The ProForm 590 T is one of their most affordable home treadmills, with a 20″W x 55″ running surface, 10% belt speed, and 10% incline gradient. It’s also one of the entry level models in a collection that includes the 790 T and 1050 T treadmills.
But with onboard workouts limited to the ‘Calorie Burn’ category, are you relying too much on the iFit Workout Cards to deliver a varied exercise routine?
In this review we’ll be taking a close look at the design features, workout programs, and entertainment options to determine whether the 590 T is really the best budget treadmill on the market. We’ll also be making comparisons between this model and the upgraded 790 T and 1050 T models to help you decide which offers the best value for money.
Note: The ProForm 590 T treadmill is now discontinued, but check our ProForm treadmill guide for all the latest bestselling designs.
Design and safety features
In terms of design features, the ProForm 590 T has a similar spec to the 730 ZLT, which could make it the best alternative now that the 590 T has been discontinued. This includes having the same 2.25 CHP Mach Z Motor, which includes a self-cooling drive system (axial fan) to help prolong the life of the internal components, as well as reduce vibration to create a quieter indoor running experience.
The two treadmills also share a number of other key features, including the 20″W x 55″L running surface and 10% maximum incline gradient. But in terms of belt speed, the 730 ZLT just edges ahead, with a top speed of 11.2 mph compared to the 10 mph limit of the 590 T. Although this is above average for a treadmill at this price point, it’s worth putting these numbers in perspective in case you’re looking for more from your fitness routine.
If you’re looking for a steeper incline, your best option is either the ProForm Boston Marathon treadmills (-6% to +20% gradient) or the NordicTrack Incline Trainers (-6% to +40% gradient). The Boston Marathon models also feature the highest belt speed of any ProForm treadmill, with a maximum setting of 15 mph. Although they’re not the most affordable options, they’re certainly some of the best treadmills ProForm have to offer.
Back to the 590 T treadmill, and ProForm have integrated their ProResponse Cushioning system into the running deck. This creates firmer support zones at the foot strike and takeoff portion of your stride, and a softer support zone throughout the rest of the deck. Unfortunately this form of cushioning isn’t adjustable, unlike the ProForm 980 CS that lets you customize the impact absorption through 5 different settings.
This is one of the features that was actually upgraded when ProForm created the 790 T, and is one of the only times we’ve seen their ProTech™ adjustable cushioning system. This let you adjust the impact reduction level using a convenient slider at the side of the running deck. Both systems differ from the Runners Flex design that was implemented on their top-of-the-line Boston Marathon 4.0 treadmill, which allows you to disable the cushioning completely for a firmer, road-like running experience.
AS one of their more affordable home treadmills, the ProForm 590 T doesn’t have the same top-of-the-line safety features as one of the treadmills in their Pro or Premier collections. This means you can’t set a child-safety passcode to lock the belt speed and incline, or set a safety screen timeout to reset the console if no buttons are pressed and the belt doesn’t move for a set period of time.
However, you still have the combination of hand rails and safety key, which has become the standard for both motorized and manual incline treadmills.
ProForm 590 T Treadmill – Features Summary
- 2.25 CHP Mach Z Motor
- 0-10 MPH QuickSpeed Control
- 0-10% Quick Incline Control
- 16 Workout apps
- 20″W x 55″L Running surface
- iFit Live Technology Compatible
- 300 lb Weight capacity
Display console design
ProForm went in a slightly different direction with the design of their T series treadmills, removing access to onboard workout categories and replacing them with Calorie Burn Workouts.
As such you have a slightly different console design to the ZT series treadmills, which provide a more varied selection of workout programs.
This is reflected in the console design, where you have 12 calorie burn workouts to choose from, with Quick controls for switching between the different speed and incline settings.
As with their ZT treadmills, the ProForm 590 T has limited entertainment options. There’s an MP3 and iPod compatible port for listening to your favorite workout music via the built-in speakers, but no color touchscreen or Android web browser (available on the ProForm Pro 9000).
The 6″ backlit display screen highlights a variety of important workout feedback, including speed, time, distance, incline, pulse, and number of calories burned. There’s also a display matrix where you can track your progress through the current workout program, and storage areas for water bottles and other small items, such as an iPod.
Heart rate monitoring
Although the ProForm 590 T has no heart rate controlled (HRC) workouts, being able to monitor your heart rate so you stay within a certain range can be important for certain fitness goals.
Unfortunately there’s no support for telemetry heart rate monitoring (chest strap), which means you have to rely on the dual-grip EKG touch sensors built into the handles. This is fine for a few seconds, but becomes impractical if you want constant feedback of your pulse during high intensity workouts.
In this case we recommend either purchasing a chest strap and watch combination separately, or if you want constant feedback via the console, take a look at the ProForm Pro 2000. Not only does this include a Dual Band (Bluetooth Smart® + ANT Plus) Wireless Chest Strap, it’s also one of ProForm’s bestselling treadmills.
