4 Ways To Get Into Calisthenics & Take Outdoor Workouts To The Extreme
Living south of the equator means having weather perfectly suited to getting outside and taking your exercise routine to the next level. As South Africans, we’ve always been partial to enjoying nature and exercising outdoors – whether it’s at the park, on a coastal promenade, or even in our own backyard, doing routines that incorporate running, pull ups, sit ups and planks – basically using minimal equipment and our own bodyweight.
One such exercise is the increasingly popular Calisthenics. It’s described as the practice of a variety of movements which focus on large muscle groups. These exercises are often performed rhythmically, at differing levels of intensity and importantly – can be mastered outdoors. More popular moves are things like pull ups, chin ups and even the move called the ‘human flag’ – where you suspend your body parallel to the ground.
Popular men’s deodorant brand, Shower to Shower Men, featured Calisthenics athlete Adam Deane in their recent advertising campaign and their brand manager Claire Bowen says that it was the perfect exercise discipline to truly illustrate the deodorant’s offering…
“Our brand motto is ‘Take Fresh to the Extreme’, and when we saw Adam Deane in action, it was clear that he was literally taking his performance to the extreme. The collaboration between Shower to Shower Men and this niche but growing sport, is all about demonstrating our brand performance and efficacy”.
How to get started
She says that watching the display during the shooting of the ad just proved how intensely strong these calisthenics athletes need to be to pull off the moves. Of course, we can’t all make ourselves into a human flag, but how does someone get into the sport? Deane offers a few tips to get started:
- Start with a press up. It’s the humble beginning of Calisthenics, but one of the most important. If you’re not able to lift your own body weight, then you’re definitely not ready to lift a weight.
- Squats, lunges and the infamous ‘plank’ are next on the list. You should be able to do each of these around 20 times, without needing to be shipped off to the nearest medical centre.
- Third on the list is what’s called a ‘close grip inverted row’. Place a bar in the squat rack and take an underhand grip. Keep your hands shoulder-width apart. If you’re able, pull your body up using your arms until your chest almost connects with the bar. It’s important to keep your body as straight as possible to protect your back. Once up, pause slightly then lower yourself slowly back down. Do this 20 times.
- Once you’ve got all that right, it’s time to celebrate with a ‘Superman plank’. Get into the normal plank position, then slowly lift and extend one arm and the opposite leg, hold for five seconds or for as long as feels comfortable. Bring both your arm and leg back to the starting position and raise the opposite arm and leg.
Shower to Shower Men’s fresh new product offering can be found in most major retailer’s.
Have you got what it takes to enter #MHBEASTMODE?
Men’s Health have partnered with Shower to Shower Men to find SA’s best body-weight athletes and their fitness videos on Instagram. Over the next four months, we want to see what you can do – whether it’s the perfect planche, a mad muscle-up or a flying Superman push-up, we just want to be inspired!
All you have to do is tag your video #MHBeastMode on Instagram and you will be automatically entered.
EVERY month you could win:
- An amazing Shower to Shower Men product hamper
- R2 000 cash, and
- Feature in Men’s Health magazine
The OVERALL WINNER will earn the Beastmode 2020 title and R15 000 cash!
For more on calisthenics get in touch with the South African street workout and calisthenics association: https://www.facebook.com/SASWCA/.
Follow Shower to Shower Men: https://www.facebook.com/ShowerToShowerSA/