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Product News Tonal Quick Start Guide

Every new fitness journey has a learning curve before it becomes second nature. We’ll break down Tonal for you step-by-step so you can kickstart your fitness in no time flat. This guide will cover everything from setting up your Tonal (the easy part) to everything you need to know to optimize your training (the fun part).


Prep for the arrival of your Tonal.

Make space for your new Tonal. Before your Tonal arrives, make sure the entire space is clear so there’s one less step between you and your first workout. 


Tonal is an entire weight training gym that you can access from the comfort of home. Through Tonal’s touchscreen you can browse our library of workouts, our team of coaches, and your workout stats, navigating just like you would an app on your smartphone. By adjusting the arms you can set up any movement from bench press to deadlift—lifting them, lowering them, and rotating them in and out as needed—for a complete full-body workout. 

Let’s get you set up!

First, turn it on. Make sure the power switch on the bottom of the trainer is on. You can find this switch just right of where the power cord plugs in. Once the trainer is powered on, tap the screen. If you stop using your Tonal for 10 minutes it’ll automatically go into sleep mode (just like a smartphone). Simply tap the screen to wake it back up.

Bought Smart Handles? Check the connection. The reason our handles are smart is because they’re powered by bluetooth to turn weight on/off. They’re set up during installation, but it’s always good to double-check. Need to connect them? Here’s how to do it

Get your membership and account rolling. Tap the Activate button on the screen to get started. This will guide you through creating your primary user account, inputting your payment information for your membership, and finally going through the rest of the onboarding process. 

Have multiple people in your house who want to work out? No problem—everyone can create a personalized account. There’s no limit to how many accounts you can have on Tonal. Log out of your account to allow others to create an account or log in. They can tap + then enter their email and password to log in. 

Once you’ve signed in, Tonal will create an icon for your account (and anyone else who signs up) to make logging in and out a breeze. Want to use your Facebook photo? Log in to the mobile app, select your profile > setting > connected apps > facebook photo. Done and done. 

A Tonal turns on. The screen shows the device's landing page as the arms move up and down.

Adjusting the arms. Moving the arms becomes second nature in no time. Each arm’s height, angle, and rotation can be changed to achieve every move on Tonal. 

  • To adjust height, press and hold the lever where the arm connects to the trainer. Now you can move the whole arm as a unit higher or lower. 
  • To pivot the arm angle up and down once the height is set, pull and hold the lever in the middle of the arm, lifting or lowering the arm to the appropriate angle for any move. 
  • To rotate the arm in or out, press and hold the button near the middle of the arm and push or pull on the arm until it rotates.
  • Each time you adjust the arm height, angle, or rotation, it will click once securely in place.
  • Important: Double-check your arm is securely locked in place by pulling on the arm twice before beginning any exercise.


Tonal optimizes your fitness routine by knowing your strength inside and out.

Set your goals. Tonal acts as a personal trainer, learning about you and your current goals, whether it’s building muscle or getting lean or anything in between. Answer all the questions after your first sign-in so Tonal can map out the most direct path to achieve those goals.

Join a program. Tonal uses your goals to custom curate the perfect programs to get you there. Choose the one you want and success—you now have a ton of scheduled workouts to follow. 

Get your strength assessed. Just like a personal trainer, Tonal gauges your strength before you train. To assess your strength, complete “Your First Tonal Workout”–it’s where Tonal has you complete a series of moves at a variety of weights. When you’re finished, Tonal sets the best starting weight for you, and increases the weight as you get stronger over time. If you ever want to recalibrate your weight, go to your Profile, select “About You,” and hit “Recalibrate” to have Tonal reset your starting weights all over again. 


Motivation comes easy with everything at your fingertips.

For beginners, take it easy. We recommend starting with Tonal Basics—it’s a 4-workout program designed to get you moving while teaching you all about Tonal, like how to adjust the arms, assess your strength, use advanced weight modes and more. Once you wrap up that series, check out Tonal Beginner Boost with Coach Natalie or Easy on the Joints with Coach Liz.

Ready to explore? Look to the symbols by each workout or program name to see the skill level (beginner, intermediate, or advanced), and focus (upper body, lower body, etc.). Always prioritize mastering your form with the basics before tackling anything more advanced. Don’t worry—Tonal’s built-in spotter mode has your back if the weights become too much. 

Stick to a multi-week program. Tonal will suggest the best 4 week programs based on your goals. Choose from our suggested programs or select your own from Tonal’s library. 

Endless one-off workouts. Prefer one-off workouts to programs? Dive straight in with hundreds of workouts to choose from, easily filtered by coach, focus, length of time, and level of experience.  

Find a coach you love. Try different coaches to see which ones motivate you the most. Tonal coaches are diverse in their personalities and training styles so there’s someone for everyone.  

Max it out. Love a solid sweat session? Get in a Tonal High Intensity workout to max out that heart rate with fast-paced moves.

Find your balance. Take your workout to the mat with Tonal Yoga to challenge your strength, stability, and stamina. And just like every other workout, you can easily turn it into a partner workout

Add headphones. Have others in the house? Pair up some bluetooth headphones. Swipe down from the top of the display to access the Settings menu. Hit “Bluetooth” to pair your device. Now you’re all set to hear your Tonal coach and Tonal Radio (we have a variety of music stations to power your workouts). Learn more.

Stay motivated. Experiment any time with new workout content on the daily—all to keep you fresh, fit, and motivated.

Download the mobile app! You can use Tonal all by itself, but our app takes your workouts to the next level by giving you mobile access to your library of workouts, your workout stats, and your streaks, aka how many weeks in a row you finish at least one Tonal workout (see how many you can do!). 

Get the iOs app >

Automatic weight adjustments. Tonal’s Coach A.I. takes the guesswork out of increasing your weights and adjusts your weight (by as little as 1lb increments) as you get stronger. 

Workout wrap-ups. After every workout, Tonal shows you a summary of what you accomplished, including workout duration, time under tension, total pounds lifted, and moves completed. It’s the quickest way to see how you measure up to your personal goals for rep goals and weight goals every week. 

Strength score gains. Your Strength Score is a picture of your progress, and a challenge to see how strong you are in relation to everyone else in the Tonal community. To increase it, lift more, lift heavier, try new moves, and have fun while doing it.  

See everything on the go. With the Tonal app you can track your daily and weekly progress—simply tap your profile to view your performance across four areas: Volume, Workouts, Movement, and Programs. Each gives you a different snapshot of your strength journey, day-by-day and month-by-month.


Take your training to the next level. 

Challenge yourself. Power up your training with advanced weight add-ons, like burnout, eccentric or chains . Chains mode simulates the feeling of lifting with actual chains, challenging your body with weight that changes throughout each movement. Eccentric mode adds weight whenever gravity helps you out in the move, making your muscles work harder with every rep. Burnout mode starts you off at the highest weight you can handle and then reduces weight one pound at a time to keep you in it until you tap out (successfully).

Work out exactly the way you want. Use Custom Workouts to create a workout that’s all you. Choose the moves you want, the sets you want, the reps you want. Add on supersets or advanced weight options. Save the workout for now, later, and forever. Read more.

Remember: the first step to achieving your goals is to show up, which means the best gym is the one that you go to.

Congrats on finding yours. #BeYourStrongest

If you have any questions, give our team a call at (855) MY-TONAL or contact us here.