What is Tabata Training ? | Tabata Workout Exercises

May 19, 2024 3 min read

Tabata Training with press ups

 What is Tabata Training?

 Over the years, you have probably come into contact with countless workout styles that have been designed to help you achieve your fitness goals. Whether your aim be to lose weight, build muscle, increase your strength or improve flexibility, as long as you stick to the exercise program designed, they can help you attain your target.

Tabata training is a form of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), a Tabata workout  includes exercises that are performed for four minutes. You may want to add the workout to your routine if you are looking for a new program.

What Does a Tabata Workout Mean & its history?

The Japanese scientist Dr. Izumi Tabata discovered Tabata training along with a team of National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo researchers.

The team used two groups of athletes to conduct their research; whilst the first group were trained at a moderate level of intensity, working out five days a week for six weeks, the second group trained at high-intensity four days a week for the same duration of six weeks. Each workout lasted for four minutes and 20 seconds and included a 10 second rest interval in between each set.

What were the results? - Whilst group 1 witnessed an increase in their aerobic (cardiovascular) system, they showed either little or no results for their anaerobic (muscle) system. In comparison, group 2 witnessed a much bigger increase in their aerobic system than group 1 as well as a 28% increase in their anaerobic system.

Thus, the results found that high-intensity interval training has a bigger effect on both anaerobic and aerobic systems.

Structure of a Tabata Workout

A typical Tabata workout consists of 8 rounds of 20 seconds of high-intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest. This cycle is repeated for a total of 4 minutes. The key to a Tabata workout is to push yourself to your maximum effort during the 20-second work intervals.

During a Tabata workout, each exercise only lasts for four minutes however it is likely to feel much longer. The program is structured as below:

  • 20 seconds of hard work where you push yourself as hard as you can 
  • 10 second rest
  • This is one set 
  • You then complete eight sets of each exercise

Any exercise that works your large muscle groups are recommended such as burpees, push up and squats, but you can include basically any exercise that you wish. Kettlebell exercises are particularly good to include, so choose 4 exercises that target different muscle groups, such as squats, push-ups, burpees, and mountain climbers. Perform each exercise at maximum intensity for 20 seconds, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat this cycle for a total of 4 minutes.

What are some Tabata workout exercises?

Popular Tabata exercises,  using mainly your body weight & free weights, such as kettlebells & dumbbells, these can include jumping jacks, high knees, sprints, and kettlebell swings. These exercises can be modified to suit different fitness levels and goals, making Tabata training accessible to everyone.

An example of a Tabata workout example:

  1. Mountain climbers (4 minutes) – you start with performing these for 20 seconds at a high intensity level, and then rest for 10 seconds. Repeat this for the first exercise 8 times. Once you have completed the 8 sets, then rest for 1 minute before moving on to the next exercise.
  2. Burpees (4 minutes) Follow the same structure of 20 seconds work followed by a 10 second rest, 8 times. 
  3. Bodyweight squats (4 minutes)
  4. Push-ups (4 minutes)


 Benefits of Tabata

Research has shown that Tabata workouts can provide significant improvements in both aerobic and anaerobic fitness. In fact, a Tabata workout can burn more calories in a shorter amount of time compared to traditional steady-state cardio exercises.

Additionally, Tabata workouts can help increase metabolism, improve cardiovascular health, and enhance overall endurance. The short, intense bursts of exercise followed by brief rest periods can also lead to greater fat loss and muscle gain.

How to Incorporate Tabata into Your Routine

Tabata workouts can be done with a variety of exercises, including bodyweight movements, weightlifting, or cardio exercises. It's important to choose exercises that target different muscle groups to ensure a full-body workout.

Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned athlete, Tabata workouts can be customized to fit your fitness level. Start by incorporating one or two Tabata sessions per week and gradually increase the frequency as your fitness improves.

Remember, the key to a successful Tabata workout is to give it your all during the work intervals and push yourself to the limit. With consistency and dedication, you can experience the numerous benefits of this efficient and challenging form of exercise.


Creating Your Consultation

If you wish to contact us for any reason, our dedicated team of customer service experts are here to help.

Please either fill in the contact form or send us a message using our online chat at the right-hand side of the screen. Our Customer Service Online Chat is available 7 days a week from 9am-8pm. If your enquiry relates to an existing order, please include your order number.