8 Common Treadmill Mistakes to Avoid

Treadmill workouts are a great form of cardio. (Image by William Choquette)
Treadmill workouts are a great form of cardio. (Image by William Choquette)

It's important to avoid treadmill mistakes and give your best on treadmill walking. Treadmills are one of the most popular types of home fitness equipment because they offer a simple and effective cardiovascular workout. Treadmill workouts are a fantastic place to start a new workout routine because walking is well tolerated by most people regardless of fitness level or spine condition. This form of training can help you lose weight by burning extra calories each day.

Running or walking on a treadmill is an excellent way to get some cardio done. But if you want to get the most out of this workout, try to avoid the most frequent treadmill mistakes. Preventing discomfort and strain requires proper walking form and posture.

8 Treadmill Mistakes You Should Avoid

These tips can help you walk more smoothly and quickly, burn more calories, and reap the full health and fitness advantages of moderate-intensity exercises while preventing treadmill mistakes and injuries:

1) Skipping warmup

Warming up.  (Image credits: Unsplash/ Intenza Fitness)
Warming up. (Image credits: Unsplash/ Intenza Fitness)

To minimize injury and prepare for the increased intensity of your treadmill workout, walking, like any other activity, requires a thorough warm-up. Warming up for five to ten minutes before getting on the treadmill gently prepares your body for exercise by gradually boosting your heart rate and blood circulation, improving blood flow to your muscles and loosening your joints. Warming up your muscles prepares them for exercise and helps to prevent injury.

2) Wearing inappropriate footwear

Are you experiencing sore feet after a long session of treadmill walking? The fault could be lying in your footwear. Running in the incorrect shoes can be excruciating and cause a variety of health issues, including hip and knee discomfort, Achilles tendonitis, and plantar fasciitis.

Because many running shoes have pointed toe boxes, your toes will be forced out of their natural position when you run. On a treadmill, the appropriate shoes can help you avoid pain and improve your performance. A specific design in high-quality running shoes keeps your toes in place as you move.

3) Looking down at your feet

One of the best things about walking on a treadmill is that you can see all of your stats at all times, including speed, distance, incline, and calories burnt, on a large monitor in front of you. However, just as you wouldn't walk with your head down staring at a fitness tracker, you should avoid walking with your head down staring at the treadmill monitor.

Walking with your head turned down is just not a good posture to have for your neck. Looking down can lead you to lose your balance and fall, as well as strain your neck and cause the rest of your body to misalign. Your spine, hips, and knees may be strained as a result.

4) Holding onto the handrails while walking

Holding handrails. (Image credits: Pexels/ Anastasia Shuraeva)
Holding handrails. (Image credits: Pexels/ Anastasia Shuraeva)

You may prefer the security of gripping the handrails for support, but this is not a natural way to walk or run. If you grab onto the handrails, you won't be able to maintain excellent walking posture or move naturally with a nice stride and arm motion.

Instead of relying on the handrails to support your body weight, use your legs, arms, and core to accomplish the effort. This is especially significant for walkers who grip the handrails when walking uphill, as your arm drive aids in the generation of extra force and allows you to get a full-body workout. Once you get used to letting go of the handrails, it will get much easier.

5) Changing stride

You might be unconsciously lengthening or shortening your stride to cover more ground or burn more energy. Unfortunately, jogging with an unusual stride consumes energy too rapidly, limiting how long you can exercise.

An awkward stride might also put you at danger of injury, which is bad for your overall training. Instead, you can maintain a range of motion and walk on the treadmill with the same stride as you would outside.

6) Not using the treadmill's incline feature

Using incline treadmill. (Image credits: Pexels/ Andrea Piacquadio)
Using incline treadmill. (Image credits: Pexels/ Andrea Piacquadio)

There are several reasons why the treadmill's slope should not be set to zero. Keep the treadmill at 1–1.5 percent to simulate the same effort and intensity as walking on level ground. An incline treadmill compensates for the lack of wind resistance or changes in topography that you would normally encounter when walking outside.

7) Sticking to the same routine everyday

It's crucial to diversify your workouts and avoid becoming weary with the same regimen. If you find yourself on the treadmill every day and completing the same workout, you're probably not getting as much exercise as you could. Your body has totally adapted to your regular workout and will not adapt unless you force it.

Your sessions should vary in intensity, length, frequency, and/or form of exercise to gain higher fitness. To mix things up, try running on the treadmill. Using the exercise bike, rowing machine, or stair climber alternately is even better.

8) Going too fast

Only walk as quickly as you can while preserving proper walking posture and technique. If you find yourself overstretching, leaning forward, or hunching your shoulders, reduce your speed until you can walk correctly.

Avoiding these eight common treadmill mistakes will help you prevent injury and get the most out of your workout. Buying a treadmill is convenient and eliminates excuses about walking outdoors in hot, cold, or wet weather, the treadmill is one of the most popular ways to receive cardiovascular exercise. Put your newfound knowledge of effective treadmill walking form to good use and start walking!