Want To Perform Strength Moves That Defy Gravity? We’ve Got A Workout To Fix Your Everyday Routine. Without Any Further Ado, Hop In!
With gyms and tech forever evolving it’s easy to underestimate just how varied and powerful a bodyweight workout can be. You do not need rows of cardio machines, racks of weights and six different pair of shoes to gain muscle, instead burn fat and improve your mobility through Calisthenics.
The ripped guy at your gym who’s able to lift his whole upper-body above a pull-up bar – that’s a muscle-up and he’s doing calisthenics. The person you saw on social media who’s turned into a human flag by holding body parallel to the ground, yep, that’s calisthenics.
It’s a form of fitness which utilises gravity and bodyweight leverage to challenge your fitness level. Thus, we’ve put together a complete workout regime to the discipline, so, whether you’re a beginner, an intermediate or an advanced practitioner, we’ve got something to teach you about the art of mastering your own bodyweight.
1. CLOSE-GRIP INVERTED ROW (5-20 REPS)
Set up a bar in the squat rack and grab it with an underhand grip, while your hands shoulder-width apart. Pull your body up until your chest almost touches the bar, keeping your body straight from neck to ankles throughout. Pause, then lower yourself back down to the start position. Repeat the same.
2. WIDE-GRIP PULL-UPS
Grab the bar with your palms facing away from you, and your arms fully extended. Your hands should be as wide as you can comfortably get them. Once done, squeeze your shoulder blades together, exhale and drive your elbows towards your pelvis to bring your chin above the bar. Then, lower under control back to the start position.
Grab the bars of a dip station with your palms facing inward and your arms straight. Slowly lower until your elbows are at right angles, ensuring they stay tucked against your body and don’t flare out. Drive yourself back up to the top and repeat. This primarily works on the triceps, chest, and front of the shoulders.
4. HANDSTAND PRESS-UPS
Place your hands on the floor in front of a wall. Kick yourself up against the wall and straighten your arms. Keep legs and body as straight as you can. With the back of your head parallel to the wall, bend your arms. Exhale at the bottom and push up. It’s an advanced exercise that targets the shoulders, triceps, and core.
5. PISTOL SQUATS
Stand with your feet in a narrow stance and lift one leg off the floor. Bend your standing knee to squat down as low as you can while keeping your back straight. Push back up to the start position through your heel, then switch legs and repeat. That’s one rep. The pistol squat is a single-leg squat variation that tests your balance, strength, and flexibility. Begin it with assisted pistol squats or use resistance bands to help you build up to the unassisted version.
6. ARMS EXTENDED PLANK (30 TO 45 SECONDS)
Get in a press-up position but with your arms as far in front of your head as you can reach. Hold yourself there with your arms fully extended. Make sure your back is straight and hold for the allotted time.
7. HANGING LEG RAISES (10 TO 15 REPS)
Grab a pull-up bar and lower yourself into a dead hang. Let your legs straighten and pull your pelvis slightly backwards. Tense your core and raise your legs until your thighs are perpendicular to your torso. Hold it then lower slowly back to the starting position. Mainly a core exercise, but the action of hanging from the bar also engages the lats as well as shoulder strength and stability.
8. STRADDLE PLANCHE
The straddle planche is an advanced static hold that requires tremendous upper body and core strength. Utilise parallettes to make it easier on your wrists and enhance your stability. Start with planche progressions such as the frog stand and tucked planche before attempting the straddle planche. Don’t forget to use wrist wraps for added support during your practice.