Everybody who begun with calisthenics or working out started with a goal, a reason to start. Maybe you wanted to get more muscular, or did you want to gain more strength? Every goal, requires a different training approach. For instance, your goal is building muscle, you need to focus more on Hypertrophy. However, this is different for gaining strength.
In this post, I will cover some crucial factors, you need to focus on when training for strength.
Rules for increasing strength
Follow the next important rules to build strength in calisthenics.
Keep your reps low and your sets high with long rest periods.
The first rule is to lower the rep count of your exercises to around 3-6 reps. Pick a hard exercise, you can do between 3-6 reps. If you can perform more than six reps, then you need to make the exercise harder. Make the exercise harder by doing harder variations or adding weight.
Because of the lower rep count, you need to add more sets. I suggest you do at least 5-6 sets for that exercise. You can even go higher, only if your form remains clean.
Between these sets, it is necessary to rest. Rest for at least a couple of minutes. This is how long it takes before the energy in your muscles is restored. I recommend you wait 3 minutes before moving on to the next set. You can wait for even longer, depending on the difficulty of the exercise.
When waiting between sets, be as productive as possible. Do some one-minute tasks or some stretching. You can even read an Ebook. Make yourself useful in any way possible.
Aim for compound calisthenics exercises
A compound exercise is an exercise that hits multiple muscles at once. These are exactly the exercises to add when you want to gain more strength. Try to avoid doing only isolation exercises. Doing only these will not get you far.
Be consistent with these exercises. Most calisthenics exercises are already compound exercises. Pick a couple and focus on them for a long period. Do not switch from one exercise to another exercise too quickly. It works best if you stick to a couple of certain exercises and try to get really good at them.
Be as strict as possible
Training with correct form is crucial when exercising. Bad technique can lead to injuries and is not as optimal as training with proper technique., especially with strength training. Pay close attention to the way you execute the exercise. It is absolutely crucial to perform the full range of motion of the exercises. Do not use momentum. Only this way you will get the most out of your reps.
Apply progressive overload
The most basic and obvious rule in fitness is to keep progressively overloading. This means you are adding more weight or make the exercise harder after some time. Continue to challenge yourself by keep adding more or making it harder each time you train. When an exercise gets too comfortable, move on, make it harder.
Only do not move on too quickly. Do not let your ego rule you and think you can try exercises that are actually way too hard for you. If you can complete more than six repetitions with perfect form, then you know you are ready for the next level.
Consistency and patience are key!
The last rule but definitely not the least is to have patients and be consistent. Please do not be upset when you are not noticing anything yet. It will come in some time. It is totally normal to not see any results in a few weeks. Just keep having patients and do not change anything. Gaining strength is a time-consuming process. Your nervous system needs time to adapt itself. Keep doing what you are doing, and eventually, results will come your way.
- Lower your reps and do more set with more rest time in between, keep your rep range between 3-6 and about 5-6 sets of each exercise. If you can do more than six reps, progress to a harder variation. Make it more challenging if you cannot perform more than two reps. Rest between each set at least 3-5 minutes, depending on the difficulty of the exercise.
- Aim for compound exercises, this means to focus on exercises that target multiple muscle groups at once. Which is essential when training for strength.
- Strict form is crucial, For better results and injury prevention, focus on Full range of motion and proper technique.
- Keep progressively overloading, keep challenging yourself by adding more weight to the exercise, or switching to a harder variation from time to time. Your workout should never be comfortable.
- Have patience and be consistent, do not expect huge results in a few weeks. Your nervous system takes time to adapt. So keep doing what you are doing. The hard work will pay off!