Join the tribe of Movement & Calisthenics Athletes – people just like you that are working with their own body weight to get strength, lose fat build muscle, recover from injuries and live their best lives!
Meet Gary, a 44-year-old financial consultant NOT unfamiliar with physical activity. He has been training since 2022 with the old-school fitness gym, doing a lot of weights and traditional muscle-building training splits. He trained with this approach for a long time. He also transitioned to marathon running.🏃
This is the story of Gareth – The Movement Athlete
He got into calisthenics around 2007 but didn’t really act much on his new interest. He only started training with bodyweight around 2017 when he realized handstands are attainable. From there, he learned more possibilities with bodyweight training, and that’s when he discovered The Movement Athlete.
Since becoming a Movement Athlete, there’s nothing but progress in Gareth’s calisthenics journey.🏆
Read on to learn about the benefits Gareth now enjoys!👇
🤯Mental and Physical Benefits of Training
“I’ve always loved the gym, not just the physical benefits but the mental benefits too.”
The most obvious benefits of physical activity, more particularly resistance training, are more on the physical side. Here are the main reasons why people should workout:🎯
- ✅ Increases muscle mass which serves for function and both aesthetic purposes
- ✅ Improves quality of movement
- ✅ Reduces the risk of injuries
- ✅ Increases strength, stamina, and range of motion
- ✅ Decreases risks of nagging aches and pains – Read more here: 📍How Calisthenics Treat Injuries
- ✅ Decreases risks of cardiovascular diseases
- ✅ Improved longevity
But training can also improve the mental aspect as well! The improved blood flow, thanks to training, can also improve mental sharpness.
“The gym really taught me about accountability and ownership, which has had a huge effect on my life outside of fitness.”
Aside from that, consistent training builds discipline, which can translate to other aspects of life outside fitness, like what Gareth experiences. Progress also offers a different kind of achievement. The fulfillment is ecstatic and can also develop a positive outlook in life. More reasons to train and improve fitness levels, not just for performance and health!🔥
“I discovered Calisthenics a few years ago but really got into it in 2020 when the world went into lockdown, and I was forced to switch to training in my garage, which basically had a set of rings and a set of parallettes.”
During the peak of the 2020 pandemic, training in the gym wasn’t a viable option because they were forced to close down.😢 This made Gareth adapt to this unfortunate situation, and he had to train in his garage.
He quickly bought a pair of gymnastics rings and parallettes to train. Keep in mind that calisthenics can be trained without any equipment. However, using rings will be massively beneficial if you want to optimize training or if you’re like Gareth, who’s quite an advanced athlete.
If you want to learn more about calisthenics equipment, then read here: 📍The Ultimate Guide to Calisthenics Equipment and Cheap Ways to Replace Them
Calisthenics offers accessibility since you can train anywhere at any time. No need for memberships or fancy equipment. All you need is actually a pull-up bar and a dip station. Or if you’re already experienced, gymnastics rings should already be fine enough!
👊Unlocking Bodyweight Mastery
“I enjoy the freedom of it, the opportunity to try new things, and the “I wonder if” moments. I’ve made my body do things that it couldn’t do before but that I’ve always wanted to do.”
Calisthenics and weightlifting are both resistance training. Both offer strength and muscle-building potential. However, since calisthenics works with body weight, the goals you can achieve can be different, especially when learning calisthenics skills.
🔎Calisthenics skills require both general and specific strength that weightlifting cannot always address.
For example, planche is roughly around, like performing a bench press with twice your body weight because of the high mechanical disadvantage. However, repeatedly training bench presses won’t help you achieve planche. You will need to train specifically for the planche with calisthenics work and progression, which we will cover more later.
🔥Trial and Error
“It’s great to have a structure in my Calisthenics training, up to now, it’s been a lot of trial and error, just seeing someone perform a skill and then seeing if I can do it and trying to break it down into progressions myself, it’s great to have something that helps me build in a structured way.“
Gareth’s first months with calisthenics were a bit more challenging since he needed to make his own training structure.🥺 It was great that he was able to create on his own. However, this added an additional effort from him. There are various ways to build a calisthenics program so it can get overwhelming.
