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galatea

Stairs, Good Or Bad For You?

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Firstly, any idea why stairs are so unbelievably exhausting, more than other forms of upright exercise?

And d'you think that we should avoid them or that we shouldn't because they’re good for building leg muscles?

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Yah, I am not sure why stairs are so terrible for Potsies, but they can make me short of breath like nothing else. I usually don't avoid them either, but I try to take my time going up the stairs because that seems to help lessen the increase in my heart rate. Hope this helps :)

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Yes stairs are horrible! I have two flights of them to climb at school and I become soo winded by the time I'm up! However, I think using them is still important to build cardiac and leg muscle strength.

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I agree, stairs are hard for me. Before POTS I had no problem with stairs. Now I get really short of breath. I still take them, but I tacile them a few floors at a time. I call it cardio rehab :)

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I find stairs hard too, I can run 5 km without too much difficulty (the first km will be the hardest), but I climb two flights of stairs and I am breathless. I wonder if it is somehow related to the running - the fact that the first km is the hardest - it takes my body a long time to get itself together - for the muscles to start working - maybe if we carried on climbing it would get easier when the muscles get going? I've considered stairs to be 'good' and try to use them. I realise I'm different to a lot of people on here who couldn't run 5 km, but I do still have POTS and am cognitively debilitated by it.

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Hard slog to get up them as my heart races and I get out of breath. ON coming down my breathing isn't so bad but my joints click and that's because of the peripheral neuropathy.

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My daughter who has POTS seems fine with stairs. But strangely I can't walk up stairs to save my life. My heart races and I'm out if breath after 1 flight . I've never been tested for POTS.

Jube

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Stairs are a challenging form of cardio. Upright exercise makes POTS worse. I think it is important to do some stairs so you don't lose practice. I have gotten better with time.

That being said I usually take the elevator or escalator whenever I can. :) There are many other ways to build leg muscles that are more POTS friendly!

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A friend of mine was diagnosed with POTS years before I was. The first thing she said to me when I was diagnosed (after we got over the fact that we talked about her symptoms all the time, and I could always sympathize more than any one else, but it never crossed our minds that I might have POTS too) was "well, that explains why you hate stairs!"

I'm not sure why stairs are so awful, though. I avoid them whenever possible. Honestly, I just don't care if I could be slightly increasing my tolerance by taking them. It's not worth how bad they make me feel.

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I have a horrible time with stairs, I can do a short flight or a flight or two but my heart does race and I get short of breath. My lovely husband has learned to walk behind me and push my behind as I walk up and be a support as I sometimes get clutzy and take misteps if its a steep flight.

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Stairs are really hard for me! I made the mistake one time of thinking it would be fine to walk up three flights of stairs at a time... HA! What a joke. They wear me out, and I then have no energy for anything else. I also have proprioceptive issues (possibly related to my suspected EDS), which means I just have more problems judging how far to lift my leg up, how far away the step is, etc. All in all, a bad idea.

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Stairs are terrible for me. I have 4 sets of stairs in my house, and each level has something important. I am pregnant right now, and on bed rest so I grab what I need and stay on one floor for as long as possible. Depending on your circumstances I would avoid them.

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I have tremendous difficulty with stairs! That was my first clue that led me to be diagnosed with pots -- I couldn't handle stairs without my heart racing and becoming completely out of breath. That being said, and the fact I have avoided stairs now for years, I think some stair climbing very slowly might be good to do. I've become so deconditioned that I find I can't walk up or down stairs without pausing on each step--so I'm trying not to avoid them as much. Yes I agree that upright exercise for us potsies is the hardest, but probably the best for conditioning.

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Stairs are the devil to me. I hate stairs with the passion of a thousand fiery suns. Ever since getting diagnosed with dysautonomia I can't even name anything I hate more than stairs. They use to make me feel extremely sick after climbing the 10-12 steps it takes to get to my room, now that I'm having seizures I notice that all of my seizures are related to the stairs and I get them either after going up or down them. I hate them and with the exception of the stairs it takes to get to my room I avoid them at all costs. Exercise is good for potsies, but if stairs make you extremely sick than I would avoid them. If they don't make you more sick than other exercises than I don't see the harm and more power to you. I need to be extremely careful with stairs though because so far 100% of my seizures have been linked to the stairs and about 75% of my syncope episodes have been. If they are dangerous to you than def. avoid them when possible.

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Having trouble with stairs was also one of my first symptoms. Winded, chest pressure, crazy pulse for minutes afterward.

But, I need to be able to go up and down them so I started trying to condition myself with just two steps a day and added a few more as I could, and now I can do a whole flight. It's not comfortable and I have to go slow but I don't get winded anymore. I have no idea if it's bad for me.

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Stairs are not my friend....with having Neurocardiogenic syncope and Pots I get out of breath easily. And also i have some severe issues with my knees so it's extra hard and hurts to use the stairs. But I can't avoid them most of the time because i live in a townhouse and have to go up and down stairs multiple times a day. When i'm out in public if i have a choice between taking stairs or an elevator...i would chose the elevator.

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Interesting to hear all your replies!

Gracefulprincess, yes I’m never sure which is worse, standing still in an elevator or stairs, normally I go for the elevator too and try and fidget to keep the blood moving or even sit if there's no one else.

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Before POTS I could take them 2 at a time and now I can't get up a flight or two without feeling like my heart will pound out of my chest. I have not passed out yet from POTS, but I can tell you I have felt the closest after walking up the stairs.

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