There are a lot of acronyms in the world of fitness. You’re probably most familiar with HIIT or high intensity interval training. Then, there’s LISS or low intensity steady state training.
Well, there’s a new kid on the block! Meet HILIT…
First and foremost, HILIT stands for High Intensity Low Impact Training.
The difference between this and HIIT workouts lies in the impact. Where HIIT stands for high intensity interval training, the exercises you perform are high impact and often deliver abrupt force to your joints.
We’ve all had to do, or at least tried to do, burpees at some point. These are an example of an HIIT exercise. And while they might kick your butt, they aren’t the kindest to your body.
You’ll know your heart rate is up, but as you get tired, your form can suffer. This makes you more susceptible to injury when performing those types of exercises.
HILIT is an incredibly effective workout for those that need to take it a little bit easier on the joints! The key is to keep the same level of intensity throughout the workout, but by reducing the amount of force, you are less likely to suffer injury or strain.
You can think of HILIT workouts as an option that focuses on strengthening and toning with far less risk of ending up in pain. The easiest way to remember the difference is that in HILIT exercises, you never have both feet off of the ground at the same time.
According to Jill McKay, certified personal trainer and nutrition coach with Narrow Road Fitness, “the goal of HILIT is to challenge your body to try new things and to move in different planes of motion—front and back, side to side, diagonally. Moving your body in different ways keeps your smaller, supportive muscles strong, your brain aware of where your body is and helps with balance and reaction to different stimulus,” she notes. “These are all crucial as we age.”
There are many different activities that you can do for a successful HILIT session. You perform any given exercise as hard or as fast as you can for 20-30 second intervals, followed by a rest interval of 10-15 seconds. You maintain this timing for eight to ten sets of each exercise.
Remember, you never have both feet off of the ground at the same time.
This system is two-fold. You are getting a great cardio session by staying closer to your target heart rate. But you are also working your muscles to their maximum capacity for effective strength training.
Those two things combined translate into more calories burned, increasing your VO2max, improving your cardiovascular output and enhancing your energy production. In fact, HILIT not only burns more calories than HIIT training during the workout, but also increases the rate at which you continue burning calories in the time after your workout.
And yes, you can get those things by running for an hour, or doing tons of reps with light weights. All of these things will elevate your heart rate and accomplish muscle fatigue. But, with an HILIT workout, you get those same benefits in just 20-30 minutes.
You may be surprised that you can get those results with such short interval times, but that is just another benefit of HILIT workouts. They are incredibly time and energy efficient. You don’t have to spend hours in the gym or schedule long workouts into your already busy schedule. You can get a fantastic workout in a shorter amount of time.
This is huge when it comes to keeping up with your workouts. The longer a workout takes, the more likely we are to find reasons not to do it. HILIT workouts make it easy to get them done, which means better results over time.
HILIT workouts are here to prove this old mantra wrong. For some reason, this saying seems to have stuck around when the opposite is actually true…and safer.
Trying out an HILIT workout will be enough to convince you that you don’t need to suffer to make progress. Remember that “low impact” doesn’t necessarily mean “easier”.
If you want to test out HILIT and see what you think, here is a quick and easy workout from Fire Team Whiskey that will provide a solid cardio, body-weight strengthening session.
Developed by Stephanie Lincoln, the Fire Team Whiskey Founder, “This is a 24-minute workout—short, sweet and super-efficient,” she says. Remember to work as hard and as fast as you can during the 20-second work period while maintaining safe, proper form.
Swimming, pilates, cycling and rowing are all examples of other activities that you can perform as HILIT workouts, just remember the internal timing and to maintain your intensity.
If you’re ready for a new fitness acronym that keeps your workouts short while delivering mental and physical benefits, look no further than HILIT. Your joints will thank you.
https://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness_articles.asp?id=2375 What Is HILIT and Should You Jump on the Bandwagon? Melissa Rudy; 2018
https://fireteamwhiskey.com/posts/2018/7/11/hilit-want-to-do-high-intensity-workouts-but-cant-do-the-impact HILIT: WANT TO DO HIGH INTENSITY WORKOUTS BUT CAN’T DO THE IMPACT?; 2018
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBmvPEWt5og Lateral Shuffle Form
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwgUSMoBHDI&feature=youtu.be Sumo Squat Form
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiR1A2Bgbkk&feature=youtu.be Frog Pushup Form