When thinking of calisthenics, if you have a mental picture of the military performing jumping jacks to cadence, you’re not far off. The truth is, though, that calisthenics exercises are rooted much deeper in history, dating all the way back to ancient Greece.
When it comes to your personal history, you probably first experienced calisthenics workouts in elementary school gym class in the form of sit-ups, push-ups, jumping jacks and other bodyweight exercises. Calisthenics, when performed vigorously, actually help people gain muscle and serves as an aerobic form of exercise at the same time.
What Are Calisthenics Workouts?
Simply put, the calisthenics definition is using your bodyweight and gravity to perform exercises (some of which are pretty intense) using good form. What’s great is that it does not require a gym membership and could include various activities such as gymnastics, Pilates, running, squats, lunges for great legs, crunches, jumping and walking, just to name a few calisthenics workout ideas.
A more common term for calisthenics today is bodyweight training. Regardless of what you call it, this type of training can be the core of a fitness plan or used in conjunction with other training programs, including cardio workouts, HIIT workouts (including my Burst training), marathon or triathlon training, weight training or all sorts of other exercise. Mixing it up is a great way to ensure that you are working all of your muscles and can provide a healthier way to fitness.