Here at the School of Calisthenics we like to break down complex movements, explain the principles behind them, what we need to do and then how we can progressively build up the specific strength aspects we need for things like the Human Flag.
The Human Flag is certainly one of those movements that feels impossible when you first try it. But stick with us and we’ll show you how to redefine your impossible!
• Before jumping into a flag hold you want to make sure that you are able to stabilize your shoulder for this inverted hold so as not to injure yourself.
• Begin facing the vertical bar or pole while positioning the arms. The top hand can be in a cup grip, twisted grip, true grip or in the case of a tall set of parallel or stall bars, a T-grip.
• Once the hands are positioned push out of the bottom shoulder while engaging (or pulling down) withe the shoulder of the upper arm to rotate the body up and away from the pole. Think about trying to lengthen the distance from your ear to your shoulder on both sides to prevent sinking into or collapsing into your shoulders.
In the world of calisthenics most static [still] and dynamic [movement] exercises require a tremendous amount of strength. The front lever is one of the most challenging and represents a measurable milestone along your calisthenics journey. The front lever is a move that requires herculean shoulder, lat and core strength. This article covers the basics and provides a solid starting point.
Every wintertime workout warrior knows just how difficult it can be to stay motivated when temperatures dip. Facing the cold just doesn’t seem appealing when you can curl up with some hot cocoa and watch Netflix. But if you’re focused on strength training, you’ll lose a lot of ground if you regularly skip workouts during the winter. To help motivate you, here are some tips for how you can get outside and maintain your strength-training progress during winter:
Calisthenics – Bodyweight Training – Street Workout. Regardless of the term, many of us have a general understanding of what it is. We can thank Instagram and YouTube for the rapid dissemination of this “seemingly new” modality of strength training. Some of the most recognizable first movers in this sport are Hannibal for King and Frank Medrano. Their viral videos spread across the globe and spawned a movement akin to what Bob Marley did for reggae music. Their natural bodyweight extraterrestrial strength, without the intervention of iron weights, intrigued the masses and helped spawn a movement.
Growing populations of fitness enthusiasts have found street workout inspiration on Instagram or YouTube but often the videos they discover only display the difficult dynamic movements such as muscle ups, or static movements such as front levers and planches. These exercises require a tremendous amount of strength and stability, making them near impossible to perform for novices.
Exercise resistance bands offer a significant advantage compared to training with only your bodyweight; you are able to remove “x” amount of pounds [or kg] from your own body weight, while still performing the same core movements. This in turn means, that you will teach your neuromuscular system the correct body mechanics and which muscles to activate during the movement progressions.
Our friends over at Calisthenics 101 (https://www.calisthenics-101.co.uk) have put our assisted pull-up bands to good use to showcase 10 different assisted exercises you can try to get the most from your bands. Give their article a read and let us know what you think.
I’m all about eating clean, but I always think there is no shame in splurging occasionally. While there is plenty deliciously yummy, healthy foods out there, every once in awhile you just need to have a scoop of ice cream or a few of your favorite chips. However, the problem is sticking to just a scoop or just a few. Having a small treat isn’t going to ring you up super high on the calorie meter, however the majority of us are eating way more than the recommended serving size. So while we look at the nutritional info and can live with the extra 100 or so calories of fat and sugar, we are likely getting way more as the portions we eat don’t match what the back of the box. That’s why today I’m compiling a list of all my favorite guilty foods to discuss the unhealthy reality when it comes to portion size. (Read More)
As a first time dad, I can attest that the only thing more rewarding than watching your child grow up... is getting a workout while watching your child grow up. Family time doesn’t need to come at expense of ‘hit the pump shop and get jacked time’. [For all you non-meatheads I’m referring to gym workouts].
There are plenty of options that allow you maintain your physique and your loving-parent status. Did you know that bodyweight workouts are the number 1 fitness trend of 2015 according to the [scholarly] ACSM journal
Additionally, Mia and I would like to formally introduce the emergence of ‘babyweight training’...
Need more babyweight training ideas? All you have to do is ask.
Have some babyweight training ideas to share? Ping us an email.
Perhaps it’s just because I live in LA, but it seems like everyone and their dog is going gluten free. Even though I took nutrition classes in college, I admittedly don’t know much about gluten other than everything comes gluten free nowadays. Turns out I’m not alone. If you skim through the video, you’ll get a good laugh at the many people who are devout to their gluten free lifestyles and don’t even know what they’re avoiding. But hey, this is LA and we’re a little nuttier than the rest of America.
So what is Gluten?
Depending on who you ask gluten is synonymous with death, but it’s actually a protein. Or rather it’s a combination of two different proteins: gliadin and glutenin. Gluten acts as a glue, and helps food hold their shape.
Where is Gluten found?
Gluten is found in the plant’s endosperm. The endosperm is a tissue produced by plants that surrounds the embryo and provides nutrition. We grind wheat endosperm into flour to create yummy breads and pastas. Gluten is not only found in wheat, however, its also found in rye, barley, and triticale.
Since you’re probably not looking for the gluten right off of the plant, you’re more likely to run into at the grocery store in items including:
Or you know… just all the good stuff.
So is gluten bad for you?
While most of those items aren’t exactly the healthiest, gluten itself isn’t the worst for you. Gluten is a serious problem for those with celiac disease or those who suffer from a gluten sensitivity. For those who suffer from these conditions, even in taking a small amount of gluten can be severe.
For those of us who are lucky enough to be free from these conditions, however, going gluten free might not magically solve all of our health problems.
“People who are sensitive to gluten may feel better, but a larger portion will derive no significant benefit from the practice. They’ll simply waste their money, because these products are expensive,” claims Dr. Leffler an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.
When you should go gluten free:
Perhaps you really are one of the unlucky ones who experience a gluten intolerance, but before you start up a gluten free diet, you should go get yourself checked out by the doc. As great as web MD is you’ll want the real doc to help you plan out a healthy gluten free diet. If you think you’re experiencing these symptoms, you might want to get yourself checked out.
Common symptoms found in adults:
unexplained iron-deficiency anemia
bone or joint pain
bone loss or osteoporosis
depression or anxiety
tingling numbness in the hands and feet
seizures or migraines
missed menstrual periods
infertility or recurrent miscarriage
canker sores inside the mouth
an itchy skin rash called dermatitis herpetiformis
And if you’re worried about a little one, common symptoms found in children:
abdominal bloating and pain
pale, foul-smelling, or fatty stool
irritability and behavioral issues
dental enamel defects of the permanent teeth
delayed growth and puberty
failure to thrive
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
For more resources on celiac disease check out our links below: