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How a treadmill works [Article, Video]

Posted by Pascal Landshoeft

Mar 15, 2020 9:00:00 AM

How a treadmill works

How to run on a treadmill

This is an overview of the basics of how to run a treadmill. We will go into the different programs, how to set the treadmill up and what the best way is to lose weight. 
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How a treadmill works 

Treadmills work on a pretty simple idea “put someone on a conveyor belt and make them run until they collapse”. There are different ways of making the mechanics work. The two main ones are
Electrically propelled treadmills will need to be connected to a socket and consume energy. If you are buying for a commercial establishment where they are plugged in all day and you have a row of 10 to 100 treadmills you want to check energy consumption. Otherwise, you might regret hitting the buy button on a particular model. A little electromotor drives the conveyor belt. To maintain the treadmill it needs to be oiled regularly. The most likely component to break is the electromotor itself. 
The main advantages of electrically-propelled treadmills are the low cost compared to self-propelled models and the wide arrange of providers. You also have a bigger market for used models if you want to get something on the cheap. The main disadvantages are that they tend to break more easily and are not the best option to train sudden stops and acceleration. 
Self-propelled treadmills are basically glorified hamster wheels. The belt usually rests on bearing balls which make it possible to move the belt with your own bodyweight. Generally, this design seems to be less error-prone than electrically-propelled options. Prices for self-propelled treadmills are usually higher as the build is more complex. In return, they are often better quality than their electric counterparts. 
The advantages of self-propelled treadmills are that they do not need to be connected to a socket and that you can do start and stop drills. The main disadvantage is the higher purchase cost. Especially when you buy in bulk, calculate energy consumption over 3 to 5 years into the equation to see whether it makes more sense to buy self-propelled treadmills. 
Whether you get an electric or self-propelled treadmill, both take up quite a bit of space. An air bike can be a good alternative with a smaller footprint for cardio training.

Topics: Treadmill, Cardio, Marathon