Treadmill Basics

Treadmill Basics

A treadmill is the original cardio workout machine. It’s easy to use and gives you a great workout.

Treadmills have been around since the 1970′s and they are the most popular exercise machine.

Like ellipticals, they will give you a great cardiovascular workout.

What is a Treadmill?

Quite simply, they are running machines.  Just like a moving sidewalk, an electric motor moves a wide belt and you must run or walk to stay in one place as the belt slides by underneath you.

Most treadmill models include an incline feature which allows you simulate running or walking uphill. This works slightly different muscles and allows you to increase the intensity of your exercise.

Treadmill Console

Treadmills also include an electronic console that allows you to set the speed, incline, and duration of your workout. The console also tracks the distance you run or walk and calculates your pace, calories burned, and other useful information.

Usually, the console also includes several predefined workouts that will automatically alter the speed and incline of your workout. These workouts target various goals, such as losing weight, burning fat, or building endurance.

Treadmills are Easy to Start

While some people may fear sliding off the end of the treadmill if they can’t keep up, treadmills are pretty easy to use.

They typically include a stop button that will stop the treadmill quickly. They also include an emergency stop key that you can attach to your clothing so that the treadmill will stop automatically before you can fall off the back.

Treadmills also include side rails to support you and keep you from falling sideways.

Treadmill vs. Elliptical Trainer

If you are considering using a treadmill, you might also be looking at elliptical trainers.

Elliptical vs Treadmill Article

Thinking about using a treadmill? Wonder how it compares to an elliptical trainer? Read our article or watch our video: Elliptical vs. Treadmill: Which is Best?

The elliptical was designed as a low-impact alternative to the treadmill. Both machines provide an excellent cardio workout, but there are some important differences.

For a comparison of a treadmill vs. an elliptical, read our related article or watch our video:
Elliptical vs. Treadmill: Which is Best?

Have you tried a treadmill? Did you like it? How about an elliptical? Which do you like best? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

References & Sources: (show)(hide)

    • Fitzgerald, Matt.
    • “Blast Fat with Exercise Machines.”
    • Men’s Health.
    • Web.
    • Laskowski, Edward R., M.D.
    • “Are elliptical machines better than treadmills for basic aerobic workouts?.”
    • Mayo Clinic.
    • Web. 4 June 2011.
    • Sweitzer ML, et al.
    • “The cardiopulmonary responses of elliptical crosstraining versus treadmill walking in CAD patients.”
    • Journal of Exercise Physiology.
    • 5.4 (Nov 2002).
    • United States: American Society of Exercise Physiologists.
    • Department of Exercise Science and Leisure Management, The University of Mississippi.

Comments Add Your Own Comment

  1. Jackie Smith says:

    My personal favorite is the treadmill – I hire one of them every now and again for a few months. The elliptical I find to be a tougher workout, so I’d suggest starting off with the treadmill – then over time switch to the elliptical for a bit of variety:)

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