Treadmill Basics

Why Treadmills?

When you compare the different equipments for exercising, you find that you can burn 500 calories per hour on the exercise bike, whereas with the average medium-intensity treadmill workout, you can burn 700 calories per hour. One reason for this difference is the amount of muscle mass that is used in both exercises. Apparently, when you walk or run on a treadmill, you use more muscles than you do on a bike, stationary or otherwise.

Burning calories is the main benefit of treadmill workout. However, it is not the only reason why people consider this type of exercise. For people with certain health conditions, engaging in vigorous physical activity can only be detrimental to their health. People with osteoporosis, hypertension, and back pain are recommended to do no more than walking when they exercise. It is done to avoid any complications which may arise when such people may overexert themselves. The treadmill, therefore, provides them an exciting alternative to do just plain walking outside or inside their home.

A treadmill can add consistency to your walking workout. Most models have in-built programming that allows you to maintain speed and intensity throughout your entire workout. They also have incline device that would let you control the inclination of your walk, exactly as though you are walking up or down hill.

According to a research conducted by the Harvard Medical School, walking for 45 minutes, five times a week can cut your chances of getting a flu or cold to half. But if the weather condition is bad, for example, if it is raining, or it is very windy, you can’t really walk, can you? That is when a treadmill seems to be such a great exercise equipment to have.

Furthermore, the treadmill can be used by anyone – young, old, male, female, pregnant…. Let’s take the case of pregnant women. While some aerobic activities can be risky during pregnancy, walking is actually beneficial to both the child and the mother. Hormonal changes caused by pregnancy can loosen ligaments. In order to tone down muscles and strengthen the joints that support the growing baby, walking is recommended for pregnant women. For doing that what could be better than a treadmill.

However beneficial running and sunlight might be, gravity can have very nasty effects. The treadmill, therefore, can help prevent those injuries that could happen when you run outside on uneven or wet ground. A treadmill with good cushioning on the belt will help support each foot-strike you make, making your running or walking easier and safer.

Finally, to get in to a good shape with a healthy heart, walking or jogging on a treadmill will do the trick. It improves muscle tone not just in your legs, but all over your body. Strengthened muscles mean the heart can pump more oxygen-rich blood with each step you take. So, watch the step you take!