Mini Steppers – How to Evaluate Them

Mini Steppers – Which One Do I Choose?

Many fitness experts erroneously recommend that your purchase of a mini stair stepper should be based solely on your exercise frequency and the intensity of your workouts.

The correct approach is to determine how much you can budget for a portable stair stepper, and your reason for wanting a portable stepper.
Here’s the reason your budget is one of the most important considerations.  The quality of a mini stair stepper is dependent on its price. In almost all cases a more expensive stepper is built better, works better, and lasts longer.

That said, the prices of a portable stair stepper ranges from $600 for a commercial unit to $40.00 for a budget model.  If you can afford a quality unit, then buy it. You’ll be much more satisfied over the long haul, as these units are built to last for 10 years.  If you can only afford a budget portable stepper, then look around for the best you can buy for that price. Regardless what you pay, you will benefit from the exercise.

Here’s a few things to keep in mind when making a choice.

Since most portable and mini steppers don’t have handle bars like the full size models, look for a mini steppers balancemini stepper that rests solidly on the floor without wobbling while you are exercising. The lack of handle bars on mini stair steppers are actually a plus because as you exercise, you are improing your balance.  After you have been exercising for a few weeks, you will notice a great improvement in your balance. The weight of the portable stair stepper also contributes to stability.

Self-leveling Flat Pedals
This factor is the one most overlooked when a person chooses a portable stepper. Self-leveling flat pedals means the mini stepper is designed to keep your feet level during your exercise. Some budget models don’t have this feature and as a consequence, your feet are tilted up in an uncomfortable position while exercising. Self-leveling flat pedals are so important that they are recommended by The American College of Sports Medicine.

mini stepper noiseNoise is not a problem with medium to high quality steppers. Budget models can be noisy, especially with use. This is related to design and construction quality. If you exercise in the bedroom or if you have a baby or toddler, then make this a consideration in your choice.

Heart Rate Monitors
Most portable stair steppers don’t have a heart-rate monitor included. If you need one, then you can alway purchase a separate monitor. They are relatively inexpensive.

Adjustable Resistance
mini stepper resistanceAs you exercise, you will become fitter, stronger, and have increased endurance. It is important to have a portable stepper that “grows” with your increased fittness. High quality portable steppers are designed so that your can easily increase the resistance in order to make your exercise program harder as you grow stronger.  Without this capability your fitness would level off after a few weeks and stay at that level with no further improvement.


mini stepper warrantyMini stepper warranties vary, usually with price,  from 1 year to 5 years.  Obviously the longer the mini stepper warranty, the better.  Higher quality steppers tend to have longer warranties, generally from 3 years to 5 years.  If you purchase from Amazon or similiar stores, an extended warranty will be available on purchase.  If you are purchasing a budget machine, the cost of a warranty may cost half as much as the price of the mini stepper.

Ease of Storage

mini stepper storageIf you are considering a mini stepper, then you are most likely thinking about exercising in an apartment, an office, or other area with limited floor space.   When not in use, the mini stepper will probably be stored or moved out of the way.  Figure out ahead of the purchase if you will be storing it under the bed, in a closet, or simply putting it in a corner when not in use.  Make sure you buy one that matches your storage requirements.