Annually, there are over 24,000 injuries associated with treadmills that are treated in emergency departments across the country. Of all exercise equipment (which includes swimming pools, weights, golf clubs, and trampolines), treadmills cause the single largest number of injuries.
Doctors of emergency and sports medicine say that injuries from falls on machines are rare, and that the vast majority of injuries from sports equipment were related to overuse -- for example, an injured tendon from a long run on a treadmill.
More than 400,000 people in the U.S. are sent to the hospital each year for injuries related to exercise equipment. Treadmill injuries typically include broken bones, abrasions, head injuries, and people developing chest pain while on a treadmill.
Consider the following tips for a safe treadmill training experience:
- Workout at a place where you feel under control.
- Identify where the "emergency stop" button or cord is located.
- Do not set the speed of the treadmill beyond what you are capable of handling.
- Do not jump onto the rails while training on the treadmill.
- Keep your eyes and head forward at all times. If you turn your head, your body tends to follow.
- Do not leave your treadmill running to exit the treadmill for any reason.
It's also a good idea to exercise with a friend, and not alone; in case of an emergency someone can help you. You should also ask your doctor or pharmacist to review your medicines to identify those that may cause side effects, lightheadedness, dizziness, or drowsiness.
Keep reaching for life's mileposts!
The P.A.C.E. Fitness Foundation, Inc.
P.A.C.E. is a non-profit organization aimed at Promoting Active Children Everywhere.