Burpees are a well-known exercise that offers many benefits. The workout isn’t for everyone because it’s not always beginner-friendly, but you can make it happen. You can learn to do the original exercise and some modified burpees with consistency and practice.
Burpees are a great way to increase your heart rate and get your muscles burning. Modified burpees can make the exercise easier or intensify the workout, depending on how you want it to go. As you become comfortable with the activity, you’ll see how you can modify it to make it work better for you.
This exercise doesn’t require any equipment, allowing you to skip the gym and work out at home. You can do burpees at home, making them perfect for busy people who don’t have lots of extra time. They are a full-body and high-intensity strength-training exercise, burning fat and helping you get into shape quicker than other options.
Benefits of Burpees
Burpees are an intense bodyweight exercise, and they’re quite a bit of work. They work almost every muscle in the body, so you feel the burn everywhere. It exhausts every muscle group, making it one of the most intense exercises.
They also burn more calories in less time than other exercises. Burpees improve your overall workout, helping your heart rate increase and promoting greater endurance. This exercise improves your stamina and cardiovascular health.
Burpees don’t take much time and, since you can do them anywhere, they’re a perfect option for busy people. When you don’t have time for a jog or full workout, burpees can get you the exercise you need.
With the many modified burpees out there, you’re sure to find one that works for you. Many people believe the exercise is too intense, but you can adjust it to work for you while still reaping the benefits.
Why You Should Try Modified Burpees
You might want to try modified burpees to switch your daily workout routine. Some people find modified burpees easier, making them a beneficial alternative to the original. Pregnant women and people with sensitive joints may benefit from a lower impact version.
The Original Burpee Exercise
You can’t modify an exercise that you don’t know anything about, so it’s essential to understand the original version. The workout originated as a physical fitness test but has intensified over the years, becoming one of the best exercises for getting super fit. An original burpee doesn’t require a push-up or jump at the end of the exercise.
- Squat down and place your hands on the floor in front of you
- Jump back into a push-up or plank position
- Jump forward, returning your feet to the original position
- Stand up and repeat the exercise until you can’t anymore
Modified Burpees to Get Super Fit
Learning how to do modified burpees can change your workout routine for the better. Choose the one that works for you, your body, and your needs.
1. Elevated Burpees
This modified version is beginner-friendly and lower-impact than the original. It’s gentler on your joints, but you will still feel the burn in your arms, core, glutes, and legs.
- Find an elevated surface like a chair or something similar, and place it in front of you.
- Bend over, putting both hands on the surface
- Jump your feet backward, planking before you reverse the movement
- Reverse by jumping forward and standing back up
- Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds
For an added challenge, attempt a push-up while in the plank position, just before you stand back up. You can also jump up when you stand, adding more cardio.
However, you can make the exercise easier by stepping back into the plank position rather than jumping. Please don’t overdo it in the beginning, either. Start slow and gradually increase your speed as you become comfortable with the movement.
2. Half Burpee
A half burpee doesn’t require going into a push-up position like you would for the original. Plus, half burpees put more emphasis on jumping than other variations do.
- From a standing position, plant your hands on the ground
- Pop your feet back until you’re in a plank position and immediately pull them back to the front
- Stand or jump, depending on the level of intensity you want
- Repeat the movement until you feel the burn in all of your muscle groups
When you stand or jump, make sure to extend your body. If you don’t expand, you won’t work all the intended muscles.
3. Modified Burpees Pull-ups
When you add a pull-up to your burpee, you target every muscle group in your body. It’s the ultimate workout and doesn’t take much time at all.
- Stand straight with your arms at your sides and feet hip-width apart
- Bend your knees and lower your hips while placing your hands on the outside of your feet
- Kick your legs back until you’re in a push-up position
- Quickly pull your legs forward again and return to a standing position
- Jump straight up and do a pull-up
- Repeat the exercise as many times as you can without losing form
When you do the pull-up, you can pause before doing it or jump straight into it. If you don’t wait, it leads to a more intense workout. Make sure you don’t let your hips get too low when you’re in the push-up position, and do each rep as quickly as you can.
4. Burpee Box Jumps
The burpee box jumps exercise targets muscles from all over your body, although it targets the quads. You’ll need a box or other surface that you can jump onto. This variation requires you to jump higher, making it a good exercise for intensifying your workout.
- Stand in front of your box or platform with your arms at your sides and feet shoulder-width apart.
- Bend at the hips and knees, placing your hands on the ground
- Hop backward, extending your legs behind you into a push-up position.
- Do a push-up
- Quickly hop forward, placing your feet back beneath you
- Stand up, and jump onto the box with both feet
- Jump down, return to your starting position, and repeat the exercise until you tire out
As you do this exercise, keep a pace that allows you to stay in control of your movements. If you go too fast, you could lose a proper form or injure yourself.
5. Alternating One-Arm Bench Burpee
You’ll need a flat bench or another surface to lay on for this exercise. Keep your core tight while exercising, and take it slow until you have it down.
- Stand facing a flat bench with your feet shoulder-width apart
- Bend at your hips and knees, placing one hand on the bench and the other behind your back
- Jump backward to extend your legs behind you into a push-up position
- Reverse the movement, bringing your feet back underneath you
- Hop around and forth as quickly as you can, rotating your arms as you go
While you’re supposed to have one hand behind your back, you can adjust as necessary. You can place that hand on your hip or raise it to the side to help you stay balanced.
6. Burpee Tuck Jumps
This modified burpee will quickly raise your heart rate and build your upper body and core strength. It improves cardio fitness while helping with fat burning.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, tightening your core from the start
- Put both hands on the floor and jump back until you’re in a high plank position
- Reverse the movement and bring your feet back towards your hands until you’re in a squat position
- Explode into a jump while pulling your knees toward your chest
- Draw your elbows in toward your knees while you’re in the air
- Keep your knees slightly bent as you land, and repeat the movement as many times as you can
If you have knee or lower back injuries, the burpee tuck jump isn’t for you. You’ll want something with less impact on those areas of your body.
Other Ways to Do Modified Burpee Exercises
You can do any variation, including any modified burpees or the original. Once you’ve found the ones you’re comfortable with, you can make minor changes to customize your workout. There’s no correct way to do a burpee, as long as you focus on form and movement.
Some of the ways you can switch it up include the following:
- Using dumbbells or weighted vests
- Doing a knee push up instead of a regular one
- Adding push-ups, pull-ups, or other movements into your exercise wherever you see fit
- Skipping recommended push-ups or pull-ups to decrease the intensity
- Adding mountain climbers
- Doing long jumps
Final Thoughts on Modified Burpees That Will Help You Get Super Fit
Modified burpees engage almost every muscle group in your body. It results in a total body workout in a short amount of time. Plus, most variations don’t require equipment, allowing you to do them anywhere.
Practice the original burpee to see how you like it, and then you can adjust from there. Determine if you need something more manageable or would prefer more intensity. The best thing about burpees is that you can modify and variation as long as you focus on your form.