exercise stepper
Unusual Training

The best exercises for pumping legs and buttocks on stepper | Step exercises

Last Updated on

Hello friends! I thought what topic to raise for the article, so that it concerned the cardio exercises on the simulator and at the same time the classes were available for people of very different physical training, even to those who start from scratch. It turned out that stepper exercises are a very interesting thing, and the effect of practicing on a stepper is worth discussing. Let’s take a closer look at how to practice this type of simulator and what kind of exercises you can do with it. I have prepared many useful things for you. Go!

A stepper is a type of cardiovascular equipment that mimics walking in place. Steps are made thanks to the pedal mechanism. The effect is reminiscent of climbing stairs, with high elevation of the legs and load on the feet. Many models are equipped with handrails. The stepper trains the cardiovascular system and contributes to weight loss by burning mass calories.

Climbing the stairs is one of the frequent activities that athletes engage in to make their calves, glutes, hamstrings and quads stronger. This is especially effective when done in a faster mode. The movement involved in this activity is stimulated by a stair stepper. It gives you your daily cardio fix couple while working on shaping your buttocks. Some women worry about having bigger buttocks because of steppers. This is not really true because the resistance when using steppers is not heavy enough to cause overload  on the lower body. It also facilitates full movement for your glutes and legs. This results to a more sculpted buttocks. With each higher step, a greater range of motion is achieved. Your backside is also brought closer to a more perfect shape.

Stepper – a simulator for the lower body, that is, the load mainly falls on the legs. This is a great opportunity to work out joints, ligaments, improve blood circulation and stimulate the flow of lymph from the lower body due to the contraction of leg muscles.

Mini stepper exercise

The stepper uses the following muscles:

  • Flexors and extensors of the knee and hip.
  • Four-headed.
  • Two headed.
  • Lateral and medial wide.
  • Half-webbed.
  • Semi-tendinous.
  • Large, medium and small buttock.
  • Calf.
  • Soleus.
  • Legs.

Benefit and harm

The advantage that I would call first is the naturalness of walking. You can start practicing at any level, at any age and condition, even as a rehabilitation after injuries and illnesses.

The stepper is effective for pumping all the muscles of the legs, as well as the body, depending on the model of the simulator. With it, you can drive off extra pounds and increase the endurance of the body as a whole, develop coordination of movements, and compensate for a sedentary lifestyle.

Interestingly, the simulator allows you to solve the problem of “lazy” intestines, because when walking it is mild stimulation. After regular classes, you can say goodbye to constipation and colitis, and the immune system is strengthened by improving the health of the intestine.

Combining exercises with foot massage and wrapping, you can quickly get rid of cellulite. Mandatory addition in this case will be low-calorie diet. Training of medium and high intensity will reduce the volume in problem areas.

One of the significant benefits of a stepper is the cardiovascular activity it involves. With the proper usage of the equipment, you can engage in stepper exercises that are safe and effective in making your heart and lungs stronger. This equipment even comes with per-programmed workout sequences. You have the option to design your session based on the intervals, simulated options or intensity. It is recommended to start slow and within a short period of time. An ideal is for the first exercise sessions to be in 10 minutes and doubled after a few days. For additional power, you can also dumbbells while on the stepper.

It also helps you improve your balance and stability. You should not be fooled by how simply this equipment looks. It can work on your whole body, inside and out.

About the dangers of this type of simulators heard quite a bit, however, it exists. As always happens, with improper use there is a risk of harm to the body.

Stepper exercise at home

I highlighted a few typical mistakes in classes and their consequences:

  • Uncontrolled intense exercise with an increase in heart rate outside the recommended limits (220 – age * 85%) will lead to heart pain, headaches, discomfort in the liver, shortness of breath, and painful fatigue after exercise. Doing better with a pulsomer.
  • Over-bending of the legs in the knee joint when walking can cause joint pain and even inflammation in the knee joint (bursitis, acute arthritis, exacerbation of chronic arthritis). Swelling, pain, crunch – accompanying such an injury. The recovery period in relative rest (absence of loads, only daily movements) will take about 3 months.
  • Training on the rotary stepper poses a danger to those who suffer from osteochondrosis or other diseases of the spine. Do not rotate the body too intensely and with a large amplitude of movements.

Contraindications to training:

  • Exacerbation of osteochondrosis.
  • Intervertebral hernia.
  • Dislocations and fractures.
  • Varicose veins in the legs with edema and marked venous nodes.
  • Hypertension with rates above 150 mmHg.
  • Asthma, except for periods of prolonged remission (can be under the supervision of a physician).
  • Pregnancy.
  • High body temperature.
  • Recovery period after myocardial infarction or stroke.
  • Urinary and gallstone disease with inclusions in the kidneys and bile ducts of more than 2 mm (data can be obtained by ultrasound examination).
Mini stepper
Mini stepper

Types of stepper and differences between themselves

The mini stepper is a small-sized simulator, which is often chosen when buying for home use. Usually it is equipped with straps for support, which must be held in hands for stability during movement.

The balancing stepper has a more complex structure, due to which during walking it is necessary not only to walk, but also to keep balance, which increases the load.

The turning view is additionally equipped with a turning mechanism for working out the oblique abdominal muscles, back, and allows you to increase the mobility of the vertebrae.

The lever model is equipped with high rigid arms for hands (not ribbons, like a mini-stepper), allowing you to connect your hands.

The hydraulic view resists at each step, so that the degree of foot load increases. This is a model for intense training.

