Is Calisthenics Dangerous?

Attempting new things in life can often be a thrilling experience, if not a little daunting at times due to not completely understanding your newfound hobby’s do’s or don’ts, but what about something like calisthenics? Is it dangerous or safe?

Calisthenics is considered generally safe if the proper technique is applied. Calisthenics will keep you strong, healthy, increases your metabolism, and have more active joints as you get older if done correctly. However, when vanity is involved, it can cause some serious injury. 

You will want to avoid damage to your body at all costs, so we will delve into how doing calisthenics can be a threat to you and what the benefits are. Let us delve into the nitty-gritty details! 

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Things To Know Before Starting

Knowing origins on how something started is often key to having a solid foundation to build upon. In the world of calisthenics, this statement is doubly true. 

While you may indeed only require your body to engage in making progress, you can also injure yourself substantially if you utilize poor form or techniques.

Beginning with that form we spoke of, it is critical to take time and find an excellent regimen. Even better than that, a good program or trainer to guide you into calisthenics instead of just jumping in. 

While tempting, you can seriously injure yourself by attempting “motivational moves” you see on YouTube, so be wary and keep your beginnings simple.

It is essential to remember that timing is everything. Despite us living in a day and age that prides itself on immediate satisfaction and entertainment (like social media), working on your body and seeing meaningful progress will take time, and a substantial amount of it at that.

Any results you gain now are phenomenal and something to be proud of. However, rushing to see your muscles get sculpted for you to have long-term injuries at a cost simply isn’t worth it.

1. Bodyweight Is All You’ll Need

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As stated above, the world of calisthenics relies entirely on your body. This is relatively the most affordable option you can do for yourself. Still, you can use a few tips and tricks to get started on the right foot and not be sprinting to the emergency room.

Firstly you want to set some time aside and research and find a solid guide to pace yourself on. 

Perhaps more importantly, a community to immerse yourself in, motivate you, and hold you accountable for sticking with any program you do decide to start with.

2. Patience Is A Virtue (It Will Take Time)

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Rome wasn’t built in a day, and you certainly can’t expect to go from flab to fab overnight (if only). The key to success is moderation and patience. 

You can chase any plan you want to and subscribe to any notion you like that will promise abs in 30 days, but the truth is, long-term success takes time and dedication to achieve. 

We are talking about an entire lifestyle overhaul for most people, including eating habits and breaking bad habits. 

When you immerse yourself in a healthy lifestyle, you get into the psychology of why you’d convince yourself not to work out or have so many cheat days in your routine. 

Another fundamental understanding is that once you find yourself comfortable with whatever physique you achieve, you want to maintain it. 

To do that, you will have to commit to the changes you made and define them even deeper to make those beneficial improvements permanent.

3. Maintain Range Of Motion

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Some of the biggest threats you can face when you begin calisthenics would be overloading yourself, chasing some image, and damaging your joints. 

The entire point of calisthenics is to achieve and maintain a healthy body utilizing only what you already have. Still, you can just as easily make such a goal almost impossible if you severely damage a joint, nerve, or even bone in the process. 

Getting to a point where you can even comfortably do most exercises will take some limbering up. By that, you will have to do lots of stretching and studying to understand how good form and flexibility are in your body. 

Studying these techniques allow you to the more complicated techniques and not get stuck somewhere along the way. Obtaining a solid foundation to work upon is the key to success in calisthenics. In doing so, you will reap a wide variety of benefits. 

One of them is keeping your range of motion well throughout your life and into old age (assuming you keep up with the routine). Old age is notorious for dampening how we perceive life in some cases and is typically associated with being limited or “out of our prime.” 

Still, a fascinating part about building your body up and adequately taking care of it would be that you will age like a fine wine instead of milk on a hot day.

4. Look After Your Wrists & Elbows

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Many upper body workouts rely on your wrists and elbows to do anything of importance. 

Never mind the nearly unlimited usage someone has for these joints in your day-to-day life. As such, you must take care of them with every fiber of your being, and diet for that matter. 

Having inadequate flexibility or range of motion can hinder you in this area. It can come back to bite you in the form of immense strain being put on your elbows and wrists to offset that same lack of motion we spoke of earlier.

