Bodyweight Workouts and Exercises to Get You Ripped | Onnit Academy (2023)

TMany exercisers and athletes quickly overlook (and sometimes forget) thisbodyweight training. However, you can get very strong just by training with your bodyweight.

Bodyweight training is all about the basics and the truth is, no matter how advanced you are, your body will always return to its baseline strength level. The total strength of your body weight always serves as a foundation and bridge to your other strengths.

When it comes to the basics of bodyweight training, you should be familiar with all the essential movements:squats,lunges,lizards,dominates,rows, jplank variations. Must also have the ability to climb, crawl, and walkjump. These areprimary movements.

Obviously there are hundreds if not thousands of different variations to each of the basic bodyweight training moves, but no matter what, everyone will be able to get back to the basics.

Bodyweight training serves as the foundation and engine for all of your other strengths and skills. weight machines likeRussian weights, dumbbells,dumbbells, jsandbagsThey're useless if they don't have the right bodyweight strength and conditioning base.

One of my biggest annoyances is when young athletes or new clients come into my gym and get frustrated when I don't quickly get them under a heavy bar to see how much weight they can lift.

Most of my clients (and even advanced athletes) are in TERRIBLE form and technique when they first arrive; this is perfectly normal and, frankly, all too common.

I've always made it a point to train bodyweight first and let my clients prove to me and themselves that they are strong enough to properly and efficiently handle their own bodyweight before attempting to use other strength equipment extensively.

Bodyweight training program for strength and conditioning - bodyweight standard

Duration:30-40 minutes
Frequency:3x a week
Exercise type:
weight training
stable, intentional
Varies depending on education
How necessary

The general rule of thumb I have for my clients and athletes is that they have a solid level of bodyweight strength before moving on to any type of external resistance. You should be able to easily do the following:

1. Standing Poses: Build leg strength and hip flexibilityKnee tendons.
2. 25 ace to grass bodyweight squats.
3. 5BreastPull-ups to the bar (any variation).
4. 25 platform push-ups
5. 25 lunges per leg without stopping.
6. 3 handstand push-ups OR 5 dive presses.
7. 20 recumbent rows.
8. 10 hanging knee pleats.
9. 90 second basic plank.

The bodyweight glove

Bodyweight Workouts and Exercises to Get You Ripped | Onnit Academy (1)
One of the best types of tests I like to put my athletes and clients through to challenge their overall bodyweight conditioning and strength levels is the Bodyweight Gauntlet.

I've always believed strongly in training aggressively and pushing your body to the limit to take your results to the next level. Yes, there are progressions to follow, but the bottom line is that you need to be relentless in attacking your training to get the best possible results.

The basics are always important, but the intensity uFocusshould be number one above all else!

The Bodyweight Gauntlet consists of four main movements:

1. Push-ups: any variation

2. Strict Pull Ups: All grips and variations

3. Squats: just your butt on the grass!

4. Burpees: Chest to the floor with an upward bounce

Complete a full three-minute set of each exercise and keep track of all your reps.

For a beginner, this can become brutal very quickly. As a person progresses over time, they will quickly begin to see differences in strength and general conditioning.

I do not recommend an absolute beginner to bother with it. Typically, I'll have a complete beginner progress through each of the four basic movements first to build a solid foundation of bodyweight strength and conditioning before dropping them onto the bodyweight gauntlet.

While this may seem like nothing more than a simple test of fitness, the real key to success is having a solid foundation in bodyweight strength from the start. From there, it's all about improving that power and increasing the efficiency of each movement over time.

Try it out and take the test to see where you stand. You're aTIERor just a proven soldier? Leave your comments and score!

Beyond the basics of bodyweight training

Well, beyond the basics of bodyweight training, you need to understand that in order to get stronger with your own bodyweight, you need to start moving forward in difficulty.

Being able to do squats, push-ups, lunges, and pull-ups by the dozens or even the hundreds is pretty cool, but how much? This will actually help you get into better condition, but over time you won't get much stronger max strength.

For your training to really help you gain more strength, you need to build more strength over time with more advanced movements.

This is where various advanced forms come inbodyweight exercisescome play

A great way to improve your workout and make it more advanced is to make it explosive by increasing the speed of the movement.

While this doesn't directly affect strength, it does help your body move with more power and speed, which ultimately crosses over to help you increase your overall strength. The faster you can move, the better.

One of my top training tips for my athletes and clients is to always be as explosive as possible with your movements during the concentric phase. I want my people to remember to lift fast, never slow.

Of course I want people to be in control during the eccentric part of the move, but when it's time to pucker, you need to pucker fast!

An example of this would be the push-up. Imagine you are at the forefront of the movement; As you descend into the push-up, you want to engage your entire body from head to toe (especially your core).

An important point is that your whole body should function as one solid unit, never in parts, so keep your whole body engaged throughout the movement. When you go down, you want to be in control.

You don't have to go slow, but make sure you stay in control. This is the eccentric part of the movement. Now as you come up, imagine moving your body as fast and as explosively as possible.

