Calisthenics are a good way to build muscle and improve your body’s athletic abilities. Many athletes do these kinds of exercises regularly so that their bodies can perform at optimal athletic levels.
You may have even seen some videos online that have gone viral showing jacked up people doing crazy stunts on various structures with bars. These feats can all be attributed to doing calisthenics.
And guess what? You do not even have to be a super athlete to achieve these feats yourself. Just follow this simple guide and you will be well on your way to becoming a calisthenics expert.
Some Things To Know About Calisthenics Before Starting
You are probably worried about how much money you will need to spend to get started. Let me relieve those concerns by stating you do not necessarily need to spend any money to do these exercises and get good at them.
That said, if you do have some spare money to spend on exercise gear and equipment (such as pull up bars), or even a gym membership – it would definitely be a worthwhile investment and greatly help you along the way.
To reduce the risk of injury, do not purchase cheap generic equipment if you are on a tight budget. There are much safer options like trying to find a cheap gym membership or even using the gym at a local community center.
Hell, it would even be safer for you to go the public park and use the monkey bars to do pull ups than to buy a cheap pull up bar from the internet.
Another thing to consider is that you should not do random calisthenics every day. Try to work a certain muscle group of part of the body and do exercises that build up that certain group or part. Pick a day for your arms, chest, etc. because that is the best way to build muscle than just doing random workouts.
Since you are just starting out with calisthenics, there are some five basic exercises that you should learn and get adjusted to before you get involved in a rigorous calisthenics training program. Let’s take a look at those exercises now.
Five Exercises You Must Know To Succeed
1. Push Ups
Push ups are a very simple exercise that most people know how to do. However, knowing how to do a push up is only half of the battle. If your body lacks the strength to pull off a proper push up, you might have to adjust a little.
I remember back in school that the gym teacher would have any kid that could not do a real push up get on their knees and do a push up like that. That option remains open for anyone reading this who can’t do a proper push up yet.
Some good posture tips for push ups include:
- Keep a good distance between your hands – roughly the width of your shoulders
- Do not let your back curve at all – keep it straight as a board
- Line up your wrists with your shoulders and elbows
2. Pull Ups
Pull ups are another simple exercise – at least, their simple in theory. In actuality, there a few different kinds of pull ups and they can be much more difficult to do than they look. Anyone who is new to doing pull ups should start off doing negative chin ups.
Once they have mastered that, they can move on to the Australian form of pull ups and then when they feel like they really have got the hang of things, they can finally graduate to doing a full chin up. This is everything that you should accomplish before doing a proper pull up. Trust me, it is better to master chin ups before you even try a pull up.
This is a fantastic exercise for those who are having trouble push ups. Dips can help to make your triceps strong enough to handle push ups. So you might be wondering: What are dips?
Basically, all you have to do is find a nice solid object that will not move or buckle under your weight. A workout bench is great for this. Put your back to the object and put both of your hands on the ends of the object adjacent to your hips.
Stretch out your legs and get your hips off of whatever object you are using to support yourself so that the only things holding your body up are your arms. The actual exercise starts now. This is where you curve your arms (like when you do a push up) to move your body up and down.
Just like a push up, if you can’t do this exercise with your legs straight out, you can scrunch them up to your knees and push yourself up and down in that stance as well.
Handstands are another simple looking exercise, although they can be dangerous if you do them wrong. Always make sure you do them near a wall so that if you start to fall, you can back yourself up into the wall to keep yourself from falling.
In fact, being near a wall is the best way to perform this exercise. This is because the best way to do a handstand is to first get into a push up stance. Then, place your feet on the wall and “walk” up the wall until your legs are straight in the air and push off. Then use your arms to support yourself while you are upside down.
5. Pistol Squats
Squats are a must-do for most workout programs, and calisthenics are no different. They are a fantastic exercise to determine how strong your core muscles are and improve your balance. Additionally, they help improve flexibility in your leg joints and let you jump higher.
That said, pistol squats are not a walk in the park – especially for beginners. Just like with pull ups, you will want to master certain basic squat exercises before graduating to pistol squats.
Calisthenics Review Summary
This is obviously a very simple guide and is really just an introduction to calisthenics for people who are just starting out. If you already know what you are doing have been doing calisthenics exercises for a while, this is probably not the guide for you.
I hope it was able to help all of you out there who have an interest in getting started with calisthenics but did not really know where or how to start.
I wish you all the best of the luck!