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HIIT, or high intensity interval training, was all the rage a few years back. And if you love getting your sweat on with rapid circuits and burpees, you do you.
But there’s a new trend in town that might appeal to those who found HIIT, well, a little too intense.
Enter HILIT, which stands for ‘high intensity low impact training’. Instead of throwing yourself around at the gym, HILIT is all about small, targeted movements that lead to mighty results.
And according to Amber Johnston, assistant head trainer at Barrecore, this type of exercise is “suitable for everyone,” including “new people to exercise, prenatal and postnatal people, plus athletes recovering from injury”.
“Very simply, via HILIT work outs, you are putting less impact on your body, especially your joints,” she tells us.
The benefits of HILIT, according to Johnston, include:
• Raising your heart rate
• Improving cardio fitness and muscle strength
• Protecting you from joint damage, pain and injury
• Burning calories
Below, Johnston has shared a five-minute HILIT workout that focusses on squats. “Squats are great for ankle and hip mobility, you will work your quads, glutes, hamstrings and core whilst getting your heart rate up with the full range movements especially the arms above your head,” she says.
“Watch your alignment; knees in line with toes, knees and ankles stacked and keep breathing! If you have trouble with your knees/hips/ankles keep the range of motion smaller and higher.”
Give this a go at home or in the gym.
1. Start with slow squats, feet wider than your hips, toes turned out slightly, weight in your heels as you drop down for two counts and up for two counts, repeat for 30 seconds. Speed up to single count down, single count up, repeat for another 30 seconds.
2. Raise arms above your head as you come up, repeat for 60 seconds, then hold at your deepest squat position and do tiny pulses for 30 seconds.
3. Hold your squat position and start walking to the side as if you are a crab, maintaining your deep squat position, step five times to left, five times to right, then four, then three, then two then one. This should take around 60 seconds to complete. Come back to your squat position and start to do single full range [as low as you can squat] again with arms and legs together for another 30 secs.
4. Finish your workout in a 30 second straight arm plank with mountain climbers.
5. Then finally lower onto your forearms for the last 30 seconds for an active recovery whilst targeting all of your major muscle groups in a full isometric hold.
Focus on keeping your elbows under your shoulder, head in line with your spine, tailbone slightly tucked to prevent arching in the lower back, whilst focusing on drawing your belly button to your spine on each exhale breath. Modify onto your knees if you are struggling with your form in this position.
Move celebrates exercise in all its forms, with accessible features encouraging you to add movement into your day – because it’s not just good for the body, but the mind, too. We get it: workouts can be a bit of a slog, but there are ways you can move more without dreading it. Whether you love hikes, bike rides, YouTube workouts or hula hoop routines, exercise should be something to enjoy.