The ProForm SMART Pro 12.9 is a well designed machine that will enable you to enjoy cross-training at home. It's a close cousin to one of our top picks for the best elliptical machines, the NordicTrack C12.9. In fact, the ProForm and NordicTrack brands both fall under the Icon Health & Fitness umbrella, and their exercise equipment has parallel technology. If its MSRP were lower, the ProForm SMART Pro 12.9 would have scored higher in our review.
This elliptical is a front drive machine constructed with commercial grade steel. It has a heavy 32-pound flywheel, and its 20-inch stride length is adjustable. While industry experts recommend a 21-inch stride length as optimum, the SMART Pro 12.9 should accommodate most users. Based on consumer feedback, this elliptical is a high-quality, sturdy machine that operates smoothly and is easy on your joints.
Top cross-trainers have oversized, adjustable pedals that are cushioned for comfort and stability, and the SMART Pro 12.9 is no exception. It also has multi-position upper body grips that work muscles in your shoulders, arms, back and core. Its static handles have EKG pulse grips, and it also comes with a wireless chest strap for hands-free heart rate monitoring.
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Features that enhance the SMART Pro 12.9’s workout experience include a two-speed workout fan, an adjustable tablet holder with a device clamp and an auxiliary audio port with dual speakers. There’s also a water bottle holder. The machine weighs 225 pounds, with a maximum user weight of 375 pounds.
The SMART Pro 12.9 has 26 digital resistance levels and a 0-to-20-degree power ramp incline. Adjustable resistance levels let you increase the intensity of your workout incrementally. Incline provides more realistic trail training, simultaneously strengthening your calves, quads and glutes.
The SMART Pro 12.9’s console is programmed with 35 workout presets. The machine comes with a 1-year single user membership to iFit Coach, giving you access to trainer-led workouts filmed around the world. You’ll also receive personalized nutrition coaching and extensive tracking services. Most interaction with this machine’s console takes place using its 7-inch touchscreen. While we like the advantages of a touchscreen, the Sole E95’s 10.1-inch LCD is much larger.
ProForm provides free curbside shipping for the SMART Pro 12.9 and offers a $249 assembly option. However, you may not need to spend the extra money because this elliptical comes out of the box nearly fully assembled. It requires just three quick setup steps, and it has oversized levelers to help with stabilization. The machine’s dimensions are 79.75 x 25.75 x 66.25 inches (length, width and height).
ProForm backs the SMART Pro 12.9 with a lifetime warranty on its frame, five years on parts and two years on labor. ProForm customer service can be reached by phone, email and live chat. We had success using the company’s chat service, but phone and email support is often reported as being slow to respond.