T Nation

Tabata Training?

What is this and does this work? I just read about this at this article http://ezinearticles.com/?Tabata-Anything---Four-Minutes-of-Pain-to-Gain&id=348486 . It says it’s a 4 minute workout. Does anyone have any experience with this?

Yes. It’s pretty simple. The basic protocol is 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest for a total of 4 minutes. I have heard of people going longer than the 4 minutes. Some people also change up the workout/rest intervals, depending upon the exercise. The most common I have seen are 40:20 and 40:15.

[quote]lewhitehurst wrote:
Yes. It’s pretty simple. The basic protocol is 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest for a total of 4 minutes. I have heard of people going longer than the 4 minutes. Some people also change up the workout/rest intervals, depending upon the exercise. The most common I have seen are 40:20 and 40:15.[/quote]

I get cryin after 4 minutes,How the fuck can someone go for 40 minutes ?HOW THE FUCK!!!

What is the purpose of this workout though? Why would I go with this instead of my regular, high volume training?

Tabata = HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

Researcher Dr. Izumi Tabata discovered and created a high intensity interval timing protocol that increased both anaerobic and aerobic pathways at the same time. He was searching for a system that would increase an athlete’s VO2Max. The protocol is as follows:

4-5 Minute Warm-Up

For twenty (20) seconds perform the maximum number of reps of an assigned exercise followed by a ten (10) second rest; repeat for “x” number of times.

Cool Down for 2-4 Minutes.

Tabata does not stipulate the number of sets as it depends on the type of exercise you are doing. Originally the protocol was developed on a psuedo-stationary bike and soon after adapted to speed skating sprints for the Japanese Speed Skating Olympic Team. Soon after Tabata Squats, Tabata Sprints, Tabata Dumbbell Squat Thrusters, Tabata Jumproping followed…

Again, exercise for twenty seconds, do as many repetitions as possible. Rest for ten seconds. Repeat.

E.g. 8 interval sets = 4 minutes = 160 seconds of actual exercise.

It’s not a workout,its just cardio.I like complexes better.

[quote]Marlind wrote:
It’s not a workout,its just cardio.I like complexes better.[/quote]

Be careful Dan John may just read your post…

He has written an excellent article about Tabata Dumbbell Squat Thrusters and Tabata Front Squats and they surely warrant the title of “WORKOUT”!

You’ll surely remember them for days after, especially if they were Tabata Overhead Squats as he has suggested elsewhere… believe me I wished I never listened to him!

[quote]Marlind wrote:
lewhitehurst wrote:
Yes. It’s pretty simple. The basic protocol is 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest for a total of 4 minutes. I have heard of people going longer than the 4 minutes. Some people also change up the workout/rest intervals, depending upon the exercise. The most common I have seen are 40:20 and 40:15.

I get cryin after 4 minutes,How the fuck can someone go for 40 minutes ?HOW THE FUCK!!![/quote]

Wake up! He is mentioning other HIIT timing intervals in seconds not minutes!!!

eg. 40 seconds exercise followed by 20 seconds rest.

[quote]Marlind wrote:
It’s not a workout,its just cardio.I like complexes better.[/quote]

Cardio can be aerobic (which is what most people think all cardio is), anaerobic or a combination of the two. I do complexes and tabata with weights, sandbags and kettlebells.

If you don’t think it’s a workout, then you are probably not pushing yourself when you do it.

[quote]Ricochet wrote:
Marlind wrote:
lewhitehurst wrote:
Yes. It’s pretty simple. The basic protocol is 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest for a total of 4 minutes. I have heard of people going longer than the 4 minutes. Some people also change up the workout/rest intervals, depending upon the exercise. The most common I have seen are 40:20 and 40:15.

I get cryin after 4 minutes,How the fuck can someone go for 40 minutes ?HOW THE FUCK!!!

Wake up! He is mentioning other HIIT timing intervals in seconds not minutes!!!

eg. 40 seconds exercise followed by 20 seconds rest.[/quote]

Lol. Thanks.

I use Tabata method for punch out drills on the heavy bag, burpees, and a few other exercises. They flat out whip ass if done with intensity. This is a great addition to any routine, and I highly recommend it, depending on your goals.

If the gains were seen through doing a primarily aerobic exercise(IE stationary cycling) what makes you think that the same physiological benefits will also transfer when lifting weight? Does the nature of the exercise effect the results, is what I’m asking.

Like, 20 secs of cycling all out may stimulate different physiological responses than squatting for 20 secs, and so we could be seeing different results.

I wouldn’t use squats or other big lifts for the Tabata protocol, since these lifts require impeccable form when being executed. Tabata is not only aerobic by nature, but is also anaerobic. Thus, depending on your exercise selection may lead to an increase in your squat or whatever your goal is. Using this protocol for cycling is basically like a HIIT session, but use it for sledgehammer drills or dumbbell thrusters and it has a totally different effect.

