Calisthenics Workouts: Pros and Cons (TOP 4!)

6 week calisthenics workout that builds muscle

Calisthenics workouts, or bodyweight training as some call it, can be an incredibly effective way to train. That said, some will say that there are major limitations to this type of workout regimen that will prevent you from seeing the gains you should from your hard work. In this video, I cover the 4 biggest pros and cons of calisthenics workouts to help you decide if they are right for you.

To start, let’s cover the positives or pros of calisthenics training.

1. Least inexpensive workout option
2. Can do calisthenics exercises anywhere
3. More athletic in nature
4. Use as a fat loss workout option more readily

It goes without saying that calisthenics exercises are very easy to implement since the cost barrier to entry is low. You can start a bodyweight exercise program without needing any equipment at all. This makes it much easier for those on a limited budget who can’t afford home gyms or gym memberships to get started on their workout.

Next, calisthenics have a high level of convenience that allows them to be done anywhere. You can be outdoors without any equipment at all and still be able to get in a great workout if you are following a good bodyweight exercise program.

Due to the high degree of compound movement that occurs with bodyweight exercises, they demand that you be a bit more athletic. By doing them however, you tend to develop more athleticism even if you aren’t the most coordinated or gifted to start. They make for the perfect exercise options when looking to maximize your ability to move and perform like an athlete.

Finally, calisthenic workouts are great fat burning options since they include many high ‘bang for your buck’ exercises. By including multiple muscle groups into one movement, often in a way that allows you to perform many reps in a short period of time, you can significantly program them for a metabolic effect in your workouts.

Now onto the cons of bodyweight or calisthenic workouts

1. Less control over loading
2. Requires more coordination
3. More difficult if already injured
5. Less Muscle Mass and strength from bodyweight workouts

No doubt, it is harder to control the loading of calisthenic exercises. While you can always add another two and a half pound plate to the ends of a bar you cannot as easily modify a bodyweight exercise to make it more difficult if you don’t have a good understanding of biomechanics. Not only that, sometimes the jump to the next level of the exercise is too great and this often leads many stuck at plateaus for quite a long period of time.

If you are already injured, the lack of single joint specificity in bodyweight exercises makes these a little less viable as options in your programming. Sure there are things you can do with your body weight that will get the job done in these instances, but they may not be as perfectly suited as some equipment based isolation exercises.

Finally, the idea of not being able to build muscle with calisthenics is popular…but wrong! Watch the rest of the video to see my reasoning why.

If you want to get a complete 6 week program that helps you to build significant muscle with nothing but your own bodyweight, be sure to head to and get the ATHLEAN XERO program. No equipment is needed at all and all the workouts can be done in a very small space.

For more bodyweight workout videos and calisthenic exercises, be sure to subscribe to our channel here on youtube at

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