Calisthenics is a form of bodyweight exercise that uses your own body weight for resistance training. It is an excellent way to get in shape and improve your fitness level. Calisthenics exercises can be done anywhere, and they are an excellent way to improve strength, flexibility, and balance.
While there are many different types of calisthenics exercises, they all have one thing in common: they use your body weight to provide resistance. This makes them ideal for people who want to get in shape but don’t have access to a gym or other equipment.
History of Calisthenics
Some of the first recorded bodyweight exercises date back to ancient Greece. The word “calisthenics” comes from two Greek words, “kalos” (beautiful) and “sthenos” (strength). These words perfectly describe the goals of calisthenics: to create a strong body using elegant movements.
In the early 19th century, calisthenics became popular as a way to keep soldiers fit. In the United States, calisthenics gained popularity in the early 20th century to stay in shape without needing a gym membership. Many schools and organizations, such as the YMCA, began offering calisthenics classes, which helped to spread the popularity of this type of exercise.
Benefits of Calisthenics
Calisthenics is an excellent option if you are looking for an excellent way to get in shape. This exercise has various benefits for both your mind and body, making it an excellent choice for people of all fitness levels. Some of the benefits of calisthenics include the following:
1. Builds Muscle Mass
Whenever you put your muscles under resistance, they will grow. This is why weightlifting and weight training effectively build muscle mass. However, calisthenics can be just as effective for building mass if you use the proper form and challenge your muscles. You will be able to see results more quickly if you focus on compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups at the same time.
2. Helps with Weight Loss
Don’t give up on your dreams of becoming healthier, losing weight, and looking better. Calisthenics can be especially helpful for weight loss as it helps to build muscle mass, which in turn helps to burn more calories. Many calisthenics workouts, such as push-ups and pull-ups, also help tone your muscles if you’re already fit, giving you a more defined appearance. Burning calories and toning your muscles are critical for weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight.
3. Improves Strength and Endurance
Calisthenics exercises help improve your strength and endurance by using your body weight as resistance. This exercise is perfect for people who want to build strength without using weights or other equipment. Compared to weightlifting, which can be harsh on your joints, calisthenics is a low-impact way to build strength. As your muscles get stronger, you can do more repetitions and sets of calisthenics exercises.
4. Boosts Athletic Performance
Professional sportspeople also benefit from calisthenics as it can help improve their performance. Athletes need training to strengthen and improve their endurance to perform at their best when it matters most. With calisthenics, they can get this type of training without using weights or other equipment. They can also do the exercises anywhere, which is convenient for athletes always on the go.
5. Improves Cardiovascular Health
Calisthenics is an excellent way to improve your cardiovascular health. Your heart and lungs will get a workout as you do calisthenics exercises that raise your heart rate. Like various cardio exercises such as swimming, calisthenics is an excellent way to improve cardiovascular health. Some of the best water sports go well with calisthenics exercises, such as surfing and kayaking.
6. Increases Flexibility and Joint Mobility
These exercises require a full range of motion, which helps to keep your joints healthy and mobile. As we age, it’s essential to do exercises that help maintain our flexibility and joint mobility. You can also reduce your risk of injuries by doing calisthenics exercises, as they help to increase the range of motion in your joints. Gymnastic sports like trampolining and aerobics are perfect examples of how calisthenics can improve flexibility.
7. Reduces Stress Levels
One of the best things about calisthenics is that it can help reduce stress levels. Exercise releases endorphins, which have mood-boosting effects. This can help to improve your mood and reduce stress levels. Calisthenics can be an excellent way to release some tension and improve your mood when you’re feeling stressed. Just a few minutes of calisthenics can help you feel more relaxed and happier.
8. Helps to Maintain Good Mental Health
Because calisthenics can help reduce stress levels and improve your mood, it’s also good for maintaining good mental health. Exercise is beneficial for people suffering from depression and anxiety. Calisthenics, in particular, can help to improve your mood and reduce stress levels, which can help to improve your mental health.
