Burpees – A Full-Body Exercise

At VIP 1 to1 Fitness in Fort Lee, New Jersey, we create personalized programs and follow your progress, helping you every step of the way. However, people often ask generalized questions, and one of the most common is “If you could only recommend one exercise that would provide the most benefit for the whole body, what would it be?” The answer is easy, I’d suggest burpees. The exercise was originally created by Dr. Royal H. Burpee, as a test for total body fitness of inactive individuals.

What is a burpee?

Dr. Burpee’s original burpee was easier than it is today. It consisted of five steps. Step 1. Squat down and put both hands on the floor in front of you. Step 2. Push your feet backward to plank position. Step 3. Bring your feet back to starting position. Step 4. Stand up again. Step 5. Repeat. Today burpees have changed a bit and become more difficult. It’s now seven steps and a lot tougher. Step 1. Squat. Step 2. Do a plank. Step 3. Do a push-up. Step 4. Jump your feet back. Step 5. Squat. Step 6. Jump. Step 7. Repeat.

Burpees use all large muscle groups.

One thing that makes burpees so effective is that it uses all major muscle groups. It’s extremely helpful if you’re trying to get into shape and if you speed up a succession of burpees, helpful in getting your fitter and keeping you fit. They’re not easy, but you can do them anywhere and since they work so many muscle groups, can be the basis for your workout when you’re short on time. You’ll work your core muscles, glutes, quads, shoulders, calves, chest and triceps. It also provides a good cardio workout.

If you’re out of shape, start slowly.

You can revert to the original burpee if you’re completely out of shape. It’s better to error on the side of safety. Once you’ve conquered those, add the other steps of the modern version. The military first used burpees to see if recruits were in shape. Later they modified it to the more difficult version during WWII as part of the training regimen. Most trainers use the more difficult military version.

  • Burpees also provide flexibility and balance training, besides building strength and endurance. The squatting and thrusting movements help improve flexibility and balance.
  • Burpees can help lower blood pressure. Large muscle groups are worked during burpees, which causes the body to create nitric oxide. That causes vessels to dilate and lowers blood pressure, which reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Burpees is a fat burning hero. They’re hard and will make you sweat. You may love them or hate them, but one thing is certain, burpees will help you lose weight. They’re demanding and use a lot of calories.
  • No matter what type of exercise program you start, always check with your health care professional first to see if you may have any conditions that it might affect. In most cases, they’ll wholeheartedly approve.

For more information, contact us today at VIP Fitness Center

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