Kalistenika – building a strong and beautiful body without going to the gym

Kalistenika – building a strong and beautiful body without going to the gym

Muscular, harmonious and strong body can be built, not only the iron in the gym. Fashion trend in physical culture – kalistenika has a lot of advantages over bodybuilding, both in the training process and in the final results of training. Kalistenika forms not only strong and voluminous muscles, she develops an unsurpassed control of her body. Consider what calistik is, as well as the basic exercises, principles and training programs that will help anyone to master this type of fitness.

Kalistenika can be practiced by people of any gender, age and physical fitness. Even those who can never be wrung out from the floor, after 3 months of regular and proper training, will see how much stronger, more harmonious and enduring his body has become.




What is kalistenika?

Kalistenika is a system of strength training, in which the role of the main projectile performs the weight of its own body. This name is derived from the ancient Greek words “beauty” and “strength”; now this type of fitness is also called workout, bodyivet, ghetto workout, street workout. To workout, there is no need to go to the gym, it is enough to have a horizontal bar at home, or to go to the sports ground with the simplest gymnastic equipment.

Like most of the new, calistenic is a well forgotten old. It appeared in the days of antiquity, then it was used for the physical training of soldiers and Olympic athletes. It was used in army training and in later centuries. Also, it has long been used in the preparation of tricks circus acrobats.


what is kalistenika


In the 19th century, calistenic was reborn in connection with the growing popularity of gymnastics and the emergence of such gymnastic equipment as bars, horse, rings, logs. Many athletic clubs were created, in which athletes developed the ancient art of calista. But over time, this training system lost its independent meaning, becoming part of gymnastics and acrobatics. And in amateur sports calisthenics were replaced by training with heavy weights.

See also: Female Bodybuilding

The renaissance of interest in Calistie has already happened in our days, and the Internet has contributed a lot to this. Simple guys from the Negro ghettos began to post videos to the network in which they showed on the street crossbars such wonders of owning their muscular bodies that were not dreamed of by regular gymnasts. A simple and affordable system of training, leading to such amazing results, has interested many. Calisteniki fans are constantly replenished by newcomers to fitness as well as athletes who come from other disciplines.

The advantages of calisthenics compared to bodybuilding are:

  • Availability and gratuity. Training calisthenics does not require complex equipment and a visit to the gym.
  • Almost complete lack of injury. Strengthening the joints and ligaments is parallel to the increase in the complexity of the exercises, it is simply impossible to overload them.
  • The development of not only strength, but also coordination, plastics. In bodybuilding, only the strength and beauty of the body are achieved, and in addition to this, calistenica allows one to master spectacular exercises that can be performed in almost any conditions, attracting admiring glances.

Basic exercises

Exercises calisthenics involve all muscle groups and, with regular exercise, strengthen and develop the whole body. If, when working with iron, progress in training is achieved by increasing the weight of the weights, then in workout this happens due to the complication of exercises.

For example, push-ups are first allowed to perform from their knees or by placing their hands on the platform. Then you can go to the classic push-ups, and gradually complicate this exercise, wringing on the fingers, with an elevated position of the legs, on one arm, in a handstand, etc. When the possibilities of increasing the complexity of the exercises are exhausted, and this can only happen for high-level athletes, the complication is produced through the use of weights.

Kalistenika is based on three types of movements – a plunge, a press and a hold (static). Consider the main types of exercises and techniques for their implementation.




Push ups

In accordance with the position of the body, push-ups are divided into 2 types: horizontal and vertical.

Horizontal push-ups are performed while lying flat.

The body is straightened in a straight line, palms at shoulder level with the fingers forward. Bending hands, we fall almost to the touch of the breast floor, elbows while not moving away from the body. Extend your arms, returning to the starting position, making sure that the body remains straight, and the shoulder blades in the upper position are fully divorced.

Vertical push-ups are performed on the uneven bars.

Focus on the bars on the outstretched arms, with the shoulders lowered, the neck does not sag, the body is tense and stretched in a straight line with the legs. Slowly bend your arms to a right angle, and then fully straighten, making sure that the neck does not sag.

In the absence of bars, you can perform push-ups with an emphasis on the back of a bench or sofa. Sit back to the bench, leaning your palms on its edge. Bend and unbend your arms, lowering and lifting the body only through the efforts of the hands. Make sure that the neck does not sag, and elbows bend no more than 90 degrees. To complicate the exercise, you can stretch your legs by placing your feet on an elevation, put a weighting agent on your hips.

