The burpee is a simple and effective exercise that is often used for fat loss, muscle building, and general strength and conditioning. The burpee also has a reputation for being quite unforgiving. By design, it’s not easy, and for a lot of people, the burpee is a bit too challenging to start off with. That’s when the CST strategy called movement sophistication really shines. You can not only make exercises more challenging, you can also make them easier by changing, swapping, or removing certain components, which is exactly what I’ve done in this instructional video.
Here are 5 incrementally more challenging versions of the burpee exercise that will help you build a foundation of conditioning in prep for the traditional burpee and the many advanced variations thereof. Even if you’ve done burpees before, you’ll find benefits from working on the components in this video.
5 Beginner Level Burpee Exercises
Note: If you’re struggling with achieving a deep rock-bottom squat, then check out this video for tips to improve your squat range of motion.
Level 1 – Squat down to the depth that you’re comfortable. Place your hands on the ground in front of you, and then place your feet back behind you one at a time. Once you have stabilized in the top portion of a pushup position, place your feet back forward, until your knees are beside your elbows. Push back until you are flat footed in the bottom squat position. Press your feet into the ground until you are standing again.
Level 2 – Squat down to the depth that you’re comfortable. Place your hands on the ground in front of you, and then place your feet back and knees down onto the ground – one at a time. Perform one knee pushup, going down as far as you are able. Place your feet back into the forward position, get into your rock-bottom squat position, and stand back up.
Level 3 – Squat down, and once you’ve gotten into the rock-bottom squat position, bounce/kip the feet back into the top of pushup position. Once you have stabilized, bounce/kip your feet back forward, achieve flat foot squat stance, stand back up.
Level 4 – Squat down, kip your feet back, perform a pushup, kip your feet forward, achieve flat foot squat stance, stand back up.
Level 5 (classic burpee exercise) – Squat down, kip your feet back, perform a pushup, kip your feet forward, achieve flat foot squat stance, perform a squat jump.
Well, there you go – 5 beginner level burpee exercises to help you build up to the classic burpee and beyond. If you enjoyed this tutorial and want more like it, check out this Tactical Gymnastics Workout. I think it’ll be right up your alley.
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CST Coach, CST-KS
Health-First Fitness Coach
P.S. If you’d like a complete burpee workout, using some less conventional burpee exercises, then please check out my article: Beyond Burpees – 3 Ground-Engagement Bodyweight Workouts.