An increasingly popular option for many users is a curved FreeRun treadmill, an alternative to the standard electric treadmill. Unlike motorised options, a FreeRun commercial curved treadmill has no electric motor and requires no main power. Instead of a motorised belt automatically rotating under your feet, a curved treadmill is set in motion manually by your feet and force that you put into it. This may seem strange at first, but there are many reasons to love this kind of treadmill.
How does it work?
Curved treadmills are completely manual, and are responsive to the amount of force the user applies in their workout. This means the speed of belt is set by your pace and motion. The curve of the machine assists in getting the belt rotating under your feet, and makes for a more natural motion for your feet and legs. Manual treadmills give you closest experience to actually running, making them popular amongst professionals and marathon trainers. Lifespan’s selection of curved treadmill are all made with commercially graded materials for the absolute best experience and comfortable run. For a breakdown of the difference between commercial and standard treadmills, click here.
Speed is an important component of your treadmill workout. FreeRun treadmills are responsive to the speed of their user. This also means that the maximum speed of these treadmills is unlimited, allowing you to truly test your own limits. This control over your own speed makes the experience of a manual treadmill closer to actual running. The ability to set your own speed as you go means you have greater control over your workout, and allows for more complex exercise routines involving variations in intensity. This makes them great for High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), giving the user the ability to accelerate intensity quickly without having to stop to change any settings.
Promotes Better Form
The 15-degree curve is designed to mimic your natural stride pattern and actually increases posterior muscle activation. This assists in developing better running form and produces less strain for your legs and back. This is why they are sometimes used for rehabilitation, as they have a fantastic ability to correct posture and form, developing muscle strength in a way that’s safe and comfortable.
More Intense Workout
Manual treadmills also require you to work harder, as keeping the belt moving requires extra stability work from the core and leg muscles, leading to a higher energy expenditure. This extra work and additional muscle activation means that manual treadmills will burn up to 30% more calories than a standard one. This makes them popular with those who aren’t able to run at high speeds, as they can still provide a great workout even at a walking or slow jogging pace.
Then, of course, the fact that it doesn’t require electricity will be a huge boon for many users. Not only will it give your energy bill a bit of a break, but is handy for those who may not have access to a power outlet in their home fitness space. This gives you extra freedom to place your treadmill where you’d like. It also provides the added satisfaction of being eco-friendly.
For a move comprehensive breakdown of the differences between a motorised and curved treadmill, click here.
Being manual, curved treadmills have fewer moving parts and as such don’t require as much maintenance or complex repair work. While it’s not immune to breaking down, repairs are usually simpler than they might be on a motorised machine. Having said this, every Lifespan curved treadmill will come with instructions on maintenance of your machine to help extend its life as much as possible.
Curved treadmills are generally considered safer, as there is a reduced risk of injury from slipping. Slipping on a motorised treadmill can be hazardous, especially at high speeds, another reason why it’s a good idea to where shoes with adequate grip. While you’re not immune to injury on a manual treadmill, slipping or falling is less of an issue as the belt will come to a stop when after you stop moving. The handlebars also provide extra security if anything goes wrong during your workout.
Tips on Using a Curved Treadmill
If you’re still a little hesitant to step onto a manual treadmill, here are some tips on using one for the first time.
- As with all treadmill workouts, it’s recommended to wear good quality footwear to protect your lower body joints and set you up for the best workout.
- Check whether or not your machine has an adjustable resistance level, and set it accordingly.
- Step onto the treadmill from the back, straddling your legs on either side of the belt.
- Curved treadmills will also have handlebars on each side that are there to assist you in getting onto the machine and to provide stable support as you set the belt in motion. These can also be incorporated into different types of workouts.
- Set the treadmill in motion by stepping onto the lowest part of the belt. Pull at the belt using your hamstrings until you fall into a natural stride.
- Accelerate speed as you feel comfortable.
Lifespan’s selection of FreeRun treadmills are built with a sturdy, commercial frame with tubular steel for extra durability and strength. Curved treadmills are one of the best commercial treadmills for home use and provide a truly unique and personalised experience to suit all levels of fitness. Speak to our friendly team today and we’ll help you along your fitness journey.