WHAT IS TABATA?
Tabata is high-intensity interval training (HIIT) which lasts for four minutes. The workout is designed to burn more fat and calories in less time (that’s got our vote!) It was developed by a Japanese professor to train Olympians in the 1970s.
It’s a simple approach: 20 seconds of maximal-intensity work, 10 seconds of rest, then repeat.
CAN ANYONE DO TABATA?
Tabata isn’t typically for workout novices. The brief rest periods force your body to keep going before it’s properly recovered. That’s where you see the aerobic benefits. But because you are trying to do as many reps as possible, you will be moving at a fast pace, so you can also get injured more easily.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF TABATA?
- Flexible. Because Tabata is more of a framework than a specific workout, you can fill it with endless variations of cardio exercises. Love burpees? Add a set of them. Kettlebells fire you up? Perform a set of kettlebell moves.
- Quick. Everyone can spare four minutes. Tabata is perfect for those busy days when you can’t get to the gym.
- Protects muscle tissue. Tabata promotes rapid muscle tissue growth, without eating away at any muscle tissue, which sometimes happens in dieting.
- Improves anaerobic and aerobic capacity. Performing Tabata 5 days a week for 6 weeks has been shown to increase anaerobic capacity by 28%.
- Fun. Watch a video of a Tabata routine to see if you can follow along!
FANCY A TRY? HERE’S A TYPICAL SESSION.
This basic workout engages all muscle groups. Remember to warm up first.
What to Do: Perform each exercise for 20 seconds, then rest for 10. Complete 2 circuits. Remember – maximum effort! A free Tabata Interval Timer for Apple or Android may be helpful.
- Jumping Jacks
- Mountain Climbers
- Russian Twist
- Squat Jumps