In the face-to-face that opposes Tabata and HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), which wins the title of hardest workout? The answer is not so obvious.
First of all, the comparison between Tabata and HIIT itself is questionable, as Tabata is technically speaking a for me high intensity interval training.
For the Tabata training protocol established and tested by the scientist who gave it its name, Dr. Izumi Tabata, you alternate between 20 seconds of maximum effort and 10 seconds of rest.
Perform eight repetitions and you have just completed a workout that has been shown to be effective in assessing VO2 max (maximum oxygen consumption) and improved anaerobic capacity, all in just four minutes.
But the four minutes of a Tabata workout may seem like harder than the 20 to 30 minutes of a typical HIIT workout at home or in a group fitness class. We tell you why.
Tabata vs HIIT: level of effort
If you don't exceed your limits during a Tabata workout, you are not doing it right, claims Saara Haapanen, science graduate, certified personal trainer and doctoral student in sports psychology based in Denver, Colorado.
“You have to give everything you have during the 20-second work phases,” she adds, “and finish out of breath, literally. The level of effort must be at the maximum!
During a HIIT workout, the level of exertion is high (between 75-85% of your maximum effort), but you are supposed to be able to last longer than in a Tabata session.
Rest is the other variable that differentiates Tabata from other forms of HIIT training.
“If you train at your highest intensity level, you will still have a longer rest period to allow the body to replenish its reserves of energy.adenosine triphosphate and eliminating enough metabolic waste to allow you to produce the same amount of energy during each interval, ”says Trevor Thieme, CSCS (Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist) and Director of Fitness and Nutrition Content at Beachbody.
This is not the case with the Tabata.
“You are deliberately giving yourself insufficient recovery time,” he adds. "This is what allows a complete workout in just four minutes."
Tabata vs HIIT: muscles put to use
In Dr. Tabata's study, participants used mechanical brake ergometers (stationary bikes), making the original Tabata a workout targeting the lower body.
However, the Tabata protocol can be applied to almost any exercise using bodyweight, from squats to push-ups, and target almost any part of the body, or even the entire body, with movements such as the burpee.
But the key to such a workout is just one exercise for the full four minutes.
The muscles you use during a HIIT workout also vary depending on the workout schedule.
A HIIT workout of mostly squats, lunges and pelvic raises targeting the lower body, while a mix of kettlebell swings, barbell thrusters, and rock climbers will work all major muscle groups.
Tabata vs HIIT: results
HIIT workout, whether Tabata or not, is ideal for busy people because it requires less time than a moderate-intensity cardio session, which typically lasts an hour.
But you can't find any workout that gives such good (proven) results in such a short time as the Tabata workout.
"L"original study showed that six weeks of Tabata training increased DMOC (maximum cumulative oxygen deficit, or anaerobic capacity) by 19.4% and VO2 max by 4.7%, ”says Saara Haapanen. "That's considerable for less than five minutes a day."
Tabata workouts can also speed up your metabolism and help burn fat, she continues.
But the extra 20 minutes of a HIIT workout may be worth it, depending on your goals.
"You'll burn more calories," Trevor Thieme says before adding, "and gain strength while boosting muscle building."
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It’s not only six-pack seekers who should be paying their abs plenty of attention when they visit the gym. Strong abs are an integral part of a rock-solid core, which should be one of the goals of any fitness regime.
That’s because a strong core is the foundation upon which so many other things rest – whether that’s good posture that helps to prevent lower back pain developing from sitting at a desk all day, or the mobility and strength required to excel in sports and other activities ranging all the way from athletics to zumba.
Forming a mighty midriff will also help you perform better when doing all manner of other moves in the gym. Powerhouse lifts like barbell squats and deadlifts all demand a strong core, as do agility workouts and plyometric exercises.
So the list of benefits of adding abs exercises to your gym repertoire and strengthening your core is almost endless. And who’s going to complain if you also happen to sculpt a picture-perfect six-pack at the same time ?
tera help ensure you have an array of exercises suitable for your training experience to add to your abs workouts, Coach enlisted Fitness First personal trainer Luke Chamberlain and Carl Martin, personal training directeur at Equinox, for a selection of their favourite moves for beginner, intermediate and advanced gym-goers, and we’ve added some of our favourites, too.
An all-time core classic. Hold a straight line from your shoulders to your ankles while supporting yourself on your forearms and toes.
“The plank is great for beginners and there is minimal movement so less chance of getting it wrong, ” says Chamberlain.
“It’s also easy to scale – start at 20-second holds and work up towards 60 seconds. Make sure you engage your core by tilting your pelvis back slightly to flatten your lower back – a curved lower back is to be avoided. ”
Lie down with your feet flat on the ground and knees bent. Place your hands on your thighs and slowly slide them up towards your knees as you sit up.
“This does not have to be a large movement, ” says Chamberlain. “Focus on closing the distance between your ribs and hips by lifting your shoulders off the floor while maintaining contact between the ground and your lower back.
“Moving the top half up puts more emphasis on your upper abs. Start with sets of five and work towards 15. ”
“Start in a straight arm press-up place with one knee up between your elbows and only the back foot on the floor, ” says Chamberlain. “Jump the back foot off the floor and swap it with the front foot.
“Focus on pulling your stomach zones musculaires in throughout the movement to protect your spine and add more intensity. This is a great exercise for burning calories as well as developing your abs. Start with 30 seconds of mountain climbers and work towards 60 seconds. ”
The reverse crunch is even better than the standard crunch for strengthening your abs. The move keeps your groupes musculaires under tension for a longer period and hits the tricky-to-target lower abs particularly hard.
Lie down and raise your legs so your thighs are vertical and your knees are bent at a 90° angle. Contract your abs to bring your knees to your chest and raise your hips off the floor, then slowly lower your legs back to the start.