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STEP AEROBIC

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					                                STEP AEROBIC

I.     Guidelines for proper stepping posture:

       1.    Shoulders back, chest up, buttocks tucked under the hips, and
             knees soft.

       2.    Avoid locking the knee joints.

       3.    Avoid hyperextending the back especially when using weights.

       4.    Use a full body lean when stepping. Do not lean or bend forward
             with the hips.

       5.    The knee should never flex beyond 90 degrees when it is weight
             bearing. Choose platform height accordingly.

       6.    Avoid pivoting movements when the knee is heavily loaded.

       7.    When lifting or lowering a platform, always use safe lifting
             technique. Face the platform and lift, using the legs, not the back
             and the arms. When carrying the platform, keep it close to the
             body.



II.    Guideline for appropriate step training technique:

       1.    Step to the center of the platform.

       2.    Contact the platform with the entire sole of the foot when
             stepping up. When stepping down, land on the ball of the foot
             lowering the heel to the floor before taking the next step.

       3.    Keep your eyes on the platform.

       4.    Stay fairly close to the platform as you step down.

       5.    Do not add arm movements or weights until proficient with the
             foot work.

       6.    Do not step up or down with your back towards the platform.

III.   Warm Up and pre stretch exercises

       1.    March in place for 16 counts.




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     2.    Tap the right foot up on the step with the left foot on the floor.
           Then place the left foot up on the step with the right foot on the
           floor. Continue this for 16 counts.

     3.    March in place for 16 counts.

     4.    Tap the right foot up on the step with the left foot on the floor.
           Then place the left foot up on the step with the right foot on the
           floor. Keep the arm movements fluent with the footwork.

     5.    Continue using the above foot pattern, Begin using arm motions.
           Begin with bicep curls. For the bicep curls, the elbows are glued
           to the waist as the forearms come up to the shoulder area with
           the palms up. Then take the forearms all the way back down to
           the extended position. The bicep curls can be done together or
           alternating. Continue this for 16 counts.

     6.    Continue using the above foot pattern, but change the arms to
           tricep push-downs. For the tricep push-downs, the elbows are
           glued to the waist and the forearms are at right angles with the
           body with the palms facing down. In this position, extend the
           forearms down until straight. Continue this for 16 counts.

     7.    Continue using the above foot pattern, but change the arms to a
           chest pec press. For the chest pec press, bend at the elbows
           bring the elbows up to each side in line with the shoulders. The
           hands are facing toward the ceiling. In this position, bring the
           forearms forward until they touch right in front of the chest area.
           Then take back out to the sides. Continue this for 16 counts.

     8.    March on the floor for 16 counts. Change the foot pattern to
           placing the heel up on the platform rather than the foot. Stand
           back about a foot more in order to feel the stretch in the
           archilles tendon and in the calf. Continue this for 16 counts.

     9.    Place both arms out straight in front of the chest making the
           arms parallel to the floor. Pull the arms into the body when both
           feet are on the floor and stretch them back out when one of the
           heels are on the platform. Continue this for 16 counts.

     10.   Using the above foot pattern, place the arms straight up in the
           air. When one of the heels are on the platform, the arms are in
           the air. When both feet are on the floor the arms are pulled down
           to the shoulders. Continue this for 16 counts.




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      11.       March on the floor for 16 counts while shaking the arms loose.
                Begin taking the right foot to the right and the left foot to the left
                for 8 counts. When the feet are in a straddled position, continue
                marching for 8 more counts. On each of these last 8 counts lift
                the feet less and less. Then ease into a sway. Continue swaying
                while doing the following 1 - 4 stretches.

IV. Stretches

1. Head drop and roll - Drop the head to one side and hold. Repeat to the
other side. Finish by slowly rolling the head from one side to the front then to
the other side. Reverse the direction.

2. Shoulder circles - Either together or alternating, roll the shoulders
backward and downward in a circular motion.

3. Reach and pull - Begin by resting the fingers gently on the shoulders.
Reach above the head with single alternating arm movements as if to grasp
the air directly above the head.

4. Chest press - Grasp the hands above the head, slightly bending the elbows.
Press the arms back and hold. Next grasp the hands behind the back bending
the elbows slightly and lifting upwards.

5. Low back stretch - Stand with feet shoulder width apart and flex the
knees. Support the hands on the thighs. Begin the exercise by flattening the
back then rounding the lower back upward while contracting the abdominals
and tucking the buttock under the hips.

6. Inner thigh stretch - Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Tuck the
buttock under the hips and shift the hips to the right until tension is felt in the
hip adductors of the left leg. The right knee will slightly flex. Keep the knee
aligned over the right toes. Repeat to the other side.

