Bowflex Max Trainer M9 – A Cardio & HIIT Machine With All the Essential Features

The products recommended on Runningwilder are independently selected by our team. We may receive a commission if you make a purchase through any of the links.
Summary:
The Max Trainer M9 has a compact design that takes up little floor space but doesn't compromise when it comes to helping you reach your fitness goals. It gives you a total body cardio workout while offering lots of entertainment options.

Its 10-inch HD touchscreen display will keep you motivated through low-impact and high-intensity workouts thanks to the JRNY mobile app. Your workouts are sure to be fun as mine were since you can stream media from apps like Hulu, Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime through the same display screen.
Bowflex Max Trainer M9

Bowflex Max Trainer M9

Bowflex ensures that the Max Trainers are unlike any other aerobic exercise machines. The brand has made a strong name in the industry for creating innovative home gym equipment.

The brand’s JRNY fitness platform reinforces the low-impact workouts you can do with the Max Trainer M9, allowing you to do things you didn’t think were possible on this type of equipment.

This hybrid elliptical comes with a one-year free JRNY Experience membership that is sure to keep your fitness in check with its tailored high-intensity interval training exercises.

Bowflex Max Trainer M9
Bowflex Max Trainer M9
Bowflex Max Trainer M9

Pros

  • The versatility of both an elliptical trainer and a stair stepper machine
  • 10″ interactive touchscreen with access to streaming media platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime
  • 4-grip handlebars for both a stationary grip and active motion when desired
  • 20 resistance levels for targeted goals and varied intensity
  • Free JRNY app membership for 1-year that includes customized training plans and virtual trainer
  • Bluetooth armband heart rate monitor
  • Little footprint that fits in small spaces
  • Wide and textured pedals

Cons

  • 3-year limited warranty and 90-day labor warranty only
  • Some apps may be difficult to operate
  • The machine may be loud when in use

Main Features

Iconic to the Bowflex Max Trainer M9 is the 10-inch HD touchscreen that sets it apart from other Max Trainers. Not only does it display your metrics and personal bests, but it also works in harmony with JRNY.

The Max Trainer M9 comes with a free one-year JRNY membership. Through this, you get unlimited access to on-demand classes led by an instructor. They’re tailor-fit to your preferences.

These full-body workouts automatically adjust as your fitness progresses. I’ve found that you get to explore new things every day of the week using just one elliptical-stair stepper machine.

If the thrill isn’t enough to motivate you on your workouts, I recommend enjoying the immersive running trails that JRNY has to offer. It will give you access to up to 50 scenic routes. (The canyon trail is my favorite.)

If you’re not a fan of the subscription business model, you can still access 4 standard workout programs without JRNY. Aside from these, the built-in screen also offers entertainment apps like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, and Disney+.

You can get fit using this hybrid elliptical machine thanks to its low-impact and high-intensity interval training. It allows for short bursts of effort and longer periods of rest with maximum efficiency.

Supplementing the touchscreen display is a USB charging port that I’ve found most useful for recharging your smart devices while doing your favorite aerobic exercise.

Bowflex Max Trainer M9
Bowflex Max Trainer M9

Functionality

The Max Trainer M9 comes with transport wheels. Its weight is a light 148 lbs, which I’ve found easy to stow away after each use.

It has 20 resistance levels to accommodate users of all fitness levels. It offers full support with its 4 grip handlebars and oversized pedals.

The touchscreen display allows you to check your statistics and completed workouts. You can then access your fitness information through the JRNY mobile app anytime, any day.

The Max Trainer M9 also has exceptional heart rate monitoring. It offers a wireless Bluetooth armband in addition to the usual heart rate hand grips that most machines have.

Bluetooth connectivity is also present in the speakers of the Max Trainer M9. I was able to easily listen to audio and music from my phone and other devices directly on the machine’s speakers.

For added convenience, the Max Trainer M9 even sports a water bottle holder, media notch, and accessory holder. I greatly appreciated these features during my sweat-fests.

Price

The Bowflex team offers the newer Max Trainer models directly on their website. These models are the Max Trainer M9 and M6.

You can purchase the Max Trainer M9 for around $2,000.

The older models, such as the M3, M5, M7, and M8, are available on retail sites like Amazon.

Warranty

bowflex warranty
Bowflex Max Trainer M9
  • Frame: 3-year warranty
  • Parts: 3-year warranty
  • Electronics: 1-year warranty
  • Labor: 90-day warranty

The components of the Bowflex Max Trainer M9 have different warranty terms. They are as follows.

I think the biggest disadvantage of the Max Trainer M9 is its warranty. For a fitness machine at its price, it is undeniable that the warranty that the Bowflex Team offers is short.

This hybrid machine cannot be compared directly to a treadmill or an elliptical trainer, but its 3-year warranty for its frame is too short compared to the lifetime frame warranty offered by some $2000 machines.

That said, the 3-year warranty on parts is acceptable enough. However, the 90-day labor warranty is way shorter than the warranty offered by other brands. They usually offer a 1-year warranty on labor.

