An elliptical and a treadmill are two of the most common machines that you are going to find in a gym. They both help you burn calories and improve you stamina, but each has some benefits and some disadvantages. So before deciding which one is better for you, here are some things you should know.
The benefits of the treadmill
1. Versatility: because it offers many options when it comes to speed and training programs, the treadmill is a great workout choice.
2. Natural movement: the treadmill is emulating our natural movement like walking and running.
3. Burning calories: just like running and jogging, exercising on a treadmill requires a great effort from our body. This way you will lose more calories.
4. Healthy bones: walking and running are making our bones stronger. Also they train those muscles which aid our posture and over the years, we will be stronger and healthier.
5. A piece of history: did you know that treadmills have been around since the 1800's? Since then, this workout machine has been studied and developed and today is one of the best and most popular gym equipment.
The disadvantages of the treadmill
1. Tough on joints: even though it might look like a child's play to run on a treadmill, you must know that a workout like this can put a lot of pressure on your hips, knees, ankles and spine. That's why you must warm up very well before starting.
2. Not so safe: when you are a beginner, the treadmill can be quite dangerous. Do start by making a high intensity sprint, but instead choose something that is more adequate with your skill level.
3. Hold on tight: some people have reported that they find it hard to hold on to the treadmill handles while running, so be careful with that.
4. Problems with the posture: studies have shown that the treadmill can affect the way we walk and run in our daily lives. It's actually all about the size of the belt and the quality of the treadmill.
5. It's hard: overall, running can be difficult and many people will choose that one machine that they feel is more comfortable.
The benefits of the elliptical
1. Impacts free movement: the elliptical is a great workout machine because it does't put stress on your joints, like the treadmill does.
2. Multiple training ability: because the elliptical has movable handles, you are able to exercise not only your legs, but also your arms.
3. Moving in reverse: this machine has a function that helps you move in reverse. This way more muscles are put to work.
4. Less effort, more results: when working on an elliptical, people don't even realize how hard they train. This makes the training easier and will help you lose a lot of calories.
The disadvantages of the elliptical
1. Not so dynamic: when running on a treadmill, you can adjust your speed and intensity, but the elliptical does not have this function.
2. No weight bearing effect: because the pedals of the elliptical are suspended, the weight bearing effect that helps strengthening our bones is lacking.
3. Momentum: when you use an elliptical, you will gain a momentum that will help you power the machine.
The battle of the calories
Ok, so now that you know which are the advantages an the disadvantages of both machines, let's talk about calories. Studies developed by medical institutions have shown this:
• running one hour on the treadmill will burn from 705 to 866 calories;
• using the elliptical for one hour will burn about 733 calorie.
Based on this and other studies, the treadmill has a small advantage when it comes to burning calories, that this is no reason to give up the elliptical. In the end, you must choose the one that you feel most comfortable with and enjoy the time you spend exercising.