Treadmill is the Easiest Way to Cross-Train

Published Date: April 7th, 2012

Running on a treadmill may seem like the most mundane form of exercise, but according to a new study in the 'Journal of Strength and Conditioning', it could also be the ultimate form of cross-training.

Researchers compared the metabolic demand of running on a treadmill against a kettlebell swing routine to test whether or not ketttlebells could serve as a practical means of cross-training.

On the first day, researchers had 13 people complete a 10-minute kettlebell swing routine consisting of 35-second swing intervals, followed by 25-second rest intervals. Two days later, the same people completed a 10-minute treadmill run at a similar level of intensity.

The researchers found that running was the better choice for aerobic activity. Oxygen consumption, calories burned, and several other metrics were all significantly higher for the treadmill session.

“We found that only 10 minutes of running on a treadmill resulted in an average of 512 calories burned, while the kettlebell routine only burned 375,” says Jerry L. Mayhew, Ph.D., co-author of the study and professor of exercise science at Truman State University.

But that doesn’t mean you should stash those kettlebells in the attic.

While the treadmill proved more effective for aerobic gains (according to ACSM’s standards), the kettlebell routine also produced gains in aerobic capacity, says Mayhew.

“Yes, there was a significant difference in calories burned, but you have to consider the fact that the treadmill routine was 10 minutes of nonstop exercise, while the kelllebell routine allowed 25 seconds of rest for each minute that passed,” says Mayhew.

Running may provide better aerobic gains (learn how to burn more fat on the treadmill), but kettlebells will provide you with a mix of benefits—aerobic, strength, flexibility—that you won’t get from the average treadmill session, explains Mayhew.



"Treadmill is the Easiest Way to Cross-Train" is posted under: Treadmill Guide, Treadmill News