The ProForm Pro 4500 treadmill is an upgrade to the Pro 2500 model, and features a large 20″W x 60″L running surface, 4.0 CHP Mach Z™ motor, and full-color, web-enabled touchscreen.
The most recent version was released in 2014, which was a redesign of the 2011 model. But how does this compare to other ProForm treadmills, and is the Pro 4500 better value for money than NordicTrack’s Commercial series treadmills?
In this review, we’ll be taking a closer look at everything from the design and safety features, through to the console functions and entertainment options. We’ve also included a quick guide to the workout programs, to help you decide if this is the best treadmill for your own home exercise routine.
Note: Both the 2011 and 2014 versions of this treadmill have now been discontinued in favor of more advanced machines with a greater choice of entertainment options (2016 version of the Pro 5000). For an up-to-date list of reviews for all their latest machines, it’s worth taking a look at our in-depth ProForm treadmill guide.
Design and safety features
Although the Pro 4500 is considered an upgrade of the Pro 2000 treadmill, in reality they share many of the most important features, such as belt speed, incline range, roller size, and running area. After reviewing a number of other Pro series treadmills, including the Pro 9000 and Pro 7500, it became clear that these are standard features across the entire ProForm Pro collection.
This is certainly no bad thing, as the -3% to +15% incline range allows you to emulate the terrain change of an outdoor running workout. You can also use the steeper gradients to increase the rate of calorie burn, and shift the focus between different lower body muscle groups. Set the running deck to 15% and you’ll target more of your hamstrings and glutes, while the flat and decline settings are better for working your quads and calves.
The belt speed itself is capped at 12 mph, which is the fastest you’ll find on the majority of home treadmills. One exception to this rule is ProForm’s own Boston Marathon treadmills, which have a maximum belt speed of 15 mph. This is made possible by having the most powerful motor of any ProForm treadmill, but the ProForm Pro 4500 isn’t far off, with a 4.0 CHP Mach Z™ Commercial Pro Motor.
So what can you expect from the size of the running area? Measuring 20″W x 60″L it’s certainly large enough to provide support for taller runners (6ft+), even when sprinting with a full length running stride. In order to keep the belt flowing smoothly and with minimal sideways movement, the Pro 4500 is also fitted with large 2.5″ precision-machined balanced rollers. These increase the lifespan of the belt by reducing the amount of wear.
To reduce the stress placed on your feet and joints, ProForm have also built-in their ProShox™ cushioning system. This reduces the impact of your foot striking the belt, creating a running experience that’s more cushioned and comfortable than running outdoors.
Despite the fact that the ProForm Pro 4500 is a few years old now, the console still benefits from having a child-safety passcode that you can use to enable and disable its features. This is a simple 4-digit code that helps prevent young children from starting the tread belt accidentally.
As with the design features we mentioned earlier, the console passcode seems to be a familiar feature of ProForm Pro treadmills. It’s something that’s surprisingly difficult to find on most home treadmills, but we discovered the feature when reviewing the Pro 7000, Pro 7500, and Pro 9000. You also have the more standard safety key and side rails features, which serve to assist you with your balance if needed.
ProForm Pro 4500 Treadmill – Features Summary
- 4.0 CHP Mach Z™ Commercial Pro Motor
- 0-12 mph belt speed
- -3% to 15% Incline range
- 20″W x 60″L running surface
- 38 Workout apps
- 10″ full-color, web-enabled touchscreen
- 400 lb Weight capacity
Display console design
As with a number of their Pro series treadmills, the Pro 4500 is fitted with a 10″ full-color, web-enabled touchscreen, which runs an android browser and offers connectivity to news sites and social media. Unfortunately you’re unable to download Android apps straight to the console, but it’s still the best way to get the most enjoyable visual workout experience from a Google Maps iFit program.
Another of the entertainment options is the built-in Intermix Acoustics 3.0 sound system, which includes two 3″ speakers for listening to your favorite workout music without the need for headphones. The design of the console port means this is iPod® and MP3 compatible, with a convenient storage tray for holding your device after making your song/podcast selection.
It’s worth mentioning that any connection to iFit requires access to a wireless network. This is also the only way the built-in tablet lets you access the internet. But if you have the wireless network access and an active online account, you can use the simple menu system to access your iFit profile and check your performance.
Another useful feature that’s built into most modern ProForm treadmills is the multi-speed Coolaire™ workout fan. Power settings can be chosen at the console, where you’ll also find a selection of Quick Select buttons for controlling the belt speed, incline, music volume, and workout program.
Heart rate monitoring
Having multiple heart rate monitoring methods may seem like a common feature, but it’s actually only available on a select number of ProForm’s top-of-the-line machines. This includes the Pro 9000, Pro 7500, and Pro 4500.
The dual EKG® touch sensors built into the handles are perfect for short term readings, but if you want to track your heart rate continuously through your workout, there’s no substitute for wearing a telemetry heart rate chest strap. This is something you can wear under you clothing if needed, and doesn’t inhibit your natural running stride and upper body movement by requiring you to maintain a grip on the handles.
Workout programs and user profiles
The Pro series is considered ProForm’s top-of-the-line treadmill collection, with some of the most advanced entertainment options and their largest selection of onboard workouts.
