How to Use Hand Weights While Using Stair Steppers

Swing weights to burn more calories while stair-stepping.
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A stair stepper workout is challenging enough on its own. After all, you’re not just putting one foot in front of the other, as you do with a treadmill, but you’re simulating a climb up a seemingly never-ending staircase. Nevertheless, a standard stair stepper workout isn’t enough for everyone. If you want to put an extra charge into your cardio workout, swing a pair of hand weights while you’re stepping.

Step 1

Grasp a pair of 1-pound hand weights, if you’re a beginner. Work up to 3-pound weights for a greater challenge.

Step 2

Swing your arms as you normally do during a stair-stepper workout. To burn the most calories, pump your arms aggressively. As you step with your left foot, for example, bend your right elbow at a right angle and swing your arm forward from the shoulder. Your hand should reach about mid-chest height, then should swing back to the side of your right hip when your right foot steps down on its pedal.

Step 3

Use the hand weights as part of an interval workout. If you don’t want to swing the weights during your entire session, lay them carefully on the machine’s control panel, then pick them up periodically. For example, you might swing the weights while you step for one minute, put them down for two minutes, then pick them back up for another minute. Repeat the pattern throughout your session.

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