Bowflex Max Trainer Series Review

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Everyone loves to be physically fit and what better way to be fit than by making use of the Bowflex fitness training equipment. We love the Bowflex fitness equipment because of its compactness, versatility, value for money, to mention a few. Bowflex, which is one of the most popular brands when it comes to fitness training equipment, is sold by Nautilus Inc.

Nautilus has made a name for itself with their Bowflex Max trainer models. We have the Bowflex max trainer M3, the Bowflex Max Trainer M6, the Bowflex Max Trainer M8, and the Bowflex Max Total.

There are several things to love about the Max Trainer series. These include:

  • Dual User Profiles: Have more than one person using this machine? No problem. It offers two user profiles so that each person’s data can be saved and they can pick right back up where they left off when they come to do their workout sessions.
  • Compact design: The Max Trainer series are designed in such a way as to not take up much space in your room.
  • Good body frame: The materials used in making the body parts of the Max trainer are of high quality, which make for its solid body frame.
  • Ease of usage: The Max trainers are very easy to use by beginners and professionals with the well-lit console that helps teach users how to make use of it.
  • Lightweight: The body parts are made from quality stainless which accounts for its lightweight stricture. It can be moved easily from one place to another and operates silently.
  • Comfortability: The Max trainer are designed in such a way to make the user feel very comfortable whilst working out.
  • Workout customization: You can customize the workout programs as well as user profiles to suit your workout style

Bowflex Max Trainer M3: Best for Budget

The Bowflex Max Trainer M3 is the first of the Max Trainer series released by Nautilus. It possesses eight resistance levels and has just two pre-installed workout programs. It, however, does not support Bluetooth technology and comes with no sound systems.

​It is quite an affordable machine for beginners who want to attain some certain levels of fitness. It can be used easily by beginners with its LCD. It has a zero-impact motion on your body joints as well.

The Bowflex Max Trainer M3 can however not be used by a large number of people as it comes with space for the storage of just two user profiles.

It is quite compact in its aesthetic design, having dimensions of 46″ L x 25″ W. It has a heart rate monitoring device as well. It weighs about 300 pounds.


  • Very safe to make use of by anyone
  • Burning of calories is quickly achieved using this machine
  • Easily used by beginners
  • The LCD screen display is well-lit
  • The design is quite aesthetic
  • It is quite affordable
  • Compactly designed to save space
  • Has no impact on the body joints


  • Only the profiles of two users can be stored on this machine
  • It has no sound systems

Bowflex Max Trainer M6 (Earlier M5): Best value

The Bowflex Max Trainer M6 comes with several features that make it quite popular among exercise enthusiasts. It has 16 resistance levels that can be adjusted to give you workout sessions that range from light to extreme. All depends on the fitness goals you want to achieve. This feature makes it an ideal machine for both beginners and professionals.

Low resistance levels work when you are looking to reduce your body weight while High resistance levels will help to tone your body muscles as well as your legs.

It comes with a well-lit LCD that allows you to switch between manual and preset workout programs. There are nine workout programs you can choose from: Calorie burn, Calorie goal, fat burn, Smart Max interval, stairs, steady-state as well as fitness tests. With the Max and Smart Max interval programs, you can quickly burn calories at 2.5x than the M3.

The M6 is made of quality components that help to make it lightweight. It comes at a weight of 143 pounds. With its compact design, it does not take up much space with dimensions of 46″ L x 25″.

The M6 helps to develop your upper body and generally improves your cardiovascular well-being. It is also Bluetooth compatible and syncs with the Bowflex Trainer App. You can also make use of the media rack, water, and tablet holders. Provided with this machine is the wireless chest-strap heart-rate monitor.
The warranty for this machine is two years.


  • Comes with sound systems
  • The 16 levels of resistance provided makes for smoother pedaling
  • The console is well-lit
  • The machine comes with Bluetooth technology
  •  It does not take up a lot of space with its compact design
  • The body joints are not affected with the zero-motion feature
  • The morning of your body muscles is carried out successfully
  • It has nine preset workout programs


  • The price is mid-range but more expensive than the M3.
  • The two years warranty is too small with just a year added.

