People have been using the treadmill for indoor cardio training for almost a century since its creation. Running a high-intensity plan to prepare for a marathon or receiving a brisk walking workout for overall wellbeing, utilizing a treadmill provides the user with several advantages.
A treadmill not only improves your cardiovascular function but also exercises vital lower-body muscles, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, and glutes. Modern treadmills contain an incline function that simulates the slope of a hill to make walking a more demanding cardio workout.
However, if you don’t know about the benefits of using the Incline feature, then don’t worry. We will be covering the 6 benefits of Incline Treadmill Training in this article.
Is Incline Treadmill Walking Different from Normal Walking?
Incline function is basically added to make walking and running on the treadmill a bit challenging. But some people think there’s no such difference between normal and incline treadmill walking. To clear their doubt, we list out the following differences:
Put Extra Pressure
The treadmill’s incline feature tries to put extra pressure on the body than simply walking on a flat surface. It simulates the grade of a natural uphill climb by providing a perfectly even surface devoid of divots, holes, or plateaus. It burns more calories than treadmill walking on a flat surface, making it ideal for weight loss.
Changing from one percent incline to others is one tactic used in incline training. This strategy is used to push your body towards its limits with a strenuous cardio workout. Anything above a 15% inclination will offer you the most significant muscle activation, which means it will be significantly better at muscle growth. You may imitate an uphill climb’s health and muscle-building advantages by going from a 15% inclination to a higher one.
Activates the Posterior Chain Muscle
Walking or jogging on a level terrain uses more quadriceps and fewer hamstrings and glutes, which are the components of your posterior chain. When you switch to inclination mode, though, you’ll see the posterior chain muscles working with every step.
6 Benefits of Incline Treadmill Training
The majority of the people think that incline function in the treadmill is only there for weight loss. But in fact, there are many essential advantages of training on incline treadmill. Some of the vital benefits of incline treadmills are discussed below.
1. Increase Heart Rate
Walking fast on an incline treadmill, like most exercises, will bring your heart rate up. As previously stated, even walking on a flat surface will improve your breathing, which will enhance blood regulation if you practice regular incline walking. A treadmill workout forces your heart to work harder, which is precisely what it needs to strengthen. In contrast to more intense cardio workouts, incline treadmill walking can be steady, allowing your heart rate to enhance without shocking it.
If running causes discomfort or is too hard on your joints, consider raising the percentage of inclination for a low-impact workout that will still aid your circulation.
2. Increase Metabolism
You’re probably aware that incline walking can help you lose weight. Because it can help you revive your metabolism, forcing your body to burn more energy. High-intensity workouts, such as HIIT, will keep your metabolism going for hours after you finish. The same is true for incline walking but to a smaller extent.
When the body expends a lot of energy regularly, it consumes more energy. It is one of the main reasons why people struggle with weight loss when they only exercise once or twice a week. Because they haven’t forced their body to burn substantial energy in a long time, their metabolism is still dormant. If you want to lose weight, metabolism is essential, and incline walking is an excellent technique to increase your body’s energy consumption.
3. Protect from Exhausting
Muscle exhaustion is one thing if you’re participating in a strength training plan and want to push yourself to the maximum to develop hypertrophy. On the other hand, total bodily weariness will be a demotivating issue for most people in the middle of a cardiac workout. Unless you’re used to being out of breath after a long run, you’re likely to avoid cardio activities entirely if you overdo it.
Incline walking is an excellent method to reap the advantages of cardio without exhausting yourself. Of course, you may still select a more significant incline percentage and challenge yourself during incline treadmill walking. However, it is not required to receive any of the other advantages.
Exercising while you don’t feel rested entirely might provide an energy boost. But, most importantly, you don’t want to exhaust all of your body’s energy reserves. As a result, you may overcompensate after the workout. To compensate for the energy expended at the gym, some people binge eat, jeopardizing their weight reduction efforts. With incline walking, you can get a solid cardio exercise without feeling exhausted afterward.
4. Boost the Fitness Level
The increased metabolism and heart rate will all contribute to an increase in your overall fitness level. Although incline walking does not allow you to target specific muscle groups or where the fat loss will occur, it does result in muscle activation across the body. This will make other exercises and physical activity more manageable. As a result, many individuals utilize incline treadmill walking as a warm-up before doing more intense workouts.
Many powerlifters and strength training specialists eliminate cardio activities from their regimen, fearing that the body may lose muscle mass to get energy for the activity. That, however, is a blunder. Light cardio, such as incline walking, is an excellent way to raise your heart rate without depleting muscle mass.
5. Increase the Stamina
Incline walking improves stamina not only in your legs but also in a variety of other areas. There are apparent locations where there will be an increase from your calves to your upper thighs. Your lungs and brain are examples of areas that may not immediately spring to mind.
Your lungs will work considerably more challenging on the treadmill than they would on a flat surface. As a result, your lungs will get stronger and more conditioned, making this workout an excellent method to prepare for longer runs, marathons, and other endurance events.
Working out on an incline treadmill improves your brain as well because you’re pushing your mind and body to areas they’ve never been before. You will be training and demonstrating to your brain that your body can perform these strenuous activities. Your brain is generally the one that prevents you from pushing yourself as far as you can when working out, telling you that you can’t. Incline training will demonstrate and develop your brain to convince you that you can accomplish it.
6. Reduce the Injury Risks
Using a cushioned treadmill to exercise instead of jogging or walking outside decreases the chance of knee and hip damage since changing the inclination of the treadmill raises the effort level without increasing stress on the body’s joints. It also stretches the Achilles tendons and calves, which can help patients with foot issues like plantar fasciitis. Walking at an elevation can aggravate lower back discomfort. Therefore, those experiencing pain in this region should lessen the incline and gradually increase their workout as the back muscles strengthen.
According to research conducted by the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine, increasing the inclination of the treadmill by 3% decreases the impact that the legs must take by roughly 24%. Running on a treadmill is already less stressful on the body’s joints than running outside, so a little inclination minimizes this stress while increasing the activity levels.
Besides being a perfect cardio machine for the workout, the incline treadmill comes with multiple other advantages. This article has covered six benefits of Incline Treadmill Training. So, if you want to walk but don’t have much outside area, incline treadmill walking is the right combination of cardio that works well as a warm-up or cool-down and won’t tire you. Add it to your workout regimen right away for some added health advantages and faster muscle recovery.
John is a Certified Personal Trainer – Exercise Fitness Specialist who loves to share his experience to assist you reach your fitness goals.