Stair Climbing Exercise For Trail Fitness

Stair Climbing Is A No-Cost Fitness Activity For Heart And Lower Body

Wherever you find steps, use them to your advantage. Stairways are pretty much everywhere: your home, a local park, a city street.

You won’t need a gym membership, so you can practice all you want for free. Your workload is determined by the number of steps, the incline, weather conditions, and optional added weight.


  • Snow, or ice on an outdoor stairway will test your agility and balance.
  • Use the stairs in both directions to test your skills on the incline and decline.
  • To increase the workload, wear a daypack, or adjustable ankle weights*. If added weight interferes with your ability to walk normally, use less weight. If added weight is contraindicated, don’t use it, as in the case of someone having knee or ankle problems.
  • Consider starting a total body strengthening routine to help prevent on-trail injuries.

*Adjustable ankle weights are available on Amazon in increments from 1 pound up to 10 pounds.

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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO: Trip Planning Resources For Hikers and Backpackers

Irene Pastore, is a Certified Personal Trainer, fitness blogger, health educator, and speaker. She has 23 years experience teaching exercise in New York City.  To read her complete bio, visit the About Page.  

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