Walking Pad Treadmill: The Compact, Foldable Workout Solution

Walking Pad Treadmill

Bursting onto the fitness scene in 2015, King Smith Fitness was started by postgraduate students at the University of Science and Technology of China. 

These techno whizzes paired their advanced training in robotics with the growing trend toward working from home and designed their unique “walking machines”: light weight, foldable devices that can easily fit under a desk to let you get your steps in while working.

When working from home really began to take off during the pandemic, their WalkingPad products were perfectly positioned to hit a global market and they have really taken off in the last few years.

What are the WalkingPads all about?

The idea behind WalkingPads is really quite simple; it’s all about encouraging people to stay active even if they’re stuck at a desk for hours a day.  These aren’t your heavy duty treadmill with all the bells and whistles that will help you train for your next 5k.  While there are some models that allow for light jogging and running, as the name suggests they are really designed for walking. 

They took off during the pandemic when everyone was stuck at home and workout options became very limited. With no access to the gym, walking around the neighborhood or at the local park was really the only way to get any kind of workout, so having any option to get yourself up and moving was critically important. 

Unfortunately for many people who live in apartments or condos where space is limited, having a home gym isn’t really feasible.  This is where King Smith’s design engineering wizardry really stands out.

While there are other brands of walking pads, from makers like Egofit and Treadly, King Smith WalkingPads are the only ones on the market today that completely fold in half, enabling them to easily tuck away under a bed, sofa or other piece of furniture when not in use.

As you can imagine, this is a real eye opener for anyone looking for an opportunity to walk but lacking the floor space for traditional exercise equipment.

WalkingPad Treadmill Current Lineup

There are currently seven different models of WalkingPad available from King Smith, ranging from the tiny C1 and C2 through the more substantial X21, which allows for both walking and running.

Here’s a brief glance at what they offer:

WalkingPad C1/C2 - these are the most basic models, with a tiny footprint that can fold up to just 5.4” for storage.  The C2 offers a slight upgrade with a quieter, brushless motor and a digital display built into the machine itself so you can get all of your stats at a glance.

WalkingPad P1 – The P1 is sort of a hybrid of the C1 and C2.  It has a slightly wider walking surface than the C2 (16.5” v 15.7”) but, like the C1 lacks the built-in display and brushless motor so it isn’t as quiet.

Walking Pad A1 Pro – The A1 offers a small step up from the other models.  It features the same 16.5” belt width as the P1 but also offers the brushless motor and built-in display of the C2. It’s also a bit more substantial feeling than the flimsier C2.

WalkingPad R1/R2 – Taking a step up from the basic models, the R1 and R2 add a couple of notable features, including a built-in hand rail, an additional sport mode that allows for greater speeds so that you can do some jogging and light running, and a full built-in display that lets you track time, speed, distance, calories and steps.  The R2 is slightly more powerful, working up to 12 km/h, compared to 10 km/h for the R1, and its handrail has a storage box and phone holder, while the handle of the R1 has only a phone holder.  Unlike the other models, it can be stored upright once folded.

WalkingPad X21 – The top of the line model comes closest to being a traditional treadmill as it can reach speeds up to 12 km/h, allowing for some jogging and light running. It has an easy to read display and control area built directly into the handrail, and an attachable phone/tablet holder.  Like the R1 and R2, it can also be stored upright when folded up.

Walking Pad Treadmill Folded

How does it stack up to the competition?

Of course, King Smith isn't the only brand offering walking pads.  There are even some brands that offer “foldable” models, like Home Fitness and Urevo, but those only fold flat to either stand upright or slide under a couch or bed. King Smith WalkingPads are the only ones on the market today with their patented 180° folding technology for the smallest footprint yet.

One area where WalkingPads do fall behind is their lack of incline.  While models like the Egofit Walker M1 offer up to a 5% incline for an extra workout challenge, that option is not available on any of the WalkingPad models.

In general, King Smith WalkingPads rely on their lightweight, easy to move design with the ability to tuck away for easy storage in order to appeal directly to those with limited space. Unlike most of the more affordable treadmills, they also offer a 1 year warranty on all models.

Prices range from $470 to $950, making them slightly more expensive than other brands, which can be found for as little as $200 or $250 at some retailers, but the extra features they offer make up for the added expense.


As with any type of workout equipment WalkingPads are not without some drawbacks, so it’s worth looking at both the pros and cons in depth.


  • Obviously the biggest pro is the unique, foldable design.  All of these models can fold to as little as 5.4” for the smallest models, but even the top model X21 folds down to just 9” for easy storage.
  • Most models feature a brushless motor that makes them surprisingly quiet, which means you can use them even when answering phone calls or attending zoom meetings without disturbing your co-workers.
  • All models except for the X21 can be controlled in one of three ways: via the remote, using the KS fit app on your Android or iOS device or with the Automatic foot mode.  The Automatic mode uses three distinct divisions on the belt to help you control the speed yourself: walk on the front of the belt to speed up, on the middle of the belt to maintain speed and on the back of the belt to slow down and stop.  The X21 does not feature the Automatic foot speed control.  Instead, it can be controlled either from the built-in panel on the handrail or through the KS fit app.
  • Though the ability to fold in half might make you leery of their durability, WalkingPads are actually much sturdier than you’d expect.
  • They are slim enough to fit under any standing desk, so you can easily use them while working


  • The size and weight capacities (up to 240 lbs. for the largest model, 220 lbs. for most of the others), and short belt length make them more suitable for smaller users.  Larger users may have difficulty finding and maintaining a comfortable stride.
  • The motors are not heavy duty, so they won’t stand up to all-day or heavy use.
  • The models that lack handrails can be difficult to use if you have balance issues.
  • The Automatic mode, which uses three divisions of the belt to adjust speed depending on where you walk, can be difficult to get used to but the manual mode, using the remote or app, works just fine.
  • The folding design means there is a “fold hinge” in the center of the machine and this can be noticeable when walking on the belt.  It is less noticeable on some models than others and you may get used to it over time but for some people it can be bothersome.
  • The belt on most models can slip some with use, so it will need to be adjusted.
  • The adjustable handrails on the R1/R2 can be a little difficult to maneuver.
  • The attachable tablet/phone holder on the X21 can be a little unstable if you’re running at the highest speed.
  • The small size of the wheels can make moving a challenge, especially on carpet.   

So should you buy the Walking Pad Treadmill?

So, with all this in mind should you be rushing to get in on the latest home workout trend?  Well, that really depends on what you’re looking to get out of it and what your personal needs are. 

These are not top of the line machines designed to give you a full bore cardio workout, with programmable routines and hi def touch screens.  If you’re a serious athlete training for competition or want to challenge yourself with incline capability, then you’ll want a traditional treadmill.

On the other hand, if you’re simply looking to get moving or get your steps in while working from your home office and you don’t have a lot of extra space, then King Smith WalkPads could be a very good option.  These are relatively lightweight treadmills, though at 50 – 90 lbs. moving them isn’t quite as easy as the manufacturer’s website makes it look.

Still, with their unique 180° folding technology they are easy to store in even the smallest of spaces, tucking away easily under a couch or bed or behind a door when not in use.  They also come in one piece so set up is as easy as taking them out of the box, plugging them in and turning them on.

While not for the serious athlete, WalkingPads can be the perfect answer to get you moving, burn some calories and even help to boost your energy throughout your workday.  We’d say it’s a great introduction to exercise for anyone, especially if you’ve got limited room to spare.

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