Girl practicing a Tabata workout for beginners

If you are a busy person looking for a physical activity that will get you in shape and make you lose weight, our 4min Tabata workout for beginners with no equipment is for you! If you have never heard about the Tabata method, you unquestionably won’t believe that only 4min HIIT could bring you fantastic body results. And yet! This method was designed to train the national Japanese speed skating team for the Olympics. In this article, we will see the steps to start right, Tabata.

Tabata method : simple and efficient

The Tabata method will exhaust your muscles and provide a quick burst of energy for an hour or more. Indeed, the National Strength and Conditioning Association has recommended Tabata training to athletes to help them reach their maximum performance potential. Moreover, this training can be beneficial to people of all fitness levels.

The Tabata method:

  • 20 seconds of intense effort
  • 10 seconds of recovery
  • All this has to be repeated 8 times

What are the benefits of the 4-minute Tabata workout for beginners?

Tabata is an excellent way to have an intense and efficient workout in only 4 minutes. Further, it is also a great way to get in shape easily as it can be done anywhere and doesn’t require any equipment.

This training has the following benefits and advantages for a Tabata beginner:

  • Increased fat loss
  • Keep lean muscle tissue
  • Reduces the accumulation of excess carbs and fat in muscles
  • Improved cardiovascular health
  • Improved mental focus
  • Increases Fat-burning
  • Increases work capacity for extended periods
  • Burns more calories than other aerobic exercises
  • Shorter training than a traditional cardio session
  • No equipment is needed
  • Practice anywhere

Advises for Tabata beginners

Tabata beginner girl practicing HIIT

Starting a new physical activity is beneficial for your health. If you want to begin Tabata, here you can find our advises: 

1) Pay attention to the intensity

Its intensity characterizes Tabata. So, don’t be surprised; the 20 seconds of power has to be repeated 8 times for 4 minutes will be particularly intense. And, if you can’t complete the full 8 sets or 4 minutes on your first attempt, it’s normal! Therefore, if you are a Tabata beginner, start gradually in terms of intensity and exercise difficulty. Your Tabata routine has to be adapted to your level. Later in this article, we will propose a Tabata workout for beginners. 

Note, that this exercise makes you reach, on average, 90% of your maximum heart rate. That is why, this workout is not recommended without prior medical examination for people with a family history of heart disease, high cholesterol levels or high blood pressure.

2) Don't skip the warm-up

Before starting a Tabata workout, it is crucial to warm up properly. And, it is even more essential if you are a Tabata beginner. Indeed, Tabata’s exercises are fast and intense. Therefore, make sure to practice these exercices with preparation to avoid the risk of injury and muscle damage. Prefer dynamic exercises for your warm-up, such as lunges, donkey kicks, and squats for 5 minutes or more. If you are looking for a Tabata warm-up that fits every level: Best TABATA warm-up exercises for all level

3) Rest and recover enough

If you do the training correctly, you will need rest periods throughout the session to catch your breath. So, do not shorten the rest period of a Tabata session. Also, if during your first sessions you need more seconds to take your breath increase your rest period.

4) Don't put many Tabata Workouts together

When the Tabata method was initially developed, Japanese speed skaters had trouble completing the 4-minute workout. So, if you think you can do more than 4 minutes as a Tabata beginner, you are either not pushing yourself hard enough or doing exercises wrong.

5) Don't perform a Tabata workout too frequently

Since you are just starting and Tabata is a very intense workout, it will put a lot of strain on your body. However, if you don’t practice any other demanding sports activity, you can start with 2-3 sessions per week and increase gradually.

4-min Tabata workout for beginner

Each set consists of 20 seconds of exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest. The long-term goal is to complete 8 sets for a total of 4 minutes.

  • 20 seconds of jumping jacks – 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds of mountain climbers – 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds of push-ups – 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds of burpees – 10 seconds of rest

Repeat for the second set:

  • 20 seconds of jumping jacks – 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds mountain climbers – 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds push-ups – 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds burpees – 10 seconds of rest

Exercises execution

It is essential to practice well these Tabata beginners exercises to get results quickly and to avoid injuries. Below are the details of the exercices execution:

Tabata workout for beginners - Exercise #1: Jumping jacks

  • Stand with your feet together and your hands at your sides.
  • Bend your knees slightly and jump into the air.
  • As you jump vertically, spread your feet about one shoulder-width apart, raising your arms to your sides over your head.
  • Extend your arms above your head.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat.

Exercise #2: Push-ups

  • Start the exercise on the floor in a plank position.
  • Hands shoulder-width apart, elbows fully extended, and body (head to toe) as straight as possible, without digging in.
  • Slowly bend your elbows toward the ground so that your arms form a 90-degree angle, making sure to keep your neck, back, and legs in line.
  • Once on the ground, push up on your arms until they are almost straight.

Exercise #3: Mountain climbers

Men doing mountain climbers at home during a tabata workout for beginners
  • Start in a plank position with your hands directly under your shoulders, arms, and legs. Your hands are shoulder-width apart.
  • Bring your right knee toward your chest while contracting your abdominals.
  • Return the right knee to the starting position while moving the left forward.
  • Continue the movement by alternating legs.

Exercise #4: Burpees

Burpees may seem complex at first if you are a Tabata beginner, but don’t let that impress you!

  • Start from a standing position with your feet slightly apart, bend your legs and put your hands on the floor to get into a squat and plank position (be careful not to dig into your back).
  • Do a push-up, then return to the squat position by bringing your feet to either side of your hands.
  • Then jump up quickly by stretching your arms over your head.
  • Return to the starting position.

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