If you had the option to take four flights of stairs up or the elevator, what would you do?
For me it would depend on how I was feeling and what shoes I was wearing.
I think we all know that there is a benefit to walking up stairs. I mean, there are machines at the gym for this activity.
Is there a benefit to going down the stairs?
This New York Times blog post says, since you’ll burn less than a third as many calories going down a flight as going up, don’t count on walking down to build fitness or shed fat. Still, you use different muscles going down, and they contract differently at that, so going down does make a contribution to your legs.
The blog post also says, since every little bit of exercise is a step forward on the long road to health, walking down stairs is also a plus. But while gravity makes walking up tough, it makes walking down easy on the heart.