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Thread: Question On Stairclimb Speed?

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    Default Question On Stairclimb Speed?

    I have been training on a stair climbing machine for the past couple of days. The machine that I have been training on has a cpat work out option. The machine starts at level 5 then changes to level 7 after the 20 second warm up period. Does level 5=50 steps/per min and level 7=70 steps/per min? Shouldn't the machine start at level 5 then change to level 6? Thanks in advance!


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    Just test it out by doing the quick start option, go to level 7 and see the steps per min. But hey...if it is jumping to 70 steps/min., just keep training that way - it will make the 60/min. seem easier on test day

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    Yeah, it should be 60/min or 1 a second. I would try to train at that speed if you can set it manually to level 6.

    I don't agree with Elson that 60/min is easier than 70/min with weight added. In my opinion slower pace taxes your leg muscles faster if you aren't used to it. Think of it this way. When doing pushups I would guess that most could do more of them at a faster pace than a slow pace. If you can't set it to level 6 then do level 5 for 180 steps instead of going for 3 mins.

    Just my opinion... others may not agree. Good luck with your test though.
    Nothing is as unimpressive as someone who is unwilling to learn.

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    Actually that's a great point! I didn't think of it that way....was thinking in terms of the cardiovascular demands. I agree with you also!

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    Gotcha. Yeah I completely agree with you there.

    Either way cdtalk, if you are training for it you're on the right track. Best of luck!
    Nothing is as unimpressive as someone who is unwilling to learn.

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    What other execises are you guys using to prepare or did use to prepare for the CPAT? I'm starting to prepare for mine in early September and I'm in good shape but no where near where I think I should be I think. Sorry if this was answered in another thread I did a search and couldn't find it, I ordered a 60lb weight vest and have started jogging, to however I want to make sure I'm doing all I can to get ready..

    I'm going to start running up stairs in a parking garage in our downtown area. But what did you guys use to prepare your upper body, I really don't have the money for a monthly gym membership so anything I can do at home would be preferable.

    Thanks for your help.

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    For a good full body workout, pick up a Kettle Bell. You can get a 35lb one on Amazon.com for $50 free shipping. That is a good one to start out with if you are in decent shape. If you are a muscle head, maybe a larger one. Go to Youtube and type in Kettle Bell exercises and workout till your hearts content. You can work about every muscle in your body with one.

    Also, get a large used truck tire for free at a tire store and a 10-12 lb sledgehammer. Then beat the tire using either high reps or do intervals with it. Also, get a jump rope and get good at it.

    All of these things will help you improve your strength and cardio. I passed my first CPAT in May on the first shot. I am 5'8" 145lb and 35 years old. Upper body is not that big a part of the CPAT. Your quads, hamstrings and cardio however are. My quads were KILLING me on the dummy drag. That told me I needed to really get to working my legs more in preparation in case I get a chance at the academy. I was also really parched by dummy drag. My mouth was so dry I could hardly swallow. I take allergy medicine daily, so that contributes to my mouth dryness though. But do hydrate for a couple days before you test.

    I ran bleachers for about 90 days, every other day, with a 50lb vest prior to the test. I would run/walk as fast as I could for 5-6 minutes on the stairs, and I would run/jog with the vest to and from the park with the bleachers. Overall about 10 minutes total, the same as the CPAT.

    Good luck on your test.

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    Thanks for the help! I started doing most of the things alternating days between my running and once a week climbing stairs, I'm pushing myself to ensure that I'm ready for this test!

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    Default Training for the stairmill

    The first 20 seconds is your "warm up" which is why its at a slower pace. It forces you to have muscle control at a slower pace which in turn will make your muscles work harder. It kicks up to 60 steps/min. for 3 minutes (the timing on the machines are NOT spot on).

    The best way to train for the test is training for on each station you need improvement on. If the stair mill is your weak point you should work on increasing your lactic acid threshold (the burning you feel in the muscles). The vest actually pushed on yoru chest and makes it harder for you expand your lungs - dig your thumbs in the armpits of the vest and pull it off of your body to open your lungs up.

    Any of the newer"stepmaster" steppers will have the CPAT pre-programmed in them. I think its menu arrow down twice and it'll say CPAT Test.

    If you're in the DC area look up www.wildfireadventures.com for some personal training specifically for CPAT

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    Quote Originally Posted by ORD84 View Post
    What other execises are you guys using to prepare or did use to prepare for the CPAT? I'm starting to prepare for mine in early September and I'm in good shape but no where near where I think I should be I think. Sorry if this was answered in another thread I did a search and couldn't find it, I ordered a 60lb weight vest and have started jogging, to however I want to make sure I'm doing all I can to get ready..

    I'm going to start running up stairs in a parking garage in our downtown area. But what did you guys use to prepare your upper body, I really don't have the money for a monthly gym membership so anything I can do at home would be preferable.

