Incline Treadmill Pros and Cons

Incline Treadmill Pros and Cons

We know that a treadmill is one of the most versatile fitness machines.

But, what is the best feature of a treadmill? Well, the incline function because it gives you a feeling that you are climbing a steep hill.

You can try other machines that add resistance to your workout.

However, none of them can simulate slopes like a treadmill. Hence, there are multiple benefits of this feature.

The Pros of Incline Treadmill Workout

Helpful in Weight Management

Walking, jogging and treadmill on an inclined tread belt burn calories rapidly compared to working out on a flat surface.

It’s easy to understand. You are using more power to walk on a hill, which means you are burning extra fat per km.

It’s the reason most professionals use incline for strength training.

We suggest that you follow some workouts that include incline because it will help you lose weight faster.

You can use the incline function while walking, jogging or running, and it will do the needful. For instance, you can try the given workout to enjoy treadmill incline benefits.

  • Walk or jog for 5 minutes at 0 per cent incline.
  • Run at your top speed for 1 minute at 1 per cent incline
  • Jog for 2 minutes at 2 per cent incline
  • Run at your average speed for 3 minutes at a 3 per cent incline
  • Jog for 5 minutes at 4 per cent incline
  • Run at your average speed for 3 minutes at a 3 per cent incline
  • Jog for 2 minutes at 2 per cent incline
  • Run at your maximum speed for 1 minute at 1 per cent incline
  • Cooldown your body by jogging for 5 minutes at 0 per cent incline

Simulate Outdoor Running

The incline function of a treadmill can simulate outdoor running because it adds some resistance.

According to experts, running outdoors is similar to indoor running when you are on a treadmill, and the incline is at 1 per cent.

Related article: Is Running Outside Better Than Running on a Treadmill?

So, this feature is one of the best if you are an outdoor runner. You can choose to work out on a treadmill and feel the same as outdoor running.

The treadmill is a fantastic alternative if the weather is terrible or you cannot find a nearby running track.

Plus, there are multiple benefits of running on a treadmill that you cannot enjoy outdoors. The incline is one of the primary features why even professional prefers to train on treadmills.

Builds Your Legs and Butts

Working out on an incline treadmill helps you lose weight, but it also tones your lower body.

Walking, jogging or running on a slope strengthens your lower body and gives it an attractive shape.

Be regular with your workout schedules, and you will notice the results within a few weeks.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to work out on an inclined treadmill every time you step upon a treadmill.

Include it at least for 10 minutes. You can change the time period according to your fitness level. But, do not keep it permanent.

Also read: Does Incline Treadmill Build Your Butt?

Simulates Races

A treadmill cannot replicate outdoor running, but it can help you prepare for races and marathons.

For instance, if you know there is a 1-mile uphill track in the race, you can simulate it using the incline function.

This function is helpful when you cannot practice on the racing track. You can even set the incline at a higher level so that you can easily overcome the original uphill section.

Some of the treadmills can also simulate declines, but they are generally expensive.

But, the incline is available in most of the running machine.

Apart from speed and strength training, you can also use a treadmill to warm up your muscles before starting the weight lifting sessions.

Other Inclined Treadmill Benefits

Cardiovascular fitness: To get the most benefits from a workout session, your heart should work at about 70 to 80 per cent of its maximum rate. So, working on an inclined treadmill keeps your heart in top shape.

Muscle building: An inclined path puts added pressure on your calves, glutes and hamstrings. When you walk, jog, or run on slopes, all these muscles are toned and strengthened.

Stamina: Working out on an inclined treadmill makes your lungs strong.

So, you can easily cover long distances without losing your breath.

Apart from that, you are also pushing your mind and body limits. So, you will be training your brain to achieve higher fitness levels.

Impact free workout: An inclined tread belt adds intensity to your activity without exerting extra pressure on your joints. So, the risk of pain or injuries in your hips and knees are minimal.

The Cons of Incline Treadmill

The number of drawbacks overshadows the advantages when we talk about incline workouts. However, it will help if you consider them.

Additional pressure: When you start walking on incline tread bet, your lower back muscles deal with different constraints.

So, expect high soreness in your tibialis anterior, gastrocnemius, soleus and peroneals. However, the soreness minimizes once you adapt the movement.

Shin splints: Some of the users also experience shin splints, especially after excessive workouts on slopes.

You can treat it with stretching and rest. But, it’s better to consult a doctor if the soreness or pain persists.

Extra impacts on the back: Are you dealing with back pain?

Then, consult your doctor before attempting incline workouts. The gradient impacts your lower back as its level increases.


What is incline on treadmill good for?

Incline function on a treadmill is helpful for weight management, strength training and muscle building. It’s the reason most of the electrical treadmill is available with some per cent of gradient, which generally varies between 5 to 20 per cent.

Is incline on the treadmill good for weight loss?

Walking, jogging or running on an inclined treadmill burns more fat because your body is working harder.

These activities engage all your body muscles and make them lean as well as strong. So, you lose more calories per kilometre when the incline is activated.

Bottom Line

The incline feature on a treadmill is handy for your indoor workouts. It allows you to add a lot of variation to your physical activities.

The slope strengthens your lower body, which boosts your fitness level. This means you will enjoy all the benefits of exercising if you include the incline feature.

Taking advantages of an inclined treadmill is easy. Some of the workout programs are specially designed according to this feature.

However, we suggest that you should not work out on an incline tread for too long. It’s easy to understand because there are no endless hills on an outdoor running track.

So, running long distances on an incline treadmill might cause injuries, especially if you don’t take regular breaks.


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