ⓘ Burpee, exercise. The burpee, or squat thrust, is a full body exercise used in strength training and as an aerobic exercise. The basic movement is performed in ..


ⓘ Burpee (exercise)

The burpee, or squat thrust, is a full body exercise used in strength training and as an aerobic exercise. The basic movement is performed in four steps and known as a "four-count burpee":

  • Begin in a standing position.
  • Immediately return your feet into squat position. count 3
  • Move into a squat position with your hands on the ground. count 1
  • Stand up from the squat position count 4
  • Kick your feet back into a plank position, while keeping your arms extended. count 2

1. Origin

The exercise was named in the 1930s for American physiologist Royal H. Burpee, who developed the burpee test. He earned a Ph.D. in applied physiology from Teachers College, Columbia University in 1940 and created the "burpee" exercise as part of his Ph.D. thesis as a quick and simple way to assess fitness. The exercise was popularized when the United States Armed Services adopted it as a way to assess the fitness level of recruits when the US entered World War II. Consisting of a series of the exercises performed in rapid succession, the test was meant to be a quick measure of agility, coordination, and strength.


2. Variants

Box-jump burpee The athlete jumps onto a box, rather than straight up and down. Burpee broad jump A burpee followed by a stationary two footed distance jump. Burpee push up also known as a "bastardo" The athlete performs one push-up after assuming the extended plank position. CrossFit burpee The athlete performs a standard four count burpee with the addition of a tricep push up at the bottom, where the chest and thighs touch the floor, and jump at the top of the standing position with hands above the head. CrossFit speed burpee The athlete drops to the ground with the chest and thighs touching the floor, creating a hollow back through hip extension, rolling onto the knees getting up, and perform a jump with hands above the head. This version is all about efficiency, high reps. Dumbbell burpee The athlete holds a pair of dumbbells while performing the exercise. Eight-count push up or Double burpee The athlete performs two push-ups after assuming the plank position. This cancels the drive from landing after the jump and makes the next jump harder. Each part of the burpee might be repeated to make it even harder. Hindu push up burpee Instead of a regular push up, do a Hindu push up. Jump-over burpee The athlete jumps over an obstacle between burpees. Jump up burpee The athlete jumps straight up as high as possible at the end of the movement, before beginning the next burpee. Knee push-up burpee The athlete bends their knees and rests them on the ground before performing the push up. Long-jump burpee The athlete jumps forward, not upward. Muscle-up burpee Combine a muscle-up a variation of a pull-up with the jump or do a muscle-up instead of the jump. One-armed burpee The athlete uses only one arm for the whole exercise including the pushup. One leg burpee The athlete stands on one leg, bends at the waist and puts hands on ground so they are aligned with shoulders. Next jump back with the standing leg to plank position. Jump forward with the one leg that was extended, and do a one-leg jump. Repeat on opposite side. Parkour burpee Following one burpee on the ground, the athlete jumps upon a table and performs the second burpee on the table, then jumps back to the initial position. Pull-up burpee Combine a pull-up with the jump or do a pull-up instead of the jump. Side burpee The athlete bends at waist and places hand shoulder-width apart to the side of right or left foot. Jump both legs out to side land on the outer and inner sides of your feet. Jump back in, jump up, and repeat on opposite side. Squat thrust Same as a four-count burpee. Tuck-jump burpee The athlete pulls their knees to their chest tucks at the peak of the jump.

3. World records

At 4 pm on May 17, 2014, in Greenwood, SC, Cameron Dorn broke two burpee world records: the most burpees performed in 12 hours with 5.657 and the most burpees completed in 24 hours with 10.105.

On July 7, 2019, in Milford, MI, Army ROTC Cadet Bryan Abell set the Guinness World Record for most chest-to-ground burpees performed in 12 hours by completing 4.689 chest-to-ground burpees in 12 hours.

At 6 am on October 21, 2013, in Portland, OR, Lloyd Weema broke the burpee world record: the most chest-to-ground burpees performed in 72 hours with 9.480.

On July 23, 2018, in Hobart, Tasmania, Charlie Gard achieved a record 851 chest-to-ground burpees in one hour. On December 1, 2019, the new record was set to be 5234 in 12 hours by Samuel Finn from Canada.