So you want to take your dog for a walk, or perhaps you want to take him jogging with you – but it’s freezing outside. You’d like to get your exercise in today, when you have time, but is it really worth venturing out into the cold? Well, ok, we’ll put it off until tomorrow…or maybe when it gets warmer.
Challenge: need exercise, but don’t like the cold. Solution: exercise inside. But what about the dog? There’s not enough space for him to run around. Challenge: need to walk the dog. Solution: walk him inside. Inside?! How can you possibly do that? There is a way. You can use a treadmill.
Would you believe that people have been using treadmills since 1875? They weren’t originally designed for that use – but they were designed for animals.
We’ve all heard the expression: Necessity is the mother of invention. The treadmill was no exception. The need was for mobile power. The invention was the treadmill. The first treadmills were an agricultural machine called “level power” treadmills. They were built in various sizes to accommodate various sized animals. The smaller treadmills were run by dogs and sheep to power attached fanny mills or butter churners. The bigger ones were run by horses to power threshing machines.
Fast-forward to 1952 and the first medical treadmill. It was invented by UW cardiologist Robert Bruce, called the father of exercise cardiology, along with UW staffer Wayne Quinton. Together, they developed the standard treadmill test to diagnose and evaluate heart and lung disease. Quinton later sold his interest to Stairmaster, who was subsequently bought by Nautilus.
The fitness equipment industry recognized the need for a smoother and more user-friendly treadmill. Several companies competed for the right to the best treadmills of its time. We’ll show you a few examples:
Its obvious that the treadmill industry has your keep-fit program in mind. They want you to be healthy, and they’ve provided the means for you to do so. The Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association reports that consumers spend more money for treadmills than any other home exercise equipment. For example, treadmill sales in the U.S. alone shot up 10% in 1996, climbing to $725 million from $660 million in 1995. In 2001, there were over 43 million treadmill users, up 9% over the previous year.
There are other types of fitness equipment that can meet your needs, like motorized treadmills, recumbent exercise bikes or elliptical machines, but if you want good cardiovascular exercise, the treadmill is unsurpassed in providing the maximum benefit for your heart.
And now you can really walk the dog indoors. You can now get a double-wide treadmill – enough room for you and your jogging partner, or for you and your dog. Have a nice walk!
Gareth Marples is a well published freelance writer providing tips and advice for consumers on the best treadmill reviews. His numerous articles offer moneysaving tips and valuable insight on typically confusing topics.