The Step Up
This highlighted exercise is the Step Up, an excellent all-around exercise for all age groups.
The step up can be performed using variable heights depending upon the desired degree of difficulty. The exercise can also be increased in difficulty by having the participant carry weights in their hands or on their shoulders.
To begin, a stable platform to step up on is required. Depending upon the challenge required the platform height should fall within the eight to twenty-four inch range. Regardless of the fitness level of the participant the platform height should not be such that the performer’s thigh (upper leg) substantially exceeds a parallel orientation with the ground during the step up phase.
For the exercise the participant should face the step, box or bench approximately six to eight inches back. Begin the exercise by standing tall, lean forward raising the right leg up on to the platform lifting the body up and over the working leg. Come to full height on the platform with the right leg before bringing the left leg up on to the platform. Stand at full height before stepping down with the right leg first (the same leg you started with). Repeat the procedure with the right leg ten times with the right leg before switching to the left leg, once again performing ten repetitions. Start off with a lower height platform to acclimatize to the exercise. As the body adapts the height can be gradually increased to a maximum of an approximately thigh parallel position. After this point the exercise can be increased in difficulty by carrying progressively increasing weights.
One special note – where many individuals fail with this exercise is by not rising to full height using the exercising leg before bringing up the trailing leg.