    Thanks for your help.
    I've been trying to do something specific for each event. All this can pretty much be done at home, (or in a field somewhere) at minimal cost

    1. Stair climb
    Weighted vest going up stairs I made my own that''s adjustable and uses plate weights and was made from scraps metal (I made it to have up to 225 lbs of plate weight but I will never use that much on it)

    2. Hose drag
    I made a sled to pull around with a 50 foot length of rope, I put weight or a person on it then drag it around like I would be doing with a hose. Sleds can be made from an old tire, a piece of wood, or metal. They are really cheap to make and offer a lot of different types of training you can do with them. You don't even need plate weights to weigh them down use rocks if you have to.

    3. Equipment Carry
    Farmers walks, if you have plates you can make them easily out of pipe or wood for cheap, google "homemade farmers walks" There are numerous ones that you don't have to weld to make them

    4. Ladder Raise
    Shoulder movements like upright rows, mil press, etc.

    5. Forcible Entry
    Get your self a 10-20 lb sledgehammer and whack it at a tire for a few seconds then rest, then do it like 5 - 10 more times

    6. Search
    ????? Haven't really thought of something to train for this

    7. Dummy Drag
    Pull the sled around like a dummy, or pull a vehcile down the street

    8. Ceiling Breach
    Shoulder movements

    These are just my suggestions I've thought of based off the events and the types of movements you have to do in the CPAT, as well as suggestions from the instructors

    Basically anything you do that somewhat replicates the events in CPAT will be a good thing to use in training


    Some addition things are flipping large tires, doing hiit training with the sled or just running then doing pushups, mixing stair climbs with sprints, whatever you can think of. Have fun
    Attached Images Attached Images     

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobjenkins View Post
    1. Stair climb
    Weighted vest going up stairs I made my own that''s adjustable and uses plate weights and was made from scraps metal (I made it to have up to 225 lbs of plate weight but I will never use that much on it)
    Would you mind sending me a picture of that vest you put together? Great ideas for the rest of the events.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AFoster View Post
    Would you mind sending me a picture of that vest you put together? Great ideas for the rest of the events.
    Ive got a couple pictures in the post above. You put it on your shoulders put on whatever plate weights you want then tighten (screw on) the small plate to keep the others on tight. Its 1/8 in strap steel so i wouldnt recommend more tgan 225 (112 on each side) prolly more than youd ever want to use though. (Whatever you use to keep the plates on (bolt in my case) make sure to weld it through the strap steel so it doesnt break loose)

    Another tip I can give you is bend the strap steel around a circlular object (kitchen pot or a plate weight) with roughly the same diameter of your shoulder so it distributes weight evenly on your shoulders. Goodluck
    AFoster likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yjbrody View Post
    Yeah, it should be 60/min or 1 a second. I would try to train at that speed if you can set it manually to level 6.

    I don't agree with Elson that 60/min is easier than 70/min with weight added. In my opinion slower pace taxes your leg muscles faster if you aren't used to it. Think of it this way. When doing pushups I would guess that most could do more of them at a faster pace than a slow pace. If you can't set it to level 6 then do level 5 for 180 steps instead of going for 3 mins.

    Just my opinion... others may not agree. Good luck with your test though.
    Count me as one who does not agree

    Look at it this way, which is easier, to climb 12 stories in 3 minutes while bunked out and carrying a highrise pack, or to climb 14.5 stories in 3 minutes while bunked out and carrying a highrise pack?

    When you are climbing at level 7 (72/min, which all new StepMill 5s have as the CPAT program), you are climbing 20% MORE steps than climbing at the prescribed 60/min per IAFF. Having climbed at both rates, I can say unequivocally that the higher pace is more difficult than the slower pace, which stands to reason since you are doing 20% more work in the same time period.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Train View Post
    Count me as one who does not agree

    Look at it this way, which is easier, to climb 12 stories in 3 minutes while bunked out and carrying a highrise pack, or to climb 14.5 stories in 3 minutes while bunked out and carrying a highrise pack?

    When you are climbing at level 7 (72/min, which all new StepMill 5s have as the CPAT program), you are climbing 20% MORE steps than climbing at the prescribed 60/min per IAFF. Having climbed at both rates, I can say unequivocally that the higher pace is more difficult than the slower pace, which stands to reason since you are doing 20% more work in the same time period.
    I ended up going with 60 steps a minute for 7 minutes every day, I found that helped out my endurance more than just going faster. when I didn't wear any weightvest or backpack with weights in it because my shoulder or back was sore from my other job I simply did the stairclimb for 14 minutes...in three weeks I got the pacing down and was barely winded by the stairclimb on the CPAT..

    Thanks for the help though guys, I passed the CPAT on my first practice test! I probably would have taken the second session to pass it otherwise, I guess that's what I would have deserved though letting my body go to crap for half a decade...oh well now just to keep on it and not fall back to the old ways of sloth.

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    I don't acknowledge with Elson that 60/min is simpler than 70/min with body weight included. In my view more slowly speed taxation your leg muscle tissue quicker if you aren't used to it. Think of it this way.

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    Congratulations on passing!

    Our Stepmill was originally set at L5 and L7 for the CPAT program. We contacted Stairmaster and after a while they finally sent out a software update to put the stepping rate closer to the IAFF prescribed rate of 60/min. The CPAT program is now on L6 for the 3minutes. And we got it fixed just in time, as we are doing practices last two weeks and have our test set for Sep 12.

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