You might think if you’ve done one excruciating burpee workout, you’ve done them all, but there are more than likely a few variations you’ve yet to try. Guys will never stop chasing that elusive goal of being super-fit and cut—so trainers won’t ever stop innovating new ways for you to get there.
Men’s Health Fitness Director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., is one of those trainers. He has a long list of burpee styles in his repertoire, some of which he shares in the Men’s Health New Rules of Muscle program. You’ll get workouts filled with new variations on old standards, which will help you to build even more muscle.
This super-simple move that blends a little extra abdominal benefit into your regular burpee and adds a little bit of fun in other planes than the sagittal. It doesn’t seem like it, but you’re working in the transverse plane on each roll, twisting at the waist.
The traditional burpee is an expression of triple-extension, at the knee, hip, and shoulder joints. With the situp here, we also introduce an element of hip flexion. We’re doing so smartly here. Most people don’t need too much hip flexion in their life because we spend so much time sitting, but every rep of hip flexion via situp is offset by the triple-extension of the burpee.
Also note the mechanics of the situp here: We want to avoid any excessive spinal flexion so you’re reaching for the ceiling on these instead of simply curling your torso upwards and toward your knees. Think of “sitting tall” and try to feel your abs contracting on every rep.
The roll may seem silly, but it has underrated value in retraining athleticism that you may have forgotten with all that time sitting at your desk. Work to make it quick and compact, and work to roll right into position for that situp.
You can package this in a lot of different ways, simply doing it for 5 to 10 minutes of 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off. You can also use it in a 10-minute workout as an upper-body-focused motion that complements a lower-body motion. Think 45-on, 15 off of situp roll burpees, into 45-on, 15-off of reverse lunges for 5 rounds.
By Brett Williams