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Add HIIT Into Your Training!

In the world of fitness, a common misconception prevails—long, grueling hours of exercise are necessary for visible results. However, it is often the efficiency of workouts rather than their duration that can better impact your fitness goals.

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) offers numerous benefits without the need for extended workout sessions. HIIT is a form of cardiorespiratory exercise involving short bursts of intense effort followed by brief periods of lower-intensity activity or rest.

This efficient and effective workout method enhances cardiovascular fitness, burns calories, and offers various health benefits in shorter timeframes compared to traditional exercise routines.

Common Types of HIIT Training

1. Tabata Training

A widely recognized model, Tabata, involves 20 seconds of intense work followed by a 10-second recovery, repeated eight times for a total of 4 minutes. For beginners, a modified approach of 2 minutes of Tabata followed by a 1-minute recovery can be an effective starting point.

2. 30:30 Model

In this model, 30 seconds of high-intensity exercise are alternated with 30 seconds of lower intensity for active recovery. Beginning with 5 minutes (5 intervals) and gradually increasing the number of intervals over time.

3. 30-20-10 Protocol

Organized in 60-second intervals, this model combines 30 seconds of low-intensity, 20 seconds of moderate-intensity, and 10 seconds of all-out, high-intensity effort. Whether performing a single exercise for 3-to-6 minutes or developing a circuit, this protocol offers versatility. Transition times of 10-15 seconds between exercises maximize results.

Six Benefits of HIIT Training

1. Reducing Chronic Health Risks:

 HIIT serves as strength training for the heart, improving its efficiency and reducing the risk of heart disease.

2. Muscle Size and Definition:

Activation of type II muscle fibers during HIIT contributes to muscle hypertrophy, enhancing size and definition.

3. Post-Workout Caloric Burn:

 Beyond the session, muscles continue to burn calories as they metabolize fat during the recovery period.

4. Increased Aerobic Capacity:

HIIT challenges conventional wisdom by increasing mitochondrial density, stroke volume, and aerobic capacity in a shorter timeframe than traditional training.

5. Anabolic Hormones Boost:

HIIT triggers the production of growth hormones, testosterone, and insulin-like growth factor-1, supporting muscle protein repair and growth.

6. Brain Health Benefits:

Elevated levels of Brain-derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) during HIIT can contribute to the growth of new brain cells, potentially reducing the risk of Alzheimer's or dementia.

Warming Up Is Key For Effective HIIT Workouts

Before diving into a high-intensity session, a comprehensive warm-up is essential. Include self-myofascial release (SMR) on tight muscles, core training, and balance exercises for optimal neuromuscular efficiency.

Plyometric exercises can activate explosive muscle fibers, preparing the body for the challenge ahead. Gradually increasing intensity during the warm-up ensures clients are ready to give their maximum effort when the real workout begins.

10 Popular HIIT Exercises That You Can Do At Home

*If these exercises are not right for you, ask your Physiotherapist for other suggestions!  

1.Jumping Jacks:

Full-body exercise to elevate heart rate.


Combines squats, push-ups, and jumps for a total-body workout.

3.Mountain Climbers:

Engages core and cardiovascular system.

4.Squat Jumps:

Squatting and jumping to target lower body and boost heart rate.

5.Plank Jacks:

Plank position with jumping legs in and out.

6.Kettlebell Swings:

Full-body exercise for power & strength.

7.Weighted Lunges:

Hold dumbbells while performing lunges for increased leg and glute engagement.

8. Band Pull-Aparts:

Use a resistance band to target the upper back and shoulders.

9.Bicycle Crunches:

Core exercise involving cycling legs in a crunch position.

10.Medicine Ball Slams:

Slam a medicine ball into the ground for an explosive, full-body exercise.

HIIT for Optimal Results

While HIIT presents a potent tool for achieving fitness goals efficiently, it's crucial to approach it with care. Limiting HIIT sessions to 2-3 times a week with at least 48 hours between sessions allows for optimal recovery. On days following a HIIT session, opt for lower intensity activities, targeting different muscle groups to ensure adequate rest time.

Incorporating HIIT into workout programs is an effective way to reach your fitness goals. By understanding its science and benefits, you can work towards achieving results in less time, making every HIIT session a rewarding step towards a healthier lifestyle.

Interested in adding a HIIT workout to your routine? Ask your Physio today if this type of workout is right for you. Your Physiotherapist can provide individualized exercise suggestions to incorporate in your HIIT workout!

Call (403)-282-2545


 Book online to start developing your personalized HIIT program today!


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