How to Progress in Calisthenics as a Beginner

You need to understand some tips on how to progress in calisthenics. Maybe the term gymnastics is familiar to you, but maybe you’ve done it once in your life.

The movements in this exercise are often used as a warm-up before doing other sports. It is defined as a set of motor movements to build body muscles using only your own body weight.

The movements include pulling, lunging, pushing, and lifting movements without using any tools. Your muscles mass will increase if you exercise more often.

In addition to the terms above, which you must have heard often, there are other terms as a form of walking exercise because it is enough to “carry yourself,” You can choose your own moves and practice them whenever you want.

You can equate the benefits of calisthenics with endurance training, strength training, and weight training. Besides building muscles, losing weight, and maintaining physical fitness, calisthenics also helps maintain bone strength and density.

It also includes cardio exercises that can help maintain the health and fitness of the heart, lungs, and blood vessels. The most basic movements are push-ups, pull-ups, lunges, squats, and crunches. However, there are many things you should pay attention to.


The Benefits of Calisthenics for Your Body

As previously stated, it is a sport that only uses bodyweight without special tools or equipment. In fact, you’ve often done calisthenics without realizing it.

Push-ups and pull-ups are just some of the simple calisthenics movements that you can do anywhere and anytime. At first glance, it looks trivial and is not as intensive as other sports that require special equipment.

Though this sport is very suitable for building muscles in the body, you will get the benefits of calisthenics that are no less than other sports. Here is the list of those benefits:

  1. Help to lose weight

There is no need to spend extra money to hire a personal trainer at the gym or buy a variety of expensive exercises equipment because you can lose weight with calisthenics. It is a practical exercise that can burn calories and increase heart rate.

  1. Train muscle strength

It is an alternative exercise that you can choose to train muscle strength and endurance because you lift your own weight using your body’s muscles. In addition, calisthenics can also increase flexibility and muscle building.

  1. Increase joint and bone strength

When you learn how to progress in calisthenics, muscles are trained, and the strength of joints and bones is also improved. Strong joints and bones can reduce the chance of injury during activities.

  1. Great for muscle coordination and balance

For beginners who want to try lifting weights, you can try calisthenics first. It is a great way to train coordination and muscle balance for people trying to lift weights first.

  1. Practical and can be done anytime.

Practical and can be done anywhere and anytime, calisthenics is a very suitable sport for busy people. You can do this exercise for a short duration after waking up or while watching television.

The Right Movement to Train Muscles

how to progress in calisthenics

Don’t worry. It is a varied and easy sport to manage. You can train your upper or lower body muscles with certain calisthenics movements.

For example, if you want to work your upper body muscles, you can do push-ups or pull-ups that tighten the muscles in your shoulders, arms, chest, and stomach.

Meanwhile, you can try squats or lunges that use the thigh and lower leg muscles to train the lower body muscles. The frequency of calisthenic exercises depends on the purpose of the exercises.

If you want to lose weight, you can try doing calisthenic four times a week, two sessions for the upper muscles, and the rest focusing on the lower muscles.

When you’re not doing calisthenics, you can do cardio to accelerate weight loss, such as jogging, running, swimming, and so on.

However, to increase muscle size and strength, you must combine it with weight lifting. Perform calisthenic after lifting weights three sessions per week. Use at least four to five calisthenics and complete them in 15 minutes.

How to Increase Difficulty in Calisthenics

how to progress in calisthenics

It is a practical exercise that you can try to train the body’s muscles or lose weight. While not as intense as lifting weights, you can increase the difficulty by doing slower calisthenics.

For example, you can slowly lift your body or hold the position while counting to eight seconds when doing push-ups. You can also perform it with one limb to increase the difficulty.

For example, you can use one leg for squats, spread the other leg, or do push-ups with one hand. The main key to calisthenic is to perform the movements in the correct position.

For beginners, you should do the basic movements first before trying more difficult movements. However, if you have a history of injury, surgery, or other disorders in the joints, bones, and muscles, don’t forget to consult a doctor.

How to Progress in Calisthenics

how to progress in calisthenics

The basic movements of calisthenic can train the muscle strength of the upper body, core, lower body, or overall. If you want to get in good shape and make progression, you need to do this exercise several times a week.

The first thing you should do is warm-up to prepare your body and avoid the risk of injury during exercise. Perform the following warm-up movement for 2-3 repetitions.

  1. Walk on the spot: 1 minute.
  2. Jumping jacks: 20 reps
  3. Half squats: 10 reps
  4. Push-ups: 10 reps. Push-ups are one of those movements that almost everyone has ever done.

This movement makes your body work fully, especially the upper body muscles, such as the chest, shoulders, and triceps.

Next is to do the core movement as much as 2-3 repetitions. Give yourself a break of 5-15 seconds for each movement. Here’s a sequence of moves that you can practice, as seen in the chart below:

  1. Pull-ups: 1 minute. Pull up is a movement of hanging and lifting the body’s weight with the strength of your arms on an iron bar or pull bar.
  2. Squats: 25 reps. The squat is one of the exercises that help train the strength of the core and lower body muscles. It would be best if you did this half-squat movement correctly to avoid the risk of lower back pain.
  3. Crunch: 20 reps
  4. Push-ups: 20 reps
  5. Lunges: 15 repetitions (on each leg) is a movement that focuses on strengthening lower body muscles, such as the quadriceps, hamstrings, buttocks (glutes), and calves.
  6. Plank: 1 minute (increase to 2 minutes if able)
  7. Cardio: 10-minute run or 10 x 30-second sprint

How Long Until Calisthenics Progress Begins to be Visible

how to progress in calisthenics

The muscle-building process begins when you train a muscle to do a new exercise. In the first few weeks of starting a workout or switching to a new type of exercise, your muscles will need to adapt.

Therefore, do not be surprised when you do a new exercise for the first time, such as push-ups. After training, you will feel your arms shaking. However, don’t worry because you will get used to it repeatedly when you do the same exercise repeatedly.

Most beginners will feel muscle building and muscle strength gain within 8 weeks of starting a new exercise or sport. This increase in muscle mass will be seen more quickly in muscles with less fat mass, such as the arm area.

With increasing exercises time—weeks, months, or years—of course, with proper exercise and diet, your muscle mass will increase and will give you an additional 0.5-1 kg/month of weight. Slightly different from athletes or bodybuilders who can gain weight due to muscle mass up to 2-3 kg.

Exercise to Speed Up the Progress

Therefore, it is not surprising that even though athletes or bodybuilders appear to have a proportional body, their weight is actually larger than they appear. If you are impatient, you can do this progressive exercise to speed up the muscle-building process.

  1. Exercise each muscle at least 2 times a week.
  2. Consume enough protein. The protein you eat will become the protein needed for muscle building and is also important for the muscle recovery process to help with your progression.
  3. Vary the portion of the exercise. Every 4-6 weeks, you need to do a variety of exercises. There is no need to change the type of exercise.

But change the number of variations of exercise repetitions, exercise duration, rest time, and so on. However, the tips above, it’s best to avoid exercising more than 4 times per week to give your muscles time to recover.

Building muscle is not easy. To know how to progress in calisthenics and building muscle itself requires a process that is not instant. The process of muscle building can also vary depending on the conditions or training of each person.

The most important thing here is to be consistent with monitoring regular exercise and paying attention to the nutritional intake needed. You will know how to progress in calisthenics if you consult with trained trainers and nutritionists.


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