If you have any concerns with these figures, you can email the Bowflex team or contact them with any questions. Their privacy policy ensures your confidentiality.

Dimensions

The footprint of the Max Trainer M9 is 49.2″ L x 30.5″ W x 65.1″ H. This small package is even more excellent when you realize how it has the versatility of both an elliptical trainer and a stair stepper machine.

The maximum user weight it can accommodate is 300 lbs. This can cater to users of bigger builds and is in line with the standard user weight across other fitness machines. It sure held my weight just fine.

When assembled, the total weight of this fitness machine is 148 lbs. Transport wheels support the lightweight machine for trouble-free transfers and repositioning. It saved me plenty of time, effort, and struggle.

Its pedal height, when set to its maximum, is 19.1 inches. This height is adjustable, which means that the Max Trainer M9 gives room for users of varying heights.

Regarding its minimum ceiling height, you can take the tallest user and add 15 inches. This is the safest ceiling height for preventing head injuries during exercises.

Assembly

The assembly of the Max Trainer M9 is simple. From my experience, unboxing and assembly can be completed in about an hour.

Like other equipment, the Max Trainer M9 has an assembly manual included. I recommend studying it from end to end.

At first glance, the assembly of the Max Trainer M9 may seem intimidating, but its manual, which is easy to understand and includes large step-by-step images, will help you zoom through the assembly process.

Aside from this, you don’t have to prepare separate tools beforehand. Everything you need is included in the packaging.

You don’t even have to be too handy to assemble the Max Trainer M9. You get a preassembled frame to which you simply have to attach the pedals, handles, console, and stabilizing feet to.

The cable connections of the console are easy to link, too.

Assembling this yourself is definitely doable, but I’ve found that a helping hand will save a lot of time and effort.

Frame

The Max Trainer M9 has the duality of an elliptical and a stair stepper in a package made of compact construction. It does not take up much floor space, making it great for apartments and small spaces.

Despite its compact size, it does not compromise on stability with its 300-lb weight limit. It is heavy-duty and has large components.

It didn’t wiggle or shake, no matter how much weight I put on it. You are sure to be supported and comfortable while using the M9!

Aside from the large size of its stepper, handles, and pedals, it also has both stationary and moving handles. This is another way you can modify your workouts for progression and comfort.

This piece of equipment also features smooth motion to ensure low-impact exercises. This is perfect for users with achy joints and helps prevent knee injuries.

Bowflex Max Trainer M9
Bowflex Max Trainer M9

Resistance

The Max Trainer M9 has 20 resistance levels that are made possible through the drag force of both magnetic and air resistance.

You can pedal slowly against high resistance with the M9, unlike fitness equipment that uses only air resistance.

Its wide range of resistance levels makes it capable of catering to users of varying fitness levels, from beginners to athletes. It made me feel more athletic just by using it.

Like the other Max Trainers, the M9 is designed to be high-intensity interval training (HIIT) equipment.

This type of training is more intense than traditional cardio training. It burns more calories, increases metabolism, and improves cardiac health, among its many benefits.

As I said, the movement pattern of the M9 combines those of an elliptical and a stair climber. But, its horizontal movement is not as much as that of an elliptical trainer. Its vertical motion is not as much as that of a stair stepper, either.

It’s perfectly in the middle.

In-Depth Review of Specifications

Bowflex m9 specs

Console

The 10-inch high-definition touchscreen display console is the highlight of the Max Trainer M9.

Thanks to your one-year free JRNY membership, the Max Trainer console also serves as a viewing screen for streaming media such as Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+.

Aside from entertainment, you will also have access to coaching and custom workouts to keep you motivated through your progress.

Drive System

The drive system combines both magnetic and air resistance to allow for more intensity. You can get close to unlimited speed because of this.

Heart Rate Monitoring

The Max Trainer M9 has one more option for monitoring heart rate than the M8.

Both Max Trainers have Contact Heart Rate (CHR) sensors. You can access these by touching the top and bottom parts of these sensors to complete the loop when detecting pulse.

However, the Bluetooth heart rate armband is an M9 exclusive. You don’t even have to use the grips when wearing it. I’ve found this way more convenient than the sensors!

Foot Pedals

The oversized textured pedals of the M9 give you both space and stability. The machine can fit in small areas, but it does not trade off comfort and safety, thanks to its well-thought-out parts.

Multi-Grip Handlebars

Aside from its pedals that can accommodate a wide range of foot sizes, the handlebars of the Max Trainer M9 also allow for varying heights and hand sizes.

Unlike a bicycle handlebar, the handlebar of the M9 has two types of grips with 4 handlebar grips total.

I’ve found the two moving handlebars most comfortable. However, you may prefer the two stationary grips below the console to monitor your heart rate.

Your heart rate data is sent directly to the JRNY app without needing to input additional details.

Programs

There are two basic workout types on the Max Trainer M9. They are the Steady State and the Interval Training settings.

You can be comfortable or challenge yourself at your own pace throughout the workout duration of the Steady State. Interval Training will give you periods of high intensity.

They allow you to build your stamina and progress through your fitness journey with just one machine!