Bowflex Max Trainer M8: Best features

The Bowflex Max Trainer M8 is quite an upgrade on both the Bowflex Max Trainer M3 and M6 versions. With the Bowflex Max Trainer M8 version, you get several added features as well as excellent performance.

It comes with a well-lit LCD screen display, a coaching guide to help you out with progress on your workout schedule as well as 20 resistance levels, which is four more levels in comparison with the Bowflex Max Trainer M6.

With the Bowflex Max Trainer M8, you have a machine that can adapt to your levels of body fitness automatically, giving you information that would make you meet your set fitness goals. This is the Performance Targeted Programming feature.

The M8 is designed with comfortability in mind as it comes with ergonomically designed handlebars and foot pedals made of stainless steel. It is also quite compact, not taking up much space with dimensions of 46″ L x 29.5″ W and weighs only at 148 pounds.

This version comes with eleven preset workout programs to help diversify your workout. You can either select an exercise that focuses on gaining muscles or a workout program that is solely to burn calories, which is the cardiovascular setting.

The workout programs are split into two modes: Target mode and Performance mode.

The Target model comprises of:

  • Max 7 Minute, Max 14 Minute and Max 21 Minute Intervals.
  • Calories Goal
  • Steady Pace
  • Power Interval

The Performance Mode is made up of programs that adjust automatically to your workout progress. The programs include:

  • Fat Burn
  • Stairs
  • Manual
  • Calories burn and
  • Fitness tests

  • You can also sync and share your workouts by using the Max Trainer App via your iPhone or Android device.

    Up to 4 user profiles can store their workout results on the Bowflex M8 machine simultaneously. There is also provision for a water bottle holder, a media rack as well as a wireless chest strap that helps to monitor heart rate.

    Last but not least, this version comes with a three-year warranty after purchase. The warranty covers the machine as a whole. It also comes with a six-week guarantee of having your money refunded. This means for a period of six weeks, if you don't feel satisfied with it helping you to attain your fitness goals, you can package and return it as long as you have not damaged it.


    • Comes with 20 levels of resistance
    • 11 preset workout programs are installed in the console
    • It comes with a wireless, chest-strap heart-rate monitor.
    • The workout data of four users can be stored on the machine
    • The handlebars come with premium grips for comfortable handling
    • Holders for water bottle and tablet made available
    • No impact on-the-go body joints
    • Compactly designed to take up little space
    • It has Bluetooth compatibility
    • Syncing feature with the Bowflex Max Trainer App
    • Has a 3-year warranty


    • It is quite expensive
    • Takes some time to completely assemble the body parts

    Bowflex Max Total: Best wireless connectivity

    The Bowflex Max Total is an upgrade on the Bowflex Max Trainer M8 recently introduced into the market scene. It has the same features as the M8 with a few differences.

    It possesses Bluetooth enabled technology that you can sync with your smartphone devices and heart rate monitoring devices. It also comes with a good number of preset workout programs to help with your workout schedule. You can also save time when you work out as the preset workout plans range from 4 to 30 minutes.

    With the Max Total machine, you can combine the motions of an elliptical and stepper into a workout. Samsung and well-lit designed the LCD.

    The significant difference between the M8 and the Max Total is that you don't have to use an Android device to connect to the Bowflex Max Trainer App.


