In college, I was pretty strong by most standards – benched 450, squatted over 600, power cleaned 375 …
But I could MAYBE do two good pull ups on my best day!
Doing a handstand or a pistol squat or a muscle up never even crossed my mind
But the reality is, I would have been a much more balanced, all-around athlete if I had included more bodyweight training in my overall workout plan.
If your goals include:
– fat loss
– lean muscle gain
– functional strength
– a stronger core
– better movement / less pain
You should include bodyweight exercise in your training as well!
I also believe that there are some benchmarks EVERYONE – barring injury or physical limitations that make an exercise impossible – should strive for. You should be able to do the following exercises:
– squats, below parallel and with PERFECT form
– pull ups
– push ups
– single leg squat variations, like different types of lunges etc.
– handstand holds, against the wall
– jumps of all kinds
– running and sprinting
To say that you have a basic mastery of bodyweight training.
If you can’t do all the moves on that list yet:
1 – Get stronger!
Work hard on the body weight exercises above until you can do them ALL.
2 – Lose body fat!
You can be plenty strong, but if you’re carrying around excess body weight, you’re going to have a hard time doing most – if not ALL – of the exercises listed above, well.
To sum up, if you’re looking to lose fat, gain lean muscle and functional strength, and take it easy on your joints, bodyweight training is for you! And the list of exercises in today’s article are a great place to start.
Start working on those moves and you’ll be dominating EVERY one before you know it
– Forest Vance
Certified Progressive Calisthenics Instructor
PS – One of the most basic bodyweight moves that I find folks struggle with the MOST is the pull up. If YOU are looking to do more pull ups FAST, grab out my 100% FREE guide on “How to Do More Pull Ups in 30 Days” HERE.