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Manual Running Machines - Self Powered Motorless Treadmills

Updated on February 19, 2012

A manual running machine does not use a motor to drive the belt. Instead, you as the user, utilize the strength in your own legs to propel the belt forward which is why this type of exercise machine is also sometimes called a self-propelled running machine or a motorless treadmill.

These are often the machine of choice for home users who are not willing to pay out hundreds or thousands of dollars for an exercise machine, especially when they do not know whether they will either like to work out at home, or be able to stay motivated enough to reach their fitness goals. Motorless manual treadmills are cheap alternative to the more expensive powered alternatives and if you lose interest you are out less than $200 and not $800+.

Recommended Manual Treadmills

Let's get straight to business. If you are here, it is probably because you are looking to buy a motorless treadmill. I will write more about the pros and cons of this type later if you are interested, but if you just want some recommendations on which are the best manual treadmills money can buy, they are!

Top Recommended: Stamina InMotion II Manual Treadmill

Stamina is well known for making good quality products at the lower end of the price spectrum. Their self-propelled basic treadmill, the Stamina InMotion II is another in their arsenal of low priced exercise machines which hits the right balance between price and features.

Stamina InMotion II Manual Treadmill
Stamina InMotion II Manual Treadmill

As cheap treadmills go, the Stamina InMotion II running machine is a very good alternative to the more expensive motor powered products on the market. This typically retails for around $250 but you can get one for around $170 with free shipping on Amazon. You can raise or lower the deck for a varying workout intensity and the console features feedback on speed, time, distance and an estimation of calories burned. It is ideal for home users too as the deck can be lifted up so it folds flat, allowing to to roll it away on its built in rollers and store it in a closet. That makes it ideal for saving space and the lack of a motor makes it much lighter and easier to handle. A great buy at this price.


More Recommended Self Propelled Running Machines

If the Stamina InMotion 2 doesn't grab your fancy then check out these other options.

Manual VS Motorized Running Machine

It's funny because it seems lke you'll either love or hate a motorless running machine, there doesn't seem to be too much of an in-between state.

If you are somewhat who has worked out in a pro health club and has pounded away on one of these ten thousand dollar (or more) commercial grade treadmills, then the chances are it is going to be quite a shock to climb aboard a sub $200 product. These machines do not compare and neither should you even bother trying to make a comparison. One is aimed at a pro gym and to cater to users of all weights, sizes, runners, joggers, walkers, fat, thin, tall, short etc. etc. and the other is aimed at someone who wants to do some power walking at home.

Motorised home treadmills do no start to compare to the commercial gym quality products either until you start getting over the $1000 dollar mark either but if you wanted to spend that kind of money you wouldn't be looking at manual motorless running machines in the first place.

Here's the deal. Manual self-powered treadmills and non-motorized running machines are cheap and they have a lot of limitations compared to their more expensive brothers, but so long as you can accept the lack of additional bells and whistles you will get a good cardio vascular work out in the comfort of your own home and can pocket the savings.

What you will NOT get are built in fitness programs, push button speed and incline controls, hydraulic folding, built in televion screen, tilt forward decline options, or any of the latest high tech advances like deck cushioning etc.

What you will get is a fitness product which will definitely give you a great workout and some say a more intensive workout too as you are providing the energy to move the belt not playing catch up to a motor running at a set speed.

Read the reviews, most users are more than happy with their purchase but you do have to be aware of the limitations.


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