One of the most common questions we get asked here at Pure Calisthenics is, quite simply, ‘is calisthenics enough?’
This is a good question; a smart question, and one we will take a shot at answering for you right now.
The meaning of ‘enough’ will be different for everybody and only you can decide whether your results measure up to expectation.
Generally speaking, though, you only have to look at prominent calisthenics practitioners to know that the sky is the limit when it comes to what you can achieve.
Take a look at Lazar Novovic, founder of Bar Brothers, for example, and then ask yourself if such results would be ‘enough’ for you.
Of course, everyone is genetically different but you only have to look at Lazar in his younger days to realise that he wasn’t exactly given his physique as a genetic present.
This guy worked hard as hell to achieve these results because his ‘enough’ was much greater than that of others. Where some people may have given up, he pushed through and in the end calisthenics has been more than sufficient to sculpt one of the bodybuilding world’s finest physiques.
So, before you even lift a finger, you need to define your ‘enough’. Think about whether you want to be a bodybuilder and work on individual parts of your body, or achieve total functional body strength through the art of calisthenics.
Calisthenics, by definition, is bodyweight training, therefore most people’s immediate concern is regarding what happens when you become so strong that your own mass no longer presents enough of a challenge to continue your progress.
The answer is simple; you add more weight. Sound familiar? It should.
Those of you who have practiced lifting free weights before will be well used to slamming another 10, 20, 30kg on the rack as you progress through your routine. The concept here is the same, it is merely applied in a different way.
When training calisthenics your body becomes the equipment, so in order to add more weight you yourself need to become heavier. This can be done in a variety of ways, but take the below suggestions for example.
- When performing pull-ups or dips, use a weighted belt, chain, or dumbbell between your feet.
- Whilst performing push-ups, place a stable weighted bag on your back and have someone spot you.
- Doing squats? Add a Bulgarian bag into the mix to challenge yourself further.
We could go on but the point is already abundantly obvious; if you want to scale up your results then find a way to scale up the challenge.
The Take Home
Ultimately you will never know the answer to ‘is calisthenics enough? until you try it for yourself. And that doesn’t mean you should dabble for a few weeks and then give up, because that really isn’t trying at all.
If you truly want to find out if you can revolutionise your workouts with bodyweight exercises then you need to take massive action.
Get yourself on a proven program, train like a beast and dine like a god. In the end, you will only achieve enough if you give enough to do so.