What Is HIIT Training?
Have you heard of HIIT? You've probably seen these quick workout routines if you did any home workouts during the lockdowns or if you follow Joe Wicks The Body Coach. What exactly does HIIT stand for and why should you include it into your weekly workout routine? Continue reading and we'll discover more about HIIT!
HIIT training stands for high intensity interval training; short groups of intense exercise are combined with rest periods in this type of training. HIIT workouts benefit both the body and the mind by increasing muscle strength and lowering blood pressure (1,2). If you're wondering why people love HIIT workouts, we asked our Head Fitness Coach Jade to share her top reasons:
- You can make the exercises easier or harder: depending on how much energy you have on a given day or how fit you are. Squats, for example, are a fantastic beginner's exercise! If you want to make them more difficult increase the speed, progress to squat jumps or add weights
- Different fitness levels can take part: HIIT workouts are frequently performed with an interval timer such as a Tabata timer, that has an exercise section and a rest section. It's possible that you'll see this style written as something like 40/20. This means 40 seconds of activity followed by 20 seconds of rest or active rest, such as jogging. Everyone can work at different levels with this style of timing. If you're in better fitness than me, you can perform 20 squats in 40 seconds, when I might only manage 10
- The workouts never become easy: that is a plus since you can mix up the workouts, develop them, and push yourself harder, which can prevent boredom. You can increase the reps (the number of times you do each exercise), the sets (the number of times you execute that exercise circuit), and decrease the rest periods (rest time between sets)
What Are The Advantages Of HIIT:
Improving your cardio fitness: are you looking to add cardio into your weekly workout or do you want to become fitter? HIIT workouts can be a great option for you! Did you know by doing your own HIIT workout or watching a workout video with your favourite trainer can improve your fitness? That allows you to reach higher maximum heart rates, which strengthens the heart muscle (2,3). HIIT workouts are great for cross-training too, such as running, or team sports like football and hockey.
Time saving: are you a busy person? One of the best things about a HIIT workout is you can fit it into your busy schedule and it can be done at any time! Depending on your time availability or fitness levels you could start off with a 10 minute workout and build this up to a quick 20, 30 or 40 minute routine.
How Do I Start HIIT Training?
Even if you're still undecided, you can always get a taste of what HIIT is all about, check out and try Jade’s Favourite HIIT exercises she loves to use with members:
Fancy giving them a go? Try doing 10-15 reps of each exercise back to back. Then have a 1-2 minute rest (longer if needed) and complete 1-3 more rounds depending on your time and fitness.
Written by Performance For All - find us on Instagram @wearepfa
Written and researched by Ilektra Lampraki, Msc Marketing Student - Intern at Performance For All
Edited by Sophie O’Neill - BA Creative Writing Student (Content Writer at Performance For All), Jade Mottley- Sport Scientist and MSc Human Nutrition student (Head Coach at Performance For All) and Maisha Haque, Inclusion Team Leader at Performance For All.