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HIIT: What is Tabata workout?

HIIT: what is Tabata workout?

First things first, before going into the description of the Tabata workout, let’s explain what is a HIIT training.

HIIT = High-Intensity Interval Training

This training style became very popular recently because it allows you to do a good training in a short period (perfect in you have a busy schedule).

This type of training will help you to lose body fat because, due to the high intensity, your body will continue to burn calories even after the training (afterburn effect). This is due to the fact that your body requires more energy (calories) to repair itself after this intense training.

The concept of this training is quite simple: performing short powerful movements, followed by regular resting periods. Rather than spending one-hour practicing moderating exercises, you will push yourself close to your limit for a short time.

Tabata is one of the most effective HIIT training. It was originally created by Japanese professor Dr. Izumi Tabata for the Olympic speed skating team.

Tabata HIIT = 8 x 20 seconds maximal intensity exercise + 10 seconds of rest between each lap = 4 minutes exercise

This type of training is really efficient because it will both strengthen your muscles and improve your cardiovascular system.

Here is an example of a Tabata workout with 2 different exercises that you can easily do at home, for the days you would like to skip the gym.  

Exercise 1: Perform squat during 20 seconds + rest for 10 seconds + Repeat again (8 times)

Rest for one minute

Exercise 2: Perform mountain climbers during 20 seconds + rest for 10 seconds + Repeat again (8 times)

You are done! Congratulations! You just burned 343 calories!

Don’t forget to engage your core during both exercises. Perform the mountain climbers at high speed in order to get your heart rate up!

 

Do we need to stretch before exercising?

Do we need to stretch before exercising?

A few years ago, to stretch before exercising in team sports was an activity widely recognized, especially the static stretching during which you undertake a pose and you hold it from a few seconds to long minutes.

However, recent studies have demonstrated that a prolonged static stretching could cause reactions in the nervous system that might weaken temporarily the stretched muscles and the performance of athletes.

Many coaches and sports organizations recommend the dynamic stretching because your limbs and joints always stay in motion.

With the purpose to analyze the effects of dynamic stretching on performance, some scientists have tested different stretching routines on 20 young male athletes in team sports (rugby and football) for 4 days.

In order to have the best conditions for the study, the warm-up consisted of a few minutes jogging, a stretching and then 15 minutes of intense sprinting, jumping and other fast moves. During the 4 days, only the stretching was changed.

The first day, during their warm-up, the athletes completed 9 basic static stretching for different muscles, each of them last 5 seconds. The second day, the same 9 stretches were completed again but for 30 seconds each. The third day, the same stretches were done but with the dynamic version. And the last day, no stretching was done during their warm-up. The athletes had to complete tests every day to measure their flexibility, agility, jumping and sprinting.

Results: the performance of the athletes didn’t change, regardless of the type of stretching (dynamic or static) and even without any warm-up. So, to stretch before exercising?  It’s up to you to decide! The answer will depend on how do you feel about stretching and the type of exercise do you want to do!

 

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