Which is best?
Treadmills have long been the most popular piece of home exercise equipment, but now elliptical trainers are giving treadmills a run for their money. Both pieces of fitness equipment offer advantages over the other, so you'll just have to decide which one best fits your needs. Below are some things to think about to help make your choice, along with an outline of the advantages of both elliptical trainers and treadmills.
What are your needs?
- Do you have any neck, back or joint issues that are exacerbated with impact exercise?
- Do you have space constraints in your home?
- What is your budget?
- Do you enjoy running? Are you training for a marathon or anything of that nature?
- Are you confident in your coordination skills to be on the moving belt of a treadmill?
Compare Treadmills vs. Ellipticals
Why choose a treadmill for home fitness?
One of the greatest benefits of a treadmill is the variety it offers with the different workout programs. Some people feel motivated by this feature and it helps them to stay engaged in their workout. Most treadmills have the ability to increase the incline which also adds more variety to your workout. For further variety and an upper body workout, you can run with weights in the hands.
Another advantage to treadmills is the fact that fold-up models are available. This could be a huge determining factor of you have limited space in your home.
Although using an elliptical trainer does increase bone density, treadmill use has a greater impact on increasing and maintaining bone density because of its higher impact.
Keep in mind, treadmills are more realistic if you are training for a marathon or similar goal. Also, people who really enjoy running may prefer a treadmill over an elliptical.
Why choose an elliptical trainer for home fitness?
One major benefit of ellipticals over treadmills is the fact that elliptical trainers are virtually impact-free. This is a huge advantage for people with joint, back or neck problems, or for people who worry that running could cause those problems for them. Ellipticals are also viewed to be safer, as with a treadmill you are running on a moving belt that could be dangerous with a misstep.
Due to the fact elliptical trainers are low-impact, studies have shown that the 'perceived exertion' is less than running, although the same amount of calories are being burned. Because of this, experts say that the user is more likely to use the elliptical machine more often, for a longer period of time.
The low-impact nature of ellipticals also lends itself to need less maintenance and last longer than its treadmill counterpart.
In addition, elliptical trainers offer more of a full body workout than running, as most machines have dual action handlebars. You can also work different muscles by reversing the foot pedals. Some higher quality ellipticals also have the ability to increase ramp incline, further increasing the variety in your workout.
Because of the self-propelled nature of ellipticals, they typically use less energy than a treadmill which many people appreciate.
Elliptical trainers also have a lower price point compared to equal quality treadmills, which can be a big deciding factor for some customers.
As you can see, both treadmills and elliptical trainers have their own advantages. You just need to take your likes and needs into consideration to choose what is best for you. Make sure you try both an elliptical and treadmill to see which feels better and address the questions above to come to a conclusion.
At Colorado Home Fitness, we carry treadmills and ellipticals of notable brands such as Precor, LifeCORE, BodyCraft and BH Fitness. Our knowledgeable and helpful staff would be happy to educate you more on your options and find the perfect fit for you. Step into our Park Meadows Showroom to take a look around.