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Treadmill Buyers Guide

Treadmill Buyers Guide

Fitness Warehouse Treadmill Buyers Guide

It’s no secret that training at home is the ultimate escapism, especially if your plan is to double up tv time with burning calories. You still get ‘me time’ whilst being able to hit your training goals and not waste time traveling to and from the gym. Not to mention in winter it's dark, cold and wet, having a treadmill at home allows you to stay safe, dry and fit throughout winter. We understand that purchasing cardio equipment can be a big investment. However, that’s exactly what treadmills are, investment pieces for the longevity of your health. Did you know research shows that the best predictor for the longevity of your life is your level of aerobic fitness? Simply put, if you want to live longer, get walking, jogging or running. Training on a treadmill allows you to train in a controlled environment. This means you can control the pace, incline, intervals, recovery and the weather!!! To help you hit the ground running (sorry) we’ve created our Treadmill Buyers Guide.

Before purchasing your treadmill in-store or online there’s a few things to consider. How often will you be using the treadmill? Where will it be stored? Do you need/want an entertainment console? Lastly, you’ll want to make sure that you’re purchasing a treadmill that matches your overall fitness goals. For example, a hammer is great for building and hammering nails but if you try to use it for washing dishes, you’re going to be in trouble. That’s why it’s important to speak to our Fitness Equipment Experts in-store, on the phone or via our tawk bot online, because if you don’t know what you’re looking for, you’ll never find it. 

Matching your fitness goals is important as it dictates the kind of motor required to support your style of working out. To help with this we’ve broken down the Fitness Warehouse Treadmill range into 3 easy to understand categories. Beginner, intermediate and advanced. 

Treadmill Buyers Guide

As you can see there is quite a range of treadmills at Fitness Warehouse. Understanding how often you’re going to run, how fast and how far/long will determine the type of motor that you’ll require which we discuss below. In addition, it's important to consider purchasing a machine with the ability to handle the fitness level you aspire to achieve as opposed to your current level of fitness.


Top things to consider:

Consoles & Programs

If you’re the type of person who wants to just get on and walk or run, a simple console is going to suit you. However, if you’re a bells and whistles person who prefers an entertainment console with programs and functions, you’ll need to factor that into your budget. If budget is top of mind, one great tip is to use a tablet in place of an entertainment console.

Motor Size

Horsepower is an often overlooked aspect of buying a treadmill. Does size matter? Essentially the answer to this question lies in what you want to use your treadmill for. This decision ensures that you'll bring the right treadmill home to align with your overall health and fitness goals. This is because some levels of exercise need relative amounts of horsepower. For example, will you be walking, jogging, running or a combination of all three? As a general rule of thumb;

  • Walkers - 1.75 - 2HP will serve you well
  • Joggers/Runners - 2 - 2.5HP is a good minimum to start from
  • Distance Runners - 3HP and above recommended

Keeping this in mind will definitely help extend the life of your treadmill. It’s also important to note that user weight can play a role in the horsepower requirements. Generally speaking, if the user of a treadmill is over 95kgs adding .5 HP will help with support. Think of it this way, a 95kg person walking 1000k’s versus a 95kg person running 1000k’s is a completely different load on your machine and motor. Another consideration is how many people will be using the machine. If the answer is 4 or more people, we suggest following the same +.5HP rule.

Running Area

If multiple people in your household are going to be using the treadmill make sure that the running area/deck is large enough for the tallest person as this will affect their running stride. In general, the treadmills on the lower price spectrum will have shorter and thinner running decks, compared to the mid and high range treadmills. 

Cushioning

Treadmills come with some form of cushioning built into the deck, whether it’s via rubber dimples, cushioning under the deck which supports the running mat or both. Cushioning is important because it can replicate the feel of running on grass and heavily reduce the impact on your joints compared to running on roads. More advanced cushioning like the below image of the Horizon T101 involves focused cushioning. This features different cushioning at the impact zone or ‘foot strike’, whilst providing sturdier and stiffer cushioning at the rear of the deck for when your foot pushes off of the belt. 

Fitness Warehouse Treadmill Cushioning

 

Incline

The incline function on treadmills adds intensity to your workouts which is a great feature. Typically treadmills under $1000 will have an incline of 10%, the more advanced models with 3.0hp motors and sturdier frames have an incline of 15%. A quick Fitness Warehouse tip - By running on an incline of between 1-2% it will help further reduce the impact on your joints.

After Sales Support

The fact of the matter is that for a treadmill to have a happy life, regular maintenance such as lubricating the running deck, dusting and vacuuming underneath the machine are required. In the event of a treadmill breakdown the good news is that all of the treadmills sold at Fitness Warehouse are covered by a full comprehensive warranty including all physical components of the machine PLUS the often unspoken inclusion of in house labour.

Sturdiness

There’s nothing worse than running on a treadmill that feels like it’s about to fall apart or take off. If you’re looking for a rock solid and sturdy treadmill this will directly correlate to the materials used for the construction of the equipment and the size of the frame. This is turn will be part of your discussions around budget. Fitness Warehouse Tip. The sturdiness of the machine can usually be determined by the weight capacity. The higher this number is the more solid the running experience.

Budget

In an effort to help understand what features and functions fall within price brackets here is a rough guide;


Below $1000

  • Small footprint
  • Typically have a shorter running deck
  • Lightweight
  • Small motor
  • Light on features
  • Small user weight 

Between $1000 - $2000

  • Medium running deck
  • Feel more sturdy
  • Decent top speed
  • More features including programs
  • May come with an app for tablets and phones
  • Medium to high user weight 

Above $3000

  • Heavier user weight capacity
  • Serious structural integrity by design
  • Wider range of workout programs
  • Minimum 3hp motor
  • Minimum 20kph top speed
  • Up to 15% incline
  • Larger running deck
  • More advanced cushioning
  • Some semi commercial models won’t fold
  • Option for entertainment console

Summary

At Fitness Warehouse we're Australia’s Number One supplier of Horizon, Tempo and Matrix Cardio Equipment and we pride ourselves on the products we offer. Our buying team meticulously select what we believe to be the best machines per price point. If you have any questions about any of our treadmills, please don't hesitate to reach out to our Fitness Equipment Experts in-store or online.

 

simon mitchell fitness warehouse head trainer   Written by Fitness Warehouse Personal TrainerSimon Mitchell

Simon has a Bachelor of Human Movement, is a certified FMS trainer and has worked in the fitness industry since 2003. Simon started his fitness journey as a trainer with iNform Health and Fitness before moving into commercial radio and then back into fitness with Bodyism in the United Kingdom and Australia. A career highlight was being one of the cast trainers on Star Wars IX - The Rise Of Skywalker.

 

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