Top 8 disadvantages of treadmill running!

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Written By Samarjit Sinha

Working out for 10 years | Has a home gym | CPD (UK) Certificate holder in Fitness

The fact that running on treadmill is not a joint friendly workout, for that I would stay away from it. But if you are training for a marathon, then you have no choice. But for safe weight loss workouts, you should try exercise cycles and weight lifting.

Top 8 disadvantages of treadmill running!

  1. Boredom
  2. Not joint friendly
  3. Buying Cost
  4. Maintenance Cost
  5. Space Needed
  6. Noise
  7. Does not replicate actual running
  8. Outdoor running burns more calories

disadvantages of treadmill running

What are the top 10 disadvantages of treadmill running?


Some people find the idea of walking on a treadmill to be boring. It is not as interactive as taking a walk outside, but there are ways to make it more interesting. For instance, you can watch TV or read a book while you are on the treadmill. You can also listen to music or podcasts.

disadvantages of treadmill

But should you not focus on the workout itself more? Concentrate on the muscles being worked, focus on the movement?

So I do not like watching TV, reading books while walking on the treadmill. I believe you will miss the treadmill benefits for the body by doing this.

But some people who try walking or running on the treadmill, they usually enjoy how quickly their fitness goals are achieved.

But on the long run, it is a boring piece of exercise equipment.

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Not joint friendly

One of the most common exercises that’s done on a treadmill is running. Running requires a lot of force exerted by the joints to keep it going, and this puts strain on the muscles and joints. A good alternative would be to walk on a treadmill, which is much easier on your joints.

This is especially true with manual treadmills, here you need to push the belt to move it. This is more taxing on the knee joint and not recommended if you have knee pain or an elder citizen. And too much of treadmill training is bad for knees for everyone.

Buying Cost

High treadmill buying cost is one of the factors that you should consider. Cheap manual treadmills are not worth it since they will breakdown quickly and are problematic. And high-priced treadmills will burn a hole in your pocket. High-priced motorized treadmills do worth it, though. 

Maintenance Cost

Even if you are using a good treadmill for running, even for home running, even then the maintenance cost will be high. Most of the time it will not be possible to do the maintenance can not be done by yourself and professionals help will cost some money. Motorized treadmills do need extra help and needs more money to be spent on to keep it functional.

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Space Needed

Treadmills are a large piece of gym equipment and for a small house/apartment it takes up the space pretty fast. Yes some treadmills are foldable, but even when you fold it, it solves the problem with floor space, but you will still need a large space to store the treadmill at home.

Treadmill Noise

Running on a manual treadmill makes the loudest noise. Automatic treadmills are good, but still they do make some noise. But still manageable. Although, we as a treadmill runners do not mind the sound. But if you are living with small infant or old people, then it might pose a problem while you are running on the treadmill. And low cost budget treadmill do make more noise.

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Does not replicate actual running

No matter what the treadmill companies tell, you, running on a treadmill does not mimic the outdoor world. Outdoor world is much more exciting and works wonders for overall health and not just weight loss. But treadmill running is easier than outdoor running, so it might not be a counted among a disadvantage of treadmill exercise!

Outdoor running burns more calories!

You might want to buy a treadmill to burn some calories. But only do it if you have no option to run outside on a field. Outdoor running present itself with challenging surfaces, weather and people. This burns more calories that running on a treadmill. And of course better than manual treadmill running.

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Features that a Treadmill Should Have

Here are the top features that a treadmill running machine should have!

Motorized Treadmill: Motorized treadmills are good for running indoors. These treadmill benefits include being soft on the knee joint. If you start running at home, then you should invest in a motorized treadmill. This ensures that the chances of having running injuries are less.

Heart rate tracker: Treadmill running is intense, and you want to have a heart rate tracker to know how you are doing. All motorized treadmill do come with a system to track heart rate, distance and calorie burned. And if you are doing treadmill training, you have to keep that data to log your progress. This is good for treadmill walking as well.

Wide Running Deck: The running deck has to be wide and long enough to suit your strides. Usually low cost treadmills come with smaller running deck and which is not good for everyone. It is better to try exercise equipment like this before buying, if possible, that is.

