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Power-Packed Exercises To Elevate A HIIT Session Without Hopping

Deep squats, core jacks, and alternating lunge motions are frequently included in intense interval workouts, known as HIIT sessions. These exercises present physical challenges that also elevate your heart rate. However, if you are not inclined towards plyometrics (or your joints simply do not favor high-impact routines), is it feasible to still ramp up your heart rate during a HIIT session?

A definite yes is the answer. For a HIIT workout absent of jumping, you can explore variations of plyometric exercises that involve quicker movements, but without the jump component. Another way to enhance the intensity is by introducing some resistance. As per the American Council on Exercise, even a tiny amount of added resistance “can heighten heart rate by five to 10 beats per minute and oxygen consumption (along with caloric expenditure) by approximately 5 to 15 percent compared to executing the same routine without additional weights.”

The quantity of weight you select makes an impact. When you execute fewer, more deliberate repetitions with heavier resistance, you are generally focusing on muscle development. Conversely, if you engage in numerous repetitions with lighter weights for a sufficient duration to boost your heart rate, that type of resistance training can act as a cardiovascular exercise. Therefore, by incorporating brief intervals of weight-assisted moves, you are transforming your routine into a HIIT workout.

Tatiana Lampa, Trainer of the Month at Well+Good, adopts this approach in her recent 20-minute minimal-impact HIIT session. Translation: Zero jumping involved!

“We’re heightening your heart rate sans any jumps to ensure minimal stress on your joints,” Lampa explains.

To reach that pinnacle of HIIT intensity, Lampa transitions from bodyweight exercises to the same exercises using weights, like an oblique crunch while standing, reverse lunges combined with bicep curls, deadlift cleans, squats leading to explosive punching movements, and more. The session concludes with rapid footwork drills to notably boost the cardiovascular challenge (rest assured, no weights are necessary for this section), enabling you to benefit from the HIIT calorie burn for hours following the workout. Each interval lasts only 20 seconds, and per Lampa’s suggestion, you can endure anything for 20 seconds. So, grab your weights and give it a shot!

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