The Use of Treadmills in Pre-Industrial Times:


Treadmills are everywhere – in commercial gyms, households, community fitness centres etc. It is a feat of engineering, designed for walking or running while staying at the same place. Interestingly, the technology was around for quite some time until humans decided to use it for physical training purposes. Some of the traditional treadmills still exist in the remote parts of the world where technology is yet to arrive. They are still used for irrigational purposes, in mills in these places. These days, treadmills are used basically to maintain fitness. It comes with a wide conveyor belt powered by an electric motor or a flywheel. Let’s have a look at how these machines came to be how they are now.

Use in Ancient Egypt & Rome:

The land of Egypt is filled with marvellous and gigantic pyramids, which are counted under the Ancient Wonders of the World. Each stone, that was piled upon one another at certain intervals, weighed tons and were transported from 800kms.

Here we can see one of the earliest application of the treadmill like technology. At this point in history, there seemed to be the existence of two types of tread wheels. The vertical treadwheel was used to grind grains, while the horizontal wheel was used for irrigation, grinding or pulling weights.

The Romans, too, used the ancient treadwheel for construction purposes (Polyspaston Crane & Magna Rola), wherein a wide diameter wheel attached to a mechanism, which was operated by 2 people and pulled stones from the ground.

They were widely used in the Middle Ages for lifting stones to create Gothic Cathedrals, as well.

From the design perspective, the earliest treadmill had a horizontal bar jutting out of a vertical shaft and was moved around by an ox or some other animal. Another design was where the treadmill was powered by climbing on it. It is similar to the modern-day hamster wheels. There was the third design as well, which used a moving sloped platform. This is the actual ancestor of a modern-day treadmill.

Use in the 1800s:

Treadmills, in the 1800s, were used in prisons for people sentenced to hard labour. Punishment treadmills were installed by Sir Williams Cubitt, sensing the prisoners’ idleness and using their manpower to be used in productive work.

The treadmill felt like walking an endless pair of steps supported by a horizontal handrail. Another form was designed where the prisoners had to walk on a wheel, which was further attached to mechanisms for grinding grain, pulling water etc.

The prisoners would climb a vertical height equivalent to 7200 feet. Many prisoners would die in exhaustion combined with a poor diet. Some jail wardens credited the device for taming more defiant inmates. It was banned in 1902 by the British Government, for the device was way too cruel.

Modern Age:

From farm and construction sites, the treadmill first paved its road to households in the 1900s. It was developed by an engineer, William Staub. His prototype was called Pacemaker 600. And from there on, further developments were made to mechanize the treadmill. And now, we have a whole industry dedicated to fitness by using the treadmill. It has also become one of the highest-selling devices in the industry.


It is astonishing to see that a simple treadwheel can be transformed into a complex device like a treadmill. One can hardly imagine life without it. Life has been made easier using a treadmill within the comfort of four walls. But on the other side, the treadwheel is energy efficient and can be further used in the future for renewable energy options. The windmills are a perfect example of that. The future generations can take a note and work on furthering the idea.…



NordicTrack was established in Chaska, Minnesota, which has an average temperature of 55 degrees, thus, the brand aimed to create treadmills that provide an easy way to workout indoors.

NordicTrack is manufacturing since 1975 and is well known for manufacturing its Nordic ski machine, low impact exercises, elliptical, and incline trainers.

The brand is owned and managed by ICON Health& Fitness currently.


NordicTrack Treadmill series:

2019: NordicTrack’s 2019 treadmill series include, traditional and incline trainer treadmills, in each series the models have touch screens and high tech experience, and the models are supported by iFit Coach App.

2020:There are three different levels of machines in 2020 brand line,

  1. The entry-level T series.
  2. The higher-spec Commercial Series
  3. The Commercial incline Treadmill series

In these lines, there is a gradual development into features like:

  1. Extra-wide tracks
  2. Advance cushioning system
  3. Sturdy frames
  4. Steeper inclines
  5. Wider screens



The idea of incline treadmills invented for those people who do not like running so much yet are willing to burn big calories, the sole reason that made NordicTrack incline trainers so famous.

They not only provide you the incliners but also the decliners up to -6%.

When summed up with the Warranty of 10 years, these treadmills are a steal.



And in today’s era, we spend more than half of our day working, so NordicTrack desk Treadmills provide you an option to run while you work, of course, if your workspace allows this.

These Treadmills are designed according to your corporate grind, also providing you the statistics of your progress and workout.

There are two options to choose from,

  1. The treadmill desk
  2. The treadmill desk platinum

These are easily foldable, noiseless treadmills to fit in completely in your office space.



  • Over time it has been established that inclined running is a lot more effective than normal running and NordicTrack is manufacturing more innovative treadmills with each of its new series.
  • The wide tracks allow you the comfort of running either indoors or outdoors.
  • The NordicTrack Treadmills have a lot more powerful motors when compared to the other brands of its price range.
  • The high tech touch screens up to 32 inches are indeed manufactured to provide you with a fun workout experience.
  • The storage and pockets provided make the cardio all the more comfortable.
  • The iFit lets you enjoy a gym membership at home to optimize your workouts.
  • The Google Map routes and integration with various apps are all the more exciting.
  • The amplifying speakers and Bluetooth availability is what you need while a good workout session.
  • The brand’s treadmill Warranty of 10 years on the frame, 2 years on the parts and 1 year on the labor, makes it a more lucrative purchase.


  • The treadmills from NordicTrack are on the expensive side for the buyers, this does not make it easily accessible for all the strata.
  • The assembly process is not very easy.
  • Customers end up paying an extra cost for the professional set up of the treadmills.



NordicTrack, without a doubt, have a shinning reputation when it comes to treadmills.

Each of their Series is unique in its features and worth the try, the more recent the series, the extra the features.

Also, NordicTrack treadmills are very highly rated by the customers.

Though they can appear to be on the high end, price-wise, but it will be worth your every penny.…