6 Best Calisthenics Exercises to Strengthen Your Muscles

Calisthenics exercises help to build muscle strength. (Photo via Pexels/RODNAE Productions)
Calisthenics exercises help build muscle strength. (Photo via Pexels/RODNAE Productions)

Calisthenics exercises are basically bodyweight-based workouts performed using no added gym tools. These exercises are practiced using different levels of intensity and engage the large muscle groups.

The best thing about calisthenics exercises is that they're great for beginner-level exercisers. When performed consistently over a period of time, these exercises can help improve muscle flexibility, endurance, and strength.

While calisthenics doesn’t require any equipment, sometimes these exercises may be performed using light handheld pieces of equipment.

Calisthenics exercises to strengthen muscles

Here’s a look at the top six calisthenics exercises to develop and strengthen muscles. Perform them in a sequence at least three times, with a 20-second break between each set.

1) Burpee

Step-by-step instructions:

  • Take a tall standing position with your shoulders rolled back and abs engaged.
  • Push your hips back, and bend your knees to get into a squat position.
  • Place your hands in front of you on the floor, and try to balance your body weight on your hands.
  • Bring your feet back into a plank position, and jump back again to get into the previous position.
  • Stand up straight, and repeat the exercise.
  • Do three sets of ten burpees.

2) Push-up

It's done as follows:

  • Start in a high plank position with your elbows below the shoulders and core tight. Keep your gaze at the bottom, and ensure that the neck is stable.
  • Keep your head, leg, and spine in a straight line. Bend your elbows, and lower your chest till it nearly touches the floor.
  • Push your body back to the plank position.
  • Complete three sets of ten reps.

3) Pull-up

It's done as follows:

  • Stand beneath a pull-up bar, and jump to grab it. Place your hands slightly wider than shoulder width, and ensure that your palms are facing outward.
  • Cross your legs; bend your knees, and engage your abs as you pull your body up till the chin gets above the bar.
  • Extend your hands, and lower your body to return to the starting position.
  • Repeat.

4) Crunch

It's done as follows:

  • Lie on the floor on your back. Positioning your feet flat on the floor, bend your knees at a 90-degree angle and hands behind your head. You may also cross your hands and place them on top of the chest.
  • Keep your core muscles tight, and try to sit up till the chest nearly touches the knees.
  • Ensure that you use your core muscles to pull your body up. Keep breathing easily as you sit up and lie down back.

5) Side Lunge

It's done as follows:

  • Stand tall with your feet at shoulde distance and arms by the sides.
  • You may also keep your hands in the front, with your palms clasped together. Ensure that the shoulders are relaxed and the chest is out throughout the exercise.
  • Taking a step to the left with your left leg, bend your knee, and slowly lower your body towards the same direction.
  • As you do that, ensure that your hips are pushing out, and your weight is on your left leg.
  • Push your body back to the centre, and perform the same movement with your right leg on the right side.
  • Continue to lunge alternatively, and complete ten reps on each side.

6) Box Jump

It's done as follows:

  • Stand straight with a sturdy box a few steps away from you. Ensure that your feet are at shoulder distance.
  • Slightly bend down to get into a jump position while keeping your gaze on the box.
  • Jump high, and land softly on the box. As you land, ensure that your body is slightly bent forward, as that will prevent you from falling.
  • Squat down, and jump back on the floor.
  • Complete ten reps.


The aforementioned calisthenics exercises are easy to perform and are sure to help enhance muscle strength, stamina, and power. These exercises target the full body and help you stay fit and active.

While doing these exercises, be mindful of your form, and ensure that you're performing the moves correctly, as improper form and incorrect movements can lead to muscle strain and injuries. If you're a beginner, start slow, and work under a trainer to keep your calisthenics routine safe and effective.

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Edited by Bhargav
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