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Thread: calisthenics AND barbell training? page

  1. #1
    AndreaReina's Avatar
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    calisthenics AND barbell training?

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    How does one combine barbell training with calisthenics? I'd like to start lifting ala Rippetoe's Starting Strength, but I have the feeling that I'm going to run into recovery issues with his programming if I also train the bodyweight skills I want to (pull/muscle up, L-sits, planche, handstand, etc), plus my Ashtanga practice won't help that either.

    Should I stick with the general SS idea (3x5, A/B workouts, linear progression) but space the workouts further apart and count the bodyweight stuff as a workout, or abandon the idea of LP and work in a rep range instead (eg 5-12, when I hit 12 increase weight), or a third option I can't think of right now?

    I think that each modality has benefits that complement the others, but the programs I've found all focus on one or the other and in cases like SS simply don't work if anything else is mixed in due to the program's high volume.

  2. #2
    Abu Reena's Avatar
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    I tried that. Did SS 2x a week and 1x was doing BW stuff. Doesn't work. You need the rest on SS. (Admittedly, I'm 40, so 2x a week is enough!) After a few weeks on SS, when you're putting up the weight, your body needs its recovery time.

    I don't see a problem mixing barbell training and BW stuff, but you can't do SS and BW at the same time and do either justice. Perhaps pick one modality, do it for 6 months, then switch.

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    Al_Kavadlo's Avatar
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    I do barbell + bw workouts sometimes - I actually did today! My workout this morning consisted of barbell squats, pull-ups, muscle-ups, handstand push-ups, burpees and some bridge work.

    I'd suggest doing barbell squats, deads, and overhead presses along with push-ups, pull-ups, Australian pull-ups and L's - it a very well rounded full body workout if you can handle it. No bench press or BB rows needed!
    "In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they couldn't be more different."

    "You can have anything you want, but you can't have everything you want."

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    Abu Reena's Avatar
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    Al,

    I don't disagree with you, it's just that he's asking about doing a SS routine. I think you can mix and match, but not with the specific program that Rip prescribes.

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    Al,

    Is there a difference between Australian pullups and inverted rows? Have you seen this series? Awesome Inverted Row Progressions: Part 3 The guy lists about 17 different inverted row variations!

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    Al_Kavadlo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Abu Reena View Post
    Al,

    I don't disagree with you, it's just that he's asking about doing a SS routine. I think you can mix and match, but not with the specific program that Rip prescribes.
    I agree - didn't mean to imply otherwise. Your suggestion to maybe set aside a few months to focus on one then a few months to focus on the other might be a nice precursor to doing a hybrid routine like the one I hypothesized. It depends on the experience level of the OP.

    Quote Originally Posted by Abu Reena View Post
    Al,

    Is there a difference between Australian pullups and inverted rows? Have you seen this series? Awesome Inverted Row Progressions: Part 3 The guy lists about 17 different inverted row variations!
    Yeah - they are different names for the same thing. That guy has some good variations! That's the beauty of strength training - there are endless ways to mix it up!
    "In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they couldn't be more different."

    "You can have anything you want, but you can't have everything you want."

    My blog: http://www.AlKavadlo.com


  7. #7
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    I think you need to try it and see what happens. I never got too far (or rather heavy) with Strong Lifts (somewhat similar to starting strength) so I can't honestly say how your body feels after doing SERIOUSLY heavy lifting and then attempting some body weight work on what should be your rest days.

    Currently I do it like Al mentions above. I'm trying to build up my legs through barbell squats, I also do deadlifts and sometimes a little over head pressing. That's it though, almost everything else is through calisthenics, both weighted and otherwise.

    There was a thread over at gymnasticbodies.com where I lurk basically about how if you're serious about calisthenics/gymnastics or generally moving your own body through space then it's probably best to focus on that and leave the iron behind. However that thread was mostly referring to upper body barbell training, many posters said they use barbells and weights for lower body work.

    It's very possible to get very strong using either method, it's slightly easier to measure that strength using the bar however, so it also comes down to your personal goals. If you want a double bodyweight squat maybe pistols won't get you there (maybe!), if you want a double bodyweight bench weighted push ups may not get you there (though planche push ups might!)

    Personally I find calisthenics to be funner and more mentally engaging.

  8. #8
    Coach Palfrey's Avatar
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    I think everyone needs to consider why they'd follow SS. What are your goals? Are you trying to get good at the lifts or just trying to increase strength and conditioning? Because you can absolutely do both at the same time. It'll slow your progress in both but who cares?

    If you have pure lifting goals then fine but if not then try mixing it up and see what works for you.

    I do think that it's far too easy, especially for beginners, to get caught up in following things to the letter.

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    Hey, Coach, agree with your last statement 100%. But here's the beauty of SS: You don't have to think. You don't develop the ADHD that we all seem to have and keep mixing it up every week. You can measure your progress.

    Before I started SS about a month ago, I would scrap my workout nearly every week. I wasn't getting stronger, I wasn't better conditioned, and I wasn't getting better skilled. I'd see Al's post and try his thing. I'd see your post and try some sandbag stuff. I tend to think beginners are better off getting some consistency in. I know exactly what my workout tomorrow is, since it's the same workout I did last Thursday, plus some additional weight. No thinking, no "hey what if I try this instead".

    I'm giving it six months or so, and then I'll reevaluate as to my goals. I'm not going to be a powerlifter, so I may just take my novice gains and not worry about new PRs. Who knows? All I know is that my squat tomorrow will be 5 lbs more than it was on Sunday!

  10. #10
    Abu Reena's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al_Kavadlo View Post
    Yeah - they are different names for the same thing. That guy has some good variations! That's the beauty of strength training - there are endless ways to mix it up!
    I was doing some light sets of inverted rows and my 8 year old son wanted to try. He wound up doing 3 sets, which was really cute since he could barely reach the bar I was using.

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