Thick Running Belt: Apart from the running deck, you should look for thick running belts and shock absorbers if you are planning on running with the treadmill. Treadmill running puts a lot of stress on the knee joint. And without the shock absorbing capabilities, your knees might get hurt.

Incline: Incline treadmill is good and often recommended by running coaches to use by treadmill runners to perform better in running contests. Also, if you are into treadmill walking, then the incline feature will put you under more pressure. This will help you burn more calories and really helpful with doing variations in intervals running workout plans.

Why should you get a natural running treadmill?

If you are unable to run outside and enjoy the nature, then you should get a running treadmill. Another reason for getting a treadmill is to do marathon training at home. But no treadmill will be able to mimic road running. Treadmill running machine is better to be used at home, indoors.

How to use the treadmill at home for good form?

To run with better form on treadmill, you might refer to treadmill running videos. Ideally, you should start slow and use the handrails to balance your self while walking. If you are running then you should wear a good shoe with cushion and also buy a treadmill with thick running belt as well. The running treadmill price will increase in that case but can not be avoidable. Usually you should try to feel that you are running naturally, and your running form should get better.

Is it possible to use a natural running treadmill outside?

Electric treadmills will get damaged if you use them outside. Treadmill is an indoor gym equipment, and you should not use them outside at all. If you want to go outside, then running outdoors is the best option than using a motorized treadmill.

Running on a treadmill vs outdoors

Running on a treadmill vs outdoors is a popular debate in the running community. Some say that indoor running burns more calories and is less stressful on the joints than outdoor running. Outdoor runners, however, contend that outdoor running offers more benefits such as breathing in fresh air, being able to see your surroundings and getting a great workout for your body.

As far, my opinion goes, running outdoors burns more calories and is more refreshing than the boring indoor treadmill.

Are Treadmill running apps helpful?

There are few benefits of using a treadmill running app. This will allow you to track your progress such as calorie burning, distance and time tracking. The handrail should have a heart rate tracker, so your heart beat should get logged too.

You can use the mobile app that comes with the treadmill, or you can use your smartwatch as well.

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Tips for Buying a treadmill for running?

For running, you should buy a treadmill with at least 2.5 HP treadmill with 5 HP peak. Also, you should confirm the thickness of the running belt. A thick running belt with shock absorbers is the way to go when you want to run on a treadmill safely.

How to use treadmill to run more?

You will need a good treadmill horsepower for running, and one of the benefits of treadmill running is that you can increase and decrease the speed to do HIIT training. With a high paced workout with treadmill, you can use the treadmill to run more.

For example, first 10 minutes to run at a lower speed than the next 10 minute, increase the speed and then more. Until you can not do anymore. Then instead of stopping, run/walk at a lower speed. This way you will be able to build stamina and run more.

These kinds of intervals running might even help you win running contests as well.

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And if you are wondering how to Curb Boredom During Treadmill Running? Then do your treadmill runs in HIIT style and also add some more exercises like push ups, squats, pull-ups to make your workouts more enjoyable.

Why do you need a treadmill?

You will need treadmill for the following reasons –

  • You want to run but can not go outside
  • You want to burn excess calories by doing running at home
  • You want to increase your stamina and cardio health by running.

Apart from this, treadmill is a pretty boring gym equipment.

What are some benefits of using a treadmill?

  • Treadmill workouts can be completed virtually anywhere, unlike outdoor workouts.
  • Treadmill workouts will save time when compared to outdoor running.
  • Treadmill workout routines can be adjusted to suit the individual’s needs.
  • Treadmill workout routines are easy to do and can be made harder with no need to stop and consult a fitness professional.
  • The treadmill is an excellent way to lose weight and is less likely to cause injury than other types of exercise.

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Is It Bad To Run Barefoot On A Treadmill?


I would wear a shoe with thick cushions to avoid any feet pain. If the treadmill cushion is not thick enough then you will feel the rollerblades and that is not a pleasant feeling.

IS Treadmill Worse Than Running?