👀Looking for Guidance
“I was looking for something to help me with my progressions and provide structure, and I really liked the app and the interface. “
Because of Gareth’s training experience, he knew that there should be a clear structure when working towards his desired goals. Just like the training structure in weight lifting, calisthenics also offers structure so that his training can be more concrete and progressive.
And after looking for guidance, we finally found The Movement Athlete and made headway.
“Most of the other stuff out there is very focused on one training, so it’s good to find something that has a great structure and provides ancillary training alongside the core skills.”
Specificity is key when learning a new skill.
However, if you want to optimize the process, especially when learning advanced skills, then breaking down a complex skill into more digestible, easy movements allows for faster skill acquisition. This is what Gareth is now enjoying and why he’s improving so fast in his calisthenics journey.
The Movement Athlete app breaks down a skill into four elements:
In this element, we work towards building the necessary pushing or pulling or isometric strength. It’s the main element we need to work on when learning general calisthenics exercises and specific strength-based skill work such as the planche, levers, and muscle-ups.
The strength section has primary exercises in a workout, so it’s performed during the first part of the session. Exercises are commonly high-intensity with low to moderate reps and sets. Rest periods tend to be longer to facilitate maximum recovery.
Skills elements build muscle memory, movement pathway, and mobility element for the specific exercise you are working on. Skills exercises are generally low intensity that’s why it’s performed before strength. You won’t get fatigued too much working on this section.
The low intensity comes with low to moderate training volume. It depends on the type of the movement required for the specific progression you are working on.
The muscle element covers muscle-building potential. Bigger muscles offer a higher strength capacity, so it’s worth building more muscle, especially in key areas for the specific skill you are working on.
In this section, you will find mostly the general strengthening exercises using the variation that will suit your specific skill level. Exercises are moderate intensity with moderate to high numbers of reps and sets.
And yes, you can 📍build muscle with calisthenics!
And at the last section is endurance work. Don’t be confused with cardiovascular endurance with muscular endurance. Exercises used in this section train your muscles to work for an extended period of time with loading. The weak links and core are mostly targeted here because they need additional isolation.
The endurance element has low to moderate-intensity exercises with higher rep ranges so the muscles can work for longer periods of time, especially the core, which tends to work throughout a calisthenics workout.
⚡️Combining the Elements Together
And when we combine this all together, the app provides a solid workout that develops your body in a holistic fashion while still working on the specific goal you want.
In Gareth’s case, this has been a game-changer because the structure helped him progress faster and break through plateaus in his training. At the same time, he gets to improve while minimizing the risk of injuries.
“I like the progressions; I like challenging myself to learn new skills and discovering that my body can do things I didn’t know it could do.”
Since Gareth is already an advanced athlete, he’s looking for a more challenging movement. And like we’ve said before, 🏋️♂️weightlifting strength doesn’t always translate into calisthenics requirements. This is why Gareth is pumped and motivated even more. The additional challenge provides him with a lifetime of things to work on.
🤸Clear Training Structure
“I was very impressed; finding such a well-designed app with such clear progressions was great.”
In the app, the training structure is clearly laid out for Gareth and other Movement Athletes. They can easily see which exercises they need to work on and what moves they need to master in order to achieve a specific skill.🤸
Not only that, it’s already laid out for users to enjoy. There’s no need to plan and adjust how to use the structure. All they have to do is simply train with the app, which does everything for them.
🔥 Scalable Workouts
“I like how it’s structured from the most basic to the most advanced skills.”
Even if Gareth’s already an advanced athlete, there’s no harm in starting with the easier exercises. This will allow him to progress with better technique and address any weak links that can slow down his progress.
Luckily for him, TMA offers scalable workouts. This means that the app can be used from beginners to advanced athletes alike.
However, TMA pushes the boundaries by providing a personalized training program. Workouts Gareth gets from the app are tailored based on his skill level. It’s not your average 📍cookie-cutter workout that spurts out random exercises.
In the TMA app, each exercise is tailored to your exact level. So if you can’t do push-ups but can easily do pull-ups, the program will be adjusted just for you.
