Does Jogging in Place Offer Benefits?
The best benefit of jogging in place is that you do not need equipment. This calisthenic exercise is performed anywhere and at anytime; even while standing in line at the grocery store. Once you master the jogging form to keep your workout safe, you will enjoy the other benefits of stationary jogging such as an improved cardiovascular system and workout variety.
Jogging in place is a weight-bearing exercise of moderate to high impact intensity. You vary the intensity of the impact by how high you pick your feet off the ground. One of the benefits of jogging in place is it's potential to warm up your body for other activities such as group exercise classes, outdoor running or indoor cycling. For your circuit training workouts, jogging in place is used as an aerobic interval to increase your heart rate in between your strength-training exercises. On its own, jogging in place for 10 minutes or more improves your cardiovascular system as your heart and breathing rate elevate.
Begin with marching in place by moving your feet up and down and slightly raising your knees. Then, increase the speed of your march to a level that feels like a jog. You can use a variety of movements during your jog, such as exaggerating the knee lift or the heel lift. You can also keep your feet close to the ground and move them quickly to mimic a sprint. Another variation is to change the direction of your jog: forward, backward and sideways. As you jog in place, keep your abdominals tight by pulling your navel toward your spine. Pump your bent arms as if you are jogging outside. Land on the ball of your foot and keep your heels lifted.
Your heart does not know if you are jogging in place, on a treadmill or outside. Your heart knows it has to beat faster to increase the blood flow to your working muscles. With consistent practice of in-place jogging and with gradual increases in your duration, your endurance improves. If your endurance is suffering, you don't have to worry about being far from home with in-place jogging. Instead of turning around and suffering your way back home, you simply slow down your pace and take a break.
Be cautious of the surface upon which you jog. You may choose to jog with barefeet or wear supportive, athletic shoes for your workout. Keep in mind that a wood or laminate floor is best as you'll be able to change directions easier than if jogging on carpet. If you find you need more cushion to protect your knees and ankles, jog on an exercise mat or other cushioned surface such as an inflatable balance board.
A mother of two and passionate fitness presenter, Lisa M. Wolfe had her first fitness article published in 2001. She is the author of six fitness books and holds an Associate of Arts in exercise science from Oakland Community College. When not writing, Wolfe is hula-hooping, kayaking, walking or cycling.