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Bodybuilding with Calisthenics

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  • Bodybuilding with Calisthenics

    Hello all,

    I have recently took up calisthenics as a staple of my fitness program. I have started since last March and have seen much progress. I can manage to do 15 pullups with ease and pistol squats with sloppy form. I admit I have to get better.

    I would like to know if there is anyone out there who has competed in bodybuilding shows with just calisthenics and following a primal/paleo diet? I have read posts on bodybuilding.com forums and those guys just criticize calisthenics in general.

  • #2
    I don't know about that question, but I think Al Kavadlo is pretty much an expert in the field.

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    • #3
      Doing just calisthenics you are building the type of lean, muscular body that women like to look at, not the sort of massive hypertrophy that wins bodybuilding contests.

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      • #4
        The sort of massive hyperthrophy that wins bodybuilder contests is mainly a product of drugs anyway, but yes both weights and calisthenics build muscles, and the best for most people is probably to use both for the best results. Especially lower body can be hard to develop on calisthenics only...
        "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

        - Schopenhauer

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        • #5
          Originally posted by eKatherine View Post
          Doing just calisthenics you are building the type of lean, muscular body that women like to look at, not the sort of massive hypertrophy that wins bodybuilding contests.
          What about raw, drug-free powerlifters in the 148-lb division? Is that the type of lean, muscular body that women like to look at?
          The Champagne of Beards

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Gorbag View Post
            The sort of massive hyperthrophy that wins bodybuilder contests is mainly a product of drugs anyway, but yes both weights and calisthenics build muscles, and the best for most people is probably to use both for the best results. Especially lower body can be hard to develop on calisthenics only...
            +1

            OP, you can create a good physique with just bodyweight exercises, but it won't be what the judges at any bodybuilding show will be looking for.
            In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.

            This message has been intercepted by the NSA, the only branch of government that listens.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
              What about raw, drug-free powerlifters in the 148-lb division? Is that the type of lean, muscular body that women like to look at?
              No.

              Ok. Maybe.

              Fine! Yes.

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              • #8
                Look at pictures of gymnasts. That's the elite level of calisthenics right there. If you like that kind of musculature, have at it. Those guys are amazing.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                  What about raw, drug-free powerlifters in the 148-lb division? Is that the type of lean, muscular body that women like to look at?
                  148lbs? Um, no.

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                  • #10
                    Thanks for all the responses.
                    I think I'll shut this dream down as I don't want to pursue a life involving supplements and drugs to achieve an aesthetic goal.
                    As for developing legs though, does anyone have suggestions on developing the hamstrings?
                    I remember Al Kavadlo not recommending the glute ham raise as an exercise due to the strain on the knee joint. Are there any alternatives besides sprints?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by MisterFrancis View Post
                      Thanks for all the responses.
                      I think I'll shut this dream down as I don't want to pursue a life involving supplements and drugs to achieve an aesthetic goal.
                      As for developing legs though, does anyone have suggestions on developing the hamstrings?
                      I remember Al Kavadlo not recommending the glute ham raise as an exercise due to the strain on the knee joint. Are there any alternatives besides sprints?
                      Glute/Hip bridges. Hyperextensions.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                        What about raw, drug-free powerlifters in the 148-lb division? Is that the type of lean, muscular body that women like to look at?
                        Originally posted by zoebird View Post
                        No.

                        Ok. Maybe.

                        Fine! Yes.
                        Photos!

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                        • #13
                          If I were going to make calisthenics the center of my fitness program I think I might just add barbell squats to it. I don't think there's anything that comes anywhere close to what squats can do. I suppose in the absence of squats, walking up VERY steep hills carrying a very heavy load might suffice. And walking down, too. That's killer on the quads for sure.
                          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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