Treadmill Vs Outdoor Running

Is Running On A Treadmill Better Or Worse Than Running Outside?

 The running on treadmill can be likened to the making of bread by use of bread machine:  the purists are of the opinion that you are greatly missing the real essence of the experience while the pragmatists are of the opinion that the results and convenience really speak for themselves.  Even the critics admit that running on the treadmill still offers many benefits such as even packing, controlled temperature, good footing and possibly a nearby big screen TV. However, this does not inform us whether you are working on your muscles the same way you would if you were running outdoors.  

Can you for example prepare for a 10,000 road race by running on the treadmill?  According to Colin Dombroski, a pedorthist at Fowler Kennedy Sport Medicine Clinic, this question is ugly. Note that the pedorthist is a person who specializes in the athletes’ footwear or the footwear for those people that have lower limb or feet problems.  Research that has been conducted for over 30 years has led to the emergence of two conflicting schools of thought on this issue.  

On e of the schools holds the view that running on the treadmill is quite different and does not have the same impact as sunning on the outside.  Their argument is based on the fact that; on the treadmill, you just whip your feet back and forth without causing any movement the center of your mass.  The other school of thought maintains that; provided the treadmill is in constant motion, there is no any difference with running on the outside except only the lack of resistance by wind.

The most recent undertaking of unraveling this mystery was made by University of Virginia researchers.  These researchers used cameras of high-speed and special treadmills that had surfaces for measuring force so as to compare the motion of the joints and impact of the same.  The results of this study were published in 2008 in various fitness and exercise journals and they showed that there are some statistical significant differences between running on the treadmill and running outside.  The greatest differences of the two include the peak force and the knee orientation.  In overall, these researchers came to the conclusion that the biomechanisms of running on the treadmill are very close to those of running over ground.  The benefits are indeed almost the same.

 This is a conclusion that has found the support of very many running coaches. For example,  Peter Pimm, a Toronto based  distance running coach  says  that there  are  some differences between running on the tread mill  and running on the outside but according to him, those differences  are very minor.  One of   things that lack in the treadmill is the wind resistance; so as to compensate it, Pimm advises that the runners should set their treadmill at incline of 1%. One of greatest advantages of the treadmill is that; they are in general softer than the roads or sidewalks.

 So in conclusion; you should not rely fully and exclusively on the treadmill.  Even if the weather keeps you indoors for many months, ensure that you begin with simple outdoor runs before progressing in longer distance races.

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