Thursday, 1 December 2011

Tabata intervals

Today we mixed some Tabata interval training on a heavy punch bag into our upper body weights routine.  This routine lasts only 4 minutes but OMG. if you use max. effort, it's a killer. 

Although we used the punchbag for sport specific training, it is equally effective on bikes, treadmills, skipping ropes, as squats, burpees or whatever other method rapidly increases your heart rate without prematurely fatiguing your muscles (for example heavy weights squats would not work as your legs fail with the weight before your heartrate gets up to max).

Tabata Summary 

Tabata Intervals consist of 20 seconds of maximum intensity exercise, followed by 10 seconds of rest. This cycle is repeated 8 times (for a total of 4-minutes). Although Dr. Tabata used a mechanically braked cycle ergometer, you can apply “Tabata Intervals” to several forms of exercise, such as hitting a heavy bag, sprinting, jumping rope, or fast paced bodyweight squats.

Your first reaction might be, “How effective can this protocol really be with just 4 minutes of exercise?”

Let me answer this question for you… VERY EFFECTIVE!

You will be amazed at how intense 4 minutes of exercise will feel. This form of training taxes both the anaerobic and aerobic energy systems. Tabata Intervals are excellent for those athletes who participate in high intensity sports such as boxing, MMA, or wrestling.

After just 6 weeks of testing, Dr. Tabata noted a 28% increase in anaerobic capacity along with a 14% increase in V02Max. The 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off interval system improved both the anaerobic and aerobic energy systems significantly. These results were witnessed by physically fit athletes. Many tests are conducted on deconditioned subjects, which makes the test results more difficult to evaluate. Dr. Tabata's test was much more effective, as it produced a positive response on individuals who were already in shape.

This form of training is also effective for fat loss. Tabata Intervals will raise your body’s metabolic rate long after the exercise session is completed. You will continue to burn fat throughout the day. Recent studies have shown that intense interval training will elevate the rate that your body burns calories by up to 142% more than low-intensity, continuous exercise

As mentioned, you can perform Tabata Intervals with several forms of exercise. The most obvious is sprinting. For example, sprint 20 seconds, and then rest 10 seconds, and continue until you have completed 8 x 20 second sprints. Always begin with a moderate warm-up and cool down session.

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