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Sometimes you just need an effective piece of workout equipment that doesn’t require a lot of floor space or storage space to use at home or at the office. If you have 10 to 15 minutes of free time in the middle of the day to get in a quick cardio workout, the best mini stepper can be the ideal one to pull out from your closet or under the desk.
But are are mini steppers effective? Well, a portable stair stepper is like a traditional stair stepper but without the handlebars, so it is not an intrusive machine and can be taken with you to wherever you are. Mini stair stepper benefits are quite similar to that of a regular stair stepper except that the step height attainable is a bit less because you don’t have handlebars to hold onto for balance. Nevertheless, you can still get a decent workout with most models. Keep in mind that you will need to concentrate on your balance with these, so some may find that watching TV while on them is not that easy in the beginning. However, once you get used to it, this can be a piece of cake.
You also get some models that come with a pair of resistance bands with hand grips attached. These allow you to simultaneously work your arms while you step. Our mini stepper reviews will cover models with and without them so you can find the best small stair stepper for your needs.
If you don’t have time to get away from your desk at work or want to squeeze in some less intense leg cardio while watching TV, then get a mini stair stepper under desk model. These have more of an elliptical motion rather than stair climbing motion and can be used while sitting down. They can be placed under a desk or in front of a couch.
Table of Contents
- 1 Mini Steppers without Resistance Bands
- 2 Mini Stair Stepper with Resistance Bands
|Product||Rating (out of 5)||With resistance bands?||Max. User Capacity||Weight||Price|
|Xiser Commercial Mini Stairmaster||4.3||no||400 lbs||14 lbs||$$$$|
|Loctek FP1 Exercise Mini Stepper Machine||4.5||no||220 lbs||15 lbs||$|
|Gold's Gym Mini Stepper||4.3||no||250 lbs||13 lbs||$|
|Sunny Health & Fitness Twister Stepper||4.2||yes||250 lbs||20 lbs||$|
|Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper with Resistance Bands||4.2||yes||220 lbs||14.5||$|
|Stamina InStride Pro Electronic Stepper||3.8||yes||250 lbs||20 lbs||$|
|Air Climber Express||3.9||yes||300 lbs||10 lbs||$|
Mini Steppers without Resistance Bands
Xiser Commercial Mini Stairmaster
Available in both black aircraft alloy and polished alloy, the compact design of the Xiser Commercial Mini Stepper is quite elegant. This portable stepper weighs only 14 pounds, which makes it easily portable, and it can handle weights of up to 400lbs. The pedal height on the machine is around 8 inches and it cannot be adjusted.
The material used to make this mini stepper machine is aluminum alloy and each component is mold casted rather than welded. Hydraulic cylinders and silicone fluid comprise the resistance of the mini stepper. This makes for a smooth and stable operation that is quiet. The adjustable resistance has 3 level options; the walk, high-speed, and run. You can also use it while sitting on a high chair or stool.
The unrivaled quality of this mini stepper is its first advantage. The design of this stepper lacks weld joints, hence has no weak spots. Secondly, with a maximum upper weight of 400lbs, this mini stepper can be used by most people. Also, since its workouts are low impact, it can also be used by persons who are recovering from various injuries. Thirdly, it gives you the benefit of sprint interval training, a design that aids in reducing the period of workout from hours a week to minutes. You can switch from slow and steady stepping to fast sprinting and back, which is more effective for cardio health and weight loss. This is something that you won’t get in cheaper models, so it’s probably the best mini stair stepper on the market.
The main disadvantage of Xiser is its cost, which is quite high compared to other mini steppers. In addition, it lacks high-tech features that are seen in other steppers. For example, there are no resistance bands for an arm workout and no console display on this stepper. When using this product, you will need a mat beneath it as the device might scratch your tiles or timber floor.
Click for the Xiser Commercial Mini Stairmaster.
Loctek FP1 Exercise Mini Stepper Machine
The FP1 Mini Stepper is available in the normal and plus versions, with the latter coming with a few extra accessories. The maximum weight capacity of this machine is 220 pounds, which is relatively low. Its LCD display shows the number of steps you have taken that day, the time you have spent on it, and the calories you have burned.
A unique feature of this mini stepper machine is its twist action, which is aimed to give an intense cardiovascular exercise. This unit is made from heavy-duty steel, which makes it durable, and the foot pads are non-slip to ensure that you don’t slip during the workout. Every session on this portable stepper is quite smooth.
The Loctek FP1 is compact, making it easy to store and move around. The fact that it requires no assembling makes it desirable also. Its resistance is provided by your own weight on the hydraulic cylinders and it cannot be adjusted, therefore, be ready for an intense workout. A lighter individual will find it harder to go more than a few minutes because a heavier person will have more weight to press down.
There are no resistance bands that come with this stepper as it is more concerned with the thigh and gluteal muscles rather than a full body workout. When working it, the hydraulic pistons are slightly noisy but not irritating to anyone close by. Its pedal heights are not adjustable.
Click for the Loctek FP1 Exercise Mini Stepper Machine.
Gold’s Gym Mini Stepper
Gold’s Gym is a low impact mini stepper that targets the thigh, gluteal, hip, and calf muscles. The machine measures 16 × 13 × 7 inches in length, width and height, weighs about 13 pounds and has an upper weight limit of 250 pounds. The pedal height cannot be adjusted.