The bottom line is try it and if it meets your needs use it, if not, don’t. Just remember that it is the exercise/s you select that will dictate the effects. Hope this helps…MB

Thanks Mista, I’ll give it a try.

[quote]nobodyreal wrote:
What is this and does this work? I just read about this at this article http://ezinearticles.com/?Tabata-Anything---Four-Minutes-of-Pain-to-Gain&id=348486 . It says it’s a 4 minute workout. Does anyone have any experience with this?[/quote]

I love tabatas and do butt-loads of them. Their value is what I call an intensity protocol. Just use them to amp up whatever you are doing to a very high level. They are not much use unless they are full body, like squats, squat thrusters, burpees and the like.

One of my favorite workouts is what I call “running tabatas”. Scope out a course you can run in roughly 6 minutes (so .75 - 1.0 miles). Your entire workout is

run the course, tabata set = 6 min + 4 min = 10 minutes.

Repeat for a total of 5 times. Here is what I did Tuesday

abs, squats, pull-ups, squats, push-ups.

Aside from the abs, pull on a weight vest for the others. So in this workout I ran 5 miles, did 100 pull-up, push-ups and 200 squats. With a warm-up and a bit of stretching, this fits in my lunch hour nicely. Enjoy.

Tabatas are interesting in that the overload is simply the accumulation of fatigue. If you are going to do them with an external load, make sure it is no more than 30% - 40% of your max. It won’t feel like much until roughly 2 minutes, then you’ll think it’s a ton.

Finally, you do as many of whatever as you can. On the very last set is when you count the number of reps. This gives you the real number to measure progress against. If you aren’t sucking wind by the end, you did not choose an appropriate exercise.

For shits and giggles, go look at http://www.fastExercise.com. They have an exercise gadget for $14,000+ (you read that right) that promises fantastic results in only 4 minutes a day. Guess what their super-secret training method is that they only tell you about after you cough up the money? Yup. Tabatas.

– jj

[quote]mistabreeze wrote:
I wouldn’t use squats or other big lifts for the Tabata protocol, since these lifts require impeccable form when being executed. Tabata is not only aerobic by nature, but is also anaerobic… …use it for sledgehammer drills or dumbbell thrusters and it has a totally different effect.
[/quote]

Really and your experience is???

You say don’t do “squats or other big lifts”… (even bodyweight “air” squats?) but later mention dumbbell thrusters which are a squat/push press exercise… what is going on here?

By the way, sledge hammering requires just as much technique and good form expecially in the later sets (mind those shins and knees) I don’t see you warning him about those which you should.

I’ll stick with Dan John’s advice on this one and so should you NoBodyReal. Read his article; follow it; give it a try; and see how your body responds. I think you will be surprised. And as his article clearly states there is no need to go heavy; a modest light weight will suffice. Do watch your form (technique) but that is true for everything and anything you may do in or out of the gym.

And I am now a bit concerned for everyone doing speed reps on their squats and deadlifts, oh my… NOT!

[quote]Ricochet wrote:
mistabreeze wrote:
I wouldn’t use squats or other big lifts for the Tabata protocol, since these lifts require impeccable form when being executed. Tabata is not only aerobic by nature, but is also anaerobic… …use it for sledgehammer drills or dumbbell thrusters and it has a totally different effect.

Really and your experience is???

You say don’t do “squats or other big lifts”… (even bodyweight “air” squats?) but later mention dumbbell thrusters which are a squat/push press exercise… what is going on here?

By the way, sledge hammering requires just as much technique and good form expecially in the later sets (mind those shins and knees) I don’t see you warning him about those which you should.

I’ll stick with Dan John’s advice on this one and so should you NoBodyReal. Read his article; follow it; give it a try; and see how your body responds. I think you will be surprised. And as his article clearly states there is no need to go heavy; a modest light weight will suffice. Do watch your form (technique) but that is true for everything and anything you may do in or out of the gym.

And I am now a bit concerned for everyone doing speed reps on their squats and deadlifts, oh my… NOT!
[/quote]

Good point…what I was referring to was max effort lifts and yes, I should have clarified. DB thrusters however, are not a max effort lift. I use them for conditioning in a circuit style paired with other exercises such as chins, box jumps, push ups, etc. If your talking about body weight squats or squats using a vest, then yes by all means this can be used in a Tabata format. As far as technique using SH drills, yes technique is important especially once fatigue sets in, but as far as the difference between swinging a 12 lb hammer or having several hundred pounds on your back IMO there is a huge difference, and that is where your form and execution are most critical.

tabata’s are all about intensity. it doesn’t matter how much weight you use, as long as you are busting your ass for that 20 secs. of work. if you are using a weight that makes you stop and rest before that allotted 20 secs is up then you are going to heavy. this is meant to be a conditioning tool, not necessarily a strength building tool.