Can Calisthenics Build Muscle?

Can Calisthenics Build Muscle?

Have you ever wondered if calisthenics, with its bodyweight-focused approach, can truly help you build muscle?

Let's break it down and explore why calisthenics is the muscle-building secret you've been searching for, with insights from a seasoned calisthenics coach.

Understanding Calisthenics:

Calisthenics, a workout method emphasizing bodyweight exercises, introduces a unique dimension to muscle building.

This dynamic training, consisting of push-ups, pull-ups, squats, and dips, relies on your body weight as resistance, setting the stage for a comprehensive strength-building experience.

  •  Bodyweight Resistance and Functional Strength:

The power of calisthenics lies in utilizing your body as resistance. This holistic approach engages every muscle group, fostering not just hypertrophy but also functional strength – the kind that makes daily activities a breeze.

  •  Progressive Overload for Growth:

Calisthenics offers a progressive...

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20 Calisthenics Exercises To Get Better At Front Lever!

front lever skills Dec 05, 2023

20 Calisthenics Exercises To Get Better At Front Lever!

If you want to build the strongest abs and back you've ever had, the front lever is for you!

It requires a lot of work and practice to build up to the full front lever hold itself.

So here are 20 calisthenics exercises that will help you start and/or improve your front lever:

  •  Tuck front lever
  •  Advanced tuck/lay front lever 
  •  Banded front lever (band under the hips and band under your feet. Decrease  the size of the band to increase difficulty over time).
  •  Full Negative front levers (top -> down)
  •  Full Front lever raises (down -> up)
  •  Straddle Negative front levers (top -> down)
  •  Straddle Front lever raises (down -> up)
  •  Full to straddle high holds
  •  Full to straddle low holds
  •  Dragon Flags
  •  Deadhangs
  •  Toes to bar
  •  Hollow body holds
  •  Pull ups
  •  High pull ups
  •  L-sit
  •  Reverse L-sit
  •  Reverse L-sit rows
  • ...
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Stop Chasing Motivation (and what to do instead)

mindset Nov 22, 2023

Motivation is the most overrated thing in fitness.

Fake fitness gurus try to push that notion to fitness beginners, when it comes to training.

The problem is: IT DOES NOT WORK.

Motivation is short term. It’s a quick fix for dopamine release to feel good and positive about something for a short period to time.

If you are trying to lose fat for example, you might get motivated because you have a date, a wedding or a beach holiday coming up. But again, these reasons will fade away very quick. And you likely won’t have lasting results.

So instead of looking for perpetual motivation, I recommend you start looking for INSPIRATION instead.

These two words may seem similar but they are very different.

I see inspiration as the long fix for anything. Inspiration is LONG TERM. 

When we are kids, we are inspired by people! Kids want to be astronauts, musicians , or firefighters! These are long term goals that inspire them.

So next time you don’t feel motivated, look for...

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My Favorite Calisthenics Move

front lever skills Nov 17, 2023
 

My Favorite Calisthenics Move

I remember seeing "Hannibal For King" around 2008, on YouTube.

He went from doing a dip to levitating, between two benches.

That was a Front Lever.

The man was floating.

It was beast mode and smooth at the same time.

I had never seen anything like that.

And it became my all time favorite calisthenics move.

For several reasons.

Yes there are other very cool moves in calisthenics.

But this one is unique.

Because it is:

  • The simplest of all "hard" moves
  • Deceivingly easy looking
  • Extremely hard to hold
  • Very minimalistic
  • Joints and shoulders friendly
  • Gives you bulletproof abs
  • Carries on to other movements
  • A mindset challenge

Here are a few tips when you train your front lever:

  • Always start practicing the hardest version that you can hold.
  • Then add easier variations to your sets to extend your time under tension.
  • If you are advanced you can use the variation I use in the video.
  • If you are starting your front lever journey, use the simple tuck hold to...
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Don't Forget About This!

mobility Nov 14, 2023
 

Foot Mobility!

It's easy to ignore them.

Yet they are one, if not, the most important part of your body when it comes to basic human skills.

I am talking about your feet.

You'll notice that very few people actually spend time warming up this specific area of the body.

Here are additional movements to use a good calisthenics warm up!

Let's not forget about rotations. This is also something that everyone needs to be doing well in order to function. 

So in short, the feet and rotations are an essential part of general movement.