Workout programs and user profiles
One of the features that varies the most between ProForm treadmills is the range of workout programs. Across their collection you can find onboard workout apps, iFit compatibility, set-a-goal programs, calorie burn workouts, 8-week weight-loss programs, and much more.
But with so many different combinations of programs available, how do you know which is the best treadmill for your own home workouts?
In our ProForm treadmill guide we highlight the programs in each series, but we also provide a quick reference guide in our reviews. This is to provide information on the workouts available, but also to draw comparisons between the ProForm 590 T and other home treadmills in the same price range.
Workout program categories
This is the standard program that becomes active as soon as you have the safety key in the console and start to increase the belt speed. It puts you in complete control of the workout intensity, and doesn’t follow any preset profile of speed and incline settings.
When manual mode is selected you can monitor your progress around a virtual 1/4 mile running track, which is displayed via the dot matrix screen. As the tread belt continues to move, an indicator will highlight your position on the track.
- Calorie Burn Workouts
Many ProForm treadmills feature onboard workouts, which are usually split into a number of workout categories. These can include Speed, Incline, Performance, and Calorie.
The ProForm 590 T is based entirely around the calorie burning workouts, with 12 preset profiles to choose from. Each profile is split into a number of segments, with an incline level and belt speed stored against each segment. As the workout progresses the speed and incline automatically adjust to follow the selected profile.
The active segment will flash in a similar way to the running track with the manual program, and you can manually override the speed and incline of a workout using the controls on the console.
- iFit Workout Cards
Over the years ProForm have produced several different types of iFit treadmill, including iFit enabled, iFit compatible, and those that accept iFit workout cards.
The ProForm 590 T accepts the workout cards, which can be purchased through the ProForm website and inserted into a slot in the console.
They function in much the same way as the calorie burn programs, or the preset onboard workout apps you might find on one of ProForm’s Endurance treadmills. That is, each profile is divided into one-minute segments, where each segment stores an incline level and belt speed. You can then let the treadmill automatically adjust to these settings and be left to focus on your workout performance.
Workout cards are also known as ‘treadmill SD cards’, and can be purchased for 3 different workout levels, each tailored towards a different level of fitness. The cost depends on the type of workout you choose and whether you buy a single card or a multi-pack, but you’re usually looking at between $30 (single workout level) and $60 (3 level pack).
In summary, the ProForm 590 T is very much geared towards weight-loss and calorie burning, with no onboard workouts tailored specifically towards endurance or strength building.
If you’re looking for more variation in your training, you might want to avoid the ‘T’ series of treadmills, and look at ProForm’s Endurance collection, specifically the M7, S7, S9, or M8i models.
Ease of assembly and maintenance
ProForm continue to be one of the best fitness companies in the industry for designing cardio equipment that’s quick to assemble, with clear setup instructions that are easy to follow. Although it’s probably not something you want to base your buying decision around, knowing what to expect from the assembly process can help you get started with your new fitness routine as soon as possible.
Fortunately, the ProForm 590 T user manual includes clear step-by-step written instructions, accompanied by exploded diagrams with parts references to show how each part fits together. ProForm even include most of the tools you need, including a hex key that can adjust the walking belt.
It’s important to bear in mind that ProForm recommends three people for this assembly. That’s because having most of the treadmill pre-assembled cuts down on the setup time, but does mean you’re moving heavier parts around, such as the running deck.
If this isn’t possible, an alternative to self-assembly is the ProForm professional assembly service.
Professional assembly services
Many modern fitness companies now offer an in-home assembly service, performed by a trained technician, which is often a more convenient option than assembling the equipment yourself.
ProForm only guarantee curbside delivery, but as part of the initial purchase they do offer an in-home assembly service, depending on your location. As an alternative, Amazon have also started offering their own home assembly service for treadmills.
With Amazon, your options very much depend on your location, but it’s an excellent way to find highly rated local companies that can setup the treadmill for an affordable price. Moving the treadmill to a new room isn’t included, so you’ll need to have the boxes in the location you plan on using the machine. If Amazon don’t have service providers in your area, you can sign up to be emailed when they become available.
Transport and maintenance
As with most of their treadmills, the ProForm 590 T is fitted with transport wheels, which make it easier to move between rooms if needed. You can also benefit from the folding SpaceSaver® design, which is fitted with a powerful shock (EasyLift Assist) for reducing the effort needed to raise the deck to its vertical storage position, creating a compact footprint.
For maintenance, the user manual is packed with useful information to keep the treadmill running smoothly. This includes how to:
- Adjust the tread belt tension
- Recalibrate the incline system
- Center the tread belt
- Troubleshoot basic issues
What’s covered by the warranty?
- Frame: Lifetime
- Motor: 25 years
- Parts: 1 year
- Labor: 1 year