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All About Step Aerobics.
In the early 1970s, Dr. Kenneth Cooper created what we know call aerobics. Aerobics has continued to grow in popularity. Aerobics, which means "with oxygen", is a type of exercise that involves strengthening muscles, improving flexibility and cardiovascular health. Step aerobics is a form of exercise that many people have enjoyed since it came out in the 1990s. Step aerobics was based on the traditional aerobic workouts but added the use of a step into the routine. The step is generally less than 8' tall and is stepped on and off of during the routines.
These steps are generally between 6' and 8' tall and can often be adjusted for different people depending on what they need and how much experience they have. The beginning stepping rate is often around 120 steps per minute. With the stepping up and down movements, you get a good cardio workout but don't put too much stress on your joints.
The basic movements used in step aerobics is stepping on the step, bringing the other foot up and then bringing the feet down off the step in the same way. Most fitness experts will describe the "right basic" step as involving a step up with your right foot followed by your left, then a step down with the right foot followed by the left.
To keep things interesting, step aerobics instructors also use a "left basic" step immediately after a "right basic" step. That involves tapping the feet down as opposed to shifting your weight. The "tap-free" or smooth step is one where your feet continually alternate and you skip the taps that can cause confusion. People who are new to aerobics may have trouble mastering routines including the taps.
Step aerobics instructors generally try to have a plan for the switching of moves so that the movements are natural and mimic the way we move our legs when we walk normally. One move a step aerobics instructor may insert is a "knee up", which is a knee lift done when returning the foot to the ground and switching feet.
A typical step aerobics workout will involve a variety of moves all lasting different lengths of time. When put together, the movements make up a class with 32 beats per set. This pace makes it easy to alternate moves and legs and work out both sides of the body equally. There are basic classes and those with some more complicated movements that may include dance like movements like a turn or stomp or other popular movements. Generally, you complete two or three routines in a class session. You learn them one by one and then put them together at the end of the class. Most step aerobics instructors try to work with all participants regardless of their abilities.
The benefits of step aerobics include burning calories and losing and keeping off weight. You will burn more calories if you do a fast, long lasting and intense aerobic routine. Step aerobics can build your endurance, lower your risk of developing heart disease and improve your balance. It can also help you become more flexible and help your joints move better. Step aerobics will also improve your mental health by letting you release stress and have fun while meeting new people.