Taking care of them is at the top of the list when it comes to calisthenics training, as well as long term, holistic health.

So don't forget to do use these movements next time you warm up!

Get all my calisthenics workout programs and online calisthenics personal coaching here!

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Calisthenics Training FAQ’s

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What is Calisthenics Training?
Calisthenics, rooted in the ancient Greek...

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Best Push Ups For Chest and Triceps

 

Best Push Ups For Chest and Triceps

Are you looking to hit your chest and triceps with calisthenics?

Look no further!

These are by far the best push ups you can do to get a great chest and triceps pump.

If you haven't guessed yet, I am talking about the narrow grip push ups.

Here I am doing them on a narrow wall, which also increases core engagement and balance work.

These push ups require good shoulder mobility!

Focus on form and tempo when doing them, as it's easy to lose form and the benefits that go with it!

Go for 5-10 reps x 5-10 sets. 

I recommend to hold the last rep down for 5-10 seconds on each set, to maximize your overall time under tension.

Adapt the volume and intensity as needed.

Here is how to get started with push ups if you can't do the narrow grip ones yet!

If you need more guidance overall, get all my calisthenics programs and personal coaching here!

 

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Free Calisthenics Toolkit: ALL My 200+ Calisthenics Blog Posts

Here is your updated, Free Calisthenics Toolkit.

Wether you are a beginner or more advanced calisthenics athlete, you will find practical information to make progress and thrive with calisthenics.

The posts are sorted out by topic:

  • Full body workouts
  • Upper body
  • Lower body
  • Push ups
  • Pull ups
  • Core
  • Skills
  • Nutrition
  • Stretching and mobility
  • Cardio
  • Mindset
  • Workout tips

Here is the full list, including links to each post.

Let's go!

Full body
21 Calisthenics Exercises You Can Do Anywhere!
How To Warm Up For a Calisthenics Workout
6 Beginner Movements To Start Calisthenics
6 Most Important Movements in Calisthenics
Calisthenics Training With Online Clients In Real Life!
10 Calisthenics Movement Variations To Diversify Your Workouts
How To Train Calisthenics "On The Go": 3 Day Workout Program
The Most Important Technique In Calisthenics
3 Calisthenics Movements For A Full Body Workout
21 Calisthenics Workout Moves To Train Outdoors
The 6 Calisthenics...
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6 Months Calisthenics Muscle Up Progression

muscle up upper body Nov 03, 2023
 

Step by step 6 Months Calisthenics Muscle Up Progression!

  • Have you tried to do a muscle up before but can't really do it?
  • Are you working on getting your first proper muscle up?
  • Do you have the muscle up as a goal in the future?

If the answer is yes to some or all of the above, this video will show you the step by step actions to take in order to get what you want:

  • Start practicing with a lower bar
  • Jump on the bar and do negative repetitions if needed
  • Use a good false grip on every repetition
  • Train a lot of single bar dips and pull ups
  • Transition to a higher bar when comfortable on the lower bar
  • Use bands to practice
  • Improve form and volume overtime

Get all my calisthenics training programs and 1-1 online calisthenics coaching here!

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How Long Does It Take to See Results from Calisthenics?

workout tips Nov 02, 2023

How Long Does It Take to See Results from Calisthenics?

In a world of instant gratification, it's no wonder that many of us are eager to see results from our fitness endeavors as quickly as possible.

Whether you're just starting your calisthenics journey or you've been at it for a while, you might be wondering: how long does it take to see results from calisthenics?

The truth is, the answer is as dynamic as the discipline itself.

Calisthenics, like any form of exercise, is a journey that requires patience, dedication, and realistic expectations. 

Here's what you need to know about the timeline for seeing results in calisthenics:

1. The Early Gains (Weeks 1-4):

In the initial weeks of your calisthenics journey, you'll likely experience some quick wins. Your body will start adapting to the new movements, and you'll notice improvements in strength, endurance, and overall fitness. These early gains are encouraging and serve as motivation to keep going. However, don't be fooled into...

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Is that you?

mobility Oct 29, 2023

Calisthenics offers incredible fitness freedom and results.

So let me ask you, do you fall in one of the following categories?

Are you:

If you answered yes to one or more question, Online Calisthenics covers all of the above.

And more.

Get started with 1-1 online calisthenics coaching here!

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