Any exercise that does not involve the use of added weight, and solely body weight, is considered to be a “calisthenic” exercise. In a world today filled with crossfit, bodybuilding, and Olympic lifting, it may not seem like calisthenics may be receiving the limelight, and this is true. Many of the popular workout routines of today are not focused solely around using bodyweight. Does this mean they are bad? No! They are just targeting a different form of exercise and a different exercise response. Does this mean they are the best? Not exactly. Again, it depends on what the individual is looking to achieve through a workout. If you are looking to try to bench press 2 times your bodyweight, then hitting the weight room is a great idea. If you are looking for a great workout that’s quick and easy to do, then maybe calisthenics is the right choice for you! Calisthenics can be beneficial in a variety of ways, extending beyond the benefit of being able to perform them anywhere. It's designed to improve strength, flexibility, agility, balance, coordination, and aerobic conditioning - just about every skill you need to be a fit human being.
Calisthenics are known as one of the oldest forms of training. They attract many people due to simply the ease of working out anywhere with no equipment needed. Below are a few additional reasons why calisthenics may be the newest addition to your fitness training. Performing a calisthenic workout in the form of a circuit is a great way to build muscular endurance. Implementing a routine that works the entire body can help to build a muscular endurance for all of your muscle groups, including your cardiovascular system.
Many of the movements incorporated into a calisthenic workout requires some degree of flexibility. Tightness that you may not even know of, will become evident through the addition of calisthenics to your training. Through increasing strength, your body will become adapted to increasing its flexibility to perform the movements correctly. Inhibited muscles due to poor flexibility can develop incorrect muscle patterns! That being said, standard stretching should not be overlooked. It should be encouraged to perform dynamic stretching prior to calisthenic workouts.
This may seem like common sense that calisthenics would build strength, but it doesn’t just apply to muscular strength! Bodyweight exercises can also help to improve bone and joint strength as well. Adding calisthenics also helps to build your muscular strength without the wear and tear that weightlifting can have on your body.
The gym is always a great place to increase your fitness, but don’t let it confine you. Fitness and strength can be achieved anywhere, and that statement has never been made more true than through the use of calisthenics. Not just strength building, calisthenics can also help increase your cardiovascular fitness as well. Finding a calisthenic routine that works for you can help develop increased strength, flexibility, and stamina. Note: If you are under the care of a Physician, please check with them before starting any exercise regiment.