Does Stair Running Make You Faster?

Running is among the best ways to improve your cardio, and it's the one that comes easy to most people because you can do it anywhere. But there are many forms of running besides typical running on a flat surface.

For example, have you ever tried running up a stair? If you haven't and wish to try, you are probably wondering does stair running make you faster?

Well, some of the many benefits you can gain from running up a stair besides gaining speed is developing a solid core that will factor in improving your balance. Here are other reasons why you should consider running up the stairs in your routine.

Relieves Your Joints From Stress

stair running reduces stress from joints

Running seems like a safe way to exercise, but you will be surprised by the number of common injuries you can get. Among the acute injuries to expect is a twisted or rolled ankle resulting from chronic use and stress on your feet.

Running stresses your joints because you are repetitively hitting the ground, sending shockwaves up your leg. The force can be immense depending on the speed at which you are running and the evenness of the ground.

A flat surface means that your foot has a longer arc drop to the ground than if you were running at an inclined surface. You can also reduce this arc by running slower or upstairs as each step covers a shorter drop of your feet’ arc movement.

While running up a stair reduces stress from your joints, running down the stairs will achieve the opposite, and you should avoid it.

Improve Your Muscle Mass

Stair Running Improve Muscle Mass

If you are new to running, you will easily get impressed by the gain in your muscle mass. However, there won’t be more noticeable gains afterward like you would expect from weightlifting. This is because your muscles don’t contract to counter the resistance when you run.

However, when running up the stairs or at an inclined surface, there will be some resistance as your leg muscles are countering the gravity force, which will most likely lead to muscle mass. Therefore, a steeper angle means higher gravitational resistance.

It’s not to say that running up the stairs is a substitute for weightlifting. However, you can gain more by running faster on a steep surface and adding ankle weights.

Target Various Muscles

stair running muscles worked

When running up the stairs, the effort targets different muscles than it would from running on flat ground. Running on a level platform hits the hamstrings and calves more, which is why you feel sore in these areas after long-running on a flat surface.

On the hand, incline running shits your weight on the glutes and quadriceps, making them work harder.

It’s easier to get a more balanced workout when running on a treadmill because you can find a balance that spreads your weight evenly on your legs, targeting your calves, hamstring, glutes, and quadriceps.

Improved Health

According to recent research, running up the stairs improves your cardiovascular fitness like an elliptical machine at the gym. So you don’t need an expensive gym membership to improve your cardio.

The obvious benefits of incorporating stair running into your routine are injury prevention, improved muscle mass, and enhanced athletic performance. You will also gain endurance, balance, and a relaxed heart rate.

Stair upward running demands more from your muscles because you need to keep an upright posture which results in improved balance, especially if you are running explosively.

Improve Your Running Technique

Stair Running Improve Your Running Technique

Your running technique grows if you incorporate various running modalities into your training. Similar to CrossFit training, your body gains more, and the results are evident within a short period of consistent training.

Running up the stairs also improves your running performance when running on a treadmill or track. You will discover that you have more endurance, speed, and strength while keeping injuries at bay.


After every running session, you will most likely experience soreness in the targeted muscles. Perhaps you are still casting doubt. Does stair running make you faster? However, remember all the benefits; you will find that the benefits are immense and the risks even fewer.

Running down the stair isn’t a healthy practice; instead, you should walk down as you cool from an explosive upward climb. Also important is that not everybody should run up the stairs, especially if you have existing knee problems.

Consult with a health practitioner before incorporating stair running into your workout regime.

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