This is the concentric part of the movement and you always want to focus on moving as fast as possible here.

Once you start to slow down in your movement and can't move as fast as you know you can (i.e. you start working on your reps), this is a good point to stop your set.

This is known as "submax" training and is a very important key to focus on in order to increase bodyweight strength over time. I often refer to this point when doing push-ups, pull-ups, and rows.

I see a lot of people doing these moves to failure, and if you train like that all the time, you sear your central nervous system.

Long story short, your central nervous system takes much longer to recover than your muscles. So as long as you train to failure, your body will take much longer to recover from your training.

Regeneration und Bodyweight-Training

Bodyweight Workouts and Exercises to Get You Ripped | Onnit Academy (2)
In order to get stronger, your body needs to recover, and if you're always tired of going through all your steps to eliminate failure, you'll have a hard time getting stronger faster.

The overall goal is to focus on being FAST with your movements and avoiding missing your sets most of the time. Be efficient and sharp with your moves and you'll keep making progress. Just think: quality over quantity.

Another way to increase your overall strength is to use advanced variations of movements. Of course, unless you're someone who can do advanced moves, you need to work on your progress.

When it comes to building more strength through bodyweight movements, making the movement more difficult should be a no-brainer.

One of the easiest ways to make a bodyweight movement more advanced is to change the position of your feet or hands.

Using the push-up as an example again: an easy push-up for beginners would be your regular push-up from the floor, the next step would be a feet-up push-up on a box.

You could also implement using asling trainerand do push-ups while holding the straps or hanging your feet from the straps. You can also do range-of-motion push-ups with your hands on medicine balls or boxes.

There are practically unlimited things you can do to advance.

You can bring speed and power into the mix by doing explosive plyometric push-ups, which would be another way to make your regular push-ups even harder.

One of the best advancements would be to eliminate the opposite entirely.ArmAway and do push-ups with one arm.

The point is that there are literally thousands of ways you can enhance your various bodyweight training moves to make them more challenging. The harder you make them, the more power you'll gain in the end.

Another example would be switching to the lower bodysquattinggradients. Obviously, you would start with your basic bodyweight squat, making sure you always get your "butt on the grass" first, and then progress from there.

One of the first things you could do to make it harder is to add an explosive jump at the end of your squat. This would be another example of how you can manipulate the speed of your movement.

You can also hold your hands over your head in a prisoner position or overhead to make it more difficult. To take things to another level, implement the single leg squat (aka the pistol squat).

Standard bodyweight tips and tricks

Bodyweight Workouts and Exercises to Get You Ripped | Onnit Academy (3)
1. Focus on the basics first

Master your basic squats, push-ups, pull-ups, rows, lunges, and your running, jumping, climbing, and crawling skills. Once you get the hang of it, you can move on to the more advanced moves.

2. Train FAST

Concentrate on making your moves as crisp, clean, and explosive as possible.

3. Avoid mistakes

Reps to failure will set you back in the long run. Leave a few reps in your tank on each set. This keeps you fresh and allows you to train aggressively more often.

4. Regarding the bodyweight glove

Make sure you only do this type of challenge every 4-6 weeks as it will make you push yourself beyond failure. Doing the Bodyweight Gauntlet or similar type of extreme training too often and too frequently will result in poorer overall results.

How to stretch for a bodyweight workout

Follow the videos below for full-body pre-workout warm-up routines. For more mobility and stretching tips, follow Onnit Durability Coach Cristian Plascencia on Instagram (@cristian_thedurableathlete).




Bodyweight exercises and workouts

Below are three different workout levels: Beginner A and B, Intermediate A and B, and Intermediate A and B. The workouts are progressive in nature, so if you're a beginner you should start with Beginner Workouts A and B..B and then advance to Intermediate and then to Advanced.

The workouts are designed so that you first perform an explosive/plio movement to get the body moving quickly, and you'll propel it through the rest of the workout.

From there, you'll work your way up to some no-fighter supersets with a combination of upper- and lower-body strength exercises, and then finish your sessions with some foundation exercises. Advanced workouts end with a short conditioning interval through a Tabata set.

If you want to use these workouts as a complete program, spend four weeks on each level as follows:

Week 1 – A, B, A
Semana 2 – B, A, B
Week 3 – A, B, A
Semana 4 – B, A, B

This way you would perform each workout 6 times, giving you ample time to increase efficiency in the various movements included in each workout. After the fourth week I would take a week off to allow the body to recover and then go back to the next level with the next set of exercises.

Bodyweight Workout for Beginners A


Muscles worked:Legs, back, posterior deltoids, core.

Bodyweight training for beginners B


Muscles worked:back, legs, shoulders, core.

Advanced Bodyweight Training A


Muscles worked:legs, chest, back, core.

Advanced Bodyweight Training B


Muscles worked:Legs, chest, shoulders, core.

Advanced bodyweight training


Muscles worked:Legs, chest, shoulders, back, core.

Advanced Bodyweight Training B


Muscles worked:Legs, chest, shoulders, back, core.

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