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Calisthenics, what is it and how to put it into practice

There are many ways to train your body to get fit. Depending on the exercise model you choose, you will need one type of equipment or another. But today we want to talk to you about a specific type of training, calisthenics. Have you ever heard of it? If the answer is no, this is your article! Find out what this training system consists of. Let’s get started!

What is calisthenics?

The word calisthenics comes from the Greek kallos (beauty) and sthenos (strength). It is a type of training through which only body weight is used. Therefore, generally in this method, no type of material is needed, we will work with the resistance of our own body weight.

Instead of doing physical exercises to work legs on one side, arms on the other, or abdomen and pectorals separately; Calisthenics uses movements that involve the whole body, such as full-body routines.

That is, calisthenics takes advantage of the entire body to strengthen the muscles as a whole, which is where the basic exercises aim. To these are added static exercises, which consist of maintaining the same position for some time, and depending on this, more strength or endurance will be needed. And on the other hand, there are dynamic exercises, which are performed in motion and also involve agility and reflexes. As we said, the key to this method is to do it using only the body’s own weight.

For a long time, this type of exercise was used as a preparation before high-intensity physical activity; but at present, this modality is already much more than that.

Calisthenics benefits

The main benefits of calisthenics for our muscles are:

  • Increase in muscle mass.
  • Increased muscle strength.
  • Fat burn.
  • Flexibility.
  • Gravity control.
  • Improved muscular posture.
  • And benefits, like the rest of physical activities, for our cardiovascular system, joints, etc.

Calisthenics for Beginners How to get started?

In all physical activity, there is a risk of injury that we must not ignore, especially when we are going to submit to certain efforts. Therefore, the practice of calisthenics for beginners should be governed by certain precautionary measures and always taking into account a progressive evolution over time.

Although this modality is suitable for both young and older profiles, at an initial stage, it is advisable to start with series of exercises that do not exceed 3 repetitions. After a month this number of repetitions can be increased depending on the control of the body and the progression in each of the exercises.

Recommendations for beginners

It is also very important that a series of recommendations are followed:

  • It is essential to do a good warm-up beforehand.
  • It is important to start the exercises at a slow speed.
  • We should never train if we suffer from muscle fatigue.
  • It is important to protect your hands with gloves.
  • You can change the routine a bit if you see that some exercises are very complicated.
  • You must manage the intensity of physical exercise based on your fitness.

Exercises to train calisthenics

Like any training system, calisthenics has its own exercise tables. Many of these movements are common to other disciplines such as cross-fit or functional training (If you want to know more about these disciplines, do not miss these 10 fashionable sports in 2020).

Here we present some of the most classic exercises within the calisthenics modality. And if you are looking for how to practice calisthenics at home, take good note, because for many of them you will not need any type of extra material.

Calisthenics Exercise

Squats A classic and one of the most complete exercises to do only with your body. Squats work the lower body, but also the abdomen if you also focus on keeping your back straight. To add an extra point of difficulty and prevent your body from getting used to the movements, try playing with different degrees of openings. You can also complete them with a jump when climbing. One leg squats. Also called pistol squats, it is a much more complex movement that requires much more force in the lower body and also more balance. One-leg squats require a well-developed technique.

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Shawna Anderson

Bsc in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from the Complutense University of Madrid. I love writing about nutrition and health and related topics. I have written for some famous newspapers and magazines for the last 6 years.

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