Often faced with the difficult decision of choosing an exercise routine, we tend to decide something and then we also abandon said exercise routine. While we must not blame ourselves for realizing that exercise routines are very difficult or that you do not want to pay a monthly payment, we could look into creating a gym in your own home. Such is the case of the Foldable Treadmill.
Now even if you do not have time to go to the gym, if it rains or snows, you can run. Running is an excellent exercise for your body and health, and it helps you burn calories quickly if you accompany it with a balanced diet. And a folding treadmill will facilitate this.
Foldable Treadmill: The Ultimate Guide For Pre-Purchase Facts!
What is a folding treadmill?
- Made with steel and rubber, folding treadmills are highly versatile fitness machines. Often electric, although there are also some manual models, a Foldable Treadmill allows the user to do exercise routines at home and run, jog or walk on them.
- With a Foldable Treadmill, you have a choice between different speeds, so they can be easily adapted to different levels of users, whether they are beginners or professional runners.
- This is especially cool if you have dogs, yes, you can walk them at home.
- With a Foldable Treadmill, you also have a HUGE advantage: a folding system that allows easy storage, they are light and install very quickly.
- With a Foldable Treadmill, you can find many different models on the market and they adapt to very varied budgets. Some are even manufactured at the pharmaceutical level and used for therapeutic purposes to accelerate the recovery of patients who have suffered injuries or surgeries.
What types of folding treadmills are there?
Folding treadmills with armrests
These treadmills allow the user to hold onto the machine for added security while running. They have rubber handles to avoid accidents if a fall occurs on the band. Our safety is very important when exercising, so it is important to bear in mind that if you are not very professional in your training, you could take advantage of the benefits offered by these models.
Folding treadmills without armrests
These treadmills are even more practical to store as they do not have armrests. They are ideal for working out in the office, as they can even be put under the desk and exercise while you work. They also allow easy storage, since they do not take up much space. They are more recommended for athletes who already have some experience with them, since they can exercise without holding on. That is why it is unlikely that they will have an accident with them.
Ultra-thin folding treadmills
These types of treadmills are ideal for small spaces such as apartments or offices. They allow easy storage under the bed, sofa or in the closet. In addition, because they are thin, their power and performance are not reduced. These are very comfortable models that allow different speeds and do not take up too much space.
False myths about running on treadmills:
There are many myths about running indoors on foldable treadmills. Obviously, running on the treadmill at a gym or at home is not the same as running on the street, but if you know how to train it doesn’t have to be bad practice. Let’s debunk four myths about running on treadmills:
Myth 1: Running on a treadmill takes more effort
The fact involving facilitating the movement of the foot backwards by the same sliding of the treadmill means less muscular effort to propel the body forward.
As there are no other external agents such as resistance to the wind, visual distractions or the variety of the terrain, this practice means, as a whole, less muscular effort and energy expenditure.
Make no mistake: sweating more when running on the treadmill is not an indication that you are trying harder. Remember that being indoors and having less ventilation than when you are outdoors can cause an increased perception of effort and heart rate.
Other aspects, such as the fact that the length of the stride can be shorter and you take more strides in less time or not changing landscapes or having visual stimuli, can also increase that perception of your effort and make your race seem more monotonous. and the workouts get longer.
Myth 2: Running on a treadmill destroys the joints
Although it depends on the cushioning of the surface of the specific tape you are using, although the impact on it makes it generally more aggressive than other surfaces such as grass or dirt, running on a treadmill is still less aggressive in most cases than the asphalt on the road.
Therefore, it cannot be said at all that running on a treadmill is synonymous with the fact that you are going to suffer an injury. The secret is in use and not abuse.
Doing short workouts of about 30-45 minutes a day so as not to crush your joints, wearing good shoes and ensuring that the belt where you train has good cushioning, are key factors.
Myth 3: Running on a treadmill and outdoors is the same on the legs
Running on a foldable treadmill is not the same as running outdoors and it is not recommended that it becomes a substitute for outdoor running. Training on the treadmill is ideal only as a complement to your workouts, when it is not possible to go running, either due to lack of time, or weather conditions or for other reasons.
Keep in mind that there are many things that vary when it comes to outdoor training. In addition to external agents such as wind resistance, the variety of the terrain, or visual stimuli, there are other aspects that you can modify such as: the width of the stride, the footprint, the movement of the arms, the plantar pressure, and even the muscles you work.
When you go for a run, your legs have the objective of propelling your body forward while when you run on a foldable treadmill, it is a mat that moves towards you, so you do not need to exert that propulsive force.
