Tabata can help build muscles but not on its own. Building muscles depends on what other exercises you are doing along with Tabata. Because Tabata itself is endurance enhancing protocol meaning a set of exercises used to build stamina. That stamina can then be utilized in weight exercises to build muscles.

For muscles building, you have to take up a program that involves weight lifting. Which basically is not there in any Tabata exercise. If somehow you workaround and put weights into a Tabata exercise, it will do more harm than good because there already is very heavy cardio going on in Tabata exercise and the time to rest in between is very low.

So no chance of building muscles through Tabata training as a standalone workout.

What is Tabata Training?

Tabata is a Japanese training program that was initially designed for athletes to work out quick, build stamina and save time. It is significantly great for improving endurance, metabolism and burning fats.

tabata training workout

Why is Tabata Training not good for building muscles?

People go to the gym for two reasons. Either to build muscles or lose fat.

For building muscles it is necessary to stimulate them with heavier enough weights, which is not common or in the gist of Tabata training. Even if you do Tabata training with heavier weights, you won’t be able to keep up because the in-between rest period is too low and fatigue will stop you from reaping two perks at the same time.

Tabata is a specially designed High-Intensity Interval Training Workout program that focuses on fat burning, building endurance and get workouts done quickly.

How is Tabata Training Workout different from other HIIT Programs?

Tabata training is a form of HIIT (high-intensity interval training) that is characterized by 20 seconds of high intensity exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest.

The Tabata protocol was developed in the mid-1990s by Izumi Tabata, PhD, at the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Tokyo. The goal for this type of training is to improve aerobic capacity and anaerobic endurance.

According to Dr. Tabata, these are the four major characteristics of the Tabata Protocol:

  • 20 seconds on at full intensity followed by 10 seconds off
  • Each work period lasts 4 minutes
  • Workouts only last 6 minutes total
  • The work periods are repeated twice consecutively, with 10 minutes break after each set.

For people who are busy and are unable to find much time for a workout, Tabata is a saviour.

A single set of Tabata workouts consists of 8 Exercises, each taking 20 seconds with 10 seconds rest in between and a total of 4 minutes are consumed in overall exercising. But one thing guaranteed, in the end, is a racing heart and lots of fats burning even after the workout.

Time is the single most important factor to choose Tabata over the other HIIT training programs.

Is Tabata Good for Runners?

Yes, Tabata is very good for runners. In fact, it was the world of Athletics from where it originated first. Japanese scientist Izumi Tabata came out with the plan of this training program so that athletes can work out quick and get a lot more time to recover from exercise.

The experiment was very successful on the Japanese athletics team and since then this training program is used in athletics worldwide.

A recent study on Tabata training for running was conducted on the effectiveness of the technique. It has been found that this technique improves aerobic capacity, running economy, and anaerobic power more than moderate intensity continuous training.

The Tabata protocol consists of eight rounds of 20 seconds work with 10 seconds rest intervals. The cycle repeats for a total of 4 minutes.

However, it is not advisable to perform Tabata training every day as it can lead to over-training.

Tabata training is an intense form of interval training which is highly effective in improving fitness levels in runners.

Is Tabata dangerous?

Tabata training is a form of high-intensity interval training, consisting of a 20-second cycle followed by a 10-second rest period.

A Tabata workout can burn up to 400 calories in just 8 minutes. There are many benefits from doing Tabata workouts, such as increasing aerobic and anaerobic fitness, improving glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity, burning body fat and weight loss.

However, if the intensity is too high or the work period is too long, this type of workout can be dangerous to your health.

Some people have reported bad side effects from doing Tabata workouts such as dizziness or chest pain due to overexertion or heart issues. Studies have found that a prolonged exercise session exceeding a person’s maximum exercise capacity may cause problems with the autonomic nervous system.

For a healthy person with no record of heart disease, Tabata is not a dangerous workout. Also, Tabata is totally fine to practice if you have no breathing problem and you are under 45 years of age. For older people, Tabata can be dangerous.

It will be better for them to stick to low-intensity exercises and try to move around as much as possible.

Why is Tabata so popular in Sports?

For people in sports and athletes in general, Tabata training is good because:

  • it enhances stamina
  • improves metabolism
  • saves time
  • and there is little or no chance of injury

In most sports, like Soccer, players play a lot throughout the season. Within a week they have to play a game, travel, rest and train for the next game and possibly travel again.

Now time is the most important factor. What Tabata offers them is a quick workout and less or no chance of getting injured. Because there is no such thing in Tabata that can injure a player or torn their muscles.

Tabata improves metabolism and endurance, meaning better stamina and more energy to perform your optimal best.

Check out some studies and stats of Tabata training and other Interval Training programs here.

Categories: Fitness

Bilal Ahmed

A random guy on the Internet enthusiastic about Blogging Chess and Football Life motto "make people's lives easier"