JRNY Membership

The M9 comes with one-year free JRNY membership that will keep your physical fitness in check. It has the following highlights:

  • Individualized Adaptive Workouts – Real-time coaching and tailored workouts comprise the individualized adaptive workouts of JRNY. It gives you the complete gym package within the comforts of your home.
  • High-Intensity Interval Training – You can do your workouts guided by the M9 if you want independence from a trainer.
  • On-Demand Classes – Bowflex partners with world-class trainers who can lead you and other JRNY users through challenging workouts.
  • Explore the World – JRNY allows you to stay at home but still explore the world. You can enjoy more than 50 scenic views from all around the world.

Bluetooth Speakers

The console of the M9 comes with Bluetooth speakers that can play audio from your phone or smart device. It can also pair with your Bluetooth headphones if you want to block off sounds from your surroundings.

A JRNY membership also comes with changing music playlists if you want unique tunes to keep you going.

Onboard JRNY® Experience

Your M9 purchase includes a free JRNY membership for one year. This is normally priced at $149. Getting the M9 will give you the kickstart needed to progress your fitness journey.

Integrated Media or Entertainment Notch

There is a notch between the resistance knob and the display of the M9. It is perfect for carrying your phone, tablet computer, or even a book.

Water Bottle Holder

There is also a water bottle holder located near your media notch. It is designed to fit most water bottle sizes.

USB Charging Port

The M9 also has a USB charging port to power up your phone or any other device while you do a workout. Your device will surely be juiced up as soon as you complete your workout.

Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Users

Have other burning questions about this fitness machine? You might find them below for your convenience:

How Much Does the Bowflex M9 Weigh?

The Bowflex M9 weighs 148 lbs when assembled. Aside from being easy to assemble, it is also easy to transport and move around, even in a limited space.

Is the Bowflex M9 Loud?

In my experience, the speakers of the M9 are loud enough for you to hear the audio coming from your streaming media. In terms of loudness while in operation, it can also be noisy when in use.

What Is the Difference Between Bowflex M8 and M9?

In contrast to its predecessor, the M8, the M9 has the following differences:

  1. Display: The M9 has a 10-inch console with an HD touchscreen and WiFi connectivity. The M8 only has an interactive display with a fixed-color backlit LCD.
  2. JRNY Experience: All the JRNY features of the M9 can be accessed straight from its display console. With the M8, the JRNY app can only be accessed externally through a phone or tablet.
  3. Connectivity: On top of the USB charging port and Bluetooth, iOS, and Android compatibility of the M8, the M9 can be connected to WiFi.
  4. Streaming Entertainment: You can access your Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+ accounts on the console of the M9. You can’t access any using the M8.
  5. Workout History Tracking: You can track unlimited users on the M9. Tracking on the M8 is limited to 4 unique users. Both with JRNY membership required.
  6. Heart Rate Monitor: Aside from the integrated contact grips already found on the M8, the M9 also has Bluetooth-enabled heart rate armbands. You can track statistics through its touchscreen display.
  7. Workout Programs: The M9 only has 4 standard workout programs. They are Manual, Fat Burn, Calorie Burn, and Stairs. The M8, on the other hand, has 7. In addition to the standard workout programs of the M9, Max 7 Minute Interval, Max 14 Minute Interval, and Max 21 Minute Interval are also included.
  8. Other Features: The other features found on the M9 that are not on the M8 are its steel resistance dial and Bluetooth speakers.

Can I Use the Hotspot and Tethering Features of My Phone Instead of WiFi Connection?

In case of no available WiFi connection, the Max Trainer M9 can connect to your hotspot and tether. However, the connection may not be as reliable as WiFi connectivity.

Can I Download Other Apps and TV Subscriptions in the Console?

Unfortunately, the console does not have an app store to download other apps besides those already installed. An update in the future would automatically be pushed into the machine to accommodate other apps.

How Many Users Can the Max Trainer M9 Have Without the JRNY Subscription?

The Max Trainer M9 requires JRNY membership. There is a free membership available without access to premium content. The number of users for this is unlimited.

How Much Clear Space From the Wall Does the M9 Need?

The minimum workout area for the Max Trainer M9 is 54.8 inches by 73.2 inches. The area should be clear 24 inches along its sides and rear. This area is the only thing you have to remember. You don’t have to go deep into measuring the minute and second of the arc.

Is the Bowflex M9 Worth It?

Yes, it gives you value for your money. With the Max Trainer M9, you get access to aerobic exercise in the comfort of your home. You won’t even be bored with repeating exercises as programs vary every day of each week! Of course, this is with JRNY membership required.

Bowflex Max Trainer M9 Bottom Line Review

The Bowflex Max Trainer M9 is a great machine that is sure to give you a great workout regardless of your fitness level.

This hybrid elliptical gave me the complete aerobic exercise I needed without having to follow the same program over and over throughout the week!

It combines low-impact movements with high-calorie burning workouts while taking up only a little space, which I adore about this machine.

The JRNY mobile app’s touchscreen display ensures you meet your fitness goals through guided programs. You get additional motivation and entertainment options through the same display as you can stream any video on demand!