With celebrity fans like Sarah Michelle Gellar and Carrie Underwood, the new workout phenomenon known as “Tabata training” is gaining swift popularity. But what exactly is it?
While it only gained mainstream popularity over the last year or so, the Tabata method is a form of High-Intensity Interval Training (HIT), which combines quick bursts of intense movement with swift periods of rest – and it’s been around since the 90’s.
How it all started
The method is named after its founder, Professor Izumi Tabata, a Japanese physician who observed the short, quick bursts of movement in Japanese speed skaters. In 1996, he published his research into the effects of High-intensity Interval Training (HIIT) on aerobic and anaerobic fitness, and compared it to longer sessions of more moderate training. Tabata and his team found that shorter sessions of HIIT were just as effective, if not more effective than longer sessions of more moderate exercise, and developed the Tabata method out of his research.
So what exactly does it involve? The most basic method of Tabata training involves a high-intensity 4 minute workout, made up of 20 second activities followed by 10 seconds of rest.
An adaptable workout
Tabata can be adapted to use with exercise equipment such as exercise bikes, and it can also be extended into a longer session, with many more seasoned gym bunnies stacking Tabata lessons together for an even tougher workout and add CBD to their routine.
However even if you’re a total beginner, or if you can only manage one session every other day, that’s still 20 odd minutes of extra high-intensity movement that you weren’t doing before.
An average session of beginners Tabata could look something like this:
- 20 seconds of push-ups, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of jumping jacks, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of heel touches, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of plank, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of squats, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of mountain climbers, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of lunges, 10 second rest
- 20 seconds of standing ab twists, 10 second rest
While the Tabata method is designed to be tough going, and it really relies on you giving your all to get the best results. While it might be tough, you can be safe in the knowledge that all sections of the Tabata method only last 20 seconds, and it’ll all be over in less than 5 minutes.
Taking up a beginners class in Tabata training could be the perfect choice for someone looking to get more into exercise without forking out a lot of cash on a gym membership, or dealing with random Gym Bois giving you their unsolicited opinions on the form of your squats.
For one, there’s countless Tabata training videos for beginners on YouTube for you to complete in the privacy of your own home. Alternatively, many yoga studios offer quick Tabata method classes that can easily slide into commute to and from work without that much hassle.
While most people don’t particularly enjoy exercise, Tabata is the perfect combination of keeping your workouts short and effective, to get the most bang for your proverbial buck.