Water Walker vs. the Endless Pools Underwater Treadmill: a 5-Point Comparison

Water walking and water running have become increasingly popular. From triathletes and CrossFit fanatics to seniors recovering from surgery, people are discovering the wisdom of dipping in to put one foot in front of the other.

Two products – the Water Walker and the Endless Pools® Underwater Treadmill – both let you water walk and water run at home. Let's take a look at how they stack up. But first...

Why Underwater?

Water's natural buoyancy removes the pressure of gravity by up to 90 percent. When you walk or run in an aquatic environment, the water relieves your body of the pounding it'd take on dry land.

For people with any of a host of painful ailments, water makes it possible to exercise. Sufferers of multiple sclerosis, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and common back pain all feel pain relief in the water. The pool environment frees them to get the healthy exercise that's just not possible outside the pool.

For athletes of all stripes, water walking and water running present opportunities to get healthy cardiovascular activity without any further impact on their knees and other joints. As American Ninja Warrior and Endless Pool owner Jessie Graff told us, "Your body can only take so much impact a week, so I can't do any of my cardio with any impact."

As a bonus, water walking and water running burn more calories than those same activities on land. Because water is 800 times denser than air, your body benefits from 360-degree resistance in the pool. So aquatic exercise can be both gentler and more effective!

Now, let's look at 5 key factors as we compare these two options to water walk or run at home.

1. Utility

Both the Water Walker and the Endless Pools Underwater Treadmill let you walk and run in the water. Both have other functions too.

The Water Walker doubles as a spa, with warm-water hydrotherapy jets. According to the official website, it can also be used as a "body shower."

The Underwater Treadmill can be installed in either an Original Endless Pool or in an Endless Pools swim spa. Like the Water Walker, both lines of Endless Pools can have hydromassage jets.

The Endless Pool also lets you swim in place. The Endless Pools swim current has dozens of settings and can be adjusted for every level of swimmer, from beginners to Olympians. And as our customers routinely demonstrate, the Endless Pool can also serve as a destination for relaxation and family fun, just like a traditional pool.

2. Speed

Of the two, the Water Walker has a slightly faster top speed of 6.8 miles per hour. While the Underwater Treadmill has an official top speed of 5.5 mph, you can increase resistance by turning on the Endless Pools swim current. By walking or running into the variable-speed current, you can simulate a faster speed while getting as demanding a core workout as you choose.

So is the Underwater Treadmill fast enough for you? Consider Mike Wardian, an ultra-runner who holds the World Record for, among many other things, the fastest 50K on a treadmill. When Wardian trained on the Endless Pools Underwater Treadmill, he reported, "Because you're in the water, you have to be really deliberate with your running. It's exaggerated movement." In other words, 5.5 mph, with the current's added resistance, was fast enough for a world-class runner to use for his cross training!

3. Footprint

The main body of the Water Walker is 7.2 feet long, 9.25 feet wide, and 63 inches high. If you're planning to position one in your home, you'll need to triple the width to allow for the water tank.

The Endless Pool has a standard footprint of about 9 feet by 16 feet. With our modular series of Original Endless Pools, you can customize that in one-foot increments. In general, it will take up more room, which is necessary if you want to swim in place.

If swimming is not of interest, then look to our WaterWell exercise pool, which can fit on a space as small as 8-feet square. While that's too small for swimming, you can still use our Underwater Treadmill in a WaterWell.

4. Aesthetics

The Water Walker delivers a big visual impact with its stunning futuristic design. Its glossy surfaces and bold curves look like something out of a science-fiction film! The effect is certainly eye-popping, though it may not suit every homeowner's sensibilities.

By contrast, the Original Endless Pool is relatively utilitarian, at least in its basic form. That gives owners the versatility to finish their pools in a range of styles, from rustic to industrial, Craftsman to Mediterranean.

You can also enjoy the Underwater Treadmill in an Endless Pools Fitness System. Our swim spa models all come standard with a sleek, contemporary cabinet.

5. Price

The Water Walker and its conjoined Spa cost approximately $89,000. That's based on current exchange rates for it's £69,000 price tag.

For about one-fifth that price, you can buy an Underwater Treadmill in a WaterWell exercise pool with a 7-foot-square water area.

For about one-third of the cost of the Water Walker, you can get an Underwater Treadmill in a Performance Endless Pool with our smoother, bigger current and customize it with a 51-inch water depth.

a woman runs on the Underwater Treadmill in her Performance Endless Pool while watching television
In this Performance Endless Pool, you can run on the Underwater Treadmill while watching television. The Underwater Treadmill lets you enjoy low-impact walking, running, and cross-training. This owner customized her pool by installing it partially in-ground and accessorized with durable wood skirting and her own hand-painted tile mural. 

Making the Choice

While the Water Walker certainly provides a striking visual, it comes with a steep cost for its twofold functionality. For significantly less money, the Endless Pools Underwater Treadmill provides aesthetic flexibility and added versatility for fun and fitness. Depending on their priorities, consumers can decide for themselves which product best suits their needs.

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