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What's the Difference between Intensity and Impact?

Updated: Apr 10, 2022

You’ll often see workout labelled HIIT, pronounced “hit”. This usually stands for high-intensity interval training.

Sometimes it can be intimidating to see high intensity, especially if you’re a newer exerciser.

So, what does it mean for you? Regardless of your level, you can move - and should move! I don’t usually like the word should, so let’s say it’s good for you to move.

Your workouts should never feel like a competition with others. It is your own space, time, and body.

INTENSITY means the perceived level of work.

IMPACT is the force on the joints.

Most often, high impact involves jumping. For many, jumping is not ideal for various reasons (if it’s a pelvic floor leakage issue, this is another topic - and you can get better!).

Just because a workout is labeled low impact does NOT necessarily mean low intensity.

There are way to be more protective of the joints and minimize impact, but still get a great challenging workout in.

Ways to increase intensity, without adding impact:

  • incorporate your arms

  • use bigger arms movements

  • get lower in your squat movements

  • use more levels, lower lows and higher highs

  • increase your range of motion, simply make your movements bigger

Of course, the above suggested are within reason what is safe and appropriate for you - if you’re minding a wonky shoulder, keep those rotational shoulder movement limited or as to the guidance of your doctor or physio therapist.

If you are being mindful of achy knees, you want to be careful to reduce your depth of the bend to a level without pain.

If you have limitations, the biggest thing is to try not to feel defeated but what you ‘can’t do’ but open yourself up to what you can.

There are so many ways to exercise and what matters most is that you are just moving!

One move at a time, one breathe at a time.

Be consistent and your body will start to become stronger and more adapt to the challenges you’re asking of it, and your body will thank you!

Our virtual classes always include modifications, so you can adjust to get the workout you need within what’s safe for you.

Reach out for a complimentary 30-minute consultation so we can help you find the best mix of classes or 1-on-1 training based on you.

One thing we’re not is a one-size fits all bootcamp. Custom workouts are key for safe and effective movement, which leads to your best results! Always listen to your body and your breathe.

One thing that I have to stress is it is not a no pain no gain mentality here.

Smart movement is what we preach, for greater long term benefit!

What good is achieving a personal best in weight lifted, if you get injured in pushing for it?

Fitness is a lifestyle, not a goal once reached soon forgotten.

Just keep moving!

If you’re looking for that motivation to move and guidance for how to move, our Team Fit Body community was created exactly for that. Together as a group of like-minded women, we support each other to keep moving, be mindful, and feel our best.

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