Frankies Bikinis Sweatpant, Aiden Frank in Pink. No matter what style of aerobics classes you take, your arms have a lot to do with your level of intensity. Even if your feet are making exactly the same moves, what you do with your arms affects the intensity of your aerobic workout. When your arms are at or above shoulder level, your workout is more intense than when they are between waist and shoulder height. If you need to bring down the intensity of your workout, simply let your arms hang loosely at your sides.
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An original brand called The Step launched numerous imitators that have been using the word generically. The top platform of The Step, or other brand of bench, usually is 4 inches high, and the top surface is covered with a nonslip material. When you start doing this kind of exercise, you’ll probably place the platform directly on the floor.
As you become accustomed to the moves, get stronger, and improve your coordination, you can add 2-or 4-inch nonskid risers under the ends of the bench. Even a tall, well-conditioned step exerciser rarely adds more than three risers. If a person wants more intensity, he or she generally uses light hand weights during the routine. Another option is a new program, such as Super-Step, which uses two same-height benches set close together to add variety to the workout.
Aerobics routines are a choreographed progression of moves that come in a staggering assortment of combinations, but they all are assembled from building blocks of moves that have become standard. Instructors might combine them in unusual ways or match different arm movements to the common foot patterns. If you know the moves and the words, however, you can follow the instructor’s directions no matter where you take a class.
Some of these moves are used only on the floor, some are used on a bench, and others are used in both contexts. For the sake of convenience, some of the most common moves are described here from a feet-together position (unless specified otherwise), beginning with the right foot leading.Obviously, these moves can be done in both directions.
♦ A-step. As a floor move, you step your right foot forward and to the right at a 45- degree angle, bring your left foot next to it, and then, with your right foot, step back to the right at a 45-degree angle. As a step move, you start behind the left corner of the bench, bring your right foot to the center of the bench, bring your left foot up next to it, and step down behind the other corner of the bench with your right foot and then your left foot. Whether on the floor or using the bench, the movement resembles the capital letter A, without the crossbar.
♦ Across the top. This energetic bench movement goes sideways across the length of the bench. Start on the floor, next to the left end of the step. Step your right foot to the middle of the bench, bring the left foot next to it, and then step off the right end with the right foot, bringing the left foot down next to it.
♦ Around the world. This move circumnavigates the bench. Start on the floor, perpendicular to the bench. Begin by stepping sideways onto the bench with your right foot. Bring the left foot up and make a one-quarter turn. Step off the end of the bench with the right and then the left foot. Repeat the move, stepping up with the lead foot, bringing the other foot up while turning, and then stepping down until you have worked your way all around the bench.