stairclimbing as a fitness activity

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by tennisenthusiast, Jan 31, 2013.

  1. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    Is stairclimbing an appropriate activity for someone who has low back problems? Does it put stress on lower back? What precautions should one take before starting stairclimbing - climbing 20 floors?

    Is it a good activity to improve fitness and burn fat?
     
    #1
  2. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Messages:
    7,543
    As far as the back problems, I can't help you there. It is, however, outstanding for fitness. There are very few activities which will get your heart going as quickly.
     
    #2
  3. corners

    corners Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2008
    Messages:
    5,441
    Are you talking running stairs or walking? If walking I wouldn't think it would be very stressful on your back at all, at least not going up. Running might be, but I find running up stairs to be very low-impact, you're kind of jumping continually upwards, pulling yourself with your legs almost and you never really land with a thud. If you're doing 20 flights you can walk to 15 and sprint at 3/4 speed for the last five. Then take the elevator down to avoid the pounding! Repeat.
     
    #3
  4. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    Thank you both for your suggestions.

    At this moment, I am only talking about walking stairs and not running. I did notice that it is a great cardio workout and not even a treadmill can match that.
     
    #4
  5. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    3,567
    Going DOWN the stairs is more likely to stress your lower back, as there's a vertical impact trauma each time you stop down.
     
    #5
  6. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Messages:
    5,639
    Like any new activity, it is best to start out slowly, and gradually build up the time and intensity.
    Your back will let you know if it will tolerate the stairclimbing, but its much more likely not to have problems if you don't overdo it at first.

    (Did you ever get that book Pain Free, or start on some other back exercise program?)
     
    #6
  7. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    Hi Charliefedererer - I did get the book Pain Free -- did the exercises for few days but couldn't continue them anymore due to two reasons:

    1. Lack of instant gratification
    Being a human being, I am so used to instant gratifications. Did those exercises for few days, did not notice any improvement and gave up on them.

    2. Lack of motivation
     
    #7
  8. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Messages:
    5,639
    Yeah, its hard to stay on track without seeing at least some improvement.

    But if weak muscles are the root cause of your low back pain, as it is in most, having a whole lifetime of back problems to look forward to is not a pleasant thought.

    Any chance of some renewed interest for at least a time, to "get over the hump" and start to see some improvement?
     
    #8
  9. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2006
    Messages:
    6,404
    Location:
    The Great NW
    No, yes, don't do it you have back problems and yes it is a reasonable one.
     
    #9
  10. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    I did 11 floors past couple of days and the next day my quads were sore which is a good sign.

    Today, I climbed from 8th floor to 40th floor....32 floors....(woo hoo!) in 15 minutes. I am 33 yrs old, wow, time flies fast.

    Need to wait till tomorrow to see how my body reacts to today's activity.
     
    #10
  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    36,455
    Location:
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Good stuff.
    For football training back in high school, we jogged over to the stairways on 14th and QuintaraSt., where they filmed the part in DirtyHarry of the bad guy hijacking the school bus, ran up the 4 flights of app 40 each, back down, and once up up and down to jog back to 24th and Quintara where the school is located.
    Coach always preached...DO NOT BEND OVER while climbing the stairs, and WALK down.
     
    #11
  12. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    36,455
    Location:
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Oh...
    T en....
    One of the good tests for conditioning is the PtReyesLighthouse stairs out there in the West. 330, and if you can run them without stopping, I'd say you're pretty fit....or pretty determined anyways. I could, 6 years ago.
     
    #12
  13. BeHappy

    BeHappy Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2007
    Messages:
    4,789
    Running at breakneck speed down the stairs is also a good way to end up in a coma.
     
    #13
  14. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    Thanks for your concern Charliefederer. I am slowly making progress...going to chiropractor once a month which is helping. Revisited my ortho last week and he suggested that I go to physical therapy which I plan to start next week.

    Tennis + Warm weather is what is keeping me motivated and I am looking forward to Spring since I am in central US!
     
    #14
  15. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    36,455
    Location:
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    That back.
    Couple of decades ago, I had chronic soreness in the lower back.
    Layed on a sofa, did 30 shoulder raises twice a day, did the trick.
    Took only a couple of weeks, haven't had that lower back problem since.
     
    #15
  16. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    Thanks for the tip. I am taking elevator back down. :)
     
    #16
  17. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    36,455
    Location:
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    One of the DB's on our team, BenjaminBrooks, ran down the stairs FOUR at a time.
    He played or 3 years.
     
    #17
  18. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    Can you explain this DO NOT BEND OVER? More like slouching forward while climbing?
     
    #18
  19. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    36,455
    Location:
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    I GUESS that's what CoachPalmer meant. JimPalmer, ex 49'ers safety, 6'2" and by the time a coach, 270 lbs.
    Keep upright posture, was what he preached.
     
    #19
  20. USS Tang

    USS Tang Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    361
    Location:
    Transchoptankia
    OK, anyone, please tell me what's wrong with me. Walking down the stairs: no problem. Walking up the stairs: a pain behind my knee at the top of the calf and a little toward the outside (lateral side) part of the leg. Would that be the lateral cruciate ligament or simply a muscle strain?
     
    #20
  21. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    36,455
    Location:
    East side of San Francisco Bay
    Can't tell you, but it's the lateral collateral on the outside of the knee.
    With my torn ankle tendons, I can go UP the stairs almost pre injury, but scarily hobble down even two steps. But I can't climb foreever, sooner or later it ends and I need to descend.
     
    #21
  22. tennisenthusiast

    tennisenthusiast Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2011
    Messages:
    1,644
    UPDATE: Have been climbing 40 floors pretty religiously over past couple of weeks (2 to 3 times a week) and I haven't noticed any lower-back related problems.

    I intend to keep this activity up.

    1. What kind of muscles get worked out due to stair climbing?
    2. What kind of changes (improvements) will I notice in terms of my play?
     
    #22

Share This Page