What is an Electric Treadmill?

Diane Goettel

An electric treadmill is a treadmill that relies on an electrical outlet for power. It differs from a manual treadmill that requires no power source. It is most common to find an electric treadmill in a gym. Treadmills designed for homes are often manual, but there are some electric versions that are designed to take up less space than the larger electric versions found in most gyms. Also, an electric treadmill for the home is often designed with fewer bells and whistles and, therefore a smaller price tag than the treadmills most commonly found in gyms.

An electric treadmill requires an electric power source.
An electric treadmill requires an electric power source.

The key functions in an electric treadmill that require a power source are the belt and the display. The belt, which moves in a circuit around the treadmill platform, is operated in order to allow the user to walk or run. The display and interface on an electric treadmill allow the user to decide how quickly the belt should go, which will define the speed at which one must walk or run to keep up with the rotations of the belt.

Depending on the functions of an electric treadmill, the display interface may also allow the user to adjust the incline of the treadmill. By increasing the incline, the user must work harder to keep up with the rotations of the belt. This is a good way to burn extra calories and target different muscles in the legs and buttocks.

It is common for the interface on an electric treadmill to allow the user to choose among pre-programmed workouts that shift the speed of the belt and the incline of the platform to make sure that the maximum number of muscles are targeted and to provide training for different kinds of sports. These pre-programmed workouts are all saved in a computer system that is powered by electricity.

Other functions of an electric treadmill may be heart rate monitoring and a program that counts how many calories are burned during a given workout. The heart rate monitor is usually based on a sensor that is built in to the bar that runs along the front of the treadmill. When the user places his hands on the bar, a pulse is measured. The computer program in the treadmill can calculate how many calories are burned based on the amount of time that the user spends on the treadmill, the intensity of the workout, and the user's weight if there is a function that allows the user to enter that information.

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