The ProForm Pro 2000 and Pro 9000 have also been the recipients of numerous best buy awards, with the Pro 200 consistently ranked in Amazon’s bestseller list for home treadmills.
So how does the ProForm Pro 4500 compare in terms of delivering a high-quality fitness experience? Are the 28 onboard workouts enough, or do the 32 professional training programs of the ProForm Pro 2000 represent better value for money?
Workout program categories
If you simply want to step on the tread belt and start walking, jogging, or running, this is the program for you. Unlike the onboard and iFit workouts it follows no preset profile of speed and incline settings, and you don’t even need to set any goals.
But as a Pro series treadmill you do get a few useful extra features compared to the manual program on most entry level treadmills.
The ProForm Pro 4500 uses a similar system to the one found on their ZT8 and Endurance M8i treadmills, which is an upgrade to the basic display matrix found on the 730 ZLT and 790 T models.
This is entirely due to the larger, more advanced touchscreen design, which you can now use to slide between different display modes. For the Manual program, this includes a 400m virtual running track, which highlights your progress and keeps a total of the laps completed.
- Onboard Workouts
The ProForm 4500 offers the same onboard workout categories as the ProForm 1080i (Calorie, Intensity, Speed, Incline), except you now have 7 workouts per category instead of 8.
Each program is designed around a profile of segments, where each segment is used to store an incline setting for the running deck and speed setting for the tread belt. The combination of settings was chosen by a certified personal trainer to help you achieve specific fitness goals. These range from increasing your endurance, to increasing muscle tone with the challenging ‘Intensity’ workouts.
Unfortunately the user manual doesn’t include a quick reference guide to these profiles, so it can be a bit of a learning curve when you first get started. You’re also unable to store custom workouts which you create yourself, unless you create them via iFit (more on this below).
- Set-A-Goal Workouts
ProForm’s Pro series of treadmills is a step above their Power series, which is made even more apparent with the selection of Set-A-Goal programs.
Despite being considered one of the entry level treadmills in the Pro series, the ProForm 4500 already has the full collection of target oriented workouts. This includes goals for the number of calories burned, distance, duration, and Pace.
We’ve only found the Pace goal setting option on ProForm’s most advanced treadmills, including their Boston Marathon collection and the top-of-the-line ProForm Power 1495.
After setting your goal, you can then adjust the speed and incline settings to help you reach your target. As with the Manual program, these workouts follow no preset profile, giving you complete control over the intensity of your workouts. This also makes them well suited to all personal fitness levels, from beginner through to experienced marathon runner.
- iFit Live Workouts
Most of ProForm’s top-of-the-line treadmills are at least iFit Compatible, if not iFit Enabled. This includes the ProForm Pro 4500.
At the console you have direct access to iFit Live technology, where you can choose a workout from one of the Map, Train, Compete, Track, Video, or Lose Weight categories.
Because the Pro 4500 is iFit Enabled you don’t need to purchase the separate iFit wireless module, but you do still need an active subscription and Wi-Fi connectivity if you want to access your iFit Live account.
A single account supports up to 4 user profiles, which allows up to 4 people to upload and build up a history of their workout performance data. You can also use the touchscreen buttons to download workouts from ProForm’s online library straight to the console.
But an iFit membership doesn’t just mean personalized workouts and advanced performance tracking. You can also create custom workouts using a combination of Google Maps™ and Street View, and connect to event training programs that prepare you for distance running (5K, 10K, half marathon, marathon, etc.). You can even choose from hundreds of on demand workout and bodyweight training videos if you’re in need of inspiration.
For the full list of iFit benefits it’s worth visiting the official iFit website.
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 Pro 4500 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 two 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, 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 Pro 4500 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 update the console firmware, calibrate the incline system, and troubleshoot basic issues.
What’s covered by the warranty?
- Frame: Lifetime
- Motor: Lifetime
- Parts: 5 years
- Labor: 2 years
Overall Review Rating
3.5 / 5
So how much of an upgrade are you really getting by choosing the Pro 4500 treadmill over the bestselling Pro 2000?
After ProForm discontinued the Pro 4500, the difficulty comes in finding a vendor that still sells this treadmill for a reasonable price. Because it’s no longer listed on the official ProForm website, it’s usually not included in any seasonal offers, which could mean you end up paying more than you would for the most recent Pro 5000 design.
The treadmill itself has all the advanced features we would expect from the ProForm Pro series, such as the powerful 40 CHP motor and 10” full color web-enabled touchscreen. But at the time of writing this review we could only find it listed on Amazon for just over $1,900. When the upgraded Pro 5000 is on sale for $1,499, there’s no question which treadmill represents better value for money.
In summary, the Pro 4500 is still an excellent treadmill but shares many of its features with more modern designs that are still an active part of the ProForm Pro series. The Pro 5000 is new for 2016, and perfectly positioned as an upgrade to the hugely popular Pro 2000, and a more affordable version of the top-of-the-line Pro 9000.
Product dimensions: 80"L x 39.5"W x 73.5"H Product weight: 296 lbs Weight capacity: 400 lbs