The step-up is an everyday movement that requires the activation of your glutes, quadriceps, and hamstrings.
Ideally utilize a box that is 12 to 18 inches in height to allow the knee to be at a 90* angle when the foot is on the box. There are various actions that need to be taken to correctly perform this exercise:
- You can either perform this exercise with no weight (bodyweight), with dumbbells in hand, or with a barbell on your shoulders (more options are available).
- If utilizing a barbell on shoulders, make sure the bar is balanced on the upper back just above the posterior deltoids with a grip, just slightly wider than shoulders.
- For all versions, hold the chest up while engaging the core / trunk muscles. If the bar is on your back, squeeze your scapulae toward each other.
- Make sure the chin is well off the chest.
How to do it
- First, place one foot completely on the box. It is common for individuals to place just their toe or forefoot on the box, again the whole foot needs to be on the box.
- Keeping the torso upright (not leaning forward) shift the body weight into the front elevated foot.
- Forcefully extend the front leg so the hip and knee are straight. Make sure not to bounce or push off with the back foot.
- Stand at the top for a second before descending.
- Return to start using the same technique in reverse.