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-   -   Calisthenics vs. weight training (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=206829)

Rickson 06-30-2008 07:43 PM

Calisthenics vs. weight training
 
I used to be into heavy weight training several years ago and working at various gyms at the time made it easy for me, but recently, I've been doing more calisthenics than anything else. What I've noticed is that people who lift light weights exclusively can not do calisthenics particularly well while people who lift heavy weights are usually pretty good at calisthenics too. People who do calisthenics exclusively can obviously lift their own bodyweight so they could transition into weights well if they wanted, but they usually can't lift extremely heavy weights. I like doing both and if I had to choose one over the other, I wouldn't choose, but I know some guys who love the weights exclusively and I know even more guys who do calisthenics exclusively. If you work on machines, that counts as weight training. What's your opinion?

superman1 06-30-2008 08:18 PM

I said weights but I guess I do both, since I do pull-ups and crunches and dips.

Some of the fittest people out there do solely calisthenics and cardio. They do it every day, or almost every day, and their bodies get ripped. I'll probably go more in that direction when I get older. Even though I push myself hard in the weight room, I think heavy weight training is relatively easy compared to what some of these super fit people do.

dcottrill 06-30-2008 08:31 PM

While I believe that both are useful, as I get older, I am starting to lean more towards calisthenics. I think it is more important to be able to control your own body rather than throw big weights around. One of the most pathetic sights I have ever seen was a powerlifter trying to do pullups. Really sad. :cry:

Rickson 06-30-2008 08:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by superman1 (Post 2477243)
Some of the fittest people out there do solely calisthenics and cardio. They do it every day, or almost every day, and their bodies get ripped. I'll probably go more in that direction when I get older. Even though I push myself hard in the weight room, I think heavy weight training is relatively easy compared to what some of these super fit people do.

I met an assistant wrestling coach from Boston and this guy was in sick shape. This guy would climb the ropes at the Santa Monica Beach with his body in an L shape meaning he didn't even use his legs. This guy did the traveling rings with ease and if anyone's ever tried them, you'll know they're not easy. I always wondered if the wrestling coach could bench press what I could and I thought, probably not, but one thing I knew for sure was that I couldn't do a lot of the things he could do. You can be in good shape by lifting weights and by doing calisthenics, but I believe that someone who's proficient in calisthenics has better body control than someone who lifts weights exclusively. Don't get me wrong, one is not necessarily better than the other, but if you want to be a mountain climber one day, I'd say calisthenics would be better training than free weights.

Kobble 06-30-2008 10:01 PM

I do both, but I favor bodyweight exercises. I only use weights for legs since I need the extra resistance. I think the problem with calistenics is that the weight is too light. Of the common exercises, only dips and pullups will usually cause someone to max out in the 8-10 range. Pushups, squats and lunges are childs play for most people until 20 reps is hit. So, they get themselves out of the anaerobic strength range. I think if people tried to work up to planche pushups, pistols, and advanced pull ups, the necessity of weights would be diminished.

To be honest, I think calisthenics are much better for a majority of athletes. I think weights got popular due to isolation exercises and the ability to compete with fellow gym members with a number system. I think the prime advantage of weights is for lower body development.

Rickson 06-30-2008 10:18 PM

This is why we have weight belts. You can use a combination of weights and calisthenics by adding a 45 between your legs. Yes, sometimes bodyweight exercises become too easy, but variations of certain exercises make them much more difficult. Almost everyone can do a pullup, but how many people can do a muscleup on a pullup bar? You'd have to be able to do at least 20 pullups to the chest and at least 20 deep dips in order to do a single bar muscleup. The 45 between the legs might speed up the process due to higher intensity.

tricky 07-01-2008 12:01 AM

Yeah, one reason why Crossfit training has broken into mainstream fitness is because it balances aspects of weight training with functional movement training, which includes a lot of BW exercises and imbalanced weighted movements. A supercharged version of calisthenics.

This kind of training offers two real benefits that overlap into weight training (i.e. powerlifting or use plain ol' lifting heavy.) First, often, you're dealing with skill acquisition issues where you're trying to coordinate your body, especially your lower and upper body to some new movement pattern. Even well trained gym rats often get very sore when trying out rings or rope climbing, because it's just alien to move against a weight without having your feet as a base. All this improves the use of your core, which translates back to better lifts because your ability to coordinate the core with simpler movements becomes significantly improved. Second, when you undergo this training, because you're activating a lot of muscles at the same time, you push your neural drive capacity, especially in those muscles. That increases your intensity, and that can also increase speed of strength adaptation.

