How Dangerous Are Treadmills?: The first image that our brain forms after listening to words like “celebrities” or “actors” is of a man with a really good physique. The actors and actresses are frequently spotted outside gyms and are dubbed as fit and healthy individuals who do it all correctly, from exercise to diet. However, the past year has not been very jolly for the Indians as many of the beloved actors have left the world for their heavenly abodes.
The Indian public looked upon them as their fitness inspirations, and the sudden deaths of such celebrities as Puneeth Rajkumar, KK, and Siddharth Shukla, among others, have not only sent shockwaves across the country but also raised concerns among the common masses regarding fitness. Going to the gym now is no guarantee of fitness. However, what is surprising is that despite concerns, there have been no conversations regarding “dreadmills.”
Treadmills: An invention to punish
America has invented many things that are no longer serving their purpose; the best example of this can be found in Jeans.
Jeans, which have been popular among young people for many years, were originally designed for factory workers because they required less maintenance. The same is the case with treadmills. Around 200 years ago, treadmills were invented in England as a prison rehabilitation device. It was used to make the incarcerated suffer and learn from their sweat; it was earlier called a treadwheel.
Treadmills have not been safe since their invention. An 1885 British Medical Journal article titled “Death on the Treadmill” chastised Durham Prison for the treadmill-induced death of a prisoner with a heart ailment.
Treadmill in modern times
Nobody has ever seen a gym without treadmills. Although there are several kinds of exercise, cardio has always been the darling of the masses. A gym can be inaugurated without proper weight training equipment, but having a treadmill is mandatory. After the pandemic, the culture, however, transformed, and people resorted to running inside their homes. This period saw a spike in treadmill purchases in India.
Treadmill, perceived as the best equipment to lose weight, has over time become the favourite equipment as the beeping sound of the speed and resistance buttons and the whirring of the belt give an adrenaline rush never before experienced.
With the growing love for treadmill workouts, other kinds of workouts like elliptical, spin class, weight training, and walking or running outside have become boring. However, treadmills are not fairy tale as they might appear, and the British journal’s analysis was just the tip of the iceberg.
Treadmill or Dreadmill
Treadmill has been sold with the tagline that it helps burn calories and thus reduces weight. However, people have been relentlessly running with the hope of losing weight without proper guidance and a recovery-rest cycle. Treadmills inflict a lot of injuries, which are often not noticed by the naked eye until they become big.
Researchers believe that running on a treadmill changes the normal mechanics of the body. It is because the treadmill belts pull the runners’ foot out from under them with each stride, rather than the opposite with real running. As a result, injuries to the feet, knees, and hips occur.
Running on a treadmill also puts unnecessary pressure on the tendons and ligaments of the leg. The treadmill transmits an unacceptably high level of vibrations up the joints and into the lower back. For the unversed, running on a treadmill puts a lot more pressure on the knees as compared to running outdoors.
Running on the high platform that the treadmill offers, leads to wear and tear on joints’ cartilages, thus ultimately resulting in no support and flexibility among the bones. When obese people run on a treadmill, it causes severe joint complications, including acute pain. It can also weaken joints and increase the chances of developing osteoporosis. Also, the human body needs a range of exercises rather than just running to stay fit and healthy.
Heart diseases often go unnoticed in the initial stages. Many people pass away from a cardiovascular ailment, and then it is discovered that the person was suffering from some kind of heart disease. Almost all heart diseases are asymptomatic, and if the ones with a minute heart ailment work on the treadmill, it can trigger plaque rupture, which causes an acute heart attack that leads to sudden cardiac arrest and on-the-spot death.
How Dangerous Are Treadmills? or the treadmill story implies that it was invented for a specific location and must remain in that location.
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