Depending on the mechanism, other muscles are additionally connected to the training:

  • Balancing trains the musclespress and back.
  • Swivel makes the oblique abdominal muscles, back and chest muscles work.
  • The stepper with levers involves the abs, the back, the chest, the shoulders, the arms.


Differences from other cardiovascular machines

Walking on a stepper, unlike classes on many other simulators, is available to everyone without exception, while amplitude movements, running, stretching and all sorts of exercises with weights require physical training.

The simulator of the simplest design works on the muscles of at least half of the body and provides cardiovascular exercise, which can be controlled – to increase and decrease. More complex and effective models allow you to train all muscle groups, such as hybrids or steppers with levers. This is an important difference from other simulators aimed at any one muscle group, or from a treadmill.

What to look for when choosing a stepper?

I recommend to start the selection by determining what dimensions of the simulator are convenient for you. Depending on the amount of space for storing the stepper, you’d better choose a mini or full-size option.

In terms of savings, lever and hybrid types will be more expensive, the simpler the model, the lower the price.

And finally, the key moment in the choice is the mechanism. The stepper pedals can move interconnected, like a bicycle, or not interconnected, and for the quality of training the last option, I think, is better.

Top steppers rating

  • Horizon Dynamic 208 – full-size, effective for the thighs and legs, there is a built-in computer.
  • Sport Elite GB-5105 / ST0732-01 – a compact mini-stepper, there is a computer step.
  • Body Sculpture BS-1370HAR-B – inexpensive durable stepper with hand expander, programless.
  • DFC SC-S032 – budget compact rotary stepper, price from 3500 rubles.
  • Sport Elite GB-5106 / 0722-03 Rock-N-Roll – balancing stepper with a computer program, music, small and inexpensive.
Mini-stepper essential

Technique and types of exercises

Classes at the stepper are under the control of body position. The basic rule is a straight back. If there are levers for hands, body weight is not transferred to them. Foot tight to the pedal, the heel does not come off. The movement of the pedals – smooth and uniform. Another important rule concerns the knees: you need to constantly make sure that they do not come together and do not bend in step.

Examples of training in the gym and at home

Training in the gym has the advantage – access to all kinds of simulators and equipment – from free weights to TRX. In order to achieve a quick result, the stepper is combined with a treadmill, exercise with dumbbells, weight training equipment, with stretch-arms for stretching and a fitball for relaxation.

Usually in the hall there are several types of steppers, and each time you can choose another – swivel or with levers. Then the weight correction will occur evenly.

Example of training in the gym for 45 minutes:

  • Warm up with light weights for 5 minutes.
  • Heart rate on a treadmill 5 minutes.
  • Strength training for legs and buttocks on a high-intensity stepper for 15 minutes: 10 circles of 30 steps and minute pauses for relaxation (set up the maximum possible resistance for you, active strain your gluteal muscles for a beautiful relief).
  • Walking with low intensity for 15 minutes.
  • Hitch on fitball or yoga mat 5 minutes.

If you exercise at home, you can confine yourself to one simulator – stepper.

Home one-hour cardio:

  • Warm up joints and cold stretching for 10 minutes.
  • 30-40 minutes on stepper.
  • Hitch and stretching 10 minutes.

Training legs and buttocks:

  • Warm up joints and cold stretching for 5 minutes.
  • 15-20 minutes on a stepper, alternation of approaches and rest.
  • Hitch and stretching 5 minutes.

A couple of good advice

If increasing endurance is not the goal, I would recommend doing the method of alternating approaches and rest. You can load your leg muscles for 30-60 seconds, then give yourself a rest for 1 minute and repeat the circle.

Otherwise, you can organize a lesson, if you count not seconds, but steps on a stepper. For example, to plan a complex of 5 sets of 50 steps and one minute pause for rest.

Warming up on stepper is great for starting weight training with weights. This warm-up should be carried out for 10 minutes in order to start walking with an increased pulse.

The most frequent mistakes of beginners when practicing on a stepper are the complete extension of the legs in the knee joint and the approach of the knees while walking. Be sure to make sure that this does not happen, otherwise you can hurt your knees and get pain.

Some models come with handrails. However, you should keep in your mind that this addition is for safety purpose only. The tendency for some people is to unconsciously put their weight on the rails instead. This lessens the work given to the muscles that you want to work out. Therefore, you should avoid putting load on the rails. A smart way to use the handrail is to lightly keep one hand on it and focus on propelling yourself upwards using the power from your legs. This will ensure your safety. If possible though, you can keep your hands off completely from the rail. You can instead place your fingertips on the railings. Putting your weight on the handrails will result to unwanted stress on your shoulders

Do not forget that the stepper is ideal for pumping the gluteus muscles. In this video is given a very effective technique.


    • You can schedule it with due consideration of your weight goal, your current weight and the effects of exercising with a stepper. Basically, you can burn around 245 calories after 30 minutes on a stepper if you weigh 175 pounds and 165 calories for the same amount of time if you are 130-pound heavy.

    • You end up using a bigger amount of calories when exercising on a stepper compared to working out on other more popular exercise equipment such as treadmills, elliptical and stationary bicycles to name a few. This is because each step requires you to bring your weight up, resulting to a loss of around 450 calories every hour for a 155-pound person exercising with a stepper.

    • If you already have a knee joint problem, it is best not to exercise with a stepper. It can cause discomfort and pain on knees with injuries or any kind of weakness. Working out with a stepper properly do not bring about knee problems though.


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *