There’s a saying that “Any exercise is better than no exercise”, and while this may be true, not all exercises are made equal.
While we’re not going to go into the pros and cons of each different type of training, what we’ll look at today are 9 reasons why bodyweight training is so popular and effective.
In fact, it was one of the top fitness trends of 2019. This trend was the same the year before and will maintain its position for a long time to come.
9 Straight-forward Reasons to Be Doing More Calisthenics
1. Strengthens your muscles
For starters, bodyweight training is just as effective for developing muscular strength. You do not need barbells and dumbbells. Push-ups, squats, etc. and all their variations can be extremely challenging and strengthen your body immensely.
2. Builds lean muscle mass
A common mistake many people make is engaging in too much slow cardio. They jog endlessly on the treadmill and their bodies don’t really see much transformation because the cardio sessions do not build much muscle mass.
Bodyweight training, however, will not only sculpt and tone your body, but it will increase your muscle mass. Just take a look at the bodies of Olympic gymnasts. There are flexible, fit and sinewy… and it’s mostly from bodyweight training.
3. Increases speed
With bodyweight training, you can aim for speed. Doing push-ups, burpees, squats, mountain climbers, etc. fast can help you build speed.
You can’t achieve speed by doing bench presses or leg presses fast. You’ll just injure yourself. You need bodyweight training. In fact, guess what sprinting is?
It’s a form of bodyweight training too. You’re carrying your body and running at high speeds.
4. Builds muscular endurance
Have you ever wondered why the military makes the soldiers do countless push-ups, crunches and other bodyweight exercises?
They’re building muscular endurance in the troops. That’s why.
It may be a boost to one’s ego being able to bench press or deadlift more weight than the other members at the gym. But very often, these are just for a few reps before one is exhausted.
What happens when you need to do a ton of physical work over a long period of time? Very often, the gym rats will be gassed out because their muscles are strong but lack endurance.
Bodyweight training that involves tons of reps over and over will develop muscular endurance like no other.
5. Recruits more muscle fibers
Unlike weight training which has isolation movements to target specific muscle groups, most weight training uses compound movements.
So, you’ll be targeting several different muscle groups and recruiting more muscle fibers while you constantly work your core. This makes the exercises more efficient.
6. Aids in weight management
If you’re struggling to lose weight, bodyweight training is perfect for you. When done fast with minimal rest, it becomes a form of high-intensity interval training (HIIT). When done slowly, it’s resistance training.
Either way, you’ll be burning calories and it’s more effective than conventional cardio because it boosts your metabolism, burns fat and still helps to retain your precious lean muscle.
7. Builds an asymmetric body
There’s no denying the fact that the bodybuilding scene these days is replete with people who are freakishly big and have bellies that jut out from using growth hormones and so on. No longer is the goal of being aesthetically-pleasing, but it’s all about getting as big as you can.
Most people dislike this monstrous look. Bodyweight training will never make you a caricature of fitness. You’ll develop a muscular, lean body which is symmetric and pleasing to the eye. You’ll be strong and look great at the same time.
8. Lower chance of injury
You’ll be less likely to injure yourself with bodyweight training than you would with conventional weight training. With heavyweights, you might cause chronic injury if your form slips for a second.
Bodyweight training is a much safer protocol and a lot more forgiving.
9. Increases confidence and self-esteem
Confidence comes from knowing that you’re making progress and doing what you need to do. Since bodyweight training is convenient and can be done almost anywhere, you’ll be much more likely to do it and stick to the training program you’ve set for yourself.
It’s effective and will get you results within a couple of months. Once you’ve achieved the body you desire, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’ve achieved your goal. Your sense of self-esteem will increase by leaps and bounds.
If this isn’t enough reason to make bodyweight training a part of your life, nothing is. Get started today.