What Is a Tabata Workout and Should You Be Doing It?

What is a Tabata Workout?

Well, a Tabata Workout is a kind of HIIT. If you don’t know what HIIT is, click here for our article on the what and how of a HIIT Workout. Are you back yet? Okay, so, the Tabata workout was developed in Tokyo. In this kind of Workout, your whole session lasts only 4 minutes. Yes! You heard that right. Only 4 minutes. But if you think it’s going to be the easiest four minutes of your life, you have another think coming. In a Tabata workout, you do an exercise for 20 seconds, take 10 seconds rest and repeat this a total of eight times. You only need to have one exercise for the workout but you could alternate between two.

What are the benefits of Tabata?


A Tabata workout increases your body’s Basal Metabolic Rate, which is defined as the amount of energy your body uses while at rest to sustain your basic bodily functions. Tabata raises your BMR to 15 times the normal amount. So as you can discern, this workout is very intense for your body. Any increase in BMR is great for you because you’re burning more calories than you normally would.


Your body’s aerobic capacity is the maximum amount of oxygen that you consume during a particularly intense workout at any given time. Anaerobic Capacity is a sort of measure of the maximum energy that can be produced by the body in a scenario involving a complete absence of oxygen. So where does anaerobic energy come from? It’s produced by burning the carbs in your body. when the oxygen in your bloodstream is not sufficient.

So, if you keep at Tabata for a couple of weeks, your body’s aerobic and anaerobic capacity increases significantly which means that you have more stamina.


This workout lasts only 4 minutes. By the clock. You have absolutely no excuse not to squeeze it into your day, no matter how busy you are. So, stop telling yourself that you don’t have the time. If you can squeeze in an episode of Narcos or Sacred Games then you can definitely squeeze this in.


When you go on a diet, sometimes you end up losing your hard earned muscle. And in the journey to weight loss, you don’t even notice. However, if you go the Tabata route, you’ll find that your valuable muscle tissue is saved. Because this workout places so much stress on your muscles, it automatically signals to the body that you need more muscle. So the ratio of lean body mass to fat increases. If you are careful with the kind of exercises that you choose then you might even gain more muscle.

How often should You do Tabata?

While Tabata is a great workout option, you should not overdo it. Experts recommend that you do Tabata twice a week with intervals between the workout. On the other days, you can look at some less strenuous aerobic exercises. A combination of a good diet and proper workouts will ensure that you hit your weight loss goals in just a few months.


Tabata Routines:

If you’re inspired enough to start with a Tabata workout, here are three exercises you could try! Before trying any of these, always remember that you need to do a warm up and cool down before and after the exercise respectively.


burpee tabata

For a Burpee, you need to put your hands up in the air, jump, do a squat, do a frog crouch, then do a plank. Then you go back the frog crouch, the squat and the jump. You do this for 20 seconds with 10 seconds rest and repeat the whole thing eight times.

2. Skipping


How many of us have skipping ropes in our homes? I’m sure most of us do. So your Tabata workout could be as famous as skipping on a jump rope. Each set is 20 seconds rest with a 10-second rest interval.

3. Push Ups

push ups

A push up is an excellent workout for a Tabata routine. It places a lot of stress on the upper body. So you lie down on the mat, almost in plank position but you rest your palms on the mat instead of the forearms. And then you push yourself up. Posture is very important while doing this exercise. You’ll definitely find yourself sweating through this one!

Click here: To try a more advanced Tabata Routine.

In conclusion, a Tabata is quite like HIIT, but it’s an even shorter duration. Before embarking in this, you need to achieve a certain level of fitness otherwise you might find yourself more fatigued than inspired to do a workout. So if you’re new to the weight loss train, try these exercises for some weeks before going for a HIIT workout.



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