    • An enhanced built-in touch screen which is well lit
    • Helps to tone the body muscles all at once in one workout
    • It is compatible with Max intelligence
    • The pedals run more smoothly with the 20 levels of resistance
    • Bluetooth compatibility is used to play music and sync devices
    • Ability to sync with the Bowflex Max Trainer App
    • Provides access to Netflix, Amazon and Hulu videos
    • Provided with wireless heart rate monitor


    • It is costly

    Comparison between the Bowflex Max Trainer M3, M6, M8 and Max Total

    wdt_ID Features Bowflex M3 Bowflex M6 Bowflex M8 Bowflex Max Total
    1 Resistance 8 16 20 20
    2 Workout Programs 2 9 11 14
    3 Max Intelligence No Yes Yes Yes
    4 Foldability Yes Yes Yes Yes
    5 Flywheel No No No No
    6 Stride Length N/A N/A N/A N/A
    7 Footplates Small Big Big Big
    8 Weight Limit 300 pounds 300 pounds 148 pounds 148 pounds
    9 User Profiles 1 2 4 4
    10 LCD Console/Display Yes Yes Yes Yes

    Bowflex Max Trainer Workout Plan

    After purchasing your Bowflex Max Trainer, you would want to effectively use it towards achieving your general fitness plans. With a little ingenuity, you should be able to get the best out of your newly purchased Bowflex Max Trainer.

    The simple secret to getting a great plan for your workout? Read on, and you will get the simple steps to take towards getting your body in good shape with so much ease.

    Study the Manual

    Upon buying your Bowflex Max Trainer, you would be given a user's manual along with it. Take your time to read through the manual provided.

    We know that manuals generally don't make for an exciting read but they do contain lots of vital information. When you go through the manual, you will get information on how best to take care of your newly purchased Max Trainer. You would also get tips on effective ways to workout using your Bowflex Max Trainer.

    Get Some Bowflex Exercise Videos

    You probably would not get to understand how effective the Max Trainer until you see how other people use it. Find ways of getting videos of people who have successfully done their workout while making use of the Max Trainer.

    In this modern era of video uploading websites, you can scout the internet for videos specifically on this subject matter. Watch the videos and practice along.

    Exercise different muscle parts of your body

    People have a specific section of the body they want to work on when they purchase the Bowflex Max Trainer. Some wish to tone out their arms, and others want to work on the body's core muscles primarily. Don't get us wrong, this is not a bad idea, but you will be better off when you carry out general conditioning of the different body muscles.

    A general workout of the entire muscles of the body is one of the many advantages of having a Bowflex Max Trainer. You would be exhausted from the exercise but you would definitely feel the difference in your body.

    Make steady progress towards strenuous workouts

    If you are a greenhorn when it comes to body exercise, you would not want to spend long hours working out on your Bowflex.

    What is best is you start your workout with small, simple exercises for short periods. As you gradually get into shape, you can then increase the time and intensity of your workout.

    You should not expect to accomplish your body fitness goals in a rush. You would easily burnout. Working with a Bowflex Max Trainer requires you to have a workout plan before you can effectively use it to attain your general fitness goals. With a plan, you would be able to get your whole body in perfect shape.

    Which One To Pick

    Your choice of the Bowflex Max Trainer model to buy would depend on several factors. If you desire to have a primary and complete body workout without spending too much, the Bowflex M3 Trainer model is your ideal buy as it comes at a pocket-friendly price.

    If you desire to lose weight and burn calories at a fast rate, you should go for the Bowflex M6 version.
    For extra bucks and more technology-driven features and performance tracking, you can go for the high-end Bowflex Max Trainer M8 and Max Total models.

    Our Pick

    Choosing the Bowflex Max Trainers series is mainly a matter of choice. But we would go for the Bowflex Max Trainer M6 version for several reasons.

    The Bowflex Max Trainer M6, which is like the middle ground between all the Max Trainer models gives you best value for your money spent.

     It comes with an extra year of warranty, has a good number of preset workout programs to help diversify your workout schedule and is Bluetooth compatible.

    Best Purchase option

    As mentioned earlier in this article, the obvious best purchasing option in getting the above-mentioned Max Trainer series models is direct buying from the Bowflex website. The Bowflex Max trainer M6 and M8 come with free shipping and delivery to your doorstep in comparison with the Bowflex trainer M3. With the M3, you pay for extra for shipping and delivery. The terms of warranty when you purchase directly from the website is also another great option just as much as the reduced price you get.

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