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COMPARATOR / Treadmill

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According to industry data, the treadmill ranks as the most popular device among home cardio equipment. And if you have decided to join the ranks of treadmill owners, there are a number of factors to consider to ensure that you are purchasing a machine that meets your needs.

Is the machine noisy? Do you like the design? Is it gentle to use? Is the mat easy to use? There are indeed a multitude of treadmills on the market, with prices ranging from 300 € to over 3000 €. The cost of a rug often directly reflects its quality. Remember, this product will be around for a long time to come, so figure out what you want and what you need before you even start your research to avoid regretting the purchase.

 

KEY POINTS

Comfort
The mat acts as a cushion for the joints, legs, back and feet. The most popular treadmills feature a cushioning zone that flexes under the user's ball of the foot to absorb shock. This feature is essential for people with shin splints and foot and back problems.

Power
First, look at the power of the treadmill motor (measured in Watt or horsepower) to determine the longevity of the machine. Some manufacturers measure power continuously (the engine's ability to operate with a load for a long period of time), others under extreme stress. Look for an engine with a power of at least 2.0 continuous horsepower, which will be able to accommodate users who weigh more than 80kg.
Next, examine the treadmill belt and the bridge. The belt must consist of at least two layers (thickness), 42 cm wide and 122 cm long. The thickness of the tabletop should be at least 2.5 cm.

Quality / price ratio
A sturdy frame supports the belt system and the bridge. Treadmills that cost between $ 350 and $ 1,500 typically have a steel frame, while treadmills priced over $ 1,500 are often built with aluminum frames that provide greater flexibility to cushion shocks. . Aluminum frames do not rust and are lighter and easier to move.

Programs
Inexpensive treadmills offer basic programming for speed, time, distance, and calories. The quality and accuracy of the programming features - such as preset programs that automatically vary the intensity of the workout by raising or lowering the treadmill and increasing or decreasing the speed - increases with the price.

Tilt
A 10% incline may be sufficient for novice athletes, while experienced athletes may need a treadmill that reaches 15% incline.

Dimensions
Before buying, measure the space in which you want to place the treadmill. While an average rug is 1.60m long and 70cm wide, there are machines that fold up to be stored under a bed or in a closet.

Warranty
Most manufacturers only warrant against manufacturing defects, not normal wear and tear, and if a user weighs more than the machine specifies, the warranty may be void. Many machines come with a lifetime warranty on the frame, while warranties on features and components typically range from 90 days to three years, depending on the quality of the machine.

 

TEST PROCEDURES

The test procedure is simple: put on a comfortable pair of sneakers and run.

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