A Student’s Guide to Staying in Shape

Keep moving 

The Transformational Power of Burpees to Basketball

When I hear the word “burpee”, I feel like curling up into a ball and wrapping myself in a soft sheet. Then, in my mind, I start rolling away to a distant land, where the rhythm of movement is serene, like a gentle wave breaking along the beach at Currumbin. When I finally stop rolling, I unwrap myself and levitate with a fresh breeze. When I touch the ground again, I will have burned all the excess calories I accidentally ingested during the weekend. Gone is the greasy Picanha, I wave farewell to the excess waffle particles that slid into my belly, and no signs of flour can be traced in my organism.

It’s just magical, the word “burpee”.

It´s unfortunate this has to be such a far-fetched scenario. Although the word “burpee” can really have a transformational effect on our fitness condition. All one must do upon hearing it is to perform the movement. Then, after some repetition, it´s likely that a portion of those surplus-calories will have vanished.

I know it´s hard. But it´s also worth it. The burpee is like a double investment, where you save money and gain health. You only need consistency. And if consistency is elusive, I suggest you add the burpee into a ludic activity. Take basketball, for example.

We have multiple basketball courts scattered across the Gold Coast. There is one just opposite from where I live, so close I could score three-pointers from the balcony. Therefore, I devised a plan to include the burpee into my hoop routine.

Basket or not, this routine's a winner

The first challenge is to nail ten shots. For every shot I miss, I pay one burpee. It´s good if your conversion rate is historically low, for you will become a burpee aficionado. In addition, knowing the price for every missed attempt is a good reason to improve on your precision skills – I bet you will get better fast.

Then the layups. Twenty, alternating between the two baskets. A burpee for every layup. Fifteen burpees at completion. Just before finishing, a little prayer for someone to show up. If this happens, I thank the universe and play ball. If it doesn´t, I get creative and add more burpees between points.

Either way, the score is always favourable.

* Frankie Barcellos is studying his Masters in Communications at Bond University.