Buying the Right Treadmill For Your Body & Budget!
For the uniformed, buying a treadmill can be a challenging experience. In addition to the numerous brands and the hundreds of models, there are countless features to choose from. To help individuals in their pursuit of a healthy lifestyle, we are going to provide a list of tips for getting a treadmill that perfect for your body and your budget.
Before You Buy - Determine Your Present and Future Goals
Are you planning to start out walking, but hope to advance to jogging? Or do you want to eventually work up to a marathon? These decisions will impact the type of machine that is sufficient to accomplish your fitness goals in the long run.One of the biggest mistakes treadmill buyers make is to purchase a machine that is inadequate for their needs. Part of the problem is with the manufacturers who overstate the capabilities of their treadmills. They may suggest that a budget treadmill will accommodate an extremely overweight individual or a runner. As with any purchase you get what you pay for, and with a treadmill if you pay less than $700 you are not going to get much. In what I consider the cheap treadmill category, you get machines that are a compromise in design, engineering and components. There are many who buy cheap treadmills and they last forever, but you are playing a numbers game. The more you pay for a treadmill, the less likely you will encounter service issues.
Since most cheap treadmills come with a 90-day parts and labor warranty, if they break you may as well throw them away because they are too costly to repair.
Considerations When Buying a Treadmill
Usage - As mentioned, you need to determine what type of activity you will use the treadmill for. For example, if you plan to just walk, you can get by with a budget treadmill in the $700 - $1,000 price range. If you want to jog you want to spend between $1,000 - $1,500. For runners, plan on spending $1,500 on up.
User Weight Limits - Treadmills take abuse. Whether you walk or run, you are constantly impacting the treadmill deck. Of course, the more you weigh the more the impact. I generally recommend that most people discount the manufacturer's recommended weight limits. Some may overestimate by as much as 25 percent. If you weigh over 250 lbs. you want to consider a machine in excess of $1,000. If you are over 300 lbs. you want a treadmill that is adequate for runners, one that cost a minimum $1,500. A more expensive treadmill will have a more powerful motor that won't strain from the excess weight. In general, these machines will be more durable and stable.
User's Height - The combination of a user's height and whether they are walkers or runners will determine the necessary length of the treadmill. Most treadmills under $1,300 have around a 5'4" treadbelt. That is sufficient for average height individuals who walk. However, if you are over 6' you should consider a treadmill with a longer belt. A number of manufacturers offer treadmills with 60" belts. The length will accommodate taller users and runners with long strides.
Multiple Users - If there will be more than one user for the treadmill, then you will want to factor that into the cost. Two regular users means double the abuse, three, well you get the point. Commercial treadmills are so expensive because they are able to handle multiple users and run for hours on end. Add several hundred dollars to the cost of a treadmill if there will be more than one user. To summarize, consider all the factors above when purchasing a treadmill. Equally important is to check out expert reviews and customer testimonials. Consumer magazines, reviews sites and expert opinions can help you target the best of breeds in treadmills.
Fred Waters is editor of the Treadmill Reviews and Ratings site where you can get reviews on over 100 popular treadmills. He has worked in the fitness equipment industry for over 11 years. His site is designed to assist people in finding the right machine for their fitness goals and budget.