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Top 10 Tips to Maximize Your StairMaster Workout

by heena madaan 01 Mar 2023

The world of fitness and total body workout has seen many different trends come and go, but when it comes to StairMaster, the fitness machine has been trendy ever since its debut in 1983. It’s no wonder since Stair Climber Machines, or StairMaster Stepmills, are incredibly effective machines that can transform your whole body.

After all, there is no fitness center without at least a few StairMaster machines. But one of the best things about them is that. much like Star Trac treadmils or Cybex treadmills, they are also a perfect home workout device. So for anyone looking to get a fantastic workout out of their new StairMaster at home, we at Total Body Experts decided to share our Top 10 tips to maximize your StairMaster Workout.

But before that, let’s quickly break down what a StairMaster is precisely and all the benefits you will reap once you master our step-by-step guide to the best StairMaster workout.

What is a StairMaster?

Similar to a treadmill, a StairMaster is a fitness machine rotating steps by a human climbing upward on it. Modern Stair Climber machines such as the StairMaster SM3 Stepmill and StairMaster 4G have many options, including setting the speed and duration of the workout.

StairMasters are essentially a fantastic cardio workout that works wonderfully to tone your lower-body muscles, especially quadriceps, calves, glutes, and hamstrings.

StairMaster Stepmill Benefits

Working out on this high-quality piece of equipment offers a wide range of benefits.

An excellent aerobic condition, calorie-burning, and building core strength and balance are just a few of the fantastic side-effects of a StairMaster workout.

Burning calories per various workouts have been studied for decades now. Scientists’ of the world researched how many calories humans burn while doing various activities. And they’ve come up with numbers for StairMaster too.

A half-hour workout on the StairMaster can destroy 180 to 260 calories, depending on the intensity of the training.

It’s important to note; how many calories you burn depends on your weight. So the more you weigh, the more you will burn by working out.

However, burning calories is not the main benefit of Stair Climber machines. Alongside the amazing body goals benefits of StairMaster, a long-term study has shown that climbing those stairs reduces the risk of stroke by 29 percent in men.

The complete list of StairMasters benefits:

  • Aerobic conditioning
  • Calorie burning
  • Building core muscle strength
  • Powerful quadriceps
  • Stronger hamstrings
  • Stronger calves
  • Knee pain relief

Pro tip: We decided to share the top StairMaster benefits we at Total Body Experts love about StairMaster.

How to Get a Fantastic StairMaster Workout

Congratulations on deciding to start your StairMaster journey. We at Total Body Experts support you 100% and are delighted to share our top 10 tips to maximize your StairMaster workout.

If you’re wondering how much time you should spend climbing those stairs, know that the American Heart Association recommends working out for approximately 150 minutes weekly.

However, it’s perfectly okay to do this at your own pace. In fact, it’s recommended. You don’t want to injure yourself. For those who have never exercised on a StairMaster before, we advise trying out sets of 5 to 10 minutes climbing for a few days and then working your way up.

Without further ado, this is the sure-fire way to get an insanely effective workout on a StairMaster step mill.

Input Your Information

Most cardio machines have a quick start option–and StairMasters are no exception. However, we at Total Body Experts recommend adjusting the machine according to your information.

So input your weight and age. Then, choose between the programs, resistance levels, or workout length. The more accurate the information you put here helps your Stair Climbing machine estimate the number of calories burnt, as well as precise heart rate numbers.

Once you do that, you start by putting one foot in front of the other - literally.

Do Not Skip the Warm-Up

Spend about ten minutes to properly warm up before your StairMaster workout to raise body temperature and boost blood flow to the muscles. That way, you will get more effective training and reduce the risk of injury.

For your warmup, adjust the intensity level to half of your typical workout and start the climb.

Handrails Are Helpful but Don’t Hold Onto Them (If You’re Able)

You might be tempted to use the handrails to rest your hands, but try and avoid that. Resisting the handles poses your lower-body muscles to work harder to keep you balanced. That way, you burn more calories and fat. Moreover, you will also get some upper body workouts that way.

However, safety is a priority. So if you need more stability, hold on to those handrails.

Always Step With Your Entire Foot

Remember, if you want to best StairMaster workout, form is critical. So never use your toes to climb. Instead, use your whole foot; otherwise, you could overbear your calf muscles and hamstrings. Also, stepping with your entire foot ensures activating more muscles for a total body toning exercise.

No less importantly, correctly positioning your feet keeps you safe from knee joint and quadriceps injuries.

Pro tip: Before switching your feet, let the step extend beneath you entirely. Make sure to square your hips and face forward.

Stand Tall

Remember to keep your body upright, and whatever you do, don’t slouch over the StairMaster. A slight forward lean is recommended to prevent back pain. This step is critical since it means getting a full StairMaster workout.

Speed Is Not the Goal Here

First of all, you can’t really be fast on a StairMaster machine. Moreover, you wouldn’t want to since a slow climb at a steady pace will do more for your body workout than speed.

Your pace should be approximately 60 to 80 steps per minute. If you feel like you’re up for a challenge, instead of upping the pace, try adding more resistance to your Stair Climber machine.

Do It Backward

We at Total Body Experts have an excellent tip for those looking to get an even more powerful StairMaster workout. Switch it up by going backward, and instead of focusing on your hamstrings and glutes, your StairMaster Stepmill workout will target your quadriceps.

Even though modifications can be a ton of fun (and a great workout) use caution when using your StairMaster while walking backwards or sideways. Don’t do these workouts if you’re not 100% confident in your balance and safety.

Pro tip: You can target your gluteus medius, stabilizers, and abductors by doing crossover steps. Simply turn your whole body to the right or left while stepping.

Add Some Weights

Once you’re feeling stable and confident enough, you can enhance your StairMaster workout by adding some weights. You can simply hold them or do some overhead presses, side raises, and any other type of exercise to add some extra spice to your step mill workout and target upper body muscles.

Try Some Intervals

Interval training is undoubtedly one of the most effective types of workout, no matter the type of exercise. Try 20 to 30-minute intervals on a StairMaster to increase your heart rate and add some intensity to your activity. It’s best to start with a 1:1 ratio of high power to rest and then cool down for five to ten minutes.

Continually Monitor Your Heart Rate

Once you start with your StairMaster regimen, monitor your heart rate and measure how long it takes to cool down post-workout. As you progress, you will notice the recovery time shortening.

Start Your StairMaster Climb

StairMasters can be complete body workout machines once you learn all the tricks to get the most of them. Luckily, you will get into excellent shape with a bit of time and effort. Moreover, you will be amazed by the energy-boosting feeling those simple step mills can provide.

If you happen to have any questions about these incredible fitness machines, shoot us a message on Facebook or Instagram. Our Total Body Experts are eager to help you live out your fitness truth!

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