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High-intensity incidental physical activity or HIIPA

High-intensity incidental physical activity, or HIIPA

High-intensity interval training, better known as HIIT, has grown in popularity over the years as the go-to

way to stay healthy, because it’s a fast way to get your recommended daily physical activity in. But it’s not the most accessible form of exercise for all sorts of reasons. Despite this, new research shows that certain activities you're already doing can actually have a similar impact to HIIT. High-intensity incidental physical activity (HIIPA) is the new exercise trend that’s made for everybody, no matter how old you are or your level of physical ability.

Academics from the University of Sydney, Loughborough University, University College London, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and the National Research Centre for the Working Environment in Denmark, have agreed with the 2018 U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines which states that where it was previously thought you have to do physical activity for at least 10 minutes at a time, was found never to have any scientific backing.

Based on these changes, their recommendation is for people to adopt high-intensity incidental physical activity, or HIIPA for short. HIIPA involves using the science of HIIT and incorporating it into activities that you’re already doing every day

Let’s back up a second. For background, HIIT programs include short bursts of intense physical activity performed at your maximum effort, following short periods of low-intensity work to give your body a chance to recover.

[HIIT] interval training is so good because research has suggested that you make similar gains in cardiovascular fitness as you would with traditional endurance exercises but with shorter periods of exercise, So, if you do not have time for the traditionally recommended 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week, this may serve as a substitute.

Now by recommending a new approach to HIIT, i.e. HIIPA that uses the same science, the elimination of the 10-minute requirement means that you can use things you’re doing in your daily life to get fit. They refer to this sort of exercise as “incidental physical activity” and it is an easy way to get the physical activity you need to stay healthy.

Regular incidental activity that gets you huffing and puffing even for a few seconds has great p

romise for health. Incidental physical activity can include climbing a few flights of stairs, housework, shopping, active commuting, and can last from a few seconds to a few hours. It all depends on what gets you “huffing and puffing”.

The beauty of HIIPA and the idea of using activities we are already doing as part of everyday life is that it is much more realistic and achievable for most people, it’s just about making good decisions, like parking the car at the edge of the car park and carrying shopping for 50 or 100 metres

So if doing a super intense workout just isn't for you, don't worry about it. More and more research is saying that taking some of your daily activities up a notch is a great way to make sure you're getting enough physical activity in. Plus, dancing through a car park or racing a friend up the stairs can be a fun break in your day.

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