What Is A Calisthenics Workout? Bodyweight Bootcamp

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What Is A Calisthenics Workout? Bodyweight Bootcamp

After you have been working out for a number of years, you have to find new ways of testing your body. Anyone who works out regularly knows you have to mix it up every now and again or quite frequently even. Keeping that boredom beast at bay is a challenge, as the body gets used to the same exercises if done too often and the plateau of doom approaches you like a grey cloud waiting to dampen your spirits.

From weight training to cardio, kettlebells to battle ropes… the list is quite lengthy and people are always coming up with new ways to train. As most of us do, we stumble through workouts in between humorous flexing in the mirror subtly or not so subtly, as some members of the gym show, and that’s fine. The thing is that I always ended up going round in circles, doing the same old exercises. Then I came across calisthenics.

what is a calisthenics workout you might ask? Guess what? It’s your lucky day…

What Is Calisthenics?

The best way to describe calisthenics would be to say it’s weight training that involves only using your body weight as resistance. It may shock people to know that you can increase strength, fitness and flexibility through movements such as pulling, pushing, bending, jumping or even swinging.

The term calisthenics comes from the Greek words “Kalos” meaning beauty and “Stenos” which translates as strength (just in case the question comes up in your next Zoom quiz).

Calisthenics can provide the benefits of muscular and aerobic conditioning similar to Cross Fit, While also improving psycho motor skills such as balance, agility, and coordination.

Any exercise that you do with weights can pretty much be done using your own body weight, providing your body weight isn’t too heavy for you to work with. If it is, you can use resistance bands to help you to start and work your way up to only using your ever improving torso.

Lots of the exercises are similar to gymnastics, but calisthenics is mostly done outside in the street or parks.

The other thing that’s great about calisthenics is that you don’t need a massive space to train, you can pretty much get by with only a chin up bar, parallette bars, yoga mat and a set of resistance bands and you don’t need that gym membership either.

What Is A Calisthenics Workout

Why I Made The Shift? – Proper Strength, Functional, Flexibility

The reason I decided to work more with calisthenics than weights was because I found when I used weights exclusively I would gain little size and strength, but I lost some of my flexibility and I felt a little rigid. Plus for me, lifting heavy weights really put a lot of pressure on my joints and I didn’t want this to continue as i’m not getting any younger so needed to find other ways of training.

With calisthenics I found it to be very beneficial to me, in regard to functional fitness. It’s great being able to bench press whatever, but if I couldn’t hold my own body weight it was no good. Some guys at the gym can lift heavy and are large guys, but they can’t even do a pull up and to me personally it’s not what i’m after and is of no use to me. I want to be able to hold my own weight without fear of my body failing, i’ve always been active and love climbing trees, rock climbing, bouldering and having this type of fitness.

When you look at what some top guys can do with calisthenics – Front Lever, Human Flag, Full Planche – it made me realize the potential to this way of training and that it was the type of strength I wanted to work towards (and still am). The thing I like is how you train and build up to the mentioned exercises, as they take real strength to be able to pull them off, there’s a lot more to simply lifting a weight, you have to use your entire body as one.

Don’t get me wrong, the learning curve can be extremely steep, but you will find along the way how your strength for grip, pushing and pulling objects seems to get a little easier, while also using and feeling muscles you didn’t know you had.

What Is A Calisthenics Workout

How Does It Compare? – Depends on What You Want

It’s not even a case of saying this type of training is better than any other, it just depends on what you want out of your workouts and what your goals are? If you want to be a guy who is big with mass, maybe this isn’t for you. If you want to be more athletic and ripped, then maybe this could be for you? As calisthenics has been proven to increase posture and reduce body fat…FACT!

The easiest thing to do as ever, is to start off sensible and with caution. As some exercises could do serious harm if you fall, twist or buckle while performing them.

Some basic calisthenics exercises are as follows:

  • Press ups
  • Bench dips
  • Boat hold
  • Wall sit
  • Handstand against wall
  • Pull ups

Understandably, many of these exercises will be challenging to the majority but if you preserver, you will soon find that you will be able to increase the number of reps you can do and you may even see a change in your physique. With the help of resistance bands to counter balance the weight off your torso to begin with, anyone can try this type of workout.

