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Calisthenic Training, what it is and how to start
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20 February 2019

Calisthenic Training, what it is and how to start

Calisthenic Training, what it is and how to start

Long before there was any kind of equipment, simple or high-tech, warriors and athletes relied, single and only, on one thing to build muscle: their own bodies!


Before we can say more about calisthenic training, we must know its definition and origin.


So let's see: ca·lis·te·ni·a comes from the Greek kállos (meaning beauty) and sthénos (meaning strength). That is, this type of training comes down to a set of physical exercises that are done without weights or devices and use only the weight of their own body as resistance.

 

Advantages of calisthenics training:

- The biggest one is perhaps financially, since it does not require any gym or training space to perform a good calisthenic training. As I said our body weight and a good idealization is enough to perform a good workout.

- Possibility of doing this training anywhere - in the park, on the beach, in the room, on the street ... literally wherever we want.

- With some dedication and training, we achieved incredible strength increases. But do not deceive yourself, this, like any other method of training, by itself is not enough.

 

Disadvantages of calisthenic training:

- The evolution of the training is conditioned to the proportional increase of your strength. That is, the very evolution of the exercises can be conditioned by your abilities or strength limits.

- Sometimes, to increase the difficulty of the training, these can become more dangerous or liable to injury, so it is advisable not to be “too creative” at an early stage.

- To be more challenging, exercises are often more like gymnastics. But be careful, don’t go from “it´s all or nothing” without being at least sure that you are performing well and without exaggerating.


(See on YouTube, as a curiosity, the example of the famous athlete Frank Mendrano, a master at the art of controlling his own body.)



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 Suggested exercises

Here are some exercises you can do, from a more basic level to a more advanced one:

 

Level I

20 burpee's

40 squats

20 push up

20 montain climbers

20 total abs

Repeat all three times with one minute interval first circuit and two in the second, do everything as fast as you can without losing the quality on the exercise execution.

 

Level II

20 burpee's (10 with only one supporting leg, 10 with the other)

40 high skipping

20 push up spider

20 montain climbers with rotation

20 total abs with jump

Repeat all three times with one minute interval first circuit two in the second, do everything as fast as you can without losing quality on the run.

 

Level III

20 burpee's (10 with one leg, 10 with the other)

20 jumps from knee to chest

20 push up scorpion

20 ski abs

20 montain claibers with rotation

Repeat all three times with one minute interval first circuit two in the second, do everything as fast as you can without losing quality on the run.

 

Below are a few more exercises that can be included in the levels above, such as readjustment or as substitution, taking into account the individual:


- Push-ups (spartan push up, push up leaser, push up tricep)

- Elevations (pick up bicep, take back)

- Squats (with / without heels)

- Bench dips

- Board


Remember, you should whenever possible, have a professional in the area to assist in advising the ideal training and if possible in the execution of it. Notions of physiology, biomechanics and anatomy are fundamental to the achievement of a sport practice of excellence and safety.

 

"calistenia", in Dictionary Priberam da Língua Portuguesa [online], 2008-2013, https://www.priberam.pt/dlpo/calistenia [accessed on 03-13-2018].


 

By Sandro Silva, Personal Trainer