How to Choose a Treadmill for Home UseMatt Diaz-Rainey
8 things to consider before you buy a Treadmill
It’s a common scenario, one that many of us can relate to. Having got on the scales feeling a little sluggish or heavy, you decide to take action and make some changes. You randomly click on a treadmill advert on social media and end up with lots more ads in your feed and end up being slightly overwhelmed or confused. Don’t give up – your journey has only just started (and it’s going to be a great journey!).
Taking the next step, both literally and metaphorically, towards improved health and wellbeing, through movement and positive lifestyle choices, requires some clear thinking, a pen and paper and a little bit of research. #TeamRBF and RogerBlackFitness.com are here to share some top tips, as follows:
1.FIND YOUR WORKOUT SPACE
‘Home is where the start (and heart) is’ in this instance – before you start looking online or in-store for home fitness equipment, consider where and how you live, as well as with whom. If you struggle space-wise as it is, look at foldable treadmills. If you are allocating an entire room or part of the garage, opt for a stationary machine. But space isn’t your only consideration.
2.CHOOSE YOUR TREADMILL SIZE
Once you have decided where in your home you intend to work out on your treadmill, measure up how much space you have to spare and add a bit extra to allow for the recommended treadmill footprint. In the case of the Roger Black Gold Treadmill, you need to allow 1.7m for the treadmill itself plus allow an additional 2m of free space, as per the diagram below in the product manual.
3.SET YOUR BUDGET
Once you have your measurements to hand, set a budget for yourself, taking into account that a foldable treadmill will likely cost less than a stationary machine, based on weight, as well as other considerations. If you are keen to buy a treadmill that is very tech-friendly, this can increase the price, two or possibly three-fold. If you are an employee, signed up to the likes of www.vivup.co.up, you may be able to buy your treadmill through the salary sacrifice scheme and stagger payments. All of these details can help with your final choice.
<Dan, please find a way to copy and paste this image properly – this is just a mock-up screen grab. I haven’t included the EFT equivalent as there is an error in the manual>
4.READ TREADMILL REVIEWS
For some of our customers, reviews come before taking out a tape measure. Regardless of when you do your research, it’s an important part of the process. Sources such as Trustpilot.com, Google Reviews and Which? magazine are trusted and valued by both brands and customers alike. There are also fitness review sites such as www.fitness-savvy.co.uk for online comparison. At the end of the day, the decision is yours but make it an informed one.
5.WHAT EXTRAS DOES THE TREADMILL INCLUDE
If you seek gadgets and gizmos, some treadmills are better suited than others. If you just want a functional run, jog or walk, with or without gradient, don’t be oversold by fancy marketing campaigns. Don’t overpay for extras that you are unlikely to use, particularly if you are on a budget.
One feature that is important is a pulse monitor. These will read your heart rate through a sensor on the handlebars. Checking on your heart rate is of particular importance if you have a heart condition or are on a specific programme or recommended target heart rate. The sensor or sensors work(s) through skin contact and can be situated on one or both sides of the treadmill.
Another point for your wish list might be a manual or automatic incline. If you are used to road running or enjoy a power walk, an incline might lend itself to a more authentic outdoors experience, but an incline is not a necessity for all, especially if you need to keep an eye on your blood pressure. Some machines will have a pre-programmed incline, others a manual version.
8.AUTO-STOP SAFETY SYSTEM
As with any piece of home fitness equipment, your safety and wellbeing is of paramount importance. The ‘auto-stop safety system’ is both a practical and legal requirement for most machines, in the form of a safety key. In the case of Roger Black treadmills, a safety key needs to be engaged for the machine to work. The treadmill will switch off once the key disengages or falls out. The latter is quite important and sensible, particularly if suffer from vertigo or aren’t used to regular exercise.
Whilst we can’t and shouldn’t cover all aspects of the process in just one article, the above should get you thinking about key points to consider at the start of your buying process. ‘Knowledge is power’ so they say… in the world of fitness and health, we would rather re-define this as ‘knowledge is empower’. Now go empower yourself…