If I could poll the entire world about the most challenging workouts, I bet at least 70 percent would namecheck the burpee. In a shocking turn of events though, it turns out one Pilates-inspired burpee variation somehow manages to make the move harder.
While a standard burpee requires speed and agility, the Pilates burpee focuses on slow, measured movements that light up every muscle in the body. The sequence is very (very) similar to the yoga's sun salutation A, and requires the same amount of practice to execute properly. So if you don't nail it on the first try, don't fret. Make a point of returning to your mat on a daily basis, and before you know it, this harder take on burpees will be no big deal.
How to do the Pilates burpee variation that will make your whole body quake
Repeat the Pilates push-up 3 to 5 times for a full warm up.
1. Start standing. Bring your arms up straight overhead.
2. Roll your spine slowly down toward the mat, engaging your abs as you go.
3. Once your hands touch the floor, walk them out to plank position.
4. Bend your elbows straight back to come into a tricep push-up (chaturanga). More advanced practitioners can lift one leg as they lower down. Extend your elbows again and come back to plank.
5. Walk your hands back so you're in the same curved forward fold.
6. Use your abs to slowly roll back up to standing.
7. Inhale to lift your arms and repeat the whole sequence.
Then try a full-body Pilates workout:
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