EMOM is an acronym meaning:
- On the
It is an intense form of interval training that has a a number of benefits.
How it works is that at the start of every minute you perform a specific exercise with the intention of completing it within that minute.
So, for example, you might be doing something as simple as squats, and let’s say you are going for sets of five squats.
If you are doing a 10-minute workout, you would set your timer and start your squats at the top of each minute.
Once you finish the set, you then have the remainder of the minute to rest. If you do it particularly fast then you will have a longer rest period.
But, the flip side, the faster you do perform the exercise the more time you will need to take a break. Therefore, the goal is to reach a balance where you are comfortably finishing early with enough time to rest.
This means you do not want to just fly into it and finish every different type of exercise in the first ten seconds – that is just going to wear you out real quick.
There are no specific type of exercises that are better suited to this method, in fact there are many that work. Here is a list from Athletic Muscle on some great EMOM workouts.
As I said, there is a number of benefits to this style of exercising, so, before we discuss some good strength-training EMOM workouts, let us take a look at some of those benefits:
I touched on this a little bit, but EMOM’s are extremely versatile and they can be adapted to a wide variety of different disciplines.
You can pretty much use them to train anything. And, because you can decide on the exercises performed, you can determine if you train for strength, speed, skills or mechanics.
They can also be used to train aerobic or anaerobic systems. No matter how you are trying to train, there is an EMOM workout out there for it.
Progression is an important part of any workout programme, but sometimes it can be difficult to know if you are actually making any progress.
When you structure your individual training sessions in such a way that allows you to measure on a minute-to-minute basis, improvement becomes very straightforward.
If you were not doing an EMOM workout and you were bench pressing for example. Your intention could be to increase the weight with every session.
This might not actually be as easy as it sounds on paper. You might increase the weight and find out that you can not actually lift it (or you lift to heavy to early and risk injury).
However, with EMOM training you could see how much of the minute it took you to do a specific exercise and decide that you will attempt to complete it 2-3 seconds quicker next time.
This is a much more reasonable progression and, as such, it is much easier to measure. Which brings me to another benefit.
If you have a good handle on the pace of your workout, you can improve the efficiency of your individual training session, and training programme in general.
Now I am not saying that you can relax with other workouts, but you are not (necessarily) always a slave to the ticking stopwatch like you are with EMOM.
If you force yourself to be regimental and strict on yourself while you train (aka discipline), you will find yourself completing an efficient and effective training session.
You can watch your pace with each passing minute and ensure that you do not slip up.
With these tips in mind, below are five EMOM workouts that are in line with Crossfit and are great for building strength.
For those of you might think EMOM is not for you, there are alternative exercise methods, one of which you can find on this page.
1. 20-Minute Bodyweight Workout
For this one, you will be performing a series of bodyweight exercises, targeting a wide variety of muscles.
Do a set of each every minute for 20 minutes.
- 5 push-ups.
- 5 pull-ups.
- 5 crunches.
- 5 box jumps.
2. 10-Minute Weight Training Workout
You will need a barbell and weights for this one. Ideally, you would be training with 50-80 kg, but if you feel that this is too heavy then start with a lower weight and work upwards.
- 1 Clean.
- 1 Jerk.
- 1 Squat Clean.
- 1 Front Squat.
3. 12-Minute Heave Workout
For this one you will need a heave (pull-up) bar (or something stable that you could perform heaves on). In outdoor environments, a trim trail or sturdy tree branch might very well suffice if it can hold your weight.
This one is pretty simple. Just perform heaves until you can not perform anymore. Beginners will more than likely have lots of time left on their minute. However, those conditioned to heaves may still be performing them well after the minute. In this case it may be useful to perform a pre-fatigue set to failure and then start your EMOM session.
4. 15-Minute Burpee Workout
Do you know what burpees are? If you do not, you are probably in for a rather unpleasant surprise because they are extremely tough.
They are great for working a lot of different muscles, and they have the added bonus of being great for your cardiovascular system too. Only one exercise here, and you will quickly realise it is all that is necessary.
- 15 Burpees.
5. 15-Minute Bodyweight Workout
Much like the 20-minute bodyweight workout described earlier, this one is exclusively bodyweight and you will be performing a variety of exercises.
You will work your core, your shoulders, your arms and some other areas too. For this one, just do one exercise per minute for the first three minutes and then start the sequence over.
You will end up performing each one five times.
- 10 Hollow Body Rocks.
- 30 second plank hold.
- 30 second handstand hold.
EMOM is a tough, but effective and efficient, way to build muscle.
Altohugh you might not be suited to all of these exercises yourself, especially not at the beginning, give each one a try and see which of them works best for you.
EMOM is one of the best ways to build strength in an efficient manner.