Treadmill running is not worse, but outdoor running is way better. If you want fresh air, meet new people, burn more calories than outdoor running is preferred. If you compare the pros and cons of treadmill at home, then the pros outweigh the cons.

Is Treadmill Bad For Joints?


There are some disadvantages of treadmill on knees, if you increase the treadmill speed then you are more prone to knee joint pain issues. Otherwise, for brisk walking it is all the same. To avoid any joint issues, you should wear good running shoes and the treadmill belt should be thick as well with shock absorbers.

Can Running On A Treadmill Hurt You?


Excessive usages of treadmill running machine can hurt you, on treadmill or outdoors as well. It may get too strenuous for your knee and ankle joints.

How Fast Should I Run On Treadmill?



You can run as fast as your treadmill and your body allows. If you think you can safely run at 14km per hour on the treadmill. Then do it.

Does Running Treadmill Burn Belly Fat?



Treadmill will burn a lot of fat but from all over your body. Treadmill running can not specifically burn fat from your belly. But with diet and daily treadmill workouts, you should see good results.

Is 30 Minutes On Treadmill Good?


Few sources say that you can burn around 350 calories if you weigh around 83kgs. So daily 30 minutes of treadmill running will be good for you, if you want to lose weight.

Does Treadmill Help Bum?


All leg activities like treadmill running involves the glutes, and thus they do help the bum. But if you want to do more treadmill activities to do with butt development, then you should do walking lunges on the treadmills so see some extra benefits on the bum. You can also do weighted walking lunges if you are not using a treadmill. Weights do help more than using only body weight.

What Are The Side Effects Of Treadmill?


One possible side effect of treadmill could be knee pain if you are not wearing god shoes. Or if your treadmill does not have shock absorbers. Other than that some leg pain ,muscle spasm might happen due to the tiredness of the leg muscles. And do not try to do manual treadmill running, this is very bad for the knees.

How Can I Run On A Treadmill Without Hurting My Knees?


To protect your knees from treadmill running, you have to wear a thick, cushioned shoe. And you have to use a treadmill that has a thick rubberized platform for running. This has to have some cushion and also have to have some shock absorbers in place. This is the best way to protect your knees.

How Can I Run On A Treadmill Without Hurting My Knees?


To protect your knees from treadmill running, you have to wear a thick, cushioned shoe. And you have to use a treadmill that has a thick rubberized platform for running. This has to have some cushion and also have to have some shock absorbers in place. This is the best way to protect your knees.

What Is The Best Exercise Machine For Bad Knees?


Recumbent exercise cycle, or exercise cycles for home are good for knees. This is a low joint impact workout machine and works great for bad knees. This way you can train your legs without hurting your knees.

What Is The Best Exercise Machine For Bad Knees?



Recumbent exercise cycle, or exercise cycles for home are good for knees. This is a low joint impact workout machine and works great for bad knees. This way you can train your legs without hurting your knees.

Is Treadmill Or Outdoor Running Better?

For burning more calories, outdoor running is better. But treadmill running is much easier and much more comfortable.

Ref: Effects of Treadmill on knee

About The Skinny Author


Working Out for 10 years | Owns a home gym |Certificate course done on Improving Aerobic Fitness, Diet | CPD (UK) Accredited Certification on Fitness

Yo Friends, this is Samarjit! A skinny guy who is building his tiny home gym.

I have successfully gained 10 kgs in 10 months going to commercial gyms. And I have been working out on and off for about 10+ years now.

I have gone swimming, done martial arts, Olympic lifts and body-building-type workouts!

I canceled the gym subscription as I was more into making my home gym for workouts. And getting ready, then getting my cycle and ride to the commercial gym seemed a drag after 10 hours in the office.

Thus, I needed a home that I could access at any moment!
And I started building my home gym!

I had to research a lot to build my home gym and decided to share effective, budget-friendly home gym machines, and nutrition to buy as per your goals here in

If you have question then contact me here

Ps: The author is highly experienced with making small workout routines, understanding and guiding people to get gym equipment, and setting up the home gym as per their Fitness goals.

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