The design is compact, making it easy to carry around and store. Its electric monitor helps you keep track of your steps, calories burned, and time spent on it. The resistance of the stepper is provided by a hydraulic cylinder, and it is not adjustable. However, it gives a smooth workout. The footpads also have a strong grip to ensure that you don’t slip off while moving.
With its compact design and light weight, you can use it at the office beneath your standing desk. Carrying it will only require a gym bag. You won’t be able to use it while sitting. It is also fairly silent and if a squeaky noise develops, just use a squirt of lubricant. It is affordable when compared to many other steppers, and with its durability you will benefit from value for money in the long-run. The fixed resistance also ensures that you feel the intensity on your glutes, thighs, calves, and hips.
This feature is a disadvantage where you want a less intense session and, therefore, anyone recovering from injuries cannot use it. Its maximum upper weight of 250 pounds is another disadvantage, as it may not be used by everyone. The absence of resistance bands also means that you will need your own set of dumbbells or weights if you want to simultaneously work your arms.
Click for the Gold’s Gym Mini Stepper.
Mini Stair Stepper with Resistance Bands
Sunny Health & Fitness Twister Stepper
Resistance and twist action meet with this portable exercise machine. The Sunny Health & Fitness Twister Stepper offers twisting action along with up and down stepping motion that tones your thighs and buttocks while giving your heart the workout it needs to thrive. You can adjust the stepping resistance with a simple tension knob on the front. Get to those hidden muscles without putting excessive strain on the joints with this uniquely crafted machine.
The construction of the Sunny Stepper is one significant benefit. Not only does this machine come with oversized slip-resistant pedals, but it is made of steel that contributes to longevity. The LCD screen provides clear reporting of time spent on the equipment along with calories burned and repetition count. The attached resistance bands also let you workout upper body muscles for full maximization during your session.
While you can use this model while sitting, it won’t work well for under a standard height desk as the pedal action is quite high and you’d hit your knees underneath.
One problem with this small portable elliptical machine is its durability. Some customers report loose bolts and loud noises. A few users claim that the compact stepper completely collapsed despite their weight being under the 250-pound mark.
Click for the Sunny Health & Fitness Twister Stepper
Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper with Resistance Bands
Get a low-impact workout with this compact elliptical. The Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper comes with resistance bands that let you work the upper body while toning your thighs and buttocks. You can increase the intensity of your lower body workout with resistance controls. The LCD shows how many calories you have burned along with the amount of time you have spent on the machine.
The greatest advantage of the Sunny Health portable elliptical is its durability. You can use this device on a daily basis without fear of it collapsing in the middle of an exercise routine. This stepper is also lightweight, which makes it easier to store underneath the bed or in the corner of a room. Customers who want to get a workout in during business trips or while on vacation may enjoy the compactness of this stepper.
Although convenient for daily use while sitting, this portable stepper machine works best when used in an upright position. A disadvantage of this machine is the resistance bands that resemble that of bungee cords. Some customers deem the ribbons useless in their quest to simultaneously exercise their upper and lower muscles because of the flimsiness that is the resistance cables.
Stamina InStride Pro Electronic Stepper
With a weight of 20 pounds and measurements of 16.25 × 12.25 × 12.25 inches, Stamina InStride is relatively heavy compared to other mini steppers. The footprint is 12 by 16 inches, which is small, and it has an upper weight limit of 250 pounds. Its pedal height is not adjustable.
The resistance of Stamina InStride is provided by two hydraulic cylinders, hence providing for a smooth workout. This smoothness is also enhanced by the shock resistance mechanism that the stepper has. To assure quality, the machine comes with a 1-year warranty on the stepper and 90 days on its parts.
The Stamina has a fitness monitor display that shows how many strides you have taken per minute, the number of calories you have burned, the number of steps, and exercise time. Other advantages include its low price and the accessories attached, such as the resistance bands. These bands help with upper body workout. The portable stepper is also durable, sturdy, and has a strong resistance of two hydraulic cylinders and it will, therefore, see you through many workouts. It is also easy to assemble.
A few mini stepper machine reviews for this model state that it is noisy, as it squeaks when in use, which can be irritating. Its resistance cannot be adjusted either.
Click for the Stamina InStride Pro Electronic Stepper.
Air Climber Express
The Air Climber, true to its name, is a mini stepper that uses air power technology during workouts to aid in your fitness. It is made with tough, engineered resin, weighs about 10 pounds, and has an upper weight limit of 300 pounds. It measures 19 × 24 × 11 inches in length, width, and height, making it small, portable, and easy to store.
The resistance in the Air Climber is provided by the air-filled bellows on which the pedals are set. It can be adjusted to 5 different levels by the turn of a dial. This makes for a smooth and quiet exercise and can be as light or as intense as you want.
The advantage of this mini stepper is that you get a full body workout, from the arms through the abs and to your legs. Secondly, with the Air Climber Express, you determine the intensity level you want to use. The lack of jarring impact also makes it ideal for use by anyone who is recovering from injuries.
A workout video by Brenda DyGraf comes with the package and some customers have noted that you will lose weight and stay fitter if you follow the routine fully. The display monitor that comes with the stepper helps you keep track of the calories you have burned. However, you will need to buy batteries for that.
The main weakness of this machine is that it loses resistance over time, hence becoming less effective.
Click for the Air Climber Express.