Treadmills have been around a long time. Before they were used for exercise, they were incorporated into machinery to turn kitchen spits, grind flour, pump water, and even power looms and similar items. Medical treadmills, as a diagnostic tool, were introduced by Dr. Robert Bruce in 1952. Dr. Bruce developed a diagnostic method known as the “Bruce Protocol.” He is sometimes called “the father of treadmill cardiology.”
Treadmills have come a long way since Dr. Bruce’s time, and they have become a staple of exercise equipment. Like stationary bikes, they have their advantages and disadvantages. And like the bikes, there are several kinds of treadmills from which you can choose.
Top Rated Treadmills Offers
Treadmill for Beginners
A treadmill for beginners is a valuable part of any home gym. It does not need a lot of fancy equipment, although a good monitor that will give you progress feedback and keep a record of you daily sessions is a big plus. The treadmill needs to be long enough to allow the user a good, long running stride – even if you do not begin by running on it. It should not be too difficult to move, especially if you are not accustomed to exercising. It places more weight on hip, knee, and ankle joints than a bicycle. This can have both advantages and disadvantages.
Best Treadmill for Home
If money is no object, the best treadmill for home probably will be a model of the brands: Nordic Track and Bowflex. These are two reliable brands of exercise equipment, and you can expect their machines to be well-built and reliable. Other possible brands include Peleton (yes, that Peleton), Assault Fitness, Proform, and Sole. This is not an exhaustive list. You might find others that could function well for you.
Your next decision will be whether to use a manual treadmill or one that is powered. Reviewers indicate that the manual treadmill might give you a better workout simply because you are doing all the work. However, you lose the options for record-keeping and coaching, as well as the possibility of simulating variable inclines. The two main brands have both, but a standout brand for manual is Assault Fitness. If possible, visit stores where these are sold and try out various machines to see which one suits you best. Alternatively, if your treadmill is a medical prescription, ask your physician or therapist their opinion of which will work best for you.
Elliptical treadmills differ from the standard belt driven models in several ways. First, you place your feet on pedals and essentially walk/pedal the machine. Unlike an exercise bike, however, they do not have a seat. Like a treadmill, the user rests normal weight on hips, knees, and ankle joints. They are, however, considered to be lower impact exercise than a treadmill. This could partially be due to the inability to run on one. They provide good core exercise, and some even have moveable handlebars that can be used like a ski trainer or rowing machine. They are serviceable for people with arthritis for whom running on a treadmill could be a challenge.
On a folding treadmill, the console either folds down to the base, or the base lifts up to the console and clips into an upright position. Once folded, the treadmill can be stored to one side, out of sight, or in one case, slide under your desk to allow you to “walk” your feet while you are busy working.
Treadmill for Walking Seniors
Walking is often prescribed for seniors. But who wants to get out in all sorts of weather to take a walk? A treadmill, especially one placed to allow the user to view a coaching program or a scenic view, or even to simply watch a favorite movie while the feet are moving, can answer this need. A walking treadmill might not need as long a running ramp, since most people have a shorter stride while walking. It should be equipped with variable difficulty levels, ranging from a gentle stroll on level ground to resistance that simulates walking uphill. Multigrip handrails to assist with balance are beneficial, especially for oldsters who are recovering from an injury or illness.
Warranty for Your Treadmill
Don’t forget to check the warranty for your treadmill, whether you are buying online or from a local store. Look for the items the warranty covers, from primary standing parts to consumables such as belts and electronics. Another thing to consider is delivery and setup. Treadmills are not usually small. If you are recovering or if you are in fragile health, you might want to arrange for someone else to bring your treadmill inside your home and set it up for you.