Why you should combine calisthenics and weights!

Combing calisthenics and weightlifting aka. hybrid calisthenics is a great training method, here is why!

Calisthenics builds upper body strength & bodyweight mastery!

Calisthenics requires a focus on mastering specific movements, such as pull-ups, dips, and various upper body strength skills. This emphasis on skill development contributes to bodyweight mastery, enhancing your ability to control and manipulate your body in space.

Calisthenics relies on using your own body weight as resistance. This requires your muscles to work against the force of gravity, leading to great development of both upper body strength and size when done correctly, while also working a lot of smaller stabilizing muscles at the same time.

Weights build lower body strength!

Lifting weights places a greater load on the lower body muscles compared to bodyweight exercises alone. This increased load can lead to greater muscle activation and growth.

Weight training provides a wide range of exercises that can be used to target various lower body muscles. Squats, deadlifts, lunges, leg curls, leg extensions, and calf raises are just some of the options. For maximal growth of the lower body, bodyweight alone aren’t enough.

Weights/Resistance bands are great for isolation!

Weight training are effective for isolation exercises. Isolation exercises target specific muscles or muscle groups, allowing for focused development and refinement of those particular areas. In weight training, isolation exercises often involve movements around a single joint, concentrating the stress on a particular muscle.

Single joint exercises allow you to focus on specific muscle groups, addressing any imbalances, and targeting areas that may need additional attention.

Example of a workout that combines calisthenics and weights

I have made an example full body routine, you can try that combines calisthenics and weights. However, don’t just follow this routine blindly, tweak it to suit your experience and goals or use it as inspiration for designing your own program (you can read more about how to do this here).

Warm up:
Jumping jacks: 3 sets x 1 minute
Arm circles and leg swings
Super light set before each exercise

2Pike push up38-121,1,0
3Calf raises28-201,0
3Bodyweight Rows38-152,1,0
4Dumbbell Bicep Curl212-152,1
4Skull Crusher212-152,1
4Lateral Raise210-152,1
RIR = reps in reserve

Cool Down:
Static stretching: Focus on major muscle groups, holding each stretch for 20-90 seconds.

Here is a docs version of the routine, you can tweak to your needs!

Final Thoughts

While calisthenics is our favorite form of training the benefits of weight training shouldn’t be neglected. Using weights provides a more straightforward way of overloading the muscles (especially the legs), and provides better options for prehab/rehab work compared to calisthenics.
If you don’t have access to weights don’t worry, resistance bands work great as well for isolating various muscles, and providing good resistance. If using weight is not an option for you presently, you can also check how to train the legs without weights in this post.

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