5 Benefits of Using a Stair Climber
Each month we highlight a fantastic piece of gym kit that you might not have tried but really should. The equipment featured this month tones the lower body, strengthens the core, and uses the biggest muscles in the body so burns a lot of calories. Please meet...the stair climber.
What is a stair climber?
Think of it as a mini escalator with revolving stairs and handrails to keep you stable. As the stairs start moving, you simply walk on the spot to simulate climbing a never-ending flight of stairs. So why not just climb real stairs? Well, when you're on a stair climber you don't have to turn round and come down again!
What are the benefits of using a stair climber?
The stair climber provides a great cardio workout that's easy on your joints but at the same time builds pretty much every muscle in your legs and bum due to it being a weight-bearing exercise. The repetitive step motion helps tone your lower body whilst working your core muscles at the same time. You can alternate the speed on the machine, you can exercise to your preference, whether that's low intensity steady state cardio or high intensity interval training. Either way, a stair climber is a machine which is suitable for all fitness abilities and levels and a great way to get your heart rate up, improve cardiovascular endurance and stamina.
What do you do on it?
Climb stairs! But you'll be surprised at the variety of exercises you can perform using this machine.
Here are three stair climber workouts to get your started.
Squats: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, then start the machine at a slow speed. Squat down then spring up onto the next stair, making sure you bend your knees as you land. To keep your balance, keep your hands lightly on the handrails.
One step, two step: Climbing one stair at a time works out your quads. Climbing two stairs at a time targets your hamstrings and glutes. So to get a full leg workout do both! Try five sets alternating between one step and two step for two minutes at a time. To make it even harder, increase the level each set.
Crossover steps: If you're looking to tone and firm up your bum you could do a lot worse than try crossovers for ten minutes. Simply step up with your right foot placing it on the next step where your left foot would normally land. Then step up with your left foot placing it on the next step where your right foot would normally land. To keep your balance (and for safety) keep your hands lightly on the handrails throughout.
Once you've perfected the machine and want to try an advanced workout, you could even try climbing whilst holding light dumbbells. However you choose to climb, remember to look straight ahead, keep your back straight and only use the handrails for balance, not to take any of the weight off your legs.
Want to give it a go?
Don't worry if you've never used a stair climber before as that's what we're here for. Simply ask a member of the team to show you how to use it safely and effectively when you're next in the gym and you'll soon be reaping the benefits.
Who would have thought that going nowhere could get you to your goal more quickly!
For more workout ideas, check out our free video workouts.