Do you feel dizzy when you do burpees?

Burpees are a whole body exercise which requires you to go from a standing position to a plank position all while doing the changes with a jump and a squat.

As with any exercise, I tell my clients, that if they feel dizzy they should look for the source of their dizziness and why this happens. And immediately find a substitution exercise. At the end of the day, the purpose of any training is to improve weight, performance, speed and if there is a specific exercise that hurts or makes them feel sick or dizzy they should always find a substitution or regression. If at any point, there is some continued discomfort or pain that progresses or goes beyond a few classes, then it’s important to get it checked with a doctor to find out the source of the pain.

A lot of clients have mentioned that they become dizzy whilst doing a burpee and I find this is more common than they realize.

Reasons why you could be feeling dizzy:

  1. Age and Menopause: As we grow older, specifically between the age of 40-60, we begin to feel different, our bodies start to change in ways we never felt. We hit a wall in terms of weight, experience hot flashes and a lot of the times we also can experience dizziness more often. These are all symptoms of perimenopause and menopause and they all are due to a series of hormonal changes we begin to have. This dizziness specifically is due to a loss of estrogen that is linked to our inner ear organ responsible for balance. The loss of estrogen directly affects our inner ear organ causing women to experience vertigo during movement. A vertigo episode can be triggered by sudden changes in a movement like a burpee and can last for over 24 hours.  Metabolism, as our estrogen levels lower, this too can cause a loss in glucose levels and hence we fatigued and dizzy.

Hot flashes

A hot feeling temporarily spreads throughout the face, neck, and upper body. Hot flashes usually happen during the first 6 months to 2 years of perimenopause and can continue to occur for up to 10 years. Dizziness and disorientation can result from hot flashes.

Migraines

One study found that menopause may encourage epigone migraine vertigo, a migraine headache accompanied by episodes of dizziness.

Insomnia

As we experience these hormonal change we may find it difficult to fal asleep or sleep uninterrupted for 6-8 hours. This lack of sleep may cause dizziness.

2. Anxiety and stress

Worry and panic can increase during menopause due to hormonal changes or midlife events, such as concerns about aging and taking care of elderly parents.

Anxious feelings can culminate in a panic attack, which may include dizziness as a symptom.

3. Orthostatic Hypotension.

Bear with me as I attempt to succinctly describe this very important physiologic phenomenon which everybody has experienced at one time or another.

Orthostatic (meaning related to standing) hypotension (low blood pressure) is defined as a sustained reduction of systolic BP >20 mmHg or diastolic BP >10 mmHg within 3 minutes of standing or following head-up tilt to ≥60o.[

Dizziness due to OH occurs when you stand up quickly or rise from a kneeling position.

During the process of going from lying or sitting to standing your body has to make some major adjustments to ensure that blood flow to the brain is maintained. As you stand up from lying down your brain suddenly goes from being at the same height as your heart to being (depending on how tall you are) a foot or more higher. Thus, a higher pressure is suddenly needed to keep blood flowing to the brain. The major sensors of blood pressure (baroreceptors) within the vascular system are located in the carotid arteries (large neck arteries providing blood to the brain) and these are constantly sending feedback to the brain.

Aging and orthostatic hypotension

Dizziness due to OH is more common as we age. We don’t know exactly why but it is likely related to multiple age-related changes in the cardiovascular system and the autonomic nervous system.

If you experience Dizziness with aerobic exercise such as running or rapid walking, it  can be a sign of a serious cardiovascular disorder and merits being reported to your physician.

If you’re interested to learn more or talk about your current training routine, join our BodyGlow closed Facebook group @bodyglowtribe and I’ll answer all your questions.