What Happens After a Treadmill Power Failure?

Most recent answer: 04/05/2016

There is a debate in our office about what will happen if running full speed on a treadmill (with no front guard or controls), and the belt comes to a sudden stop. Do you:1. Run full speed off of the end of the treadmill.2. Fall forward off of the treadmill.3. Fall off of the front of the treadmill onto your back.
- Joey Fields (age 28)
Middletown OH USA

Hi Joey,

Great question!  

Your net momentum in the room reference frame is zero.   So you are not going to fall off the front or the back of the treadmill.   I presume the treadmill is tilted at a slight angle so as to give the impression of running a bit uphill.   When the treadmill stops,  you will feel a slight force tilting you to the rear.   You might stumble a bit but it shouldn't be too hard to keep your balance.



(published on 04/05/2016)

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