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Treadmill Walking Mistakes to Avoid


Updated May 16, 2014

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

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Treadmill Walking Mistakes to Avoid
Treadmill Walkers in Gym

Treadmill Walkers

© Deklofenak / Depositphotos.com
Treadmill workouts are a great way to get cardio exercise. To get the most out of treadmill walking, avoid these common mistakes. Proper walking form and posture are important in preventing pain and strain as well as helping you to walk smoother and faster.

Mistake 1: Getting onto the Treadmill

The first mistake is getting onto a treadmill while the belt is moving at full speed.
  • Begin standing with one foot on each side of the treadmill - most treadmills have sides that are designed to allow you to stand on them in this way.
  • Start the treadmill at a slow rate of speed.
  • Observe the speed and carefully get on.
  • Increase the speed smoothly after you have gotten on board.
  • Know where the emergency halt switch is located. Often this is a bright red switch.

This may seem like unnecessary advice, but I've encountered gym users who have been injured simply by trying to step onto a moving treadmill belt, or by being surprised by the jerk of the treadmill belt as it comes to life when they are standing on it.

Another treadmill safety issue is children getting their fingers and hands injured when playing around the back of the treadmill, where the tread goes over the rollers. Keep children away from a moving treadmill.

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