Exercise! - Stair Climbing Debate

View Full Version : Stair Climbing Debate

03-04-2007, 07:17 PM
So---I work on the 6th floor at my hospital and lately have taken the stairs instead of the elevator whenever I can (I've averaged about three times in my 12 hr shifts for about a week now)...and it's nice that my friends are supportive of me and once in awhile I can talk one of them into running them with me....it seems easier on me to take the steps TWO at a time, and my friend who takes one at a time says that I'm "cheating" and that her way is better than mine....she thinks I'm lifting my legs "half the time", and that she gets her heartrate up higher, I say I'm pushing off harder and lifting my legs HIGHER. Any thoughts?

03-04-2007, 08:08 PM
Congratulations - stairs are awesome exercise! :bravo:

Do either of you have a heart rate monitor so you could check? Otherwise, you could both get to the top, stop, and check the pulse in your necks or wrists for 10 seconds. Multiply by 6 and you have beats per minute. :) Then to be really scientific, switch and each of you do it the other way, take your HR, then compare which way made each of your HRs higher. You have to compare yourself to yourself because your hearts might be in different condition and one may be naturally faster or work harder doing less work.

Honestly, I think both ways are probably equally tough but if you check your HR doing it both ways, you'll know for sure. :)

03-04-2007, 08:12 PM
lol... but to be accurate you would have to do both methods yourself and measure your own heartrate, you cant compare your heartrate with your friends to evaluate technique

A lot of it has to do with how strong your leg muscles are and how in shape you are. One stair is probably slightly more of a cardio workout, two stair is slightly more of a strength-endurance workout if you are taking the same amount of time to get to the top. (I'm comparing this to biking where high rpm low gear is more cardio, low rpm high gear is more strength)

03-04-2007, 08:32 PM
Honestly, I doubt it matters, just so long as you're doing it at a decent rate of speed. ;) Personally I can get more speed up taking the stairs 2 at a time (not to mention that that way it's less stress on my knees).

03-04-2007, 08:44 PM
Both will work equally as well, regardless of heart rate. But along the lines of what ennay said, I'd alternate taking them one and two at a time. That way you're getting the lunge type (two at a time) or strength training on some days and the cardio (one at a time) on others.