If you’re a busy person or hate spending hours in the gym each week, TABATA training might be for you.
But what exactly is it, and why is it so popular?
Tabata is a specific form of high intensity interval training (HIIT) that involves 8 rounds of extremely high intensity exercise as follows:
Work: 20 seconds
Rest: 10 seconds
Heart Rate: Above 100%
Total Workout Time: 4 minutes
You can apply this tabata formula to almost any exercise – sprinting, cycling, push-ups, burpees, box jumps, kettlebell exercises.
The key to effective tabata training is to ensure your 20 second ‘on’ intervals are at your highest intensity.
I love tabata because I’m often short on time.
My favourite tabata workout:
Sprinting – sprint for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds x 8 times
Skipping – jump for 20 seconds, rest for 10 seconds x 8 times
8 minutes and you’re done!
Who came up with this?
Tabata was formulated by Japanese scientist Dr Izumi Tabata.
Dr Tabata tested his method on Olympic speed skaters – he put one group on a traditional training regime (one hour of moderate exercise five times a week) and put another group on the tabata regime.
Group 1 did approximately 1800 minutes of training over a 6 week period, compared to the Tabata group who did approximately 120 minutes. Dr Tabata discovered that the 20/10 ‘Tabata’ method was more effective at enhancing aerobic and anaerobic systems and one four-minute session burned the same number of calories as a 60-minute jog!
Note this is not an ideal workout for beginners. Consult your medical practitioner if you have any concerns before giving it a try.