Burpees (How To, Muscles Worked, Benefits)
Burpees are a full-body exercise, made very popular by CrossFit, that can be a great addition to your workout routine. Burpees are excellent at quickly raising heart rate which, combined with being a total body exercise, makes them great for either a warm-up or as part of a circuit.
In this guide, we’ll go over the benefits of Burpees, proper form and technique, and some alternatives you can try as well. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced lifter looking to add some variety to your routine, this guide has something for everyone.
How To Do Burpees
Burpees are a total body exercise involving almost every muscle group in the body. This is a big part of what makes Burpees such a good warm-up exercise.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands by your sides.
- Lower your body into a squat position by bending your knees and hips. Place your hands on the ground in front of you, just outside shoulder-width apart.
- Jump your feet back into a plank position, with your hands still on the ground and your body in a straight line.
- Do a push-up by lowering your chest towards the ground, then pressing back up to the plank position.
- Jump your feet back towards your hands, then stand (or jump) up and reach your arms overhead.
- Continue until all reps are completed.
Remember to keep your core engaged and your body in a straight line when you jump into the plank position and then as you continue through the push-up.
If you’re new to burpees, it may be helpful to practice the separate steps (squat, plank, push-up) before putting them all together. As you become more comfortable with the movement, you can try adding variations such as jumping higher, adding a tuck jump, or doing a plyometric push-up.
Benefits of Burpees
Burpees can provide numerous benefits to a training program including:
- Improved cardiovascular endurance: Burpees are a cardiovascular exercise that can help improve your endurance and increase your heart rate.
- Increased strength: Burpees involve several different bodyweight exercises, including push-ups and squats, which can help build strength in your upper and lower body.
- Versatility: Burpees do not require any equipment and can be performed anywhere, making them a versatile exercise option.
Looking for an exercise to use as a substitution for Burpees? Here are a couple of exercises you may be able to try instead.
Squat Jumps are a simple exercise that involves lowering into a squat position, then jumping up as high as possible. Like burpees, squat jumps are an exercise that can improve cardiovascular endurance and build strength (and power) in the legs.
Mountain Climbers involve starting in a plank position, then bringing one knee towards your chest while keeping the other leg extended. Mountain climbers can also be effective as part of a warm-up and/or to help improve cardiovascular endurance as part of a circuit.
More Links and Info
Looking for more warm-up exercises to incorporate into your training? Check out the Warm-up Section of our Exercise Library. There you’ll find dozens of warm-up movements, all with complete detailed instructions.