10 ways to burpee

Hi friends! How’s your day going? We’ve spent almost all of it outside; it’s 70 degrees!!! To all of my wintery friends: just remember that in the summer, Tucson is a literal frying pan. 

I’m so stoked that you guys are enjoying the Week 3 workout! Since we’ve been doing LOTS of burpees lately, I figured today would be a great day to share some of my tried and true burpee variations. Also, it’s Valentine’s week. Who doesn’t heart burpees?!

Burpee variations

(don’t answer that)

Here are some ways to change up your usual burpee sets:

Basic movement




Step one: bring your hands to the floor and drop your hips into a low squat. Keep your chest lifted, firmly plant your hands into the floor before jumping out.

Burpee  1 of 1

Step two: hop both feet back into a plank position. Keep your core engaged to protect your back and remember to jump back into a straight spine alignment. (No hips in the air, no dropping booties, and keep the neck neutral)

Burpee  1 of 1 2

Step three: you can add an optional pushup here. Bring your elbows out the side as they bend, then use your chest, shoulders and triceps to push yourself back into plank.

Step four: jump your feet back to your hands (this looks just like step one). Spring up off the ground! Remember to land with soft knees.

Burpee  1 of 1 3

(Blurry action shot)

Change it up




Modified burpee

Instead of jumping back to plank, walk one foot back at a time to minimize joint impact. Walk your feet back to your hands, then raise them towards the ceiling while lifting up onto your toes.

Sumo burpee

Plie squat before bringing your hands down to the floor. Hop back to plank, forward into a deep plie squat and spring up.

Single leg burpee

Perform the entire movement on one leg. This one is a doozy!

Burpee  1 of 1 5

Burpee with 180 rotation

As you jump, rotate your body 180 degrees to face the other side. Perform another burpee, squat jump 180 degrees to face your original starting point. 

Split burpee

Perform five squat thrusts (feet in, jump back to plank, feet in, back to plank), five pushups and five squat jumps. Repeat. Splitting up the basic movements is an easy way to change things up and work quickly through your interval set.

Traveling burpee

Instead of jumping feet back in to the original starting point, jump them to the side of your hands. Perform your vertical jump from here! You’ll be traveling to one side as you burpee. Repeat on the opposite side.

Burpee  1 of 1 6

Burpee box jump

Place a plyo box or sturdy bench in front of you. As you perform the vertical jump portion of the movement, add a box jump instead. 

Burpee frog jump

Instead of a regular vertical jump, use your obliques to jump up with bent knees, out the side (like a frog!). Hit your thighs with your hands as you jump, as this forces you to get a little more power and height, then repeat the basic burpee movements.

Burpee with plank jack

As you jump back to plank, perform one plank jack (jump feet out and in) before your pushup. This will extend a single burpee time to 8 counts, which syncs perfectly with music. 

How often do you include burpees or plyometrics in your training? Any variations you love (or love to hate)?


Ways to crunch

Ways to plank

Ways to lunge

Stability ball exercises

Have a great night!



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  1. Last night I just saw a reverse burpee where you roll backwards onto your back (with your feet over your head) instead of a plank. Then you roll back onto your feet and try to get up and jump without using your hands. You can use a medicine ball (hold in your hands) to make it harder. Yowza!

    • Fitnessista says:

      OHHHH! i can’t wait to try this!

    • is this like a candlestick?

      • Yes! We called them candlesticks in gymnastics (like 10-15 years ago, so reverse burpee may be the modern terminology). You can also do these all on one leg then repeat on the other leg – this is really a challenge, both for the muscles and cardio πŸ˜‰

    • I do something similar to this in my class all the time- I call it the Ab Roll Up Burpee… starting how you explained (rolling onto your back, feet up and then try to come to standing without using your hands), and then add a big jump when you get to standing and then drop down into a burpee. Then back up to the ab roll up and so on. it’s amazing!

    • This sounds like a prisoner get up, not a burpee, but you can do this with a burpee by rolling back, then when you roll forward, come into a ball and place your palms under your shoulders and jump your feet back. It’s a bit tricky at first but once you get it, they’re kinda fun. And tough.

  2. Wow I love this! I like adding sets of burpees while busting my butt on the stepping machine. It makes the heart rate go up superfast! Usually i’ll do 20 burpees after every 10-20 “floors” πŸ™‚

  3. Or a lower impact burpee. Plie squat, touch hands to the floor then come back up with arms over head. Different way to do it but you still get the result of a regular burpee.

  4. this is great! i never thought of adding a plank jack. i really DO heart burpees!

  5. I love burpees and trying new variations. One of my favorites is a burpee followed by a tuck jump!

  6. Great ideas!

  7. I love your shoes!! You have such a great fitness wardrobe. Is that a weird thing for me to say? Oh well πŸ™‚

  8. These are great Gina! Burpees are definitely one of my love-to-hate moves. Lately I’ve been doing a lot of the single-leg ones, but with my lifted leg in a TRX strap. They get me every single time!

