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Tabata Training

March 7, 2016 | 0 Comments
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Overview

Multiple studies have shown that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is far superior than low/moderate intensity cardio for developing both the aerobic (oxygen) and anaerobic energy systems.

Tabata training is a specific type of high-intensity interval training, typically each exercise in a Tabata workout only lasts 4 minutes; this is broken down into 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds rest repeated for 8 total rounds.

Tabata training can be performed with any type of exercise, be it bodyweight exercises, using barbells and dumbbell or any type of cardio machine or modality.


How To Perform

To perform Tabata Training make sure to begin with a general warm-up of 8-10 minutes that will prepare you for the demands of the high intensity work. Then choosing an exercise or sequence of exercises specific to your training goals, set a visible stopwatch to countdown or count-up to 4 minutes (recommended) or a predetermined time.

As soon as you begin the 4 minute countdown, perform 20 seconds of high intensity work on the selected exercise aiming to perform as many reps as possible within the 20 second timeframe; immediately have 10 seconds of total rest before beginning the next 20 second round of high intensity work.

Repeat this sequence of 20 seconds work to 10 seconds rest until the end of the 4 minute period, the goal is to keep the same number of reps performed in each 20 second work period.

There are a number of ways to incorporate Tabata Training into your workouts, the three most common are:

Tabata Training Exercise in isolation

Bodyweight Push Ups – 4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Rowing Machine – 4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Sled Push –  4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Tabata Training Supersets

Exercise 1: Bodyweight Squats – 4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Exercise 2: Battle Rope – 4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Exercise 3: Burpees – 4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Exercise 4: Bodyweight Pull Ups – 4 minutes [20 sec work, 10 sec rest, 20 sec work…]

Tabata Training Exercise Combinations

4 minutes of Tabata Training as follows:

    • 20 Seconds (Work) – Box Jumps
    • 10 Seconds (Rest)
    • 20 Seconds (Work) – Shuttle Sprints
    • 10 Seconds (Rest)
    • 20 Seconds (Work) – Bodyweight Tricep Dips
    • 10 Seconds (Rest)
    • 20 Seconds (Work) – Bodyweight Squats

*Perform 2 Rounds of the above exercises for a total of 4 minutes. Rest 2-3 minutes and repeat for 2-4 sets.


Workout Programming

Tabata Training is an extremely versatile training protocol; there are literally infinite combinations of exercises, equipment and time domains (volume) that can be performed using a Tabata style of training.

Because Tabata Training is anaerobically demanding and can cause considerable muscular fatigue and soreness as compared to traditional cardio, it is best performed following resistance training if muscle growth or maintenance is the priority. This will enable performance to be optimised for resistance training sessions, whilst also reaping the fat loss benefits of high intensity Tabata Training.


Advantages

There are a number of advantages to using Tabata Training in a properly planned training program.

Tabata Training is very anaerobic as the heart must work quickly to supply oxygen to working muscle tissue; once the demand for oxygen can no longer be met the body uses the anaerobic energy systems to supply the energy required for movement. Much like resistance training the use of the anaerobic systems produces a variety of favourable biological and metabolic adaptations that improve metabolic rate, fat loss, muscle density and overall body composition.

This is in part due to the Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) or oxygen debt; it is the amount of oxygen required following HIIT to restore the body to it’s normal resting state (homeostasis). High intensity cardio like Tabata Training creates this EPOC effect, increasing resting metabolic rate, heart rate and other regenerative processes that require additional energy (calories) for up to 24-30 hours after the workout.

As mentioned Tabata Training can be performed using any number of body weight exercises or equipment; it’s therefore an extremely versatile form of cardio that can be tailored to the specific demands of any sport or populations including those with injuries. Below are some examples of the types of athletes that could benefit from specific Tabata Training.

Bodybuilders – Elliptical Machine , Sled Pushes , Barbell Complexes, Hill Sprints

Crossfit Athletes – Air Dyne, Concept Rower, Bodyweight Complexes, Barbell Complexes

Field & Team Sports – Shuttle Runs, Bodyweight Exercises, Plyometric Exercises

Powerlifters – Sled Pushes , Barbell Complexes, Battle Ropes

Tabata Training is a very time-efficient form of cardio training making it a fantastic training tool when travelling or on holiday. When access to a gym or training equipment is limited, simply performing 15-20 minutes of Tabata Training is a great way to still get in a quick workout without overwhelming your business or holiday schedule.


Example Workout (Bodyweight Blast)

Complete a general 8-10 minute warm-up, then for 4 minutes perform:

    • Exercise 1: Burpees- Perform 20 seconds of work
    • Rest: 10 seconds
    • Exercise 2: Bodyweight Squats- Perform 20 seconds of work
    • Rest: 10 seconds
    • Exercise 3: Push Ups- Perform 20 seconds of work
    • Rest: 10 seconds
    • Exercise 4: Box/Ledge Jumps- Perform 20 seconds of work

*Perform 2 Rounds of the above exercises for a total of 4 minutes. Rest 2-3 minutes and repeat for 2-4 sets.

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