I can promise you! No boredom in this class, you will sweat like never before & you will have lot’s of fun!
Build endurance, increase stability & agility, all while feeding your brain all the oxygen it needs to stay sharp!
A brilliant person designed this very basic step website, the names are displayed to the left, the animation of the move is to the right. Check it out! It will be very helpful to you!
Learning to step, is just like learning to dance, with a little extra cardio. Once you learn the step patterns, it becomes much easier to follow. As the music speed increases, you will be flying across that the platform burning lots of calories while having lots of fun!
The general idea is to reduce the amount of pattern repetition when the music is faster. Example; currently we are repeating step patterns several times. This is to help those who are still learning. We want to minimize their frustration. We might execute a pattern for 5 mins or more, over and over. Under normal circumstances, we would start with a pattern repeat of 8, decreasing to 4, then 2, and some patterns only once then we move on. (This is when the beats per minute are above 140) Once a set of patterns are memorized, the goal is to put all the patterns together as a set. Working towards 2-3 different sets of moves, ultimately putting them all together as you near the end of the hour.
Open each section to learn more….
Focus, Focus, Focus, I can’t express enough, how critical it is for you to stay focused and listen…
30 to 40 minutes of stepping, with music speed progression. The first 2-3 songs offer 124-125 beats per minute. They gradually increase as we hit 128, or even 130 beats per minute as we near the end of our routines. Depending on the expertise in the class, you could be stepping to 140-150 bpm the last 10 minutes of the cardio portion of the class. This is when we are really having fun! The sweat is flying, while you are burning anywhere from 500 to 1000 calories! For some step classes, we incorporate weights, and or kickboxing! Yep, kickboxing, so don’t let your guard down…hee, hee, know pun intended..
Note: If you are late to class, march in place, tap your bench, swing your arms, in order to join us if we have moved past the warm up. It’s best to warm up some before you jump right in.
If you are new to stepping, or you are still working to increase your cardio capabilities, try following the class without the step. You will feel less frustrated and you will learn much faster!
Beginners You might know the step patterns, however, your cardio abilities may need improvement, or you do not know the step patterns.)
-Start without the step, pretending you have a step in front of you
-Keeps your hands on your hips until you feel confidant your feet are following properly
-Tell your feet what to do out loud! (Follow along with what the instructor, saying the moves, will increase your efficiency 100%!
-less arms while learning, keep your hands on your hips, this helps with posture and they are ready to catch you, if you fall. Arms hanging down, are not safe.
How to Increase Intensity, (novice or experienced)
Often times we feel like we have so much energy, we begin to move faster than the music. I can totally appreciate this, however, it reduces the benefits of stepping, when you travel faster than the cues, and the music. Momentum actually makes stepping easier, then following each move with precision. Traveling to fast, causes you to have to stop, miss cues, and or become anaerobic for to long. The calories burned are reduced when stepping to fast. The faster we move our posture suffers, then our form declines, causing the back to ache, feet to ache and more than necessary aches and pains. Good form for each move increases the difficulty when stepping, increase the calorie burn and helps to stabilize your footing. Good form is difficult to continue at (128 bpm) for any length of time. Yet it allows you to stay on track with the beats of the music.
Tidbits to stay on track with the music…
-Perfect posture (stand tall for all moves, execute with precision, increase your cardio strength by 20%)
-2 Steps (you can add an extra step, or take away the step depending on what you need to do for your cardio abilities)
-Weights (yes they help increase your cardio, however, be prepared to stay up with the beat. It’s not uncommon to find yourself becoming slower then the beats per minute, so be ready to ditch the weights.
-Tap Up/Tap down, holding pattern, until we return to you.
-Instead of tapping up, jump up on the step as if you were throwing a basketball in the hoop. If done correctly, this move can match someone who is tapping up and down, where know one is out of beat. (This will increase cardio substantially! When the moves are low and slow; E.g. A-step, take it low and slow, your heart rate goes up! The quads are doing a lot of work with this move.
Repeaters: This is a great way to increase the intensity, however, they are normally only used towards the end of a routine as we are at the top of our music beasts per minute. Repeaters are designed as a fast move, to increase cardio for short bursts. If the beat is to slow, repeaters will only throw you off the beat. Only the experts know how to do this and stay in the same timing as those who are not repeating the moves. Example; When the class is executing 3 -single hamstrings, the faster student could execute 2 sets of repeaters and still end at the same time as the others falling right back into place with the class. Once the whole class gets to this level, the last 10 minutes of stepping is when we put all the moves together, minimizing the taps, adding in the repeats, flying through a set of patterns which have been merged together. Our most favorite time of the class! Plus we know we are about to complete our class!
High Intensity Options
Using 2 steps increase the cardio workout substantially. 2-steps is more difficult. If you are not ready for the cardio increase it will make you fall behind the others who are using 1-step. This is the same if you add weights to your hands. Either of these additions make it more difficult to stay with the beat. If it slows you down you will begin to get out of sync with the class. Be sure you are ready for the additional work!
Stepping is your chance to get fit, have fun, and improve your brain power! Staying focused and sharp as we age is difficult! This is your chance to reduce the negatives of aging!
Step the night away!