“Burpees are the mother of all exercises, if done correctly"
Burpees are a classic exercise that burns calories, makes you stronger and works your entire body.
Also called ‘squat thrusts’, Burpees are notoriously challenging, with many fitness aficionados either loving them or hating them.
The Burpee is a favourite exercise of many personal trainers who will include them in their client’s HIIT training or conditioning routines.
Adam of the PT Academy, says:
“Burpees are the mother of all exercises, if done correctly. That means, with a press-up and with a jump, no half-Burpees, a proper Burpee.”
Another personal trainer, Harpreet adds: “It’s a great body workout. It works everything, it works your core, your legs, your arms. It’s good for weight loss.”
How to do a Burpee:
- Stand up straight, with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Drop down into a squat position with your hands on the floor in front of you.
- Kick your feet back into a push up position.
- Drop your chest to the ground to do a push up
- Return your feet back to a squat position as quickly as possible.
- Jump into the air as high as you can.
This counts as one rep. Beginners should ideally start off with 5 reps and build on this.
In an age where we are constantly trying to be sold ineffective gimmicky fitness gadgets and the next industry changing supplement, many often forget that the old ways are sometimes the best.
We have an American physiologist by the name of Royal H. Burpee to thank for this gruelling yet effective full body movement.
He endeavoured to develop an exercise that would assess an individual’s fitness level in the days when calisthenics were all the rage.
The Burpee, as it came to be known, was also used by the US army to assess the endurance of their recruits when the country entered World War Two, and the exercise spiked in popularity.
The incredibly taxing Burpee movement has a range of benefits.
Burpees work your Entire Body
Each painstaking rep will work your arms, chest, shoulders, glutes, quads, hamstrings, core and abs. And, as so many muscle groups are being used, a great deal of calories will be burned in the process.
If performed with a great deal of intensity, movements like the Burpee will aid the pursuit of fat burning far more than a treadmill would.
Burpees require no Equipment
Another great thing about Burpees is that they require no equipment; all you require is your own body and you can perform the exercise anywhere.
Burpees increase your Strength and Endurance
Performing Burpees and exercises like it will yield dramatic increases in your strength and endurance.
Burpees are referred to as a functional movement as pretty much every major muscle group is activated when performing one.
As progression is made, you will see a change in muscular endurance as well as aerobic capacity. Your lungs and heart will become more efficient at supplying oxygen to muscle groups in use i.e. You’ll become much fitter and run out of breath less quickly.
DESIblitz asked numerous British Asians at BodyPower 2016 about their views on Burpees.
See their responses in the video below:
There are so many Burpee Variations
Endless varieties of the exercise are at your disposal, so regardless of what level of fitness you are, there will always be a Burpee for you.
If those finding using their body weight are now an easy endeavour, try the dumbbell Burpee, medicine ball Burpee or the Burpee push up (which has also been coined “the Bastardo”).
It is easy to see why people dislike doing Burpees as they are difficult, but it is far more effective and far less monotonous to incorporate these exercises into your routine than doing slow steady paced cardio on a conventional cardio machine.
The only legitimate reasons for omitting Burpees would be: injuries, joint issued or specific medical conditions. Other than that it’s just a case of motivating yourself and learning to embrace the torment.
What is the age old saying? No pain, no gain.