- Better Navigation - Since the web platform was launched earlier, the navigation is more finetuned than it is on the app. You can use filters, the top menu, easily sync your workout history, get alerts about your fitness stats.
- It's more accessible - You can access it from any computer or smartphone with an internet connection. Even if you do not have the app installed, that is.
- Blog & Tutorials - The web platform gives you easy access to the iFit blog which can be a treasure trove of information. You can also get training videos and tutorials to help you get the most out of your workouts.
Cons of Web Platform
- Shows older content first - The iFit web platform shows its oldest content first, so it's a tad tough to find the newest workouts.
- Can be cumbersome - Well, for some people, logging into an account on a tiny browser is just cumbersome.
Pros of iFit App
- Updated with recent content - The app shows you the latest content up front, making it easier to follow. You can still access the old content mind you. But it's good to be greeted with the most updated videos.
- More accessible - You can download videos for offline use and watch them on the go. That means you can workout even when there is no internet connection available.
Cons of iFit App
- Requires too much scrolling - Filters are still a work in progress feature on the app. So you'll have to swipe left and right for a lot of things. You'd also have to do a fair bit of scrolling if you are looking to find a specific workout.
What are the different ifit apps?
iFit offers three different types of apps that you can choose depending on how you wish to stream it
iFit Mobile App
This app gives you direct access to your iFit account, allowing you to stream workouts from the convenience of your android, or Apple device anytime and anywhere.
iFit TV App
Get bigger and better entertainment on your TV with iFit TV. Stream workouts, watch fitness videos and access the great outdoors with it. It is available on Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Google TV, and Android TV.
iFit Fusion App
The Fusion App is designed for NordicTrack's Fusion range of home gyms that combine strength training with cardiovascular exercises.
FAQS about is iFit worth it?
Now we answer a few common questions about IFit
Q. Is there a iFit Free Trial?
A. Yes there is. You can try iFit for 30-days and decide whether you like it or not. The 30-day free trial comes bundled with any iFit enabled equipment that you buy. After 30-days, you'll need to subscribe to continue using iFit.
Q. Can you stream iFit on any device?
A. Yes, you can. You can download the appropriate app for your device and you can stream workouts on any iOS or Android-powered phone, tablet, or TV. Without the app, you can use the iFit web interface to stream it.
Q. Is iFit necessary for working out?
A. Not really. I mean, you can still hop on your treadmill and go about your workout without it. But iFit can take your workouts to the next level. You can follow videos, be guided by an instructor through your workout and monitor progress. It's a whole different level of immersive fitness.
Q. Is iFit good for beginners?
A. iFit is excellent for beginners. There are workouts that are designed specifically for beginners. You can follow the experienced trainers without worrying too much about doing things wrong.
Q. Does iFit have live classes?
A. Yes, they do. For a long time, iFit did not offer live classes which gave the competition an edge. But now, they have created a Live class schedule every day and all registered trainers conduct live classes.
Q. Which elliptical is best to have with iFit?
A. I'd go with the NordicTrack Commercial 14.9. It's a prosumer grade machine with some top-notch features and a best-in-class warranty.
Q. Can IFit completely replace the need to go to the gym?
A. That depends on how much time you have in your hands. iFit workouts are intense. That said, you might not get the same level of variety with these workouts that you'd get at the gym. For instance, I train 7-days a week with iFit.
But I have a basement gym with all basic equipment. If you are using an iFit-enabled machine in your living room, you'd want to consider hitting the gym at least thrice a week and using iFit for the rest of it.
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