Treadmills are a great way to starting a workout when the weather isn’t in our favor. Here are a few tips to follow to make treadmill use effective and safe. Don’t skip the warm-up or cool down — both should be slower than the workout and can help prevent injuries. Keep your heart rate in mind by adjusting the speed and incline to get a more effective workout. Calorie and fat burning only happens if you keep your heart rate up and at a steady pace, which is difficult to do if you are reading a book while working out. Swing those arms. By swinging the arms and not holding onto the side rails, you can improve your stride and help increase your heart rate. Lastly, slow the belt down before getting off the machine as jumping off a moving treadmill can cause injuries. As always, drink water before, during, and after any workout to maintain your body’s hydration.
Bridget R. Sanders, PTA
The Memorial Hospital Physical Therapy Department