If you are part of calisthenics or even bodybuilding in general, I bet that you’ve heard tons of stories that people tell of what should and should not be done. After all of these storytellers you do not know what to believe. That is why, today, I want to list the greatest calisthenics myths of all time, and clear the field for all the beginners out there.
Greatest calisthenics myths of all time
Myth #1: Calisthenics is just another way of doing cardio
Wrong! Calisthenics exercises are not just used to burn fat and shave a few numbers off the scale. Actually, if you take a good look at the gladiators 3000 years back in the history, you can see well shaped body physiques built with just body-weight exercises. They didn’t have sophisticated gyms to train with countless machines and weight plates back in the day. It was pure work and dedication.
So, if you hear someone talk about calisthenics as a cardio exercises, just get a good laugh and mind your own business.
Myth #2: The only way to lose fat with calisthenics is to increase the repetitions
This is one of the greatest calisthenics myths of all. Increasing the repetitions of your workouts may be beneficial for losing some weight, but at the same time, you give your body the same exact training method over and over, which is wrong.
Instead of sticking to the same exact exercises and increasing the repetitions, try to make them more intense and challenging. For example, in order to lose weight, shorten the resting period between exercises and sets instead of increasing the repetitions. That way you will get better muscle pump and less resting period, which leads to more burned calories.
Myth #3: You can’t build muscle mass with calisthenics
Although it’s hard to build muscle mass with calisthenics, I admit, it is not impossible. Many people think that once you master your own bodyweight, it is impossible to build muscle mass. Well, that is clearly wrong. There always will be complex exercises that present quite a challenge even when you are advanced athlete. Building a routine with those exercises, plus adding some extra weight (if you want) in a form of weighted west and shortening the resting period is a way to go.
Another major factor for building muscle mass is the food you eat. In order to build quality muscle mass, while staying lean at the same time, you have to organize your daily calorie intake. For example, if 2000 calories are required to maintain your current weight, adding 800 extra calories on a daily basis will help you build muscle mass for sure. In that case, increasing your daily calorie intake, while doing intense and challenging workout which comprises of complex bodyweight movements, is the right way to build muscle mass. On top of that, adding some extra weight is always beneficial.
Myth #4: You don’t need a workout plan
If you have a chance to talk with one of the best athletes in calisthenics, ask them about the importance of having a routine. They’ll all agree that having a quality calisthenics workout plan is the way to improve your physique and advance forward.
When I started doing calisthenics I used to meander around and perform the exact same moves expecting to build up strength and muscle mass. After couple of months running in place, I decided to give some workout plan a chance. I noticed that I was way more disciplined and motivated to crush me previous records. In no time I saw changes to my body and behavior.
Seeing yourself crushing goals and beating the crap out of every week- no better feeling.
Myth #5: Calisthenics is not for obese people
One of the greatest calisthenics myths of all. The category of obese people is able to squeeze the greatest benefits that calisthenics offer. There are countless of alternative exercises that are created for physically weaker people, so they can be part of calisthenics, even if they don’t have the strength to do even one push-up. Performing girly push-ups the first three months is not going to make you less of a man. If fact, obese people will burn even more calories doing calisthenics, while building muscle at the same time.
The fact that you can always lower the weight of the plates in the gym and feed your ego with more repetitions is just sad, especially for obese people. What they need is to push their bodies to the limit and experience pain, because that is how the right mindset is built.
Another great benefit is that, with calisthenics, they can take over the control of their bodies and start moving freely, like they never did before. I know number of obese people who have problem of climbing even 10 stairs. That will no longer be an issue after they start doing calisthenics.