Buying a treadmill is an investment in your health and fitness routine. Make sure you take the time to choose the treadmill that is right for you.
Whether you will be walking, jogging or running, and whether your treadmill will be put to light or heavy use, are factors that should be considered when determining the appropriate motor size. Motors with 2.0 CHP are appropriate for lightweight, casual walkers. Regular walkers and joggers require a more powerful motor between 2.25 to 2.6 CHP. Anything over 2.75 CHP are for advanced users. Your body weight is also a factor. Heavier users should consider purchasing a treadmill with a more powerful motor.
Helpful Hint: A motor’s strength is measured either in CHP (Continuous Horsepower) or HP (Horsepower). Where ‘Horsepower’ only measures a maximum motor horsepower, ‘Continuous Horsepower’ is a more accurate indicator of output because it is a measure of a motor’s ability to maintain a specific power over an extended period of time. For this reason, a 2.0 CHP motor is more powerful than a 2.0 HP motor. Sears values the quality of our products and only sells treadmills with continuous horsepower.
Deck Width & Length
Treadmill belt widths range from 13” to 22”. Average belt width is 18” as it provides adequate walking and running space, but it will fit through most doorways. The belt must be long and wide enough to accommodate all stride lengths. Your height and weight will determine the length of the belt that you require. Runners and taller users will prefer a longer deck.
- Under 5'7” - recommend minimum 52” length
- 5'7" to 6'4” - recommend minimum 55” length
- 6'5" to 6'11” - recommend minimum 58” length
Make sure you choose a treadmill that will handle your weight comfortably. Most should accommodate a minimum of 300 - 400 lbs. You will want the deck to be cushioned to withstand the impact of your walking or running as well.
Most treadmills allow you to choose from a variety of pre-set programs upon starting your workout. Once you select your desired program, the treadmill will automatically adjust speed, incline and other settings to offer you workouts focused on building strength, increasing endurance, burning calories and so on. Regardless of experience level, a range of programs will allow you to add variety to your workout routine. Some treadmills even allow you to customize and build your own programs to suit your fitness needs.
Make sure the display console is easy to read and operate. Display should show speed, time, pulse, distance, incline, and calories burned.
A safety key is a must on all motorized treadmills.
- Heart rate monitor, pulse grip monitor
- Reading rack
- Hand weight rack
- iPod dock
- Water bottle holder
- Cooling fans
You should also be sure check the treadmill’s warranty as they withstand a fair amount of use so you will want to protect your fitness investment.
It is recommended that you consult your health professional before starting any rigorous exercise program.