Tuesday, May 4, 2010
I fell in love with Step Aerobics way back in 1993. It was introduced to me by a dear friend at her Fitness Center in Shah Alam, Selangor. Since then, ive never looked back and have kindda mastered the workout. Steps has always been my regular exercise routine. I always prefer teaching steps rather than the normal aerobics workout hence find it easier to come up with a choreography than other form of aerobic dance exercises.
Step Aerobics was introduced 1989 by Gin Miller who is from the US. High impact aerobics and intense strength training eventually led her to a knee injury. In consulting with an orthopedic doctor, she was recommended to strengthen the muscles that support the knee by stepping up and down on a milk crate. The rest is history.
Basically, Step Aerobic involves the presence of an elevated platform or board called "the step" on which a person standing can place their foot. The size of this step is approximately 3 feet by 1.5 feet. The basic move is to place one foot on the step followed by the other foot, then the first foot is brought down from the step followed by the second foot. It is like mimicking the actions of climbing stairs.
Step Aerobics has been so popular since its introduction worldwide. I find it not only easy but also fun to do and of course has a lot of benefits. Besides getting a high calorie burning workout, Step Aerobics is what I call a great workout for coordination, challenge and focus. It is also an excellent cardiovascular workout. The beauty of doing Step Aerobics is that the body utilizes the large muscles of the legs. The actions of going up and down the step not only strengthen these muscles but also the tendons and ligaments that connect the muscles and bones . Muscles like quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteaus, the inner/outer thigh and calves are worked each time a person steps up and down the steps. The equivalent of this workout is jogging or running, without the associated stress placed upon the joints of the knees and ankles.
Benefits of a Step workout includes : -
a) Easy to do - almost anyone can do it. It is very simple compared to other form of aerobic workouts. Beginners are recommended to start with a 4 inch height step board and can gradually increase the height if need arises. Then again, you will have to make sure the speed of the music is at 120-128 beat per minute.
b) Burn calories more efficiently. A very helpful way to control body weight, depending on the speed (music) of the movements, the height of the step, individual weight and length of the exercise.
c) Regular Step workout will improve your physical health. It will also improve your strength, endurance and flexibility because the workout is wholesome
d) With the music and interesting challenged choreography, Step aerobics has a positive impact on mental health, so they say. It helps to release endorphins and all the stress from oneself because the workout is so fun and enjoyable.
Precaution should be taken into consideration when doing the Step workout.
a) warm up and stretch before you start
b) correct posture is important for if you lean too much, you will strain your lower back
c) keep head and shoulder back when stepping. looking at your foot while working out will make you dizzy.
d) your feet should be placed at the center of the board and not half way, this might cause you to slip and fall and will sprain your ankle.
e) step close at about 1 foot away from the board when you step down.
f) your knee should never bend more than 90 degrees because this will cause pressure on the knee
g) exercise with moderation and always listen to your own body.
h) do not forget to cool down and stretch after the workout.
p/s for those who are interested to join my power step class, do not hesitate to contact me through email. thank you :)
Like regular aerobics step aerobics provides great cardio workout, but using the steps in the routine increases the level of intensityLike regular aerobics step aerobics provides great cardio workout, but using the steps in the routine increases the level of intensityLike regular aerobics step aerobics provides great cardio workout, but using the steps in the routine increases the level of intensity