The role of the legs when you train on a treadmill focuses more on maintaining stability by working much less on the extensor muscles and partially inhibiting the use of some muscles, such as the glutes, and ligaments. It is for this reason that when you start running on a treadmill you may feel some unusual discomfort in the back and/or hip flexors or tibialis.
Myth 4: Running on a treadmill is the only effective method to lose weight.
Using a foldable treadmill can be a good exercise to complement your weight loss program, as long as you do it with enough time and intensity to burn more calories than you take in.
Without a doubt, spending hours and hours on the treadmill will make you lose fat, since at the end of the day you will be burning calories. However, by doing only cardio you may also lose weight where it does not suit you, since cardio burns both fat and muscle.
If you want to achieve a more lasting weight loss, it is better that you also integrate strength exercises into your routine. Adding weight training to your exercises will build muscle mass and this will raise your metabolism helping you burn even more fat, even when you are not exercising.
Advantages and disadvantages of folding treadmills:
It is good to take into account what advantages you get or don’t get when making a purchase. You will not waste your money with products that do not one hundred percent satisfy you. So let’s take a look at the following advantages and disadvantages of folding treadmills before making your purchase.
1. You can train in the comfort of your home or office
Folding treadmills allow you to train at any time of the year. It does not matter if the weather is too cold, too warm, or the weather conditions are not good. In addition, you will save yourself from catching a cold or a summer sunstroke.
You can easily store them under the bed or sofa, as they take up little space when folded.
3. Another weather advantage
Even in the summer, it can be an advantage to switch to the foldable treadmill during the hottest periods. When the temperature is extremely high, our body begins to slow down as a safety measure. There is a risk of collapse and heat exhaustion due to severe dehydration, or even heat stroke from dehydration in response to an increase in body temperature above 41 ° C.
This advantage is especially aimed at female runners: in the winter months, the days get dark earlier and it is not very safe to walk in the dark. For those who miss the feeling of freedom and security outdoors that the spring and summer months offer, running on the treadmill is a good opportunity to complete your training plan.
5. No allergies
Another advantage of the outdoor tape is for those who are more allergic to it. Avoiding the pollen load in an enclosed space will always be more comfortable than forcing your body to run outdoors in the middle of spring. Without a doubt, the treadmill offers an “escape point” for those who suffer from environmental allergies.
6. Results from your workouts help with good form
By not having to follow a path or look at the terrain or obstacles in the open air, you can focus more on your running technique. That is, in improving aspects such as posture, supports, the placement of your arms, or breathing.
If your city does not have strong slopes, you can train with different inclinations and vary your workouts. Above all, if you are thinking of presenting yourself to a career that will have slopes.
7. You will improve your lifestyle, as your body and mind will feel better
Regardless of the weather, intervals and speed training are easier to do on a treadmill. The constancy of the speed has a huge advantage inside. In addition, the mental strength up here is also trained secondarily: fighting the temptation to press an off button with minimal effort is a fact that all treadmills have to learn to control.
There are many options on the market with prices for all budgets. The machines generally come with after-sales service and warranty.
1. No substitution
Many people prefer this option thanks to the comfort of achieving high resistance in the same place. Just as running on a treadmill is not the same as running outdoors, we cannot allow the treadmill to become a substitute for outdoor running. Training on the treadmill, despite its comfort, is just one more complement to our workouts. We must see this opportunity as a solution, whether due to time constraints or weather conditions, but never as a replacement.
The external agents (wind resistance, terrain changes, light) are elements that one can face outside a gym, and which are essential to experience and control point us before a race. In addition, on a treadmill, we also modify the stride, the movement of the arms, and even the muscles that we work. Therefore, running on a treadmill is not the best substitute.
2. There could be a slight increase in the cost of your electricity bill
Another downside to keep in mind is that good treadmills – like those found in most gyms – are very expensive and cost several thousands! If you can’t afford to buy your own treadmill, you will end up receiving a fee for training in the gym or a larger electric bill For this reason, many athletes prefer to save and practice only in the open air since it does not involve any cost.
3. Some users find certain models a bit small and do not feel comfortable doing physical activity
Some are too heavy or do not have wheels to move easily. On the other hand, the model without armrests, if you are not very experienced, can cause accidents. These are more recommended just for walking.
4. Boring or monotonous
The monotony is an obvious drawback: despite the variety of games and training modes that typically offer treadmills today, most people do not usually entertain themselves in the same way as in free air. The fact that you are in a closed space and without seeing a goal on the horizon can become much more exasperating. Visual stimuli and a variety of scenery help motivate the athlete. In these cases, the best solution is to choose a treadmill with videos, landscape simulators, or a music player with songs that help you motivate yourself.
