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HIIT stands for high intensity interval training. Short, very strenuous training sessions and recovery phases alternate in quick succession. Thus, a significant health and fitness-enhancing effect should be achieved in a relatively short training time. Find out how long it takes to benefit from HIIT, what equipment you need and what kind of discomfort this training can help.

ArtikelübersichtHIIT
  • That's behind it
  • The right technique
  • That brings it
  • Fat loss: HIIT & calorie consumption
  • HIIT protects against diseases
  • For whom is HIIT suitable?
  • HIIT & Pregnancy
  • Equipment
  • Mistakes you should avoid

HIIT - that's behind it

There is a simple idea behind HIIT: Training is more effective when it is not always in the same middle load range but switching between heavy effort and recovery. High-intensity interval training, also known as high-intensity interval training, is also referred to as polarized training: the intervals move between two extremes - the poles "hard" and "quiet".

The "hard poles" can for example consist of running, cycling or swimming sprints. But even the lifting of heavy weights or exercises with your own body weight such as burpees (jumpsuits), jumping jacks or lunges can challenge the body sufficiently.

The "quiet poles" are accordingly walking, slow biking or quiet swimming, or a break.

The combination of "give it all" and recovery should trigger adaptation processes in the body that increase endurance and performance.

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HIIT - the right technology

You can adjust the length and number of repetitions of the intervals individually during high-intensive interval training. The individual stress phases are comparatively short and range between 15 and 60 seconds.

The subsequent light intensity exercise phase or one break is either the same length or up to four times longer than the exercise unit. In any case, you should recover so long, until you can expect a renewed strain.

To avoid injuries, it is important that you perform the movements technically clean with the HIIT even under exertion. In addition, interval training is only really effective if you actually reach your performance limit in the stress phases. Exposure may require a load of around 90 percent of maximum heart rate (HRmax). HFmax is the individual number of heartbeats per minute at maximum physical exercise.

Experienced athletes can handle a higher intensity in their training than beginners. In fact, experienced people should even take ten to fifteen percent of the intense training to increase performance. However, experts recommend combining polarized with classic endurance training in order to train the general resilience.

HIIT: Training plan

Stress duration, length and frequency at HIIT depend on the athlete's basic fitness, the type of sport in which the training is to be performed and the goals to be achieved. The following training plans are therefore to be understood as examples and suggestions.

Talk to an experienced trainer and get a plan tailored to your needs to avoid frustration and, in the worst case, injuries.

HIIT: Training on the bike: In a study by McMaster University in Ontario, the scientists peddled their subjects according to the following training plan:

  • four to five sprints of 30 seconds each,
  • in between four to five minutes break
  • 40 to 60 minutes, three days a week

HIIT: Training for runners: The trade magazine Runner's World suggests the following variant of the HIIT for jogging friends:

  • for ten to 60 seconds (almost) full throttle
  • followed by a break with equal to four times the load phase
  • A total of six to ten repetitions.

On the track for beginners, for example, intervals of six times 40 to 80 meters sprint and in each case two to three minutes walking or trotting possible.

HIT: Training for swimmers: Swimming trainer Holger Lüning has developed a HIIT Work-out for water rats. It includes:

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