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Valued Contributor
Posts: 574
Registered: ‎12-04-2011

Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

Although I would love  and prefer an electric treadmill, I just can't afford one. So am looking for recommendations for a reliable brand. I've also been considering mini steppers (like the Sunny brand on Amazon that also comes with resistance bands). My concern with those, however, are the reviews complaing about breaking. I'd hate to be on one of those and all of a sudden have the pedal break off. Don't need any additional health problems. But, if any of you know of a dependable one of those, I'd love to hear about that as well. Thanks ahead of time!

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,237
Registered: ‎03-29-2011

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

[ Edited ]

Have you tried a manual treadmill? We had one and hated it. It was difficult to use. Cost wise it was about half the price of a motorized one. In reality we wasted the money and should have bought the motorized one from the beginning.

The manual one we bought from QVC. The motorized one came from HSN.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,488
Registered: ‎05-09-2014

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

[ Edited ]

Manual treadmills are hard to use. The friction on the belt requires serious effort to get it rolling and way more of a workout to achieve and maintain speed. So you elevate heart rate without getting in the walk or run except to work much harder at it. If you don't care much about putting in the "miles" and just want the aerobic element of raised heartbeat, save your money and do jumping jacks in place. You also could consider a simple exercise bike to accomplish good exercise with more comfort and a sense of accomplishment. You can adjust the seat height and the friction to maximize miles, speed, and calories burned. Obviously, this would be a simple, non-electronic model, not a Peleton!

I had a non-electric treadmill to save money and I sold it after owning it 2 months. It was uncomfortable to use, and I came to loathe it and skip the workout. I use the stationary bike regularly and it is effective exercise. 

Buy athletic equipment you can try out before you buy it. Wait until it's safe to shop and go to a store like Modell's to view and test before ordering anything online. Equipment like what you seek cannot be flimsy and tends to be heavy.  Returns are really difficult to execute on items that big, bulky or heavy. Know it's right for you before the purchase. 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,955
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

Manual treadmills are hard to use and you might get frustrated and quit using it. While electric treadmills are more expensive, they are well worth the extra $ you will spend. 

 

I had an electric for many years and used it every day. When I moved, I sold it. 

 

See if you can find a "gently" used one and your area, imo you will be much happier.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 10,022
Registered: ‎03-16-2010

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

I haven't had a treadmill in many years, but I'll echo everyone else's comments about the manuals being a pain.  That's what I started out with and I hated it.  Not only was it flimsy and I didn't feel safe on it, it was hard to use.  I ended up straining my leg muscles without getting much actual walking in.

 

We ended up getting a decent electric treadmill that we used for several years.  They are more expensive, but you can get a basic model for not much more than a decent manual machine, provided you don't need all the  bells and whistles.  The cheapest manuals are terribly flimsy and not worth even what little you pay for them.

 

I also would suggest waiting until you can try them out and compare.  A manual might be fine for your needs, but for me, it was just money thrown away.  And a pain to try and find a way to get rid of the machine.

 

I would suggest looking at yard sales (when they're allowed again).  Many times people get rid of machines that are in very good condition and end up costing much less than brand new.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,442
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

With a manual treadmill or something like a Total Gym you are moving your own bodyweight so if you have health or mobility issues you may well be wasting cash. 

 

Looking for a second hand treadmill? Only if you have someone to throw it in the back of a pickup, drive it home, bring it in and set it up for you.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,363
Registered: ‎10-01-2010

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

@qualityshopper  Do not buy a manual treadmill,you will not use it.  Like everyone else posted,I had one and used it rarely.  I have a Tony Little Gazelle that is easy to use and not motorized. The best exercise is to get outside and walk.  But if you can't ,the Gazelle isn't bad.

Trees are the lungs of the Earth
Honored Contributor
Posts: 13,831
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

[ Edited ]

@qualityshopper 

 

They are a waste of money. If you are looking for "indoor" Cardio workouts? A cheaper recumbent bike would serve you much better. You can get a fairly good one for about $170.

 

I fall in the excellent physical fitness category, and most of my Cardio is done on my 2 recumbents. I wear a Polar Chest Heart Rate Monitor and get everything I need for the Cardio I want to achieve.

 

I also have 2 motorized treadmills. My oldest one has over 25,000 miles on it. Used it primarily for training for the hundreds of Road Races I ran over decades of running.

 

 

 

hckynut(john)

 

 

hckynut(john)
Valued Contributor
Posts: 574
Registered: ‎12-04-2011

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

Thanks everyone for the great advice. Sounds like I should just forget the manual type.  Although cardio exercise is important for me, I am actually looking for something to specifically tone my legs--a bike would be good for both. Right now, though, looks like I'm going to have to wait a while to buy anything. Shortly after I posted about this, I discovered that I apparently have termites (did a separate posting about that). The exterminator will be out Monday to confirm and tell me how much it's goint to cost me. Just what I needed!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 13,831
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Looking for recommendations for a manual treadmill

[ Edited ]

@qualityshopper 

 

Sorry about the termites! We went through that in our last townhome. Not cheap!

 

My main thing is ice skating, which to do well requires leg strength/flexibility, and durability. I get all of that from my 2 recumbent bikes.

 

One I use only for leg strength, pushing at the highest resistance setting with only 1 leg. It not only strengthens my legs, but activating my VMO muscles, also helps protect my very old and beat up knees.

 

Get just as good a Cardio workout on the recumbent as I do with my treadmills/elliptical or NuStep. Without good cardio ice skating is not much fun for proficient skaters.

 

When some $$$$ free up for you, keep the recumbent in mind. Not many cardio machines I haven't used and right now, for this old man, my recumbents fill the bill.

 

 

 

hckynut 🏒

hckynut(john)