Nailing your burpee form is worth the effort whether you love or hate the exercise.

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Burpees are hands down the most polarizing exercise. Most people love them or hate them with a (muscle) burning passion. And when one woman broke a burpee world record this year, it became clear that even the definition of "burpee" can be pretty controversial. No matter where you stand on the move, though, they're worth doing. Not only do they provide total-body sculpting, but they're also one of the most effective exercises for burning calories.

Whether you suck at burpees or just want to fine-tune your technique, try this circuit from Alexia Clark, a trainer and creator of the Fit for a Reason program. (You're also going to want to do her Creative Total-Body Sculpting Dumbbell Workout.)

Each move is a variation of the basic components of the burpee: squats, planks, and push-ups. The goal? To build up to 30 seconds of push-up burpees. Whether your goal is to try the hardest burpee variation imaginable or just to make it through a class without cussing out your instructor, this will get you one step (er, burpee?) closer.

Mountain Climbers

A. Start in high plank position. Draw right knee in toward chest.

B. Quickly step right foot back to plank while bringing left knee toward chest.

C. Repeat movement, switching feet quickly.

Alternate for 30 seconds.

Push-Up

A. Start in high plank position. Bend elbows back at 45-degree angles to lower entire body toward floor, pausing when chest is just below elbow height.

B. Push into palms to straighten arms and return to starting position.

Continue for 30 seconds.

Scale down: Perform push-up on your knees.

Squat Thrust

A. Stand with feet slightly wider than hip-width apart. Lower into a squat, thighs parallel to the floor with hands clasped in front of chest to start.

B. Place palms on the floor between feet, about shoulder-width apart.

C. Jump feet back to high plank position.

D. Immediately jump feet outside hands and lift chest up in squat position to return to starting position.

Continue for 30 seconds.

Bodyweight Squat

A. Stand with feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, toes turned slightly outward.

B. Sit back, bending knees to squat until thighs are parallel or almost parallel to the ground.

C. Straighten knees and drive hips forward to return to starting position.

Continue for 30 seconds.

Push-Up Burpee

A. From standing, drop both hands down to the ground and jump both feet back simultaneously.

B. Bend elbows back at 45-degree angles to lower entire body toward the floor, pausing when chest is just below elbow height.

C. Straighten elbows and jump feet to hands.

D. Immediately stand up and jump, hands reaching toward the ceiling.

Continue for 30 seconds.

Scale down: Perform push-up on knees.

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