The History Of The Treadmill - Deepstash

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The History of the Treadmill

The History Of The Treadmill

The History Of The Treadmill
  1. Introduced in the late 1st century in Ancient Rome as a Roman treadmill crane, the treadmill was initially used to lift or transport heavy objects.
  2. In the 19th century, farmers used a treadmill based mechanism to better utilize the pulling power of a horse(coining the term horsepower).
  3. Smaller versions of the horse treadmills were used by dogs, sheep and goats for churning butter, grinding stones, fanning mills and also for separation of creams.
  4. The Victorian Era saw prison treadmills where prisoners used to work the wheel to grind corn or pump water.

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Decrease in Human Strength

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The early humans had increased movement and activity, like going for long and tiring hunts, walking long distances that took weeks, making the prehistoric humans fitter than the best athletes today.

Technology as the Culprit

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The rise of the internet gave us a whole lot of technology, curbing our need to move even more.

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Exercise was not necessary until the mid-20th century
Exercise was not necessary until the mid-20th century

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The start of the exercise culture

The exercise culture in the U.S. only took off after World War II.

  • After a 1955 report showed that 57.9% of American kids failed one or more of six physical fitness tests - versus about 8 % of European kids - an executive order was issued to create the President's Council on Youth Fitness.
  • In 1960, President-Elect John F. Kennedy wrote that the increasing lack of physical fitness is a menace to society. This push for fitness led to an expansion of the President's Council on Youth Fitness.
Entrepreneurs played a key role in establishing the fitness industry

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  • Health clubs were popularized by the Vic Tanny Gyms chain.
  • Weight-lifting for women was popularized in the 1930s and 1940s by female-bodybuilder Abby "Pudgy" Stockton.
  • In 1974, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act paved the way for women to go out and sign up for exercise classes on their own.
  • In the '60s and '70s, exercise became a more accepted and celebrated pursuit.
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