Not doing proper techniques could result in joint damage. You will want to avoid that at all costs, so making sure calisthenics are done properly firsthand will help you avoid this issue in the long run. 

5. There’s No Substitute For Strength

Regardless of the lifestyle you’ve led, there will come to some exercise, motion, or feat that you aren’t strong enough to complete. Approaching this instance is going to be a humbling experience.

Suppose you have experience in the gym, played sports avidly, or believe you are just naturally strong. In that case, there is no substitute for strength gained by utilizing nothing but your body. 

Contrary to popular belief, even though you may bench 300 Lbs, that does not necessarily mean you can lift yourself.

This is due to only having muscles built in those precise portions of the body required to utilize whatever piece of gym equipment you worked on to achieve the said feat. 

The other muscle groups you rely on won’t be developed enough to do what you want. Rest assured, you will gain the ability to perform those gymnastic feats over time. Still, a solid foundation is the only way you can get there, safely anyway.

6. You Must Have Sustainability

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This is the primary focal point of everything that’s been discussed thus far. That is, without a doubt, your ability to maintain this lifestyle in the long run. 

Doing the “cool move,” looking a certain way, etc., are all meaningless if you can’t make use of your body thoroughly for the remainder of your life after achieving your temporary goals.

To avoid those life-changing injuries in the pursuit of greatness, check to ensure your training is done practically and safely. This means researching the following; 

  • The routines you are doing
  • The requirements to do them
  • Whether or not the strain has been too great for other athletes
  • What potential risks lie within doing them before being physically capable of doing so

7. Ensure The Proper Method Is Used

Good form is yet another pillar of the conversation we’ve been dancing around, but it makes its grand debut here. Many calisthenics is based on a very egotistical viewpoint. 

This means someone is doing it the right way because they have X number of followers, or better, they are “trending” on social media.

These people aren’t always utilizing the proper form. Worse than that, because of the ego involved in the world of calisthenics, other people mimic the poor structure and create even more waves of influence doing the same, self-damaging form.

Avoid these instances yourself by taking time to research methods that have been around for immense amounts of time in the world of calisthenics. 

Make a special note of significant injuries other people have had doing them, specifically ones that aren’t accidents. 

Good form will help you become more active later on in life, and you’ll be happier because of it. People chasing immediate satisfaction will only potentially injury them later on, and they will no longer be doing certain things. Indulging in poor form will have you out of action to recover.

8. Don’t Get Egotistical

Despite how easy it is to get lost in the incredible majesty of your greatness, remain humble. Everyone starts somewhere, and you are no different. 

Any achievements or feats you accomplish should only serve as motivation for you to strive to even greater heights. 

The second you begin looking down on others, or begin feeling a bit full of yourself, have the gentle reminder that there is always a bigger fish. 

Being a good person aside, there is a personal benefit to this as well. It will keep you from playing into any circumstance where you can be goaded into performing something you aren’t personally ready for.

9. It Is Not Limitless Training

Like all things in life, there is a limit to what you can and cannot do. Even though it is your body, that does not mean you can just rinse and repeat infinitely and expect to achieve progress that never ends. 

Truthfully it’s quite the opposite on both sides of the coin, and you can overdo it and damage your body from strain. Even worse, combine doing too much with an extreme lack of rest and harm yourself twice as much. 

Rotating your routine, keeping things fresh, and surprising your body in the number of reps you are doing is the key to making progress.

Advantages & Disadvantages Of Calisthenic Training

PROSCONS
Requires little to no equipmentYou do not isolate specific muscle groups
You can train whereverIt provides limitations for leg training
Target multiple qualities at onceIt is hard to reflect on your progress
Helps you learn quite a bit of movesProgression is not intuitive
You’ll become more creativeIt’s hard to build muscle mass
No excuses due to minimum equipment
Good for fat loss
Helps you build whole-body muscle & strength
Trains your core every move you make

Final Thoughts

You can without a doubt injure yourself doing calisthenics, and if you engage in poor form, calisthenics can be incredibly dangerous, but if you take time and make it a way of life, and not a simple phrase, you can safely navigate the world of calisthenics with little more than residual soreness from a hard day’s work.

Sources

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