Runners hate treadmills; it’s no secret. Often jokingly referred to as “dreadmills,” many exercisers complain that treadmills don’t feel natural while logging miles.
Determined to create a treadmill for serious runners, the Cybex Research Institute deconstructed the running process and investigated the shock experienced when running on a treadmill.
What did the data reveal?
- The greatest stressor during running is the shock that occurs during the first few milliseconds of stance.
- By providing a deck that is flexible up front where landing occurs, the initial shock is reduced.
- As the runner transitions through stance, a deck that is firm in the middle and rigid in the rear aids in maintaining proper joint motions and provides a solid surface for push-off.
The figure above displays three images of a person running on a treadmill at eight miles per hour. In the image at left, the heel is just making contact with the treadmill deck. This is initial contact. In the center image, the foot has moved under the runner’s hip, and the center of gravity is positioned over the instep of the foot. This is mid stance. Lastly, at the far right, the foot is pushing off of the treadmill deck at the point of toe off.
What does that mean for runners?
Not all treadmills are created equal. As a result of their research, the Cybex Research Institute worked to create a more forgiving treadmill deck that doesn’t alter the biomechanics of running.
Designed after a performance running shoe, Cybex’s IS3 Intelligent Suspension System is the heart of Cybex treadmill decks. Soft at landing, firm in the middle and rigid at toe-off, it creates a smooth, comfortable ride with reduced impact – the closest users can get to an outdoor run on a treadmill.
Optimizing Performance. Reducing Impact.
Unlike traditional treadmills, the Cybex IS3 Intelligent Suspension System anticipates every phase of a runner's stance and delivers an ideal surface for each stage. It is specifically designed to optimize the running experience.
Learn more about Cybex treadmills and the science behind their design, including the Cybex Research Institute’s IS3 Intelligent Suspension System study.
Want to get the most effective treadmill workout possible? Learn how holding on to treadmill handrails affects calorie burn and improve your running with a few simple tips.
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