Basic Beginners Workout

Below is a basic workout to follow if you wanted to give calisthenics a try (with accompanying video clip). I always work through the exercises in a circuit, by doing one set of the exercise and then move on to the next. Then repeat for another two rounds afterwards (if your body permits). Remember, if you can’t do 10 pull ups in a row just do what you can and then move on. Take a 30-second break in between exercises and 60 seconds when you finish the round, before you start the next.

    1. 10 Pull Ups
    2. 20 Jump Squats
    3. 20 Push Ups
    4. 20 Jump Lunges
    5. 20 Bench Dips
    6. 30 Leg Flutters
What is a calisthenics workout
Click on image above for calisthenics workout

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt that Calisthenics is a great way to workout, it costs next to nothing to start training this way. However, be warned…it can and is a steep learning curve and some may get frustrated with results to begin with, but like anything if you put the work in, you will find it very rewarding/satisfying.

If you enjoyed the workout, have any comments or questions please comment below.

If you do train this way or know someone that does let me know your thoughts, id love to hear about it.

Please don’t forget to check out other posts and YouTube Channel (don’t forget to subscribe) for the latest health and fitness news, CBD news, along with product reviewsmeditationsrecipesworkouts and if you require any CBD for you post workout therapy needs, please take a look at our store to get hold of yours now.




12 thoughts on “What Is A Calisthenics Workout? Bodyweight Bootcamp

  1. I have been meaning to get a gym membership, once everything opens back up. Thankfully now I understand that I do not need to pay extra money monthly for something I can do with my own body weight. Thank you for all of the great information.

    1. Hi,

      Its surprising how lots of people flock to gyms and don’t get me wrong, I enjoy them too. You can get by and keep very fit and healthy by being a little imaginative and working with your own body weight. These exercises are basic but tick all the boxes. Its worth getting a pull up bar if you dont have one as yet. Hope this helps.

  2. Thanks for highlighting calisthenics. These simple exercises seem to have fallen out of favor but I agree with you, calisthenics should be a part of any routine. As a senior with mobility issues, I can tell you that some of these simple but effective exercises have been of immense benefit for me.

    1. Hi Gregg,

      I agree with you that simple exercises do get overlooked, when lots of us should get back to basics.

      After doing this workout I can definitely tell I have had a good session and all that is required really is a pull up bar. Im so happy the post was helpful to you.

      Take care.

  3. I am so a beginner with this. I have weak arms and some times i find pull ups are hard and i am not a heavy person. So i tend to do pull ups with my knees down. I feel like this is perfect for me because i need strength and maybe i want to be able to pull my own weight. Thanks so much for this great info. Keep up the awesome work.

    1. Hi Louise,

      Doing push up with your knees down is a great way to build your strength and increase the reps till you can do them on your toes. I also use resistance bands to build strength and they store nicely away in a little bag.

      Glad you like the post and if you need any other tips, please pop back.

  4. This program looks to be a very good idea. I actually do many exercises you have shown in my home. I actually don’t like to lift weights in a gym as I get bored. I like the fact you have videos to show all the correct way to do the exercises. It is very helpful to bring out these techniques for a successful workout.

    1. Hi Jo,

      Glad you like like the post. I will be doing more workout videos, so eep checking in to see the latest exercises, tips and reviews.

      Take care

  5. HI Lee

    This is really helpful. I had got to that place where nothing was changing in my workout. I have increased my weights and seen a difference, but will give some of these moves a go.

    Upper body strength is my weakness (not uncommon in ladies of a certain age!). Can’t see me getting a bar in the house but there are lots of trees just at the back of my house so will see if I can find a suitable branch!

    I can see how this would really make a difference. Will let you know how I get on.



    1. Hi Jean,

      Hope you are well?

      With regards to back exercises, you can use any bits laying around. For example on your back you can do a bent over row with a bag for life with tins of beans and simply bend over a chair and be parallel to the floor and pull the bag up to your chest, just as you would a dumbbell. Then increase the tins of beans to suit.

      Hope this helps?

      Speak soon.

  6. I did not know what the calisthenics was before, so it’s great learning about how to use your own body wight for weight training. I liked the imagery on your post which is a fantastic way to adapt some of it to your own training. Overall, a really good website with amazing tips and technique especially the education on CBD oils.

    Thank you

    1. Hi Habib,

      Its interesting to know that you dont need to spend money at the gym to get a good workout in and keep fit. Its not easy working with your own body weight, but you dont need to go hard straight away. You can build up to improve your strength over time, just like anything else really.
      Really glad you are enjoying the site. Drop by again soon.

      Kindest regards.

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