The term ‘calisthenics’ has often been associated with people in tracksuits doing standard exercises in a gym class, but there is a lot more to it. This form of training is now becoming very popular and trendy, being incorporated into almost all the most popular workout styles and classes nowadays.

So…What is calisthenics exactly?

Calisthenics training derives from ancient Greece, where itwas used by warriors to get into shape. Two Greek words meaning beauty and strength were combined to describe this ‘calisthenics’ training style.

The base of calisthenics training is training that is done with your own bodyweight to improve athletic ability, flexibility and more. It is a simple form of exercise thatbrings it back exercise to its most natural form. You can do anywhere, anytime.. no equipment required. If you’d like to know more, this page explains what is calisthenics and how it is performed. 

How calisthenics works

Calisthenics training incorporates progressive resistance and basic functional movement training, with theresistance provided by your own body. 

You can do a lot with your own bodyweight, and by challenging your body and working it in different ways than you do on a day-to-day basis, you can get an effective calisthenics training session in. 

Types of exercises

Calisthenics training includes the following exercises:

  • Squats
  • Push-ups
  • Lunges• Crunches
  • Hanging from the monkey bars at the park
  • Handstands
  • and more.

Benefits of calisthenics

Since calisthenics training uses just your own bodyweight, there are a great number of benefits of this style training.

While you can certainly build muscle, improve flexibility and more, you also avoid injury and protect your body from over strenuous exercises with weights or improper form. 

Since you are only working against the resistance of your own body, you also develop the strength and size proportionate to your own body and muscular system. 

Aside from the physical benefits that one receives for calisthenics training, you also improve your mind-body connection through this style of training. This is because you are required to stay in tune with both your brain and body throughout these movements, working through coordination, power, quickness and agility. You have to have a lot of focus, concentrated breath work, and mind power to hone in on the benefits of these exercises. 

This can be both your primary training style or incorporated into your standard routine. Once you reach a certain level, if your goal is muscle gain you may find yourself not making progress in terms of muscle because calisthenics can only take you so far. However, this in addition to weight training can be combined for the ultimate workout plan. 

Many find calisthenics training to be the most powerful, as it requires you to tune in with your body and both work ‘with’ and ‘against’ your body. As such, it has developed a special kind of inclusive community where you will find groups challenging themselves in the park or doing creative moves in the gym.  

One can practice calisthenics training in a number of spots. You can head to the gym, head to the park on your own, or even incorporate this training style into your home workout.

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