7. Hip flexors - Turn sideways to the platform and extend the outside leg
straight behind with the toe facing forward. Firmly tuck the buttock under the
hips until tension is felt in the hip region of the rear leg. Repeat to the other
side.

8. Quadricep stretch - Turn sideways to the platform touching the platform
with the inside lower leg. Grasp the outside leg with the outside hand keeping
the knee pointing straight down. For greater stretch, firmly tuck the buttock
under the hips. Repeat with other leg.




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                   9. Hamstring stretch - Stand with feet together while facing the platform.
                   Place the right leg on top of the platform putting most of the weight on the left
                   leg. Support your upper body on the upper thigh of the left leg. Push your
                   buttocks away from the right leg. Hold and repeat to the left.

. Calf stretch - Stand on top of the platform, pressing the right heel off the edge of the platform
    while keeping the left foot securely on top of the platform. Hold then repeat on the left side.




. Step patterns

 ch step is categorized by the direction in which the body faces the platform. These directions
clude from the front, from the side, from astride, from the top, from the end and from the corner.
eps are also classified as either a single lead step where the same foot leads every cycle or as
  alternating step where the lead foot alternates every 4 counts. A complete cycle for an
 ernating step is 8 counts ( right and left foot lead ). A complete cycle for a single lead step is 4
 unts. When using a single lead step, lead with the right foot for no more than 1 minute before
 anging to a left foot lead.

= right L = left

Right foot up (single lead step)
Directional approach - From the front
Execution - R foot up, L foot up, R foot down, L foot
down
Cycle - 4 counts
Cue - up, up, down, down



Left foot up (single lead step)
Directional approach - From the front
Execution - L foot up, R foot up, L foot down, R foot
down
Cycle - 4 counts
Cue - up, up, down, down



 Tap down (alternating step)
Directional approach - From the front
Execution - R foot up, L foot up, R foot down, L foot
tap down, L foot up, R foot up, L foot down, R foot tap
down
cycle - 8 counts
Cue - up, up, down, tap, up, up, down, tap




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 Tap up (alternating step)
Directional approach - From the front
Execution - R foot up, L foot tap up, L foot down, R
foot down, L foot up, R foot tap up, R foot down, L foot
down
Cycle - 8 counts
Cue - up, tap, down, down, up, tap, down, down



 Step tap
Directional approach - From the front
Execution - R foot tap up, R foot down, L foot tap up, L
foot down
Cycle - 4 counts
Cue - tap up, down, tap up, down

                 6.      Knee Up (alternating step)
    Directional Approach-From the front
    Execution-R foot up, L knee lift, L foot down, R foot
    down L foot up, R knee lift, R foot down, L foot down
    Cycle-8 counts
    Cue-up, knee lift, down, down, up, knee lift, down, down.

    V-Step (single lead step)
    Directional approach-From the front
    Execution-R foot up and out, L foot up and out, R foot down and
     center, L foot down and center cycle-4 counts
    Cue-up,up, down,down or out,out,in,in

    Turn Step (alternating step)
    Directional Approach-From the side
    Execution-R foot up, half turn right as place L foot up, R foot down, L
     foot tap down, L foot up, half turn
    left as place R foot up, L foot down R foot tap down
    Cycle-8 counts
    Cue-up, turn, down, tap, up, turn, down,tap
    Note- Remind participants to keep their eyes on the platform

    Across the Top (alternating step)
    Directional Approach-From the side
    Execution-R foot up, L foot up, R foot down on the
    R side of the platform, L foot tap down, L foot up,
    R foot up, L foot down on the L side of the platform,




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       R foot tap down
       Cycle-8 counts
       Cue- up, across, down, tap, up, across, down, tap

.      Straddle Down (single lead step)
       Directional Approach-From the top facing sideways
       Execution- Hands on hips, R foot down on the R side of
       the platform, L foot down on the L side of the platform
       (you are now straddling the platform), R foot up, L foot up
       Cycle-4 counts
       Cue- straddle down, straddle down, up, up.

1.    Straddle Up (alternating step)
       Directional Approach - From astride (straddling the
       platform)
       Execution - R foot up, L knee lift, L foot down, R
       foot down, L foot up, R knee lift, R foot down, L foot
      down
      Cycle - 8 counts
      Cue - Up, knee lift, straddle down




.     Lunge Backs (alternating step)
     Directional Approach - From the front
     Execution - R foot up, L foot up, R foot down, L foot
     lunge down and back, L foot up, R foot up, L foot
     down, R foot lunge down and back
     Cycle - 8 counts
     Cue - Up,up down, lunge,up,up, down, lunge




     Step variations



  Traveling steps - Any alternating step that turns and moves across the entire length of the
atform. For example, a traveling knee up beginning from the front: R foot up, L knee lift while
voting on the R foot toward the L diagonal, L foot down, R foot down, L foot up, R knee lift while
voting on the foot toward the R diagonal, R foot down, L foot down (8 count cycle).



