TreadClimbers and Treadmills sound awful similar thus how do they compare and how do they contrast? FitRated.com has put together a guide to understanding both pieces of exercise equipment as well as hopefully making it easier on you when you decide, ‘Do I want a TreadClimber or do I want a treadmill?’

Let’s start with the definitions:

Treadmills: a piece of exercise equipment with a belt that is powered forward, either manually or electronically, thus providing a simple cardiovascular activity.

TreadClimbers: a piece of exercise equipment providing 3-in-1 workout motion including the same effect of the treadmill with an additional StairClimber and elliptical operation.

You have probably already heard of treadmills. TreadClimbers, meanwhile, are a relatively new piece of exercise equipment that is still gaining traction on the market. While both trainers provide an effective cardiovascular workout, some experts are really applauding the design of TreadClimbers because they not only offer the forward walking motion of the treadmill, but also a stair climbing effect of the StairMaster and quiet, smooth operation of the elliptical. They have also been proven to burn 2x the amount of calories compared to treadmills during a 30 minute exercise.

TreadClimbers vs. Treadmills

Several exercise manufactures produce treadmills while TreadClimbers are currently only produced by Bowflex and Nautilus. In terms of appearance, they both look distinctively different with the TreadClimber frame much more like an elliptical while the treadmill features the notorious long belt and larger frame. TreadClimbers are much smaller and weigh less.

The operation of both trainers are comparable, though some favor the “elliptical-like” operation of the TreadClimber. While you can only get the walking/jogging motion on a treadmill (with potentially an incline for added difficulty), TreadClimbers provide the stepping effect of the StairMaster. Therefore, it is easy to understand why the 3 in 1 workout motion of the TreadClimber is a little more efficient.

Reputation

TreadClimbers vs. Treadmills. As we already mentioned TreadClimbers are relatively new and do not quite have the same track record as the treadmill. While old-school exercise enthusiasts will always stand by the treadmill, ellipticals and TreadClimbers are making significant progress and will only continue to become more popular in the home market.

Electronics

TreadClimbers are definitely inferior to treadmills when you compare electronics. For example, iPod/mp3 docks have almost become stables on treadmills yet none of the TreadClimbers on the current 2011 market even have it as an option. If you are big into music, you will definitely miss the iPod dock as well as the built-in speakers. TreadClimbers do provide LED readouts similar to the LCD or LED display found on treadmills with vital workouts statistics such as speed, time, calories burned, heart rate, etc monitored. The important wireless heart rate strap is also included with most TreadClimber models.

Price

What is more affordable — TreadClimbers or Treadmills? It’s important to consider price with this economy and also a difficult question to answer because the treadmill industry is massive. Thus, the Under $500 budget treadmills are obviously cheaper compared to TreadClimbers, yet the well produced $1,500 to $2,000 treadmills actually compare about the same to entry-level TreadClimbers like the Nautilus Mobia and Bowflex TC1000. Meanwhile, the sensational Bowflex TC5500 is much more costly with a price tag of $3,999. In short, good treadmills are still slightly cheaper than TreadClimbers, but probably not for long.

Verdict

Treadmills have the stellar reputation and affordability. TreadClimbers, meanwhile, are revolutionary and at the brink of exercise design. They are more effective and versatile.