Step aerobics vs walking

By: Jenny Lynn | Date: January 5, 2024
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Step aerobics and walking are both forms of cardiovascular exercise that can greatly benefit overall health. Cardiovascular exercise, also known as aerobic exercise, is any activity that increases your heart rate and gets your blood pumping. It is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle and has numerous benefits for the body and mind.

Step aerobics involves performing choreographed movements on a raised platform, or step. It combines elements of dance, strength training, and cardiovascular exercise to provide a full-body workout. Walking, on the other hand, is a low-impact exercise that involves moving at a brisk pace using your legs and feet. It can be done outdoors or on a treadmill and is accessible to people of all fitness levels.

Key Takeaways

  • Step aerobics and walking are both great forms of cardiovascular exercise.
  • Step aerobics can improve cardiovascular health by increasing heart rate and oxygen consumption.
  • Walking can also improve cardiovascular health by reducing blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
  • Step aerobics can improve muscular strength and endurance more than walking.
  • Walking burns fewer calories than step aerobics, but is easier on the joints and more accessible.

Benefits of Step Aerobics for Cardiovascular Health

Step aerobics is an excellent way to improve cardiovascular health. When you engage in this type of exercise, your heart rate increases, which strengthens your heart muscle and improves its efficiency. This can lead to a lower resting heart rate and improved circulation throughout the body.

Research has shown that step aerobics can have significant benefits for cardiovascular health. A study published in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine found that participants who engaged in step aerobics three times a week for 12 weeks experienced improvements in their cardiovascular fitness levels. Another study published in the Journal of Exercise Science and Fitness found that step aerobics can improve blood pressure control in individuals with hypertension.

Benefits of Walking for Cardiovascular Health

Walking is a simple yet effective way to improve cardiovascular health. It is a weight-bearing exercise that helps strengthen bones and muscles, including the heart. Regular walking can lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and improve overall cardiovascular fitness.

Numerous studies have shown the benefits of walking for cardiovascular health. A study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that walking for at least 30 minutes a day can reduce the risk of heart disease by up to 40%. Another study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found that walking at a brisk pace can lower the risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.

Muscular Strength and Endurance: Step Aerobics vs Walking

Metrics Step Aerobics Walking
Calories Burned per Hour 500-800 280-460
Heart Rate 140-160 bpm 120-140 bpm
Muscles Worked Legs, Glutes, Core Legs, Glutes, Core, Arms
Impact on Joints Low Low
Improvement in Muscular Strength and Endurance High Low to Moderate

Both step aerobics and walking can improve muscular strength and endurance, but they target different muscle groups. Step aerobics involves movements that engage the lower body, including the legs, glutes, and calves. It also incorporates upper body movements, such as arm raises and punches, which help strengthen the arms, shoulders, and back.

Walking primarily targets the muscles in the lower body, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and calves. It also engages the core muscles to maintain balance and stability while walking. While walking may not provide as intense of a workout for the upper body as step aerobics, it still offers benefits for overall muscular strength and endurance.

Calorie Burn: Step Aerobics vs Walking

When it comes to calorie burn, both step aerobics and walking can help you shed unwanted pounds. The number of calories burned during exercise depends on various factors, including intensity and duration.

Step aerobics is a high-intensity exercise that can burn a significant number of calories in a short amount of time. According to Harvard Health Publishing, a 155-pound person can burn approximately 372 calories during 30 minutes of step aerobics. However, it's important to note that this calorie burn estimate may vary depending on individual factors such as weight and fitness level.

Walking is a lower-intensity exercise that may not burn as many calories as step aerobics. According to Harvard Health Publishing, a 155-pound person can burn approximately 149 calories during 30 minutes of brisk walking. However, the calorie burn can increase if you walk at a faster pace or for a longer duration.

Impact on Joints: Step Aerobics vs Walking

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One important consideration when choosing an exercise is the impact it has on your joints. Step aerobics is a high-impact exercise that involves jumping and stepping onto a raised platform. This can put stress on the joints, particularly the knees and ankles. Individuals with joint issues or injuries may need to modify or avoid step aerobics to prevent further damage.

Walking, on the other hand, is a low-impact exercise that is gentle on the joints. It provides a natural range of motion and does not involve any jarring movements. Walking can be a suitable exercise for individuals with joint issues or those who are recovering from an injury.

Convenience and Accessibility: Step Aerobics vs Walking

When it comes to convenience and accessibility, walking takes the lead. Walking can be done anywhere and at any time, making it a highly accessible form of exercise. Whether you're walking around your neighborhood, on a treadmill at the gym, or exploring a new city, walking requires minimal equipment and can easily fit into your daily routine.

Step aerobics, on the other hand, may require access to a gym or fitness studio that offers step aerobics classes. While some people may enjoy the structure and motivation of attending group fitness classes, others may find it more challenging to fit these classes into their schedule or budget.

Social Interaction: Step Aerobics vs Walking

Both step aerobics and walking offer opportunities for social interaction, but in different ways. Step aerobics classes are often conducted in a group setting, which can provide a sense of community and support. Exercising with others can be motivating and enjoyable, as you can feed off each other's energy and push each other to reach your fitness goals.

Walking, on the other hand, can be a social activity that you can do with friends, family, or even your furry companion. Walking with others allows you to catch up, have meaningful conversations, and enjoy each other's company while getting some exercise. It can also be a great way to explore new places and discover hidden gems in your neighborhood or city.

Cost Comparison: Step Aerobics vs Walking

When it comes to cost, walking is the clear winner. Walking is a free activity that requires no special equipment or membership fees. All you need is a comfortable pair of shoes and you're ready to go. Whether you choose to walk outdoors or on a treadmill at home or in a gym, there are no additional costs involved.

Step aerobics, on the other hand, may require a gym membership or access to a fitness studio that offers step aerobics classes. While the cost of these memberships or classes can vary depending on your location and the facility, it is an expense that needs to be considered when choosing step aerobics as your preferred form of exercise.

Choosing the Right Exercise: Step Aerobics vs Walking

When it comes to choosing the right exercise for cardiovascular health, it's important to consider your individual goals, preferences, and limitations. Both step aerobics and walking offer numerous benefits for cardiovascular health, so it ultimately comes down to what works best for you.

If you enjoy dancing and prefer a structured workout with music and choreography, step aerobics may be a great option for you. However, if you prefer a more low-impact exercise that can be done anywhere and at any time, walking may be the better choice.

It's also important to consider any limitations or injuries you may have. If you have joint issues or are recovering from an injury, walking may be a safer option as it is low-impact and gentle on the joints. However, if you have no joint issues and enjoy the challenge of high-intensity workouts, step aerobics may be a suitable choice.

In conclusion, both step aerobics and walking offer numerous benefits for cardiovascular health. They can improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen muscles, burn calories, and provide opportunities for social interaction. The key is to choose an exercise that you enjoy and can sustain in the long term. Whether you choose step aerobics or walking, the most important thing is to get moving and make cardiovascular exercise a regular part of your lifestyle.

If you're trying to decide between step aerobics and walking for your fitness routine, you may find this article on the best aerobic steppers helpful. It provides a comprehensive review of the top aerobic steppers available in the market, helping you choose the right equipment to enhance your step aerobics workouts. Check out the article here to make an informed decision and take your fitness journey to the next level.

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