Aside from the training protocols, the program even personalizes the training frequency, durations, and training equipment so that your workouts can easily fit your lifestyle. There’s no hassle, so you can easily stick to your training consistently, even with a busy schedule.
And because TMA wants users to experience the best workouts every single day, the app adapts to users’ energy levels, mood, and capacity to train. This is called 📍auto-regulation. Auto-regulation keeps Gareth’s workout challenging just enough that it’s not too taxing and frustrating to do. This is based on his previous and current training performance.✊
TMA implemented auto-regulation because it’s not every day we can show up and give 110% to our workout. There will be days that we might feel down. There will be days when other responsibilities might be too overwhelming. If so, the training program should be challenging enough but not too much that we get overtrained or burnt out.
Auto-regulation is the key to consistent, enjoyable, and sustainable training. And because of this, Gareth is now enjoying these benefits!🌟
Benefits Gareth Now Enjoys Thanks to
The Movement Athlete and Calisthenics
“I’ve made great progress in several skills that I’ve been interested in improving, like elbow lever and planche.“I’ve made great progress in several skills that I’ve been interested in improving, like elbow lever and planche.”
Training for advanced calisthenics skills is not a walk in the park. It deserves respect and smart programming. And because Gareth is training with TMA and has been doing the work, he’s gradually progressing towards advanced calisthenics skills such as the planche!
Variety and Challenges
“It’s helped me push harder and discover new approaches and skills”
Calisthenics offers many skills. The TMA app lets you choose the top goals you want to work on after mastering the calisthenics fundamentals.
The basics are crucial for building a foundation of strength, skill, body control, and mobility. This is why we place heavy emphasis on this crucial step. Once users have mastered the basics, they can choose their next path, just like Gareth did.
Like Training with his Own Fitness Coach
“Because it’s a great app that’s easy to use.”
Training structure and auto-regulation can get overwhelming and complex. But with the TMA app, Gareth has it easy. There’s nothing else for him to do but follow the program once he set his preferred training duration, goals, and equipment. The app does everything so he can focus much of his attention on his training.
Breaking through training plateaus
“Plateaus have been an issue given that I’ve been training for over 20 years, however, changing approaches and keeping things interesting helps get over those; Calisthenics is great for that because of the wide range of skills you can practice.”
Since Gareth already has two decades of training experience, a training plateau can easily hit him. But thanks to the various advanced calisthenics movement, and progressive, personalized, and adaptive approaches, he managed to break through the wall.
The holistic approach also helps by ensuring there are no weak links in his body when learning a skill.
“Training has led to a massive change in my mindset. It’s something that affects me and that I think of every day, and something that I’m working to pass on to my daughter.”
The Movement Athlete approaches training with lifetime goals in a sustainable manner. This means challenging yourself every day but not overdoing it, which can cause frustration and injuries. Longevity is the key to bodyweight movement.
This inspired Gareth to keep training to improve his health and fitness levels. It’s not just about building muscle and strength. It’s not just about learning new cool calisthenics skills. It’s about improving your body and mind and movement for life, which Gareth is happy to teach to her daughter.
And there you have it, folks. Just imagine Gareth has been training with weightlifting for 20 years but still finds new challenges in calisthenics.
But beginners, don’t get intimidated. Calisthenics and The Movement Athlete app works well for beginners too!💯
To cap off Gareth’s story, here are a few tips from him.
“Find something that you can maintain and schedule it in your diary and never miss an appointment with yourself.”
👍Tracking your training is crucial for accountability and ensuring you’re making progress. You can do it old school, like what Gareth did in the past. Record every workout. But if you want it easy, you can also use the TMA app that offers its own recording system so you can easily keep track of your progress and see the results of your training.
“I schedule training in my diary to make sure I’m making time for it, but after 20 years, it’s frankly harder not to train on my rest days than to train on training days.”
The more your train consistently, the easier sticking to your workout becomes. Don’t let your down days hold you down. And if you’re training with the TMA app, it’s going to be easy to sustain your training.
Check out The Movement Athlete app if you want to progress and improve your fitness and health. You can start your journey by trying out our full-access free trial that starts with an assessment so the app’s powerful AI can do a workout for you.🔥🔥
👊Are you ready to challenge yourself?
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