Stair climbers – also often called stepper machines – are one of the best ways to improve your health. They have everything a running machine can offer; however, they also imitate you going uphill, making the workout an even more intense one. Is it any wonder that they’re one of the most popular machines found at any gym?
You don’t have to head to a gym to use the stair climbers though, as there are plenty of different options available for you to buy. On this page, we’ll look at the five top machines around at the moment, taking in everything from the features they offer, through to the prices. Once you’ve finished reading, you should know exactly which stair climber is perfect for you!
Top 5 Stair Climber Machines
Below you’ll find our list of the top five stair climbers in the UK. We’ve looked at every aspect of them when compiling this list, so whether you’re looking for a cheaper alternative or one of the most high-tech stair climbers around, you’ll find something to suit you below.
1. Bowflex MAX Trainer M5
Okay, so the Bowflex MAX Trainer M5 certainly isn’t the most affordable option on this list. In fact, you’ll need a spare couple of thousand if you want to add this machine to your home gym. It’s worth every penny though, as aside from functioning as a stair climber, it also combines the motion of an elliptical machine as well. So, while you’re paying a high price, you’re getting the benefits of a stair climber and elliptical in one. If you prefer ellipticals, we do have a best home cross trainer buyer’s guide.
This machine comes with many different features, not least the fact that it can be set to sixteen different resistance levels, meaning that everyone can get a challenging workout when they use it.
If you’re not quite at the peak of your personal fitness, there’s no need to worry. This machine can support a weight of up to 300 lbs (136 Kg).
You can also track your progress using the display, allowing you to set weekly goals. You can even connect via Bluetooth and sync your workouts with the free max trainer app.
The Max Trainer also comes with handlebar sensors to monitor your heart rate. Ongoing tracking is ensuring you are getting the maximum out of your workout.
When people think of a stair climber they often assume that the machine is going gigantic. However, the M5 takes up minimal space with a slim footprint making it ideal for home users.
- Zero Impact helping to avoid back and joint pain.
- Gives a great full body workout.
- The 16 levels of resistance make it perfect for beginners through to advanced users.
- The Built-in heart rate monitor and chest strap are get bonuses with this model.
- The monitor gives plenty of pre-set workouts as well as working out manually.
- Price, it is a substantial investment even though I do believe it worth it.
- The assembly process is a bit fiddly but it is a quality machine.
2. Maxi Climber
While the previous entry on this list is for those with deeper pockets, the Maxi Climber is more suited to those on a budget.
While it might look quite rudimentary, it still does the job perfectly, allowing you to lose weight and tone your body, without having to spend thousands of pounds!
Maxi Climber simulates climbing some extremely steep stairs, but it won’t just be your legs doing the work, as you can also exercise your arms at the same time. Therefore, it’s more akin to rock climbing than actually walking up stairs. Because only the weight of your body is used for resistance, you won’t find any undue stress placed on your joints.
Maxi Climber certainly doesn’t have the features found on other stair climbers, however you’ll still find a digital display, which tells you how many steps you’ve completed, as well as how many calories you’ve managed to burn.
While it looks quite flimsy, this machine is made out of steel, and can support weights of up to 240 lbs. There’s an added bonus to this stair climber as well, as you’ll also receive a handy booklet, telling you about the 21-Day Maxi Diet, so you can also get help adjusting your eating habits.
- Price, this model offers great value for money
- Gives a great workout especially helping to tone the upper body
- Assembly takes a matter of moments as it comes partly pre-assembled
- Takes up very little space
- There is no resistance adjustment
3. StairMaster 4600CL Stepper
In the world of stair climbers, StairMaster is perhaps the biggest name. While the prices of their products aren’t cheap, you’ll find that they beat pretty much anything else on the market. The StairMaster 4600CL Stepper is one of their most popular models, and it provides a multitude of adjustable features. For example, you can choose from 20 different resistance levels, as well as a massive variety of different step heights and rates. This means that everyone, from the fittest through to the less athletic, will find a setting on this machine that is perfect for them.
The StairMaster 4600CL Stepper is incredibly easy to use, thanks to the intuitive display, which allows you to adjust all settings with a simple click. It’s also incredibly comfortable, with cushioned pedals and expertly crafted handrails, plus you’ll find loads of convenient accessories, such as a drink holder and even a book stand.
StairMaster also provide peace of mind for those purchasing this product, as you’ll receive a massive 15-year guarantee on the frame. So, this stair climber certainly isn’t cheap, but it really is worth every bit of money you spend on it!
- Massive guarantee and great customer service with StairMaster
- 20 resistance levels give plenty of variety for users
- Built in heart rate monitor
- Very easy to use display monitor
- Sturdy design and very good quality
- It is one of the more expensive models
4. StairMaster 7000 PT Stepmill
This is, by some margin, the most expensive stair climber on this list. So, what do you get for the big price tag?
Well, you’ll find that the StairMaster 7000 PT Stepmill brings your local gym to your home, as this machine has actual revolving steps, instead of simply offering pedals for your feet. You’ll be able to adjust the settings to anything from 24 steps per minute through to 162 steps per minute, with the latter option providing the sternest test for even the fittest of users.
You can also program the machine to change the step rate and resistance level periodically, which is a fantastic feature.
You will need quite a lot of room if you’re going to buy this stair climber though, as it states that the ceiling height above it needs to be at least 10 feet. The large size proves that it’s an incredibly sturdy exercise machine though, and you’ll find a fantastic warranty offered if you buy one.
So, this might be a pricey purchase, however you’ll find everything you could ever ask for when you buy the StairMaster 7000 PT Stepmill.
- Fantastic guarantee with StairMaster
- Commercial gym quality
- Display monitor is easy to use
- 20 resistance levels
- Takes up a lot of room and isn’t easy to move
- This model is on the expensive side, but you get what you pay for
5. Confidence Twist Stepper
The last entry on this list is for those on a budget, as the Confidence Twist Stepper can be purchased for under £50.
The make-up of this machine is very basic, with just a couple of footholds, some handles and a display screen, however it still manages to give a great workout. You’ll be able to step as quickly or slowly as you want, and every step will be tallied by the computer, allowing you to monitor your exercise levels. This computer can also tell you how long you’ve been working out for, as well as how many calories you’ve managed to burn.
The Confidence Twist Stepper is also perfect for those with a lack of room, as it only takes up a small space on the floor.
The biggest selling point of this machine though is the fact that it twists as you use it, and this helps you to achieve a much deeper workout – a workout that doesn’t just help you to lose weight, but one that also tones your muscles in the process.
- This is by far the cheapest model in our top 5
- Takes up very little space
- Easy to move
- Ropes allow for an upper body workout
- One set resistance level
You can find more ‘mini’ steppers in our home mini stepper machine guide.
Why Buy a Stair Climber?
Before we look at the top stair climbers on the market, it’s important to understand why stair climbers are a good buy. Firstly, you might be thinking that there’s no point getting a stair climber, as you could just run up and down the stairs instead. Please don’t do this. Not only could you fall, and potentially cause yourself a serious injury by tumbling down the stairs, but you could also cause significant injuries to your feet and ankles. This won’t happen with a stair climber though, as they’re designed to put the smallest amount of pressure possible on these parts of your body.
Stair climbers are great for those looking to build two things – endurance and leg strength. If you can master using the stair climber without getting out of breath too much, then running or walking on the flat should pose no problem. Those looking to lose weight will also find a stair climber to be a great purchase, as these machines offer some of the most complete cardiovascular workouts around. Essentially, everyone can benefit from using a stair climber as part of their fitness regime!