  9. Oh, I hate burpees so much. I remember being forced to do them in gym and those phy ed teachers sure beat it to death! Haha. Also, I used to live near Arizona (not Tuscan though, so I may be off) and New Mexico and, even though it’s hot in the summer you can at least still go outside in the morning and evening. I’m now in the north and haven’t been outside except to walk from my car to a building since the end of October. I wish I were kidding. I’m going crazy and have been popping Vit D like crazy…it’s not helping this year! We are supposed to hit freezing on Thursday for the first time since November and I could not be more excited! I will be siting on my porch like a crazy person! πŸ™‚ I miss the southwest so, so much!

    • I hear you, lived in Georgia for 5 years and now in Indiana. It’s supposed to be 31 here on Thursday and I’m thinking of breaking out shorts. That’s a big temp change from the -13 last night!

      • YES! I cannot wait. We had a high of 11F today and it felt super warm. :/ I’m moving to Tennessee this summer so I’m looking forward to a more mild winter next year!

    • Fitnessista says:

      i think i would die in the cold :/ mama needs sunshine!

  10. Love your nanos! I have the same ones πŸ˜‰ Burpees are just hard period… but they are one of my favorite exercises especially at crossfit. They bring your heart rate up so fast! Great variations!

  11. Great ways to mix up burpees! I am NOT fan, but I’m a fan of what they do to my body! πŸ˜€

  12. I didn’t know there were so many ways to burpee!! Now I think more people will do them because I know many have a love hate relationship with them. They’re hard but great for your body. Great post!!

  13. Wow I had no idea there were this many different types of Burpees! Thanks for sharing all πŸ™‚

  14. I might hate you a little bit for not sharing any of your warm weather. πŸ™‚

  15. Clearly by the name of my blog, I love burpees. Here’s a post I wrote with a few that you didn’t include: http://burpeestobubbly.com/2013/08/07/wednesday-workout-burpees-burpees-burpees-i-3-burpees/.

    I am going to try breaking them up with the 5/5/5- I like that!

  16. Oh I love these and am planning a whole burpee bootcamp class for one of my classes next week, these will be included, thanks!

  17. Would you post a video of a standard burpee?

  18. These look TOUGH! I usually only do regular burpees and *hate* those enough. I mean, love them!

  19. I have done a few variations of burpees with crossfit workouts. Burpees in all forms are rough but a great workout.

  20. Burpees are my favorite exercise EVER! They’re the perfect combo of strength and killer cardio! I love trying new variations like these too. πŸ™‚

  21. Dying to try the one-leg burpee now!

  22. Ughhhh I get it. Tucson is hot in the summer. But it so miserable here in NC right now. I had to do a track workout, and the wind was burning my legs it was so cold! Send me a ticket, I’ll visit you now!

  23. I really hate burpees, really do. However, I realize they’re good for you so I do them. I usually modify them as my knees been bothering me lately. Too many squats & burpees maybe?

  24. I LOVE these ideas! I’m pinning this for later. Which one do you think was the toughest for you? I’m definitely a little scared to try a Burpee Box Jump. I always feel like I’m gonna fall off the box!

  25. Yeah love love love burpees… does that make me crazy??? do tons and tons of variations in my classes and with my clients ( they are less than thrilled with me ) . Have you tried single handed or when you send your feet back placing them on a riser or a chair if you are at home ( those you have to do slowly but great for a killer push-up) I have so many more in my little book so I am super happy to share!!! Keep on rocking it!!!

  26. Box jump burpee?!? … Hello game changer. I’m going to have to try that out! I did inverted burpees for the first time last week and they gloriously made me feel the burn! Thank you for the burpee ideas.

  27. I love the traveling burpee to mix it up! No burpees for me for a while, though. Tennis elbow is baaad. Will look forward to trying some of the variations when I’m better.

  28. I love the first 5 burpees I do, and hate the last 5 burpees I do, haha. I like the low-impact version, though. I have runner’s knee so low-impact is a great way for me to get burpees in without jarring the injury! Thanks for the tips!

  29. Ohhh frog jump burpee looks killer! I can’t wait to try that and introduce it to my boot campers!

  30. Single leg burpees – oh my gee!! I would die. I always have to do the modifed one, I can not do the hop – I am too clumsy I guess πŸ™‚
    THe other day we had to do Burpee Box Jumps with Dumbells at Crossfit. I nearly died.

  31. I actually like burpees…

  32. I looooove burpees too! My recent favourite incarnations: hand-release push up burpees (explosive push ups where your hands come off the ground – or even better – clapping push ups!), double jump burpees superman burpees and 10s plank hold burpees. Love the versions here too!

  33. Love this!!! I’ve never thought of or seen most of these. I can’t wait to incorporate them into my workouts. Wouldn’t it be fun to do some tabatas with several different burpee variations??

  34. LOVE this! Can’t wait to try some of these variations at the gym tonight.

  35. I love plank jacks! hurts so good!

  36. These sound killer!

  37. Great ideas! Never thought of the split burpee one. Thanks for posting!

  38. Ughhhh burpees. We did NINETY of them in our CrossFit WOD yesterday. 90… Woofta.

  39. Great variations! Never thought of a lot of these…will have to try some on my clients πŸ˜‰
    Especially like the burpee to box jump one. Both such tough exercises made even harder!

  40. Sarah Goodwin says:

    I love the cover picture on this, how on earth did you manage that?! Awesome.

  41. Sarah Goodwin says:

    Love a burpee too πŸ˜›

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