Start slowly and safely

When running on a treadmill, start with a slow and steady pace (barely faster than a fast walk). Your body needs to get used to the machine and the feeling of the belt rolling under your feet.

Once you’ve warmed up, you can increase your speed until you reach your target pace (6kph or more, depending on your physical ability).

Adjust the incline

A run on a treadmill usually seems easier because you’re running on a flat surface without any wind resistance. 

To recreate similar conditions to an outdoor race, you should set the incline of your treadmill to 1 or 2%.

Relax your posture

Posture is a key element to think of while running on a treadmill. Try to run as naturally as you would, as if you were running outside.

Before starting your run, remember:

  • To stand straight
  • To keep your eyes focused in front of you, looking into the horizon, rather than the digital display
  • To keep a centered position on the treadmill. If you’re too much at the front, you won’t be able to bring your knees up properly. If you’re too much towards the back, you’ll be stuck doing strides that are too short and too fast.
  • Not to control how your feet land on the treadmill. Your feet should follow your natural stride and movement.
  • To relax. Don’t stiffen your body and let go.

Do your best to run at the centre of the treadmill to adopt that natural posture allowing for your knees to come up and for all your muscles to be engaged (thighs, hamstrings, and glutes).

If you have a good posture, you’ll also avoid neck, back and muscular pain.

Look out for your stride

When you run on a treadmill, your stride is not as natural as if you were running outside. Instead of you controlling your stride, it’s the belt that controls your stride: the shock absorption is controlled, the pace is regular and the surface is flat. As a consequence, your stride will be shorter than those you would normally do outdoors.