Need Low-Impact? Here’s Your 10 Minute Workout to Burn Calories

By: Kim Pieper, CPT // September 25, 2014

Injury. Age. Pregnancy. Recovery. Many things can bring you to desire a low-impact workout. Maybe you are completely healthy but looking for a way to prevent future problems. Whatever the case, low-impact does NOT mean low-intensity.  And it also doesn’t mean your only choices for cardio exercise are either walking, swimming or biking. There ARE low-impact moves that will drive your heart rate up and give you the workout you need. Just remember that when it comes to torching calories it’s not about impact, it’s all about EFFORT! You have to work hard enough to get your heart rate pumping and breathing through your mouth.

This workout gives you four great low impact moves – sans the jumping around – with great results. Performed with enough intensity, you’re heart rate will soar and you will burn that fat! If you like it you should also try our 12 Minute Hiit Workout for Bad Knees!

Here’s the plan:

  • Perform each exercise for one minute, building intensity throughout, with no rest in between exercises.
  •  After finishing all four, rest one minute and repeat the sequence two more times.

This a quick way to be nice to your body, but MEAN to your body fat!


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    Knee Thrust


    Chris Freytag demonstrating knee thrust

    A) Start standing with feet wider than shoulder distance apart and turn both feet in one direction allowing the hips to follow like you’re in a shallow lunge. The front knee is a 90-degree angle and the back heel lifted. Arms are in guard position in front of the chest.

    B) Drive the back knee up to hip height towards the hands, and hands in towards the thigh. Return the foot to floor and repeat.

    Perform on right leg for one minute, then left leg one minute with no break in between.


    Mountain Climbers

    Chris Freytag demonstrating Mountain ClimbersA) Place hands on floor slightly wider than shoulder distance apart. Bring your body into plank position and engage your abdominals.

    B) Bring one knee in towards your chest then switch feet and draw the other knee in alternating back and forth quickly. To keep it low-impact, do not pull the opposite knee in until the first foot is touching down. In other words, drive the knees quickly but do not “run.”

    Go for 1 minute.

    Note: If this exercise bothers your back or knees, try it standing up!



    Chris Freytag demonstrating punching

    A) Stand with feet slightly wider than shoulder distance apart and bend knees slightly. Tighten the core to keep your center still.

    B) Punch out one arm at a time at a steady but fast pace. For more intensity, sit deeper as you punch. Punch hard and punch fast!

    Perform for one minute building intensity and speed throughout.


    Chris Freytag demonstrating skaters

    A) Start with your legs slightly wider than shoulder distance apart and arms at the sides.

    B) Bring one leg behind at a slight angle into a reverse lunge. The front knee will come to a 90-degree angle.

    C) Swing the arms in front of that bent knee and leap the back leg forward to switch sides in a skating motion. Arms alternate as you switch sides like a speed skater.  To keep low impact, do not come off the ground as you switch feet.

    Perform for one minute, building intensity throughout.

    Want more? Try our free 10-Minute No Running Cardio Workout!

    READ THIS NEXT: Cardio Burn Workout

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