Protect Your Joints Run On A Treadmill

Protect Your Joints Run On A Treadmill

Running on hard surfaces takes its toll on a runner's knees and feet. Runners who have been at it for more than ten or twenty years will tell you of their pain. However, treadmills can greatly reduce the incidence of such pain. Virtually all treadmills provide cushioning that reduces the repeated jarring that running on hard surfaces produces. Studies indicate that running on treadmills reduce impact joints by up to fifteen per cent over running on a hard surface.

Simply taking time off between runs can often allow joint damage to heal and for the joints to actually strengthen. However, the conditioning of running can be so beneficial, and the act of running itself can feel so good, that the runner wants to do it every day. We have a tendency to want to work through this discomfort.

The cushioning on a treadmill also demands less energy expenditure than running on hard surfaces. When running on a hard surface, a certain amount of effort is required to propel yourself forward with your calves and to absorb the impact of the landing of your feet. Treadmill cushioning reduces this effort. In place of this effort, the treadmill runner can exert more effort with the larger quadriceps muscles and thus burn calories more efficiently.

Many brands of treadmill proclaim the superiority of their form of cushioning. Trade names further the impression that that company's cushioning is unique and superior. It is difficult to determine the truth behind these claims and impressions since manufacturers typically give few details on how their cushioning mechanisms actually work. Most of the mechanisms do provide an adjustment that allows the user to choose a level from rigid to very soft. On more expensive machines, this adjustment can be made while using the machine. On others, the user must make this adjustment while off the treadmill.

Fortunately, this is one instance where consumers are not hurt by what they don't know. Virtually all cushioning systems tighten or loosen the treadbelt by increasing or decreasing the tension of a form of spring that applies pressure against the underside of the belt. It is commonly recommended to adjust the tension on the tread belt to a point where the user can feel the "give," but footing is still solid. This level of comfort should allow the user to run safely and efficiently for many years.


Robert Braun's knees hurt just a little! For more information on treadmills, click on this: Treadmill

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