By Dan McCarthy//National Team High Performance ConsultantThe burpee can be performed just about anywhere, and requires no equipment. Of course it can be more difficult by incorporating weighted-vests, pull-up bars or gymnastic rings, but the basic motion is very athletic and incorporates muscle groups from head to toe. (For a demonstration of the exercise, visit the CrossFit Burpee Demo).
Joan Jett music aside, the linked demonstration is excellent. The traditional burpee is demonstrated, as well as an easier modified version, a higher-rep version, and an advanced burpee incorporating gymnastic rings.
Done with proper instruction and adequate supervision the burpee is a safe, body-weight exercise. It incorporates a wide-range of muscle groups, requires some coordination and entails the working muscles performing synergistically to complete the exercise correctly. After learning the proper technique, complete 3 x 10 burpees on :30 rest. Add repetitions or increase the speed as long as the proper form is maintained.
For more tips from the National Team High Performance staff, visit the National Team High Performance Tips archive.