This exercise provided courtesy of Billy Polson, founder and co-owner of DIAKADI Body training gym, voted best personal training gym in San Francisco by CitySearch in 2006.
Want you to get the benefits of a step aerobics classwithout actually attending a step aerobics class? Up-downs are a major workout for your calves, quads, and hip flexors, both as you lift yourself up onto the bench, and as you lower yourself back down. You'll find two minutes is plenty long enough to do this for a cardio workout as well.
Stand upright facing the long side of a flat bench (see Photo 1).
- From the starting position, bring your right foot up and put it on the bench, and step up with it, bringing your left leg up to follow your right until both feet are on the bench (see Photos 2 to 4).
- From the top of the bench, step back with the right foot to the floor, followed by the left foot as you step down.
- Now switch feet: Step up with your left foot, bringing your right foot up to follow it; and step back with your left foot, followed by the right as you step down to the floor (see Photo 5 and 6).
- Continue to step up and back, alternating your leading leg and keeping a regular rhythm, for two minutes.