High-Intensity Cardio That Isn't Hard on Your Joints


By: , – Jessica Smith, Certified Personal Trainer
  :  57 comments   :  120,194 Views

High intensity interval training (aka H.I.I.T.) doesn't always have to be high impact! This workout is perfect for maximizing your cardio time--without pounding your joints. (Oh, and did I mention it’s free of both burpees and squat thrusts? Score!)
Join me for this low-impact, high-intensity cardio routine that can be done easily in a small space with zero equipment. (No jumping means it's perfect for hotel rooms and apartments, too!)

Follow along with the video for an efficient nine-minute session, or if you have more time and energy, repeat 2-3 times in total for a longer sweat session.
Note: This workout may be low impact, but its still high intensity, which means it is challenging aerobically. Beginners, please listen to your body during the routine and move at your own pace. Challenge yourself but be sure to take care of yourself! 

Like this workout? Be sure to subscribe at Youtube.com/JessicaSmithTV to access a full library of over 150 FREE full-length workout videos. New episodes air every Saturday at noon EST!

About the Author
As someone who struggled to lose weight for years, Jessica found that the key to her own 40-pound weight loss was making small, healthy lifestyle changes that led to big, lasting results. Now, as a certified wellcoach, fitness instructor and personal trainer, she has spent the last 15 years helping students and clients reach their goals in New York City, Los Angeles and Miami, and now reaches millions online through her YouTube Channel and home exercise DVD series. Please visit jessicasmithtv.com/shop to learn more about her fun, results driven programs for all levels of exercisers.

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  • 57
    Nice way to get in bursts of movement! - 2/8/2018   1:43:09 AM
  • 56
    Thanks! - 1/15/2018   11:52:15 AM
  • 55
    who would think 9 minutes could be so effective! - 12/9/2017   4:22:28 PM
  • 54
    Each to their own - I like her chatter; it keeps me going! - 12/2/2017   6:11:25 AM
  • 53
    She talked too much. For me the focus should be on the movement and the music. Hearing someone chatter without a point was distracting. - 10/10/2017   2:08:20 PM
    Love this! Thanks you! - 8/28/2017   2:08:56 PM
  • 51
    What power there is in our service when our actions
    line up with our mission, skills and joy.
    - Mary Anne Radmacher - 8/8/2017   2:51:41 AM
  • 50
    Yeah! - 8/7/2017   8:58:51 AM
  • 49
    Jessica smith workouts are a good place to start if you have knee pain. I no longer have Knee pain. - 8/6/2017   9:37:49 PM
  • 48
    Sounds great, will have to try it! - 8/6/2017   7:35:57 PM
  • 47
    Excellent H.I.T.T. low impact workout. A good head to toe low impact workout that did not bother my arthritic knees. I will check out Jessicasmithtv.com and You Tube. Kudos!
    Found exercise on You Tube: Cardio, Aerobics, Exercise: 9-minutes Low Impact High intensity Interval Training Workout. - 8/6/2017   3:24:55 PM
    Keep moving forward - 8/6/2017   6:11:55 AM
  • 45
    Thank you for the low impact for people that have joint problems. - 5/23/2017   12:29:53 AM
  • 44
    Very impressive for an H.I.I.T. workout! I'm going to try it and see how it compares with my other ones. - 2/1/2017   9:09:00 AM
  • 43
    How would I track this? - 1/23/2017   9:28:17 PM
  • 42
    Wow!!! That was a great variety of workouts! I just love Jessica!! - 11/7/2016   4:42:07 PM
  • 41
    WOW that was better then lifting weights ! - 8/24/2016   8:31:23 AM
  • 40
    This is the first HIIT workout I haven't hated. I couldn't keep her pace the whole time, and often changed the direction of my arm circles for balance, but I'll do this one again. - 6/18/2016   8:16:39 PM
  • 39
    wow! Just what I needed. - 11/28/2015   4:29:18 PM
  • 38
    lol, this is definitely NOT the work out for me. I'm impressed that she's in that good of cardio shape, but I won't be using this again. Actually, I made it work for me because I wanted to watch something energizing while I used my mini-trampoline. She was CERTAINLY energizing. :) - 10/1/2015   10:42:27 AM
    I love Jessica's workouts, they keep my heart rate up, and I like the lower impact. You build strength as well as get a good cardio workout. I can't do them all, but some of her videos include her mom, Debbie, who does modified movements. If you have knee, shoulder or back problems, find the videos with her mom & follow her movements.

