Using a set of steps in your home, apartment building or an uncrowded public area for a total body stair workout can be a great way to combine strengthening and cardio.
This workout can be done without equipment. You can get creative if you don’t have a staircase, you could go outside and replace the stair runs with hill sprints and just use a bench for the other exercises.
You can do it at home if you have access to stairs—which makes it a safe choice during the coronavirus pandemic—and you don’t need any additional equipment. All you need is your body weight for home workouts.
Benefits of a stair workout
A flight of stairs is a wonderful tool that lets you get in a great workout without going to the gym.
Compared with walking or running on level ground, walking or running up a flight of stairs places more load on the muscles in your lower half, namely your quads, glutes, hamstrings and calves.
You can do more than just walking or running up and down them: Adding squat jumps up stairs can train explosive power (similar to doing a box jump from one step to the next.
Or climbing stairs sideways grapevine-style (face the railing, hold on to it for balance, and repeatedly cross one leg in front of the other, then behind) can challenge your coordination and work your muscles laterally, strengthening your inner and outer thigh muscles.
Stair Runs – Run up and down the stairs as fast as you can.
Double Stair Runs – Run up the stairs as fast as you can while skipping every other step, then come back down.
Stair Squats – Bring your RIGHT foot onto the first or second step, keep your weight in your LEFT leg and lower into a squat as deep as you can. Press through your front heel to come back up.
Upside Down Push Ups – Bring your feet onto the first or second step and make sure your shoulders are directly over your hands. Lower down into a push up and press back up. To modify this, do a push up with your feet on the ground or even on your knees.
Split Squats – Standing on your RIGHT leg, step your LEFT foot back to the first or second step. Keep all of the weight in your standing leg, and lower into a lunge position. Pressing through your front heel, straighten the front leg.
Tricep Dips – Sit your bum on the second step up (or on a nearby rock or bench like I did) and place your hands so that your fingers are facing towards you. Scoot your hips off the edge of the step and bend at the elbows to lower into a tricep dip. Press back up through the base of the palms and squeeze the backs of your arms. Dip down again, and repeat for 15 reps.
Stair Jumps – With both legs, lower into a squat and JUMP up TWO steps at a time, all the way to the top of the stairs, then jog back down, a continue for 1 minute. To modify, just jump up one step at a time.
Try this total body stair workout
Like this workout? Try this one.
Do you incorporate stairs into any workouts?