   Repeaters - Any alternating step where the non-weight bearing phase of the movement can be
peated. For example, a knee up repeating 3 times: R foot up, L knee lift, L foot down (1), L knee
t, L foot down (2), L knee lift, L foot down (3), R foot down. Repeat on the L(16 count cycle). To




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duce the amount of stress on the support leg, Do not perform more than 5 repeaters per side at
ime.



  Propulsion Steps - Where both feet push off the ground, exchanging positions during the
 borne phase of the movement. Propulsion steps are high impact movements commonly used
 th tap and lunge steps. Do not use propulsion steps with novice or beginner step trainers or
hile using weights. An example of a propulsion step is as follows: R foot up, L foot lunge down
 d back, push off the R foot landing on the L foot up, R foot lunge down and back (4 count cycle).



  From the end - Any 8 or 16 count step pattern that uses all three sides of the platform
 ginning from the end of the platform. Steps from the end use more than one directional
 proach and incorporate more than one step pattern. An example of a sequence from the end
 ght be as follows: (from the end) R foot up, L foot up, R foot down on the right side of the
atform, L foot down on the left side of the platform (you are now astride the platform), R foot up,
 oot up, R foot down at the end, L foot tap down at the end, L foot up, R foot up, L foot down on
e left side of the platform, R foot down on the right side of the platform (astride), L foot up, R
ot up, L foot down at the end, R foot tap down at the end (16 count cycle).



  Transitions



 ght foot up or left foot up to
 nee ups
 ap down
V-step
 epeaters



nee ups to
raveling knee ups
ight or left foot ups
epeaters



 p steps to
ight or left foot ups
raveling knee ups
raveling tap ups
urn steps
epeaters




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rn steps to
ap downs
cross the top
traddle down



cross the top to
 traddle down
 urn step



raddle down to
 stride
 cross the top
rom the edge
 ropulsion steps
ap ups



raddle up to
n the top
epeaters
ap downs



om the end to
ll major steps




I. Basic arm movements

hen adding arm movements, follow the rules for gradual progression. Start arm movements at a
w range, progress to a mid range then to a high range. Arm movements from different ranges
 n then be combined to offer interesting variations. Perform arm movements in repetitions of
4,8,or 16 counts.



 Low-Range Movements

Bicep curls - With elbows fixed at the sides of the trunk and the palms up, flex and extend both
bows towards the shoulders. For alternating bicep curls, alternate the R and L arms.

 Hammer curls - With the elbows fixed at the sides of the trunk and the palms facing each other,
 x and extend elbows towards the shoulders. For alternating hammer curls, alternate the R and




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arms.

 Tricep Kick Backs - With the elbows behind the shoulder and the hands next to the sides of the
unk, extend and flex both elbows. For alternating Tricep kick backs, alternate the R and L arms.
 lms can face up, in or down.

Low row - Begin with arms extended in front of the body at waist level. Pull the elbows
ckward until the hands are next to the waist and return to the starting position.

 Low punch - Start with the hands on the hips. Using opposition with the legs, extend one arm
rward at waist height in a punching motion. As the arm withdraws to the starting position,
 nch the second arm.

 Low cross - With the elbows at the sides of the trunk, criss cross the arms at waist level in
ont of the body. Keep palms up.



 Mid-Range Movements

Upright row - Begin with the fists together in front of the thighs. Keeping the fists close to the
dy, raise the hands up to the chin. Return to starting position.

Side lateral raises - Start with the fists together in front of the thighs. Lift the arms up and
twards with the palms facing down. Always lead with the elbows keeping them slightly bent.

 Front shoulder raises - Begin with the fists together in front of the thighs. Keeping elbows soft,
 se both arms straight up to the front to chin level. Alternate R and L arm, for an alternating
ont shoulder raise.

 Double side out - Start with fists under chin at chest level, palms down, elbows out. Extend
 th arms out to the side keeping elbows at shoulder height. Pull the fists back into the chest. For
ngle side outs, alternate the R and L arms.

Criss Cross - With the elbows at chest height, criss cross the arm back and forth over each
her with the arms facing down. Alternate the arm that crosses over the top for each repetition.

Shoulder punch - Start with the hands lightly resting on the shoulders. Extend one arm
agonally across the body at chest height. Pull back and return to shoulder.

 Upper range arm movements

Overhead press - Start with the fists resting on the shoulders. With palms facing each other,
tend the arms upward over the head, keeping the elbows close to the ears. Lower arms back to
oulders. For alternating overhead presses, alternate the R and L arms.




