Can’t BUILD MUSCLE with Calisthenics? Here’s why


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“Unwritten Return” Kevin MacLeod (
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“Leopard Print Elevator” Kevin MacLeod (
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  1. Calisthenics is just a fancy word for bodyweight training. And in bodyweight training you also work with weights, but the weight you use happens to be your own. There are many elements that we can master and adjust to create the perfect level of tension in our muscles however we want. But with machines and free weights, these elements are reduced to only a few, therefore people don't have to dive deep into complex stuff and can change only a couple of things to get their muscles work. Also there's the fact that some folks understand the word calisthenics as doing only skill-based movements such as front lever, human flag, planche etc. . But the term calisthenics has a much more broad spectrum of exercises than people think. So, there are ways to utilize calisthenics in a way that fits your aim, like building muscle.

    If you're into this path of pain or if you're in a constant search to free yourself from gym or machines, I highly recommend you to check out RedDeltaProject YT channel and take a look at Matt Schifferle's books, Grind Style Calisthenics and Smart Bodyweight Training. There, you'll find out more about the elements I mentioned by which you can optimize your workouts for your personal goals. It helped me a lot, so in a sense I'm paying my debt of gratitude by mentioning Matt's works here.

    Edit: I definitely agree to Dave on increasing the intensity of the workout regarding tension in our muscles rather than doing large numbers of reps if the goal is to build muscle.

  2. Instead of calisthenics (largely a BS training) you should use all manner of Ropes. Rope training is the way, from jumping rope to Olympic Rings and rope climbing to rope swinging to battle rope waves.. Look at why a monkey is so strong, your whole bodyweight is employed full time rather than momentarily, your 190lbs or so is in use for much longer periods of time. Rope training beats all imo and the transfer to calisthenics and weightlifting is immense

  3. You shouldn’t take weight loss advice from a fat person.

    Likewise, you shouldn’t take muscle building advice from a skinny guy who is starting his journey.

    I’ve gained a lot of strength & muscle mass with calisthenics.

    Same theory applies to money and finances. Surround yourself with wealthy people and you are likely to be wealthy.

  4. The problem with adding weight is that you will eventually get injured, especially as you get older, as with bodyweight, you get strong enough /big enough but with significantly less injury risk.

    If you want to get big and shredded, you need to use "enhancements"

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