5. The settings on the timers are sometimes a bit fiddly on foldable treadmills
In addition to that drawback, if we exceed the load weight established by the manufacturer they can be damaged quickly.
6. Running on the treadmill makes inevitable changes to your stride
What you gain in a matter of less effort compared to outdoor training, you lose in a manner of articulation. Also, if you run on poor quality or improperly maintained treadmills, you could be the victim of an injury. Joint discomfort can be aggravated if you train on an unstable or excessively soft surface that changes your stride, your footprint and forces you to run incorrectly.
This unconscious decrease in the range of your arms and legs is caused by fear that you will advance further than you should on the treadmill and hit you in the front or that you will lose your balance and fall. This is a very common mistake, especially for beginners. But as experience and safety are accumulated on the belt, it can be run and normalized.
7. You will need to hydrate more often on any treadmill
As you sweat more indoors and are less ventilated than when running outdoors, you should always have a bottle of water on hand to combat rapid dehydration.
Purchase criteria or characteristics that folding treadmills should have:
The normal thing is that you use the treadmills in a gym, since they usually have the best and most up-to-date machines. But if you are thinking of buying your own treadmill to practice running at home, it is also important that you take into account the basic characteristics that a quality treadmill should have.
This factor is decisive and depends on the space you have in your home or office, although most of these machines are designed to be easy to store in closets or under the bed. Therefore, it is better to take into account the dimensions of the product and its weight before purchasing it.
If you have enough space, you will not have problems. However, many users like to feel as close to reality as possible while running (like running in a park, outdoors). Therefore, try to install your folding treadmill in a spacious and airy place. Also have enough space to store it. The dimensions of these machines are approximately 2 meters long by 1.5 wide and 1.5 high.
The dimensions of the surface of the tape are an important aspect that you must take into account. Depending on your height, your stride will be more or less long, so if you are taller you will be more comfortable on a larger treadmill.
If you are shorter than 1.65 cm, the minimum recommended running surface length is 120 cm.
Engine power is an important element and is measured in CV (horsepower) and, as you might imagine, the higher the power, generally the higher the quality and the maximum speed. So before choosing a treadmill, make sure the motor is capable of supporting your weight and reaching the maximum speed that suits your goals.
Taking these aspects into account, it is recommended that you opt for treadmills of at least 1.5 HP, although the optimal standard power is 2 HP, especially if you weigh more than 80 kg and run (or aspire to run) at a speed equal to or greater than 16 km / h.
If you want a folding treadmill for different types of training, we recommend choosing a machine that reaches high speeds.
Maximum speed is based on how fast the machine mat will rotate and therefore your speed over it. This speed depends on the power of the engine and usually ranges between 10 and 20 km/h.
Beginning runners usually reach a top speed of around 12 km / h but if you carry out more advanced or professional training, the general recommendation is that you run on a treadmill that reaches at least 16 km/h.
Some models go up to 16 kilometers per hour, and although it is likely that we will never reach that speed, as you progress with your training you will increase your speed. Therefore, a folding treadmill with good speed will allow you to adapt your workouts and increase your expectations when performing your exercises.
When you buy a low-speed treadmill, you may meet your goals quickly and then want a new machine. However, there is a wide variety of tapes with different speeds, so you will have no problem choosing the tape that best suits your purposes. Models that offer speeds of up to 8, 12, and 13 kilometers per hour are common.
Folding treadmill tapes
Since these tapes are intended to be used at home or in the office, they may not have the same work capacity as the tapes you find at the gym. They are generally a bit lighter, so you will need to know your body weight and compare how much the machine can hold so that you will not get surprises later.
If not, we may exceed the recommended weight and the machine will break down quickly. And if we do not take this information into account, we could lose the warranty offered by the manufacturer, as it is about the misuse of the product. Keep in mind that some folding treadmills resist weights of up to 120 kilograms, so they are suitable for overweight people as they are more resistant.
You can also try to find a tape on the second-hand market and you might even find practically new treadmills at a lower price. But before acquiring it make sure that it is in perfect condition and that it has been well maintained.
The cushioning systems of treadmills help the user withstand impact and better protect their joints. Therefore, you should not train on the treadmill at a gym or buy one for your home use without first having tried it or having found out if the manufacturer ensures that the cushioning of the treadmill is of good quality.
You have to make sure that when walking fast or running, the platform remains stable and firm and that it does not wobble. It should not be too soft and spongy or too hard, in both cases, you may experience discomfort if you already have a joint problem in your knees.
It is essential that your treadmill has the option to add slopes to your workout . It is usually measured with percentages ranging from 0 to 15% and is selectable depending on the level of incline you want or the training program you choose.
The incline of the belt also depends on the power of the motor, since the higher the incline, the more power you will need.
