Updated: May 9
What is a treadmill?
Treadmills (often referred to as running machines) are pieces of cardio equipment used for running, jogging or walking whilst remaining in one place. A treadmill provides a moving platform by means of a running deck and belt. The belt is powered by an electric motor and moves from the front to the rear, allowing the person to walk opposite to the direction of the belt.
Manufacturers are continually reducing their manufacturing costs. This means you can now purchase a reliable home use treadmill for under $1,500 and a cheap budget one for under $750! and gym use treadmill for between $3,500 to $18,000! According to the prices of 2019.
In the Egypt we have unpredictable weather patterns throughout the year and winter brings fewer hours of daylight. Because of this, walking, jogging and running outside can prove to be difficult. But with treadmills you can walk, jog or run in the safety and comfort of your own home or your gym.
The fitness benefits of using a treadmill
• Less impact on joints - Running on a treadmill reduces the impact on your joints compared to running on pavements or road surfaces. To further reduce the impact, purchase a machine with an orthopedics belt.
• Reduces stress - During cardio exercise endorphins are released into your bloodstream. This release of endorphins produces a natural high, which in turn relieves stress.
• Boosts energy levels - Exercise of any kind will increase your energy levels and running is one of the best forms of exercise to help increase your overall energy.
• Increases lung capacity - Long distance running will help improve your lung capacity, making you stronger and healthier.
• Increases bone density - The impact of running on a treadmill overloads the selected structure and causes the body to increase the density of weight bearing bones in an effort to accommodate the stress of the activity.
• Increases calorie burn - Because running is a weight bearing exercise, it burns more calories in comparison to rowing machines or exercise bikes.
Features of the modern treadmill
• Motor - The electric motor is the heart of the treadmill. Without it the treadmill is useless. Motor power/output is measured in horsepower (HP). The higher the HP, the stronger and more efficient the treadmill will be. Always look for at least a 1.75 HP motor. If you plan to run long distances then look for at least a 2.0 HP motor.
• Belt - The belt should be long enough and wide enough to accommodate your running style. If you plan to do a lot of running then look for a belt with a width of 50 cm (20") and a length of 140 cm (55").
• Speed - The maximum speeds will vary between models. Mid range and commercial treadmills have maximum speeds of 20 kph (12 mph). To give you an idea of speed, world class runners run at an average speed of 20 kph during a marathon!
• Incline (elevation) - If you plan to do a lot of uphill walking or running then look for a treadmill with an incline of 10%. Thankfully most mid range treadmills incline to 10% and some incline to 12% or more.
• Console & programs - Nowadays most treadmills come with built in computer displays that enable you to select customized workouts, speed, incline and other options. If you get bored easily it may be worth investing money in a treadmill that has a range of different workout programs, as this will help you stay motivated.
• Maximum user weights - Always check the maximum user weight before you purchase. Budget running machines usually have maximum user weight of around 100 kg / 220 lbs whilst mid range treadmills have maximum user weights of around 130 kg / 290 lbs.
• Warranty - Always check the warranty before purchasing. Most treadmills come with parts and labor warranty, which means you won't have to repair it yourself if something goes wrong. As a general rule, mid range and commercial treadmills have better warranties in comparison to cheap budget machines.
• Accessories - You can purchase many accessories. At Blue Shell store we offer accessories such as floor protector mats, extended treadmill warranties, heart rate monitors and much more.
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