Buying a treadmill for use at home can be one of the best health decisions you ever make.
If your fitness goals involve shedding weight, boosting acceleration or simply getting a great cardio workout, then a treadmill may prove a good investment.
Treadmills are ideal for training at home because they’re practical and easy to use. When used correctly, treadmill training can be effective in helping to manage weight, strengthen and tone your body and enhance your cardio system. But it pays to invest wisely!
To maximise your investment, as well as stay motived and achieve your fitness goals, it’s important to find the right treadmill. When there are
hundreds on the market it may seem impossible to know where to start.
Here’s our handy treadmill buyers guide to get you up and running.
Consider Whether to Hire or Buy
Before you spend, consider whether you’re committed to getting fit. If you’re unsure whether a treadmill is the right exercise equipment for your long-term workout goals, consider hiring first. Orbit offers exercise equipment hire for cardio equipment such as treadmills, ellipticals and stationary exercise bikes so you can find the right machine to suit your needs.
Having access to exercise equipment in the comfort of your own home increases motivation for many people. Using the right treadmill for your home workouts will make it easier for you to achieve your goals.
Define Your Fitness Goals
What are your fitness goals? Think about the workouts you want to do on your new treadmill, what your health targets are and why you want to purchase the machine. Having a clear indication of these factors will help in finding the right treadmill for you.
Will you be the only person in the house using the equipment? A common mistake is purchasing a treadmill without taking into consideration the weight and height of all potential users.
Research, Research, Research
Any wise investment comes with research – a lot of it! Don’t buy blindly. Instead, arm yourself with information by researching online, talking with the team at Orbit Fitness or asking friends and family.
Familiarise yourself with the best brands and compare prices for the models that interest you. Read reviews. Often the best brands are used in gyms and health clubs.
Consider Workout Space
Treadmills aren’t small machines, but they offer big benefits. Before you purchase, consider how much workout space you have in your home. Will the treadmill be permanently set up or can it be stored away when not in use? To rule out unsuitable models, measure your intended space (L x W x H) and cross check with the dimensions of the products you’re interested in buying. You’ll also need to take into consideration the required running space or deck length.
Set a Realistic Budget
Budget will no-doubt be a factor in your purchase. Be realistic about what you want to spend – overspending can lead to stress, while underspending may not get you the right machine for your needs. Cheaper models may be of dubious quality if not purchased from a reputable supplier.
As with most purchases, the general rule is you get what you pay for. Check the warranty length as this also provides an indication of the quality of the product. The longer the warranty, the better the product. Short warranties tend to mean the manufacturer is aware the machine won’t last the distance.
Less than $500 – Forget It!
It’s reasonably safe to assume that treadmills under $500 should be purchased with caution. These low-end products usually have short-term warranties and may have issues such as wobbly frames, unreliable data screens and noisy belts. While it is possible to get something suitable for occasional walking and jogging workouts in this price range, a cheap purchase is not recommended.
Budget for Upwards of $1000
The most popular and reliable home treadmills retail between $1,000 - $2,000. Shop during sales periods for the chance to get quality entry level models at discount prices, sometimes hundreds of dollars cheaper than the recommended retail price.
For runners and serious walkers, you’re looking at a $2,000 investment or more, depending on your required specifications. Treadmills at this level usually have warranties for three-or-more years. These machines are high powered, equipped with premium features and designed to enhance your workout.
Understand Key Features
Treadmill ‘must haves’ include an easily navigable console screen, shock absorption system to prevent knee injuries and boost comfort during workouts, reliable electronic features and adequate motor power (bigger isn’t always better). A stop key which clips to you and immobilises the treadmill in an emergency is an essential safety feature.
- Programs: Look for treadmills with programs that factor in distance, speed and time. Some only have a handful; others have a big variety of routines. Make sure you choose one with enough programs to keep you motivated.
- Heart Rate Control and Recovery: Heart rate control programs will allow you to adjust the intensity of workouts to boost cardio. Recovery programs test your individual physical condition through pulse rate to give you a better understanding how your body is responding to the workout.
- Speed: The Maximum speed of treadmills varies between 10kph to 22kph. If you’re a runner or fast jogger you want a machine that will hit at least 16kph. Serious runners are urged to test the treadmill out first at its maximum speed to ensure it’s fast enough. Opt for a treadmill that comes pre-lubricated too.
- Incline: Higher models will allow you to adjust the incline through a built-in program to make you feel like you’re walking/running uphill. Cheap models have a manual incline which means you’ll have to get off the machine to adjust via a lever. Instead, you should opt for models with an automatic incline.
- Horsepower: HP is the strength of the motor and should be related to the heaviest user at the speed they will be exercising. Multiple users, runners and heavier users should use a treadmill with a HP of at least 2.0 for a DC motor or a 1.5 HP AC motor.
- Additional Features: What additional features do you want and what can you go without to fit the purchase within your budget while still achieving your exercise goals?
Where to Buy
Orbit Fitness, of course. In store or online. Purchasing through a specialised retailer ensures you have access to trained staff and a wide range of high-quality treadmills. We also provide installation, service and support which means you get greater value from your investment and long-term maintenance of your treadmill.
Try Before You Buy
Before you commit, go for a test run. Visit one of our stores and talk to the team, who will supervise your test run on our display stock. For your workouts to be fun and effective, you want to know you’re investing in the best product for you. It’s also a great opportunity to see the latest models and features. Testing the treadmill for speed, comfort and ease of use will allow you to make a better decision.
Ready to purchase or want more information? Contact us today for friendly service and expert advice.