The incline is a perfect option to tone and firm your buttocks since it requires a greater muscular effort in this area and helps you consume more calories. The higher the incline, the more weight your body will support and the more you will work your muscles . Of course, if you have any problem related to the ankles, it is better that you avoid using the incline of the tape.
A good LCD system will help you display information about your workouts and select or change the various training programs available. The normal thing is that it gives you data on the distance traveled, the speed, the time elapsed or the calories burned, among other parameters. Visualizing all that information will help you motivate yourself, increase your speed or incline, and add new challenges to your workouts.
It is always best if a treadmill includes a number of pre-configured training programs available. This can give you greater motivation when it comes to adding dynamism to your sessions. Some even allow you to memorize your workouts so you can use them whenever you feel like repeating them.
These types of programs are the solution to monotony and will help you make your workouts much more effective and satisfying. It is proven that always performing the same type of training is losing effectiveness.
FAQs on folding treadmills:
Treadmills generally come with the types of training pre-installed. The user only has to go up to it and start their exercises. However, if it’s difficult, the user manuals are pretty straightforward. Thanks to them you will be able to find the correct way for the configuration. Other options that we can also use are the tutorial videos prepared by the manufacturers that are available on the internet.
Are collapsible running accidents frequent?
When you are not experienced in the sport you can have accidents if you set a speed at which you cannot run. You could trip and have an accident. However, this does not happen often, as the machines have speeds that are easily adapted to both beginners and professionals.
What happens if I exceed the load capacity of my folding treadmill?
The treadmills have a manufacturer’s recommended load capacity. If you exceed it, the machine can quickly break down and thus make you lose your warranty. Find a model that can support your weight, since this way you can take advantage of the product in the long term.
What happens if you buy a cheap treadmill?
The purchase of a treadmill is an aspect that worries many people, especially because of the money factor.
Quality tends to come with high costs. You cannot expect to buy something cheap and that will last forever. There is a high risk when buying cheap or cheap items, especially if it is about sports machines. Therefore, you should take into account that if you want to start exercising at home by running, you will have to invest a little more in a good quality treadmill.
Today, many and various models of exercise machines are offered on the market. Among them are treadmills at incredibly low prices that attract the interest of users eager to save some money. Spending a large amount of your savings on an exercise machine is not an attractive idea. As more and more people join this activity, the appeal of selling more affordable machines increases in parallel. The problem with this is that to sell them cheaper, cheaper materials are needed which are not very suitable for the intensive use that users normally give to this machinery.
Do I have to buy the most expensive folding treadmill?
You don’t need such an exaggerated model of the finest quality but let’s not go to the extreme of cheapness either.
Basically, look for good technology.
The risk is not confined exclusively to the parts with which inferior quality treadmills are manufactured. Inferior quality treadmills also add technology that is not as good as those handled by the more expensive machines.
Technology that is important for training, a fundamental part of the advantages that these machines provide. For example, there are those that can give a reading of the distance traveled, some include physiological meters that calculate the heart rate, respiratory rate, etc. There are even those that incorporate supports to place the tablet or other music devices.
Likewise, it should be noted that, although buying a cheaper treadmill seems like a greater saving than buying a more expensive one, the truth is quite another. Cheap treadmills at the time of purchase end up involving a much greater expense for their owner, since they deteriorate more easily due to the low quality of their components. In other words, they are unable to withstand the intensive use that most users give them for their daily training.
The end result is that the machine must be scrapped and replaced with a brand new one in no time. They generally have a lifespan of a year or two, and even less than that. On the other hand, higher-quality machines manage to pass the test and last for many more years.
As we mentioned, the cheap parts and the cheap technology are the main risks, so let’s take a look at the cheap parts that are involved with low end treadmills.
- Low-end processors: while high-quality machines are built with processors that quickly adjust to the resistance we put to the tape, lower-quality ones take longer and don’t make adjustments in time.
- Short-lived parts: cheap machines use plastic parts that are not very resistant to the stress to which they are subjected during exercise. Above all, the wheels are made of plastic materials that resist stress for a short time. If the use is intensive it is much more likely that they end up deteriorating quickly. The higher quality tapes have metal parts that guarantee strength and durability.
- Low power engines: Lower quality machines bring with them engines of diminished power. The machine is slower and forces you to always use it to the maximum of its capacity. This increases the chances that the engine will burn out shortly after purchasing it. By demanding more power, the more likely it is that the wiring harness will burn out resulting in engine wear.
- Electronics that break down sooner: Electronic components in cheap machines tend to wear out faster with continued use. Especially when maximum power is required, which burns electronics wiring in less time.