Pull ups

Mastering this exercise is recommended to start with the Australian pull-ups. To do this, you need a crossbar at the belt level. Grasp the crossbar from below, stretching the body with the legs straight. Bending your arms, bring your chest close to the crossbar and lower to the starting position. Complicate this exercise can be, reducing the level of the crossbar or putting his feet on the dais.

Starting the pull-ups in the neck, learn the correct starting position. Shoulders should be as low as possible, shoulder blades laid back and down. Keeping the position of the shoulders, we stretch our arms forward, tilting the body backward, and firmly grasp the crossbar so that the palm is on top, not the fingers. This will pull up much higher. Movement should be smooth, without jerks.


push ups


Kalistenika for beginners includes the use of negative pull-ups – when you slowly descend from the starting position at the highest point. Also as an aid, you can use a rubber band.

Having learned to pull up more than 10 times in a row, you can move on to various advanced options – pull-ups with a wide and narrow grip, on one hand. The pinnacle in the development of pull-ups is a force output to the support.

Leg raises

Lifting the legs in the legs is very effective, they simultaneously train the force of grip and the press. The easiest option is to lift the legs bent at the knees, more advanced is to lift straight legs, the so-called “corner”. When performing, make sure that the body does not swing.

Squats and lunges

Squats in calisthenics are performed without burdens, so there is no requirement to squat just to the right angle at the knees. Squat should be deep, keeping the back straight and not lifting the heels off the floor. Well strengthen the ligaments of the legs all kinds of attacks – forward, backward, to the side.

You can vary the load on different muscles, performing squats with a wide and narrow setting of the legs, breeding socks to the sides. Having mastered squats up to 40 times in a row, you can move on to complicated options – “archer”, squats on one leg – “gun”, “dragon”, etc. At the beginning of training you can stick with your hands for support.

Training the muscles of the lower leg

For the harmonious development of the whole body, it is necessary to pay special attention to the muscles of the leg. They work on the calf muscles, rising to their toes from a support 7 cm high and dropping their heels to the floor. Bringing together and spreading the heels, you can increase the load on the external and internal parts of the calf muscles. Advanced version of the exercise – lifting on one leg.

Static exercises

These exercises calisthenics include many spectacular, tough racks – “flag”, “crocodile”, “horizon”, handstand and others. But in order to master them, you need to start with the well-known straight and lateral planks that strengthen the muscles of the core.

Basic rules for training

In order to make progress, being engaged in calisthenics, it is necessary to adhere to the following rules:

  • Start your workout with a 10-minute warm-up. The best workout is articular gymnastics, which consists in spinning to both sides of all large joints of the body.
  • Strictly monitor compliance with the implementation technique.
  • The difficulty of each exercise is selected so that you can perform no more than 10–20 repetitions in a row, otherwise you will receive not cardiovascular exercise, but regular cardio.
  • The number of repetitions in the approach – to muscle failure. The number of approaches – from 3 to 5.
  • End the workout with a hitch and stretching exercises.
  • Exercise every other day, giving your muscles time to recover. In the days of breaks, you can do cardio exercises.
  • Eat balanced, the daily amount of proteins should be at least 2 g / kg body weight.
  • Every 2 months update the training program.

Training program for beginners

The level of physical training for beginners in calisthenics can be very different, so it is recommended to make an individual training program, based on their capabilities. You can do it yourself, but better – along with the coach.

As an example, we present the training program for beginners, compiled by the famous popularist Calisthenica Frank Medrano. The training program for calisthenics is designed for 4 weeks. The number of repetitions in each set is up to muscle failure (except for the 3rd day), the number of sets is 4, the pauses between sets are 1-2 minutes. If some exercises are not yet available to you, replace them with lightweight options.


training program for calisthenics


1 day

  1. Push ups from the hill;
  2. Push-ups with rear stop;
  3. Standard push-ups;
  4. Push-ups with elevations;
  5. Rises on the socks;
  6. Straight bar.

2 day

  1. Standard pull-ups;
  2. Australian pull-ups;
  3. Pull up with a closed grip;
  4. Lunges;
  5. Side plate on each side.

3 day

  1. Running with high knee up – 30 sec;
  2. Planck – 15 seconds;
  3. Mountaineer exercise – 30 sec;
  4. Planck – 15 seconds;
  5. Jumping on the spot – 30 sec.

Day 4 – rest.

5 day – we repeat the program of 1 day.

Day 6 – repeat the program for 2 days.

Day 7 – rest.

This training program is not for nothing called by its creator Frank Medrano “Immersion”. Performing it for a month, you immerse yourself in the training process, and this will be a good start to achieve impressive success in calisthenics.