    She always says "listen to your body." If a movement doesn't feel right, then modify it. - 9/7/2015   2:28:05 PM
  • 36
    This may be low impact, but my knees definitely won't cooperate with this workout. It looks great for those who can do it. I am glad it works for others! - 5/29/2015   8:15:55 PM
    I absolutely love this workout! So glad I found it and will be looking for more of her videos for sure! - 4/17/2015   2:52:32 PM
  • 34
    Whoo! I was feeling lethargic, but now I have energy. This got me off the couch. - 3/24/2015   3:02:32 PM
    My son showed me how to "throw" the youtube video to my apple t.v. from my iphone. I just did Jessica's 30 cardio sculpt and enjoyed the workout while doing laundry (multitasking). Looking forward to more of Jessica's workout videos. - 2/18/2015   10:38:22 AM
  • JULIA1154
    I loved this workout - and really liked Jessica's style, too. I can't believe I've not met up with her before but I certainly intend to look for more of her workouts. - 1/6/2014   7:24:30 PM
  • 31
    Go to jessicasmithtv.com or youtube. jessica smith is an excellent trainer! some of her workouts are very tough, but all of her workouts are doable. I have fibromyalgia and arthritis. I'm also 54 yrs old. If I can do it, i'm sure most anyone can! - 1/4/2014   3:22:30 PM
    great workout - 12/17/2013   12:44:18 PM
  • 29
    I LOVE this workout. I LOVE all of Jessica Smith's workouts. I highly recommend her videos! High impact without the impact. How does she do it? She is amazing. She does things that I didn't think could be done. Try her. You won't regret it! SO positive and motivating and workouts are never boring. - 12/10/2013   8:55:17 PM
    I love Jessica Smith's workouts. Highly recommend. I think I will try this one in place of one of my higher impact workouts. I injured myself the other day doing high impact cardio. - 12/10/2013   7:22:05 PM
    This led me to her other workouts on YouTube. I didn't think I had it in me to workout at 8:30 pm but I finished the entire 30 minute video and loved it. - 11/19/2013   9:58:03 PM
  • 26
    This was great when I thought I was too tired to do anything tonight. I got a bit in anyway. Thanks a bunch!!!! - 11/19/2013   9:26:09 PM
  • 25
    I'm surprised there was no warm-up. - 11/19/2013   8:21:22 PM
  • 24
    This is great! Really works me hard but doesn't take long at all. Awesome way to fit in a quick and intense cardio session. - 11/17/2013   3:31:24 PM
    Great workout, but is it on tv, if so, what channel? - 11/14/2013   10:19:06 AM
    Great workout, but is it on tv, if so, what channel? - 11/14/2013   10:19:02 AM
  • 21
    going to this a try. - 11/14/2013   8:43:51 AM
    Wow! This really woke me up. - 11/14/2013   2:42:09 AM
  • 19
    I really enjoyed this workout and have plenty of room to grow into it!! Thanks!! - 11/13/2013   6:54:15 AM
    Going to give it a try. - 11/12/2013   8:42:21 PM
  • 17
    I'm gonna try this during lunch...sneak in as much as I can. Thank you!!! - 11/12/2013   5:01:22 PM
  • GAIA310
    Great workout! But I'd also really like to know how to track it in my fitness diary, could it be added? :) - 11/12/2013   5:00:27 PM
    Wow! Very impressed with this workout. I don't want to take on too much too soon. I will definitely try this one. - 11/12/2013   4:00:40 PM
  • 14
    I am going to have to try this in the morning. I am looking for something that is going to burn calories in the least amount of time. I will let you all know what happens in the morning. :) I found her you tube videos too. I am feeling pumped!! Did this today and it is great. I suggest going through it twice because for it is no long enough.will be adding this to my collection. - 11/12/2013   3:21:59 PM
  • 13
    That was Awesome! ans it didn't hurt my knee at all. - 11/12/2013   3:13:52 PM
  • 12
    I love her workouts. I track them as low impact aerobics, & there are some movements that aren't right for me(like leg twists)so I adjust them to work for me. I also love her dog Peanut :) - 11/12/2013   1:51:40 PM
  • 11
    I subscribe to her on Youtube already...her workouts are fun and pretty great workouts. :D - 11/12/2013   1:36:47 PM
  • 10
    Looks like fun! - 11/12/2013   1:05:40 PM
  • 9
    Great workout! And it can be done in a tiny amount of space. Another thing I love about no jumping is I don't have to worry so much about the noise travelling down into the flat below.

    It would be great to know how to put it into the Spark Fitness tracker. I put it in under aerobics- is this right? - 11/12/2013   11:43:17 AM
  • 8
    I don't think my knees can handle the deep bend and would have to keep the lateral stance much closer. Too much risk of injury. - 11/12/2013   10:35:47 AM

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