Calisthenics and high level movement training is important in sports like tennis, because most of the power comes from loading of complex kinetic chain sequences in a dynamic (i.e. moving) environment. As your coordination and movement patterns improve against weight, your ability to adjust, relax and then explode improves. That is why a guy like Federer may not be the biggest guy in the gym, but he is a world class and explosive athlete for his sport.

chess9 07-01-2008 02:48 AM

Have you seen the YouTube videos of Murray's fitness routines? LOL. After beating Gasquet (a sad day in Wimby history) he had the chutzpah to flex his anemic bicep. But, for tennis, I'm guessing that what matters most-technique aside-is simply some overloading. After that, it's all a matter of degree.

I prefer lifting. I enjoy lifting heavy one day per week. I think it keeps me strong for stuff like occasional heavy lifting I do in life.

-Robert

NotAtTheNet 07-01-2008 05:39 AM

I love both, though routine-wise I typically hit the weights more religiously, I recently purchased a pull, dip and push up station. Anytime I'm tempted to something like eat junk food or watch tv, I do consecutive sets of pull ups, push ups and dips to exhaustion (normally about 20/40/18 ) and i average about at least 6-8 sets of these a day (with depreciating reps of course). Also since I tend to not lift on days prior to a match or hitting with a rival, the calisthenics do a great job of some muscle maintenance. I feel it also keeps limber and not so tight, as opposed to when I was only lifting. Hmm... hope some of this makes some sense to people...

dcottrill 07-01-2008 05:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chess9 (Post 2477738)
Have you seen the YouTube videos of Murray's fitness routines? LOL. After beating Gasquet (a sad day in Wimby history) he had the chutzpah to flex his anemic bicep.

I'm guessing you're not a Murray fan.

malakas 07-01-2008 05:47 AM

I love weight lifting and I dislike calisthenics.I don't know what is better for your body,but.. I don't really care.
For exercise I do what I like the best,because is personal time,like a hobby.

chess9 07-01-2008 05:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dcottrill (Post 2477984)
I'm guessing you're not a Murray fan.

Good grief, no. He pulls more faces than Red Skelton did. What a whiney Scot.... In his defense, he did show some character pulling out the match against Gasquet. :) If he wins his next match I'll have to reassess my view, but that seems most unlikely. ;)

-Robert

TopShelf 07-01-2008 02:32 PM

I lift weights but include "dips, pullups" etc. for each body part
I don't raise my "lifting level" greatly so I can be more leaner on the court.

summer 07-02-2008 09:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NotAtTheNet (Post 2477974)
I love both, though routine-wise I typically hit the weights more religiously, I recently purchased a pull, dip and push up station. Anytime I'm tempted to something like eat junk food or watch tv, I do consecutive sets of pull ups, push ups and dips to exhaustion (normally about 20/40/18 ) and i average about at least 6-8 sets of these a day (with depreciating reps of course). Also since I tend to not lift on days prior to a match or hitting with a rival, the calisthenics do a great job of some muscle maintenance. I feel it also keeps limber and not so tight, as opposed to when I was only lifting. Hmm... hope some of this makes some sense to people...


How much did the machine cost?

Rickson 07-02-2008 12:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by summer (Post 2481810)
How much did the machine cost?

It's not actually a machine as much as a stand. If you're looking for a pullup/dip assist machine, that'll cost you some extra bucks, but if you have no problem moving your own bodyweight, you can pick up a dip/pullup stand for around a hundred bucks.

NotAtTheNet 07-02-2008 12:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rickson (Post 2482517)
It's not actually a machine as much as a stand. If you're looking for a pullup/dip assist machine, that'll cost you some extra bucks, but if you have no problem moving your own bodyweight, you can pick up a dip/pullup stand for around a hundred bucks.

yeah, its not a machine, but a bunch of metal pipes really... and i bought it used of craigs list for like 20 bucks. usually around march to april when people abandon their new years resolutions you'll find deals on good used exercise equipment.

Klatu Verata Necktie 07-02-2008 12:38 PM

I choose weights because I enjoy doing them. Since I enjoy my workouts, I do them happily and consistently.

Rickson 07-02-2008 12:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Klatu Verata Necktie (Post 2482572)
I choose weights because I enjoy doing them. Since I enjoy my workouts, I do them happily and consistently.

Klatu! I'm shocked that you don't include dips and pullups in your routine! Whatever you do, Klatu, make those workouts count and keep the intensity high.

malakas 07-02-2008 12:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Klatu Verata Necktie (Post 2482572)
I choose weights because I enjoy doing them. Since I enjoy my workouts, I do them happily and consistently.

I agree.The best exercise is the one you enjoy.If you actually don't like the workout sooner or later you will stop.

Rickson 07-02-2008 12:55 PM

Noone can be forced into liking an exercise so if you hate pullups, you're not gonna do them. I have never done lunges in my life and I probably never will so yeah, if you don't like a particular exercise, don't do it. Have fun with your workouts.


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