Hitting the HIIT (diary entry)

305956_352914834810032_2095627455_nTonight’s private lesson focused on High Intensity Interval Training. We warmed up with some technical revision on yesterday’s training, where the Jack Johnson inspired style seems to have really empowered by client in his footwork and use of the area. This was trained using partner mirroring and pad-work.

HIIT training has a simple premise. You have short rounds, lasting no more than a minute and as low as 10 seconds with very short intervals. You measure improvements by the amount of repetitions can be done in a space of time and how fast you recover (heart beat returns to normal after training). HIIT is great for training mental fortitude and should be approached as the biggest physical challenge of your regular training. They should be done regularly, but not too regularly.

This was followed by three caveman style training routines before we approached a very basic introduction to tabata:

First Routine

1 minute tractor tyre step-ups with striking combinations

1 minute tractor tyre box jumps

1 minute tractor tyre burpees

1 minute tractor tyre footwork movement

1 minute tractor tyre war

Second Routine

1 minute arm-drag battling rope

1 minute alternate wave/double wave with battling rope

1 minute tractor tyre flips

1 minute tractor push/drag/jump combination

1 minute Atlas stone get-ups from knees

Third Routine

1 minute Boxing on the focus mitts

1 minute Thai Boxing on the Thai pads

1 minute Grip fighting

1 minute Top position fighting

1 minute Fighting from underneath

I have learnt from experience that the Tabata workout needs to be approached with the correct mindset, right choice of exercises and with an understanding of the rate of the rep cadence. If we have pure strength, maximum weight lifting at one end of the conditioning scale, Tabata is the extreme going the other way. Rep cadence of simple exercises must be high with no sense of pacing. This is much harder than what many will have you believe and it is the reason why I believe it should only be approached by students who are ready. Our Tabata rounds only lasted for 10 seconds because I wanted to make sure my client was maintaining the right level of intensity.  His interval times were no more than three seconds.

Tabata routine

Blitzing punches

Right Leg 45 degree round kick

Left Leg 45 degree round kick

Hook punching

Hill Climbers

Alternate straight knee strikes


Standard burpees

HIIT training, if done correctly, results in short trainign sessions. Thereofore, we were finished within 30 minutes plus the technical warm-up of around 15 minutes. This left us with 15 minutes to warm down with some slow shadow boxing and focus on stattic stretching. The muscles are pliable and the student can spend more time flushing out the lactic acid, whcih will have undoubtedly built up more than usual in this type of session.


All you Need to Know About HIIT Training for Beginners