Best of Both Worlds: The Rise of High-Intensity, Low-Impact (HILIT) Training


Brands like Solidcore are championing the benefits of HILIT, which combines HIIT’s efficiency with a low-impact focus, reducing wear and tear. The popularity of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) has held steady, and its sustained time in the spotlight surprised some, but people want and need more options. This is where high-intensity low-impact training (HILIT or HILI) emerges as a solution for many personal trainers and their clients, who may be missing the mark with current programming. HILIT marries the rigor and efficacy of HIIT with low-impact precision, reducing the risk of injury and making workouts more accessible. HILIT is particularly beneficial for people seeking intense workouts without joint strain, including those with pre-existing injuries, older adults, pregnant women, and fitness novices. The growing interest provides a window of opportunity for trainers and gyms to expand their clientele by incorporating HILIT programs, aligning with consumer demands for effective, accessible solutions.


The Best of Both Worlds

HIIT is characterized by exercises performed with significant effort, typically gauged by achieving between 75% and 85% of one’s maximum heart rate, alternated with rest intervals. While it’s recognized for its efficiency and effectiveness, HIIT may not be suitable for everyone, pointing to a need for alternative approaches like HILIT. “High-impact exercise involves movements in which your feet leave then lower to the ground; the impact results from the landing after a jump,” says Sam Gelon, talent and product development manager at Solidcore. Gelon says there are a variety of ways Solidcore workouts increase intensity without stressing the joints. “For example, intensity is added from the resistance (springs), executing consecutive reps, moving slowly, and transitioning to the next exercise quickly,” she says. “In response to increased intensity, your heart rate rises.” Gelon adds that Solidcore exercises are designed to disperse body weight so the joints and spine are not overloaded. “You’ll never be jumping in class,” she says.

Low-intensity interval training (LIIT) also has plenty of fans, and for good reason. A 2015 study found that obese adults who followed LIIT lost around the same amount of weight as people who pushed themselves harder. The effectiveness of HIIT and LIIT makes merging the two into a thoughtful program design a good idea for businesses and individuals. Formats like the LIT Method, Solidcore, Tonal, and many more meet clients where they are with creative and challenging workouts. Many note that Pilates and other low-intensity programs such as barre, yoga, sculpt, and TRX suspension training that focus on balanced, total body strength—wwhen taught in specific ways to increase the intensity—aare valid HILIT choices.

Benefits of HILIT

  1. Reduced Joint Impact: HILIT workouts provide the intensity of HIIT without the harsh impact on joints. This makes it ideal for individuals with joint issues or those recovering from injuries.
  2. Accessible to All: HILIT caters to a wider audience, including older adults, pregnant women, and beginners. It offers a challenging workout without compromising safety.
  3. Efficient and Effective: Like HIIT, HIIT delivers results in less time, making it a practical choice for busy individuals.
  4. Balanced Strength: By focusing on total body strength, HILIT helps maintain muscle balance and stability.
  5. Heart Health: The intensity of HILIT still elevates heart rate, promoting cardiovascular fitness.

In summary, HILIT strikes a balance between intensity and impact, providing a smart alternative for fitness enthusiasts seeking effective, joint-friendly workouts. As the fitness landscape evolves, HILIT is poised to become a staple in training programs, offering the best of both worlds.

Written by
Jennifer Dixon

Jennifer Dixon is a passionate and professional news writer with over 15 years of experience in the media industry. She has worked as a reporter, editor, and correspondent for various news agencies such as Reuters, CNN, and BBC. She has covered a wide range of topics, from politics and business to culture and entertainment. She has a keen eye for detail and a flair for storytelling. She is also an avid reader and learner, always curious about the world and its people. Jennifer holds a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University and a bachelor's degree in English from Yale University. She is currently working as a freelance writer and consultant, helping clients with their news and content needs. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, yoga, and photography.

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