Proform 250i Elliptical Review

Written By: Jeremy N

Many runners enjoy using ellipticals because they allow individuals to exercise without going outside or experiencing the pain that can come from the feet impacting with the ground.

Because of this, the market is flooded with numerous elliptical models and manufacturers. With this in mind, how does the Proform 250i rank compared to others?

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What Is an Elliptical?

Ellipticals are a specific form of exercise equipment designed to encourage indoor cardiovascular exercise.

They are also known as elliptical trainers and facilitate running, walking, and climbing motions through the use of two steps.

These steps are connected to handles for the hands and are attached to a rotating mechanism.

Nautilus E614 Elliptical Trainer

Basically, when the user moves using their natural walking or running motion, the steps will move with them and they will be able to exercise indoors.

This rotating movement is excellent for avoiding the pain and joint issues that can come from striking the ground while running, so they are a popular choice for older individuals or those who experience joint pain.

Ellipticals are a common feature in public and private gyms.

The Los Angeles Times explains that the fitness company Precor first developed the elliptical for sale in the United States in the 1990s, and their popularity rapidly grew.

The elliptical avoids a lot of the problems associated with treadmills, including belt slippage and the aforementioned pressure on the legs and joints.

These machines can even be used for an upper body or arm workout since the handles can be pushed and pulled by the user while moving.

The 5 Benefits of Using A Proform 250i Elliptical

ProForm 250I Elliptical

We all know that ellipticals are an exercise machine with numerous benefits and few drawbacks.

What makes the Proform 250i so special is the adjustability, meaning that runners of all types can use them by simply changing the resistance and height of the workout. 

In terms of physical benefits, ellipticals, especially the Proform 250i possess quite a few. Live Strong notes that perhaps the most significant benefit of regularly using a treadmill is that people are able to avoid the pressure caused by the foot striking the ground.

To further support the point, The People, Idea, and Things Journal states that using an elliptical, especially the Proform 250i can help runners avoid this trauma and even improve their overall joint and spine health.

Proform Company - Quick History

Proform is owned by a company called Icon Health & Fitness.

This company opened in 1977 and was founded in Utah. As of 2018, it holds over 250 different patents for exercise-related developments and manufactures a variety of equipment like ellipticals, treadmills, stationary bikes, weight trainers, benches, and yoga equipment.

The company has won numerous awards for its designs and has been voted as a popular choice for runners and other athletes for several years in a row.

Recently, Icon Health & Fitness moved its manufacturing out of the United States, which might concern some athletes when it comes to the quality of equipment.

However, Proform machines continue to be well-made.

Proform 250i Elliptical Review

ProForm 250I Elliptical

The Proform 250i is a sturdy elliptical made of steel that typically costs between $300 and $500 depending on the seller.

It features a large LCD display that shows significant information like calories burned, distance traveled, current speed, average speed, and heart rate.

The heart rate is measured by padded EKG grips and the handles that runners can hold while in motion.

The Proform 250i elliptical features 14 preprogrammed workouts, 14 different magnetic resistance levels, and a workout fan.

ProForm 250I Elliptical

The stride length comes in at a total 17 in., and there is special inertia-enhanced flywheel. Other benefits include oversized pedals, a water bottle holder, front transport wheels, and even an iPad holder for interested individuals who like watch TV or stream movies while exercising.

The Proform 250i comes with a 5-year warranty for the frame and a 90-day warranty on parts and labor.

The machine is compatible with the iFit and also includes access to Google Maps so runners can pretend they are running outdoors in real world locations.

The machine can hold a maximum of 250 lbs. and weighs 130 lbs. Full product dimensions are 50 x 26 x 18 in. (H, L, W).

Full Breakdown of the Proform 250i

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Proform 250i - Pros & Cons

Because the Proform 250i is the middle of the road product, it does have an interesting list of positive and negative features.

This elliptical is sturdy, reliable, and includes all of the basics runners expect from an elliptical. It even includes a few surprises such as the Google Maps feature and is compatible with the iFit. 

Other pros include:

  • A low price at $300-$500
  • All of the basics on the LCD display
  • A reasonable weight limit
  • A reasonable number of workout and resistance levels

However, there are some cons.

For one thing, the warranty is minimal and runners will be out of luck if one of the parts breaks down after three months.

For people who use ellipticals for training or heavy workouts, this can be a potential issue that will require more money. The other cons include:

  • Rather wobbly wheels that need to be controlled with a mat (find our recommended list here)
  • Not as durable as other models
  • The magnetic resistance levels aren’t very strong


In general, the Proform 250i is a great midpoint option for runners.

It’s not expensive and is simple to use, but also doesn’t come with a ton of the new technological bells and whistles that companies are now including in exercise machines.

If you are looking for a slightly more robust machine, I would check out the Proform Cardio HIIT Trainer

So, for individuals who want a machine great for a regular workout that won’t break the bank, the 250i is an amazing investment. It just missed out on our best under 500 and under 300 rankings.  However, if you need an elliptical that needs to last through a daily intense workout should look somewhere else.

Last update on 2023-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Hi, Jeremy Here, 

I am the the guy behind Train for a 5K. On this site, I share everything that learned along my running journey. The content I create is the running training I wish I had before we started this journeyAbout Jeremy. 

I have run over 250 races including the California International Marathon, Clarksburg Country Run, and various other 5K & 10K races throughout the United States. I am a former Athletics department employee at University of the Pacific and Shoe Consultant with Dicks Sporting Goods

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