Top Calisthenics Exercises to Start With
Calisthenics can be an excellent way to improve your overall health and fitness. If you want to start calisthenics, here are some of the best beginner calisthenics workout exercises to start with.
Push-ups work your chest, shoulders, arms, and core muscles. You can do push-ups anywhere, making them a convenient exercise to add to your workout routine. Lie on your stomach with your palms flat on the ground next to your shoulders. Push up so your arms and your body are straight from your head to your ankles. Lower yourself back down to the starting position and repeat.
There are also push-up variations depending on your fitness level. More advanced movements, like the handstand push-ups, work your shoulders and arms more. Another variation is the triceps push-up, which works the muscles on the back of your upper arms.
While you may need some calisthenics equipment, they’re still an excellent calisthenics exercise. Pull-ups work your back, shoulders, and arms. They’re excellent bodyweight training for improving upper-body strength and can be done anywhere with a pull-up bar. But if you don’t have access to a pull-up bar, there are other exercises you can do that work the same muscles.
Some of the best calisthenics exercises are also some of the simplest. Lunges are an excellent way to work your legs and glutes. They’re also excellent exercises for improving balance and coordination. Extend one leg in front of you and lunge forward, keeping your upper body straight. This will work your leg muscles and help to improve your balance.
One of the more difficult calisthenics exercises, squats are an excellent way to work your legs and glutes. They’re also excellent exercises for improving lower-body strength. Many active sports require lower-body strength, such as winter Olympic sports and football. So if you’re looking to improve your lower-body strength, squats are an excellent exercise to add to your routine.
Like squats, crunches are an excellent way to work your core muscles. They’re also excellent calisthenics exercises for improving abdominal strength. Crunches work your rectus abdominis, the muscle that gives you a “six-pack.” To do a crunch, lie on your back with your knees bent and your hands behind your head. Curl your upper body up so that your shoulders and head are off the ground. Lower yourself back down to the starting position and repeat.
Burpees are a full-body exercise that works your legs, arms, chest, and core muscles. They’re also an excellent cardio workout for your entire body. Aside from being one of the more advanced calisthenics exercises, burpees are also an excellent way to get your heart rate up and improve your cardiovascular health. You just need a little space to do them. Many people use burpees to warm up for other exercises or as part of a circuit training routine.
Like crunches, sit-ups are an excellent way to work your rectus abdominis. But sit-ups are slightly different from crunches as they work your entire core, including your hip flexors and obliques. You can do them with or without weights. Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground to do a sit-up. Place your hands behind your head and curl your upper body up so that your shoulders and head are off the ground. Return to the starting position and repeat.
Dips are an excellent calisthenics exercise to work your triceps, shoulders, and chest muscles. Many people use dip bars, but you can also do them on a chair or bench. Place your hands on a chair or bench with your palms facing down to do a dip. Extend your legs out in front of you and lower your body down so that your elbows are at a 90-degree angle. Push back up to the starting position and repeat.
One of the best isometric exercises, planks help to work your core muscles. They can also improve balance and coordination. To do a plank, get into a push-up position with your palms flat on the ground and your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows and lower yourself so your forearms are on the ground. Hold this position for 30 seconds to one minute.
10. Jump roping
Jump roping is a simple but effective cardio workout that also works your legs and arms. This calisthenics exercise is an excellent way to improve your cardiovascular health and stamina. And if you don’t have a jump rope, you can always do the imaginary jump rope exercise. Just pretend you have a rope and jump as if you’re actually jump roping. This calisthenics exercise is an excellent way to get your heart rate up and break a sweat.
Calisthenics training is an excellent way to improve your overall fitness. They’re perfect for people who don’t have access to gym equipment or who want to work out in the comfort of their own homes. Calisthenics exercises are also an excellent way to improve your strength, stamina, and cardiovascular health. And you can do this bodyweight workout program anywhere, at any time.
So if you’re looking for a fun and effective workout, consider adding some calisthenics exercises to your routine.