Tabata this, ball player!

baseball player

Tabata this, ball player!

baseball player

Power. Ka-POW!

When you throw a punch, you aim at punching through the target, not just at the target.

That’s only a portion of your power. The other portion comes from your ability to recoil, to pull back ready to strike again and not leave your arm vulnerable extended there.

In this post’s featured move, the Wood Chop, which can be a baseball bat swing, a lumberjack chop, a katana sideway slicing move or even a modified golf swing, you can apply a Tabata protocol of 20s on, 10s off, for 4 minutes.


Now, before we go on a wild discussion of a proper Tabata protocol, here’s a great article referencing Dr Izumi Tabata’s actual types of moves applicable to a Tabata protocol and you will see that the 4th example lists a move like the one we are featuring here!

Many times, we’d do Tabatas (it’s become a word now, a verb even) that simply don’t allow the person to reach that high VO2 max thresold of 170 of your VO2 Max, because the moves are either too complicated, too mellow, or simply too hard to push to maximal intensity (bodyweight squats, the most used form of Tabata, is not approved by Dr Tabata himself!).


This exercise can be done with a single short ProBar, start first with the bar without any added custom 500g slug in it, as the 1/2lb ball ends already provide some torque. Strengthen and secure your grip also (you can apply chalk to the ProBar, tape it if you want, or ensure your grip is solid). After you’ve done this a few times, add the weight and keep it on the opposite end of where you grip the ProBar.

Swing/Chop from top to bottom, recoiling the ProBar aggressively before any point of (imaginary) impact, like hitting a ball or a tree. In the video, we feature a diagonal angle across a mid-line, but you can do it from top to bottom, side to side, in a lunge position with a low ROM squat. Because it’s a full body exercise (trust us, you’ll feel the core and upper body a lot), it’s a great exercise to properly include in your sessions a couple of times a week and yields great HIIT benefits!

At first shown with squared off hips, you add power by adding hip rotation. Perform at max speed, like every chop is your last!


Philippe Til is a trainer, fitness entrepreneur/product creator -inventor of the ProBar- as well as product and education consultant for various fitness brands (Terracore, Procedos P9, TE3 Mobility), as well as a published author of History-based physical education books. You can sign up for his newsletter and get updates on various workshops and events on his website.