How to Select a Treadmill?
Treadmills are the most popular pieces of exercise equipment purchased for the home. They are easy to use, and according to the American Medical Association, they are the most effective calorie burners for most people. There are many types of treadmills: fold-up models, models designed for walkers, heavy-duty designs for runners, even ones that can monitor your heart rate and adjust your workout accordingly.
When selecting a treadmill, there are several factors to consider to ensure you choose the right one for your needs. Here are some key things to keep in mind:
Budget, Space, Motor, Belt size, Cushioning, Incline, Features, Warranty
Treadmill Power – How many horses do you need?
The horsepower (HP) of a treadmill’s motor is an important factor to consider when selecting a treadmill. The motor’s horsepower determines how powerful and durable the treadmill is, and how well it can handle the type of workouts you plan to do.
Generally, the higher the horsepower, the more powerful and durable the treadmill will be. For walking or light jogging, a motor with at least 2.0 HP is sufficient. For more intense workouts such as running or heavy use, you should look for a motor with at least 3.0 HP or more.
It’s also important to note that the peak horsepower and continuous horsepower of a treadmill’s motor are different. Peak horsepower refers to the maximum power the motor can produce for a short period of time, while continuous horsepower refers to the sustained power output of the motor over an extended period of time. When selecting a treadmill, it’s important to look at the continuous horsepower rating, as this is a better indicator of the motor’s overall power and performance.
What speed do you need?
The speed you need for a treadmill depends on your fitness level, workout goals, and the type of exercise you plan to do on the machine. Here are some general guidelines to help you determine the appropriate speed for your treadmill workouts:
Walking: For walking, a speed of 2.5 to 3.5 miles per hour (MPH) is a good starting point. You can adjust the speed up or down based on your fitness level and goals.
Jogging: For jogging, a speed of 4 to 5 MPH is a good starting point. Again, you can adjust the speed as needed.
Running: For running, a speed of 5 to 9 MPH is typical. However, the appropriate speed will depend on your fitness level, running experience, and goals.
HIIT: For high-intensity interval training (HIIT), you may alternate between periods of high intensity (such as sprints) and periods of rest. The speed you choose will depend on the specific exercises you are doing and your fitness level.
It’s important to note that the speed you choose should be challenging but also safe and comfortable for you. Always start at a slower speed and gradually increase the speed as you become more comfortable and confident on the treadmill. It’s also important to warm up properly before exercising and cool down afterwards to prevent injury.
Treadmills Belts – Go Wide and Long
Treadmill belts come in different sizes, and the width and length of the belt can have a significant impact on your workout experience. Generally speaking, wider and longer belts are better for most users because they provide more space and stability during exercise.
A wider belt offers more room for side-to-side movement, allowing you to move freely without feeling like you might step off the belt. This can be especially important for runners or those doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts that involve lateral movements. A wider belt can also help reduce wear and tear on the machine since it distributes weight more evenly across the surface.
Treadmill Deck – Firm but forgiving to your joints
You need a deck that’s durable, low-or-no maintenance, and shock resistant. A deck should be firm, yet “give” a little under your stride. This absorbs some of the shock normally transmitted to your ankles and knees. Maintenance-free treadmills are usually self lubricating, which allows the belt to glide over the deck with ease, significantly reducing wear on the motor, deck, belt and rollers.
What size of treadmill to choose?
A smaller treadmill may suffice, but not if it’s also going to be used by a 6-foot-plus user and 120 kgs. Similarly, a folding treadmill may help if space is tight, but you may have to compromise on functionality and durability. Once again, it’s best to do your up-front planning, and have your exercise area thought out and tape-measured ahead of time to save guesswork in the store.
Come in – Let’s Talk Treadmills
Make your local FitnessOne’s Propel Equipment Store, your personal fitness information centre. Bring your questions on treadmills – or any aspect of fitness and exercise. Our certified fitness professionals are walking encyclopedias of information and you’ll have all of their attention. They’ll be glad to share their knowledge and help you make informed decisions that will get you the results you want.
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