There are multiple risk factors for heart disease from which mostly can be controlled.
You are at an increased risk of developing heart disease if you:
• Have certain health conditions, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes
• Do not take regular exercise
• Are overweight
• Have a family history of heart disease
• Are older. The older you are, the more likely you are to develop cardiovascular disease.
Being physically active has an immediate effect on your health and reduces your risk of developing health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, whatever your age, size or fitness level. Building a stair climbing workout into your daily routine is a safe and easy way to do this.
The heart is a muscle and needs physical activity to help keep it in good condition. The best type of activity to keep your heart healthy is aerobic exercise. When you do an aerobic activity, your body needs more oxygen, which means your heart and lungs have to work harder. This makes the heart and circulation more efficient, which lowers your risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Stair climbing cardio exercise is classed as vigorous aerobic activity. It will strengthen your heart and cardiovascular system. Just seven minutes stair climbing a day has been estimated to more than halve the risk of a heart attack over 10 years.
• Stair climbing requires 8-9 times more energy expenditure than sitting and about 7 times more energy than taking a lift
• You burn about 0.15 calories for every step you climb, so you burn roughly a calorie for every 10 upward steps
• You also burn calories going down. Every stair descended burns about 0.05 calories, so you burn 1 calorie for every 20 steps down
• Just 7 minutes stair climbing a day has been estimated to more than half the risk of a heart attack over 10 years
• Two minutes additional stair climbing a day is enough to prevent average middle age weight gain
• Climbing 20 floors a week (just four a working day) is associated with a 20% lower risk of all-cause mortality
• The heavier you are the more calories you burn when stair climbing.
Time saved advantage
All forms of exercise have similar benefits but stair climbing has very particular advantages for those leading busy lives and those just starting out with fitness:
• It is easy to weave into your daily life and make a habit of
• It does not require any special skills, training or sporting prowess
• You don’t need to get dressed up in Lycra and worry about embarrassing yourself in front of others
• It makes use of the world around you and does not cost anything
• It saves you time – up to 15 minutes a day – as taking the stairs is almost always quicker up to about five floors