Weightlifting vs Calisthenics:

As a seasoned gym goer, I have experimented with both training with weights my bodyweight (calisthenics). The majority of my fitness journey has been spent lifting weights but recently calisthenics has been calling me. I have been using weights for a long time that it feels as though I’m in a loving and committed relationship with them but calisthenics…. She is like a mistress that keeps tempting me to go with her. Disclaimer: That was just an analogy, chill out, its not serious!

Now there are advantages and disadvantages of each one and the answer to which one is better isn’t really that clear. It really is up to the person and what they enjoy to do, so I will talk briefly about each one and then discuss both the advantages and disadvantages of each one and what I think is the best course of action to get the best workout you can get.


For the past two years, I have solely done weight training. Dumbbells, barbells, and machines have been as monumental to my exercise routine as losing has been for Chelsea. So, I have a lot of experience when it comes to weightlifting. From my perspective, I view weight training as something that is very easy to do, especially in comparison to calisthenics.


Calisthenics is something that I was forced to do during lockdown, so I didn’t really enjoy it that much but lately, I have been getting back into and it is honestly very fun to do. Weightlifting can be monotonous at times so calisthenics really is a breath of fresh air. Something about being able to control and lift your body weight sounds so exciting to me.

Progressive Overload

Progressive Overload is a term in fitness that refers to continuously making sure you are doing better in an exercise than you did last time whether that be increasing your sets, reps, or weight. It is vital if you want to build muscle. In my opinion weight training is easier to progressively overload because you just must increase the weight you are using and there are increments as small as 2.5kg which allows you to easily progressively overload.

With calisthenics, you can progressively overload but it isn’t as easy to do. Like weightlifting, you have the option of increasing your reps or sets however it’s more difficult to add weight. Although an effective way to progressively overload is by doing a more challenging version of the exercise you were doing. For example, once you are comfortable with push-ups, you then do push-ups with your feet elevated.

Mobility and Flexibility:

Calisthenics is undeniably better in terms of increasing your mobility and flexibility. Doesn’t need an explanation.


You can do calisthenics anywhere with just your bodyweight and no equipment and even if you wanted equipment to perform certain bodyweight exercises, it would still be way cheaper than having to pay a gym membership every month.

The Best Course of Action.

If you are looking for something that’s easy to do, and not hard to build muscle with, try weightlifting.

However, if you are looking for a free way to workout, that provides you with a more athletic body, try calisthenics.

And if you are in a situation like mine, I would incorporate both calisthenics and weightlifting into my routine to get the best of both worlds.

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