Combining Strength Training & Callisthenics (Training Like Goku)

training -

Combining Strength Training & Callisthenics (Training Like Goku)

I get asked about calisthenics a surprising amount.

The term calisthenics comes from the Greek words “kalos” meaning beauty and “stenos” which translates to strength. They are essentially strength movements that utilise gravity & your own bodyweight leverage to challenge your fitness capabilities and can be done with very little equipment. These exercises include squats, push ups, rack rows, handstand push ups, and chin ups.

I got asked a few weeks back how I incorporate callisthenics into my weight-training routine. Barbell lifts are taxing to the muscles making it hard to perform callisthenics, callisthenics pre-fatigue the muscles which is a detriment to your barbell performance, and doing them on different days can interfere with recovery. 

What I personally think is best to minimise this inference is to split the training session into 2 parts. For instance training the barbell lifts in the morning and learning callisthenics in the evening. When performing callisthenics, treat them like any other strength and hypertrophy exercise with around 6-12 reps & 3-6 sets per movement. 

That way you'll be fresh, it doesn’t get in the way of recovery as they’re mere hours apart, proper rest periods can be taken between practice (2-5 min), and because of the minimalist equipment nature of calisthenics they can be done almost anywhere.

In my opinion this is the single best way to merge both worlds without them impacting the other. It’s the best of both, the incremental strength gains on the big barbell lifts combined with the balance and co-ordination gained from calisthenics creates a synergistic training environment and utilising both gives you the opportunity to train anywhere without any real limitations.

However, I understand that training twice a day for some people might be tedious from a scheduling perspective. If you must perform both strength training and callisthenics within the same session then train whichever one you prioritise first. That's the simplest way to work around this, and it's also what I currently do.

If you want to know more about getting as ripped as a shonen anime protagonist check out my free training manual 'The Super Saiyan Six'

Have a nice day guys and always remember: Be More Shonen

How to train like Goku in real life: combining strength training and callisthenics anime style for cosplay fitness
Cosplay: Mastered Ultra Instinct Son Goku (DragonBall Super) Photo: Keanu Berkeley

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published