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L-front - Begin with the fists resting on the shoulders. Simultaneously, extend one arm straight
t in front of the body at shoulder height while extending the other arm upwards above the head.
ll both fists back to shoulders and repeat in the other direction.

L-side - Start with the fists resting on the shoulders. Simultaneously, extend one arm straight
t in front of the body at shoulder height while the other arm out to the side of the body at
oulder height. Pull both fists back to shoulders and repeat in other direction.

Slice - Begin with the fists resting on the shoulders. Simultaneously, extend one arm
wnwards along the side of the leg while extending the other arm upwards straight above the
ad. Pull both fists back to shoulders and repeat in other direction.



II. Arm placement with step patterns

any arm movements can be performed in half time or double time. Always keep movements
 ntrolled and precise. Follow these simple rules when combining arm and step patterns:

 Opposition - Opposition or cross crawl patterning of the legs and arms helps participants
aintain balance and creates naturally flowing movements. Opposition simply means that the
ght arm moves with the left leg and the left arm moves with the right leg.

 Stabilizers - Balance and comfort are more maintained during the stepping phase if the arms
e pulled into the body when the feet are both together. Only extend the arms straight forward
hen the lead leg is moving up or down the platform.

Transitional arms - When performing an alternating step, some arm patterns will not coordinate
th the footwork. Appropriate changes will need to be made to maintain opposition.



V. Isolation work

e strength exercises you select during the isolation work will depend in part on the duration of
ur class and the specific needs and interests of your participants. Most of the strength work for
e shoulders, arms, hips, thighs, and shins will be accomplished during the stepping portion of
e program. However, a critical area that will require special attention during the isolation work
the abdominal region of the body.

e abdominal musculature is responsible for helping individuals maintain proper spinal alignment
ring exercise and thus reducing the risk of low back injuries or discomfort. The platform is a
rfect prop on which to perform abdominal exercises.

 e following are examples of abdominal exercises you can perform in your classes. All exercises
e performed while lying on the floor with the knees bent and the feet resting on the platform.
though hand position will vary according to individual strength differences, all exercises are




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ing illustrated with the hands behind the head. This position allows the neck muscles to relax
 the weight of the head is supported by the hands. Remind participants to never pull the head
th the hands.

ercise are listed in the order difficulty.

Pelvic Tilt - Firmly tuck the buttock under the hips and contract the abdominals. The buttock
ll lift slightly off the floor. Release. Keep the lower back flat on the floor at all times. Repeat.

Curl Up - Slowly curl the chest toward the knees and curl back down to the floor. Repeat.

Curl and Tilt - Combine the exaggerated pelvic tilt with the curl up. Both the chest and the hips
ll move toward the center of the body. Slowly lower to the floor. Repeat.

Alternating Curls - Slowly curl the chest toward the knees then rotate the torso to the right
ee. Come back to center and curl down to the floor. Repeat on the left side.

pper back (rhomboids and trapezius) is another important area to strengthen to help balance the
 tensive work performed by opposing muscle groups during the aerobic conditioning. Weak
 per back muscles can contribute to poor spinal alignment and result in neck and shoulder pain.

 strengthen rhomboids and trapezius perform the following exercise:

Arm raises - Lie on abdomen length wise on the platform. Place the arms out to the side. Gently
 se the arms as for as possible, keeping the elbows slightly bent. Return to starting position and
peat. If necessary add hand held weight for additional resistance.

 Cool down (slow stretch)

 is is the time when the body is most receptive to stretching. The muscles are warm and the
 nts are well lubricated form vigorous stepping. Help your participants to relax during the slow
retch. This will greatly enhance their ability to increase joint range of motion. The following are
 amples of slow stretch exercises.

Back Stretch - Sit on the end of the platform with the feet together on the floor. Bend over,
sting the chest on the thighs. Reach under the legs with the arms and gently grasp the opposite
bow pulling both elbows together. Hold.

Chest Stretch - Lie down lengthways on the platform. Press the low back into platform as you
ace the arms out to the sides at shoulder level, palms up. Relax the arms as they fall toward the
 or. Hold.

Hamstring Stretch - Lying on the platform, extend the left leg straight out along the platform.
asp behind the right thigh and gently pull the extended leg toward the chest. Hold and repeat to
e left side.




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 Calf Stretch - From a hamstring stretch, pull the right knee to the chest. Grasp the toes of the
ght foot with the right hand and gently pull. Hold.

Ankle Circles - During a hamstring stretch, slowly circle the foot in each direction.

Quadricep Stretch - Roll onto the abdomen on the platform. Keeping both legs pointed straight
ck, grasp the right foot with right hand until mild tension is felt in the front of the thigh. Keep
e head and shoulders down on the platform. Hold and repeat to the other side.




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