Step platforms are an incredibly simple piece of fitness equipment that has been around for years. Shooting to fame in the 80s with the aerobics boom, they have become a staple in many cardio routines and classes the world over.
What many people don’t realise though, is that while they are certainly great for cardio, they also have a number of uses in strength training as well.
Let’s take a look at some of the many uses a step platform has, answering common questions, highlighting a range of exercises and styles, and hopefully you will be able to see just how well-rounded this simple, portable piece of equipment actually is.
What are the benefits of step platforms?
Stability and balance
Exercises like step-ups are looked on purely as a challenge for your cardiovascular system, but they also require a great deal of coordination as well. As you improve and your speed gets quicker, you will find your balance and stability improves at the same time.
The simplicity of the product means it is one that can be used by all abilities, without any real instruction or prior experience.
The primary focus of a step platform is on cardiovascular training. Exercises such as step-ups and box jumps allow you to get your cardio done in a single location, without worrying about issues like space and the weather.
You can use a step platform to make exercises such as press-ups more challenging, doubling it as a piece of strength training equipment, in addition to its primary cardiovascular use.
The ability to use it for both cardiovascular and strength training makes it an incredibly versatile piece of equipment, which may save you having to buy numerous pieces of kit.
While not completely impact-free, it is a considerably lower impact than options such as jogging, making it a good choice for people suffering from joint or bone issues.
Full body workout
You can use a step platform to train almost every part of your body to some degree. This makes it an ideal choice for anyone who only has space or funds to purchase one or two pieces of equipment.
Types of step platform
This is the most common type of step platform. It is easily adjustable and is ideal for people looking to use it for a wide range of exercises.
A smaller version of the option above. They won’t always be adjustable (although they can be) but they take up considerably less room, making them ideal for easy transportation and for those who have limited space available.
Things to consider
Step platforms are designed to be portable but, if this is something you are particularly concerned about, perhaps consider looking at some of the least bulky options, such as a mini step platform.
Easy to store
Step platforms are generally designed to be quite easy to store away. If you are pushed for space, make sure to check the dimensions of your chosen product before purchasing.
The last thing you want with a product like this is it sliding around while in use. Make sure you get a step platform that has something in place to keep it stable.
While stopping the step platform from slipping is clearly a priority, don’t forget to think about you slipping on it. There is a range of different types of grips available on the top of step platforms to choose from.
Step platforms are designed to be stable, due to the expected use of the product. However, if it is something you are concerned about, be sure to check the reviews on your chosen model.
Make sure you are under the maximum weight limit of the step platform you are looking at, to ensure you can safely use it without hurting yourself or damaging it.
While not present in every model, many step platforms are adjustable. This opens up a greater range of exercises, so make sure the model you are looking at includes a particular feature if it is something you are interested in.
As a piece of equipment that is going to take quite a beating, you need to make sure your chosen step platform comes with a warranty that you are happy with.
While step platforms aren’t the most expensive pieces of fitness equipment, you still want to ensure you are happy to spend the money before you analyse your chosen model any further.
Step platform maintenance
Step platforms require no maintenance. Simply make sure to clean off any sweat after each use to stop it from smelling.