In today’s article, we’re going to be looking at a form of cardio that is loved by some and loathed by others.
Whether you love it or loathe it, one thing that we can all agree on is the fact that it is extremely beneficial.
But exactly what is this mystical form of cardio that we speak of?
It’s stair climbing, and it’s what we’re looking at today.
Specifically, we’re listing several awesome stair climber benefits and will be looking at exactly what it is that makes it so beneficial.
Now, everybody has their own favorite exercises to do, and everybody seemingly has their own favorite piece of equipment in the gym.
The one we’re looking at today, though, is one which we feel is vastly underutilized and underappreciated.
A stair climber machine is extremely useful if used correctly, and if you’re unsure about what it is that makes it so special, you’re at the right place.
Listed below you will find several surprising, and awesome, benefits that will hopefully convince you to start using the stair climber the next time you’re in the gym to do cardio.
Table Of Contents
You all know what climbing stairs are, so we won’t insult your intelligence by explaining how that works.
What some of you may not be familiar with, though, is the stair climber machine.
Despite being a very popular piece of equipment in the gym, not every gym has one, so they’re a great deal rarer, than say, something like a treadmill.
Basically, a stair climber machine is basically just like a miniature sized escalator that has a handrail for stability, and revolving stairs.
You basically just set the stairs to revolve at the desired speed, and you gently walk up the stairs. Sounds easy, right? It really isn’t.
In fact, it’s absolutely brutal after a while, which is why some people dread the thought of using it.
Brutal, it might be, but it absolutely works.
Now that we know what a stair climber is, let us now look at exactly what it is that makes this machine and this form of exercise, so beneficial.
Here are several benefits to enjoy.
The first benefit is slightly scientific, but it is worth knowing.
One key reason to use the stair climber is because of the fact that it promotes enhanced levels of VO2 Max.
This is basically the total amount of oxygen that your body is able to synthesize during aerobic exertion.
When training, oxygen intakes can hinder your performance.
The less oxygen you take in and produce, the less energy you will have.
The more oxygen you produce, the more energy you will have, and the more you will be able to exercise before fatigue sets in.
Climbing the stairs increases your VO2 Max levels, allowing you to produce more oxygen and exercise for longer before getting tired.
Because the stair climber increases your VO2 Max levels, and because it also helps you to get fitter in general, it is a great machine and great form of cardio for getting yourself fitter and boosting stamina and endurance.
Whether you want to get fitter in general, or if you’re training for a sport or endurance event, the stair climber is a great piece of kit to help you do precisely that.
Want to do cardio?
If so, everyone knows that the only cardio you can do is to go for jogging, running on a treadmill, or use the cross trainer or exercise bikes at the gym, right?
Well, actually no.
Whereas the aforementioned forms of cardio are all very popular and beneficial, another hugely beneficial and popular machine (such as arc trainer) to use for cardio is the stair climber.
A stair climber helps you to switch up your training and try something new.
Keeping things fresh in the gym is always beneficial and is considered to be one of the secrets to longevity through training.
In terms of the many benefits out there, one of the most prominent benefits of this particular piece of kit is the fact that it is so great for the glutes, aka, your butt.
Because of the fact that you are constantly engaging your glutes and using your leg muscles to walk up the stairs, each step that you take is helping to add shape and tone to your butt.
If you want a firm, shapely, and rounded butt, the stair climber is ideal.
It isn’t just the glutes that benefit from using the stair climber.
It turns out that another example of the many awesome benefits out there for you to enjoy is a great set of legs.
As you have probably noticed, when you walk up a steep hill or incline, your legs begin to hurt.
This is because your leg muscles are having to work so much harder.
Walking up a steep set of stairs is very physically demanding.
The machine helps to build up your quads, hamstrings, calves, and your glutes, which we have already mentioned.
If you want a great set of legs, stair climbing is ideal.
Not only will using the stair climber help you to increase muscle mass and tone in your legs, but it will also help you to increase leg strength.
Having strong legs will provide countless benefits and can also help reduce your risk of injury as well.
You might think that because using the stair climber is so leisurely and slow-paced, that it isn’t going to be beneficial for fast-paced sports, but that isn’t the case.
Using the stair climber is very beneficial for all manner of different sporting disciplines for many reasons.
To begin with, strong legs will help you to squat more, and press more weight in the gym, which will, in turn, improve functional strength.
It will also help you to generate more explosive speed and power, so you can sprint faster and jump higher.
From an athletic perspective, these benefits are quite obvious.
If there is one benefit of stair climbing that is especially well known, it’s the fact that stair climbing helps you to burn fat.
In fact, it doesn’t just help you to burn fat, it actually helps you to obliterate fat completely.
The exercise is very physically demanding and when you’re finished you should be out of breath and absolutely drenched with sweat.
This is the sign of a great workout and is the sign of many calories being burnt off.
During a typical stair climbing session, it isn’t uncommon to burn off as many as 600 – 800 calories, and that is a heck of a lot by anybody’s standards.
High impact exercise like running or skipping, is all well and good unless you suffer from joint issues.
If you suffer from knee or ankle pain, for example, running will be a very painful ordeal.
Each footfall that you make will result in increased pain and discomfort and will only serve to make your joint issues worse.
Stair climbing, however, is ideal.
This is because it is a low impact exercise that is much kinder to the joints.
Rather than slamming your foot down on the ground as you run, you gently place it down onto each step as it revolves around.
If you suffer from joint issues, this is one of the best benefits you could wish for.
Though you may not realize it, each time that you use the stair climber you are actually helping to make your bones bigger and stronger.
This type of exercise helps to increase bone mineral density, which thickens the bones and makes them stronger.
This is ideal for avoiding fractures, breakages, and conditions such as osteoporosis.
Exercise, in general, is a fantastic activity for anybody looking to improve their mental health.
When you exercise your body produces and secretes endorphins such as serotonin, which help you to feel happier and more relaxed.
These endorphins have an awesome effect on the body and help you to ward off feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression.
Because of these endorphins, this is where the expression ‘runner’s high’ came from, because you experience such euphoric feelings once your body starts producing these chemicals.
It isn’t just running either.
Any form of exercise produces these endorphins, so be sure to do plenty of stair climbing if you’re feeling low.
Hypertension is also known as high blood pressure, and it is one of the most serious health conditions in existence.
Hypertension can lead to heart attacks, stroke, heart disease, organ failure, and much more on top of that.
What’s even more frightening is the fact that high blood pressure is so common.
Whereas the condition can be controlled with medication, these drugs often have very nasty side effects.
Another benefit that we’re looking at today, is the fact that stair climbing helps you to reduce your blood pressure and get it down to a safe level.
Stair climbing and many other similar forms of exercise have actually been found to help strengthen the human immune system.
Having a strong immune system is very important because it helps you to fight off and prevent illness and disease.
Because stair climbing helps to boost the immune system, you’ll find that it will help you to become a healthier person.
Because of the fact that stair climbing has been found to strengthen major internal organs such as the heart and lungs, experts have found that it helps to significantly boost your circulation.
This is very beneficial because it means that more blood can be carried around your body, it helps to prevent headaches, boosts oxygen and nutrient transportation, and much more besides.
Okay, when listing the many benefits that are out there to be enjoyed, you probably won’t find too many people talking about how easy it is to use the stair climber.
The exercise itself is very physically demanding and exhausting, but actually using the machine is simple.
Basically, as you have to do is gently walk up the stairs.
If you are unstable, just grab onto the handrails.
As there is very little to think about, you can focus on doing the exercise and getting the most from it without having to focus on other things.
If you are now convinced that you’ve mastered the stair climber and you’re looking for a new challenge, there are a series of exercises that you can do on the stair climber to get more from your workouts.
You can do one step, two step exercises, squats, crossover steps, lunges, Power clean, and many more besides.
Having these different exercise options is very useful because it helps to keep the workout fresh and exciting and means that you’re less likely to get bored with doing the same thing over and over again.
And that pretty much brings us to a close today.
We hope that you’ve found this look at the many stair climber benefits out there, to be exciting, entertaining, and interesting.
If you are looking for a new exercise to do when you hit the gym, why not hop on the stair climber and see just how awesome the machine really is?
Reda is an ACE Certified Nutritionist, Brazilian jiu-jitsu purple belt and bodybuilder with 11 years of experience. He's been published on many influential websites such as lifehack.org, Wealthy Gorilla, Good Men Project and more.