Workout Wednesday: 5 Burpee Variations for your Next Heart Pounding Workout

Burpees are absolutely one of my favorite exercise. It all started when a trainer showed me this the challenging move, and after five reps, I was completely worn out! As is always the case with me, if something defeats me, I become obsessed with mastering it. So, I proceeded to do at least 20 burpees a day until they no longer wiped me out. For this week’s Workout Wednesday, it’s all about the burpee! If you’re looking for ways to spice up your burpees or additions to your workouts, keep reading for burpee variations that challenge the whole body! You can add these to your existing workouts (repeat for 45 seconds or more), or go crazy and do an entire burpee workout and try them all!

If you are unfamiliar with the burpee, here are the steps to the basic move:

  1. Begin standing tall, and jump up reaching hands to ceiling
  2. Lower hands to ground and jump feet back into a pushup position (you can step feet out individually if you’d like)
  3. Perform 1 push up
  4. Jump both feet back in towards chest
  5. Rise up to stand. Repeat steps 1-5!

Burpee - sharita

Burpee plus shoulder press - sharita gefitlikethat.comWeighted Burpee + Shoulder Press (Quadriceps, Shoulders)

This burpee pairs up the regular burpee with a classic strength move. For this move, grab some weights (as heavy as you like) and begin the classic burpee. Before you stand up, stay low in a squat and then press hands up towards the ceiling, completing a shoulder press. Keep palms facing inward and stand up out of your squat as you press weights up. You’ll definitely notice the added shoulder challenge after only a few repetitions!


Burpee with Tuck Jump sharita @getfitlikethat.comBurpee + Tuck Jump (Abs, Calves) 

This variation just take the classic burpee up one notch. After you complete your burpee, instead of doing a tiny hop at the top of the move, you perform a tuck jump. To do a tuck jump, jump as high as you can, while simultaneously lifting both knees into the chest. Once you’re back on the ground, repeat the entire move! Tuck jumps challenge your lower abs, and the higher you jump will give your calf muscles a great workout as well!

Single Leg Burpee (All over leg toner, abs)

Doing any activity on one leg is an awesome way to up the intensity. When it single leg burpee sharita @ getfitlikethat.comcomes to burpees, this small change really changes the dynamics of the classic move. Because of the balancing act, this move will activate your entire core, and you’ll also notice that base leg putting in a lot more work. On top of that, the single leg push up will continue to ignite the core, and you’ll feel extra work in your chest because your upper body is forced to take on more weight. All in all, this move is a doozy! But I think you’ll love it! To perform it, simply stand on one foot, complete the entire burpee move and don’t let that foot drop until you finish your burpee!


Bottom Burpee/Half Burpee (Quadriceps and Core)

Bottom Burpee - sharita @ getfitlikethat.comAlthough this move is know as a half burpee, the shorter movement means that your heart rate will be racing faster than with a regular burpee. For this move you simply start by standing in a squat, then lower hands to the floor. Next, jump your feet back into a plank. Then, quickly jump the feet towards your hands and return to your squat. You should not stand up higher than a squat for the entire move. Staying in this low position will set your quads on fire (in a good way)!


Jogging Burpee  (Glutes, Hamstrings)

Burpee Hops - sharita - getfitlikethat.comAnyone who has taken my boot camp or cardio class knows that I’m obsessed with burpee hops!! I recently found a similar move that doesn’t require as much space (as opposed to hopping all over the room). To try this move, start by doing a classic burpee. Before standing up, hold the squat. Then, using your glutes and hamstrings, hop your body as far forward as you can. Land lightly in a squat, then jog backwards
to your original spot, and repeat! (the “hop” addition is shown on the left).



I want to hear from you:

What’s your favorite burpee variation? How do you add burpees into your workouts?

Leave a comment below!


Until next time, keep it moving (burpees are preferred)

~Sharita J


Copyright September 2015

Comments 2

  1. October 2, 2015

    I love this! Never would have thought to do any of these variations, especially the single leg – I bet that’s so hard!! I enjoy burpees!

  2. October 3, 2015

    Can’t say I love doing burpees but I love how they make me feel afterwards.

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