Calisthenics, also known as bodyweight training, is a type of exercise that involves using one’s own body weight to build strength, flexibility, and endurance. It’s gaining popularity among fitness enthusiasts because it’s inexpensive, requires minimal equipment, and can be done anywhere. One question that often arises is whether calisthenics is enough for cardio. In this article, we’ll explore the relationship between calisthenics and cardiovascular health.

What is Cardiovascular Health?

Cardiovascular health refers to the health of your heart and blood vessels. It involves the efficient delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the body’s tissues through the circulatory system. Good cardiovascular health is important for overall physical health, as it can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, and other conditions.

How Does Calisthenics Affect Cardiovascular Health?

Calisthenics is a great way to build strength and endurance, but it may not be enough for cardiovascular health. While calisthenics exercises like push-ups, squats, and lunges involve many muscle groups and can increase heart rate, they are not sustained for long enough periods to provide a proper cardiovascular workout.

Benefits of Cardiovascular Exercise

Cardiovascular exercise, also known as aerobic exercise, is any type of exercise that increases heart rate and respiration for an extended period. Benefits of cardio exercise include:

  • Improved cardiovascular health
  • Weight loss
  • Reduced risk of chronic diseases
  • Improved mood and mental health
  • Better sleep

How Can You Incorporate Cardiovascular Exercise Into Calisthenics?

If you’re looking to improve your cardiovascular health, you can incorporate cardio exercises into your calisthenics routine. Examples of cardio exercises include running, jumping jacks, and jumping rope. You can also try incorporating circuit training, which involves doing a series of calisthenics exercises for a set amount of time, with minimal rest in between. This can help increase heart rate and provide a more sustained cardiovascular workout.

Mixing Up Your Routine

While calisthenics may not be enough for cardio, it’s still a great way to build strength and endurance. To maximize your fitness routine, it’s important to mix things up and incorporate different types of exercises. You can alternate between calisthenics and cardio exercises, or try different types of workouts like HIIT or Pilates to challenge your body in new ways.

Importance of Rest and Recovery

Regardless of the type of exercise you do, it’s important to give your body time to rest and recover. Overtraining can lead to injuries and burnout, which can set you back in your fitness journey. Make sure to listen to your body and take rest days as needed. Additionally, proper nutrition and sleep are important for overall physical health and recovery.


In summary, while calisthenics can help build strength and endurance, it may not be enough for cardiovascular health. Incorporating cardio exercises into your fitness routine and mixing up your workouts can help provide a more well-rounded fitness routine. Remember to listen to your body and give yourself time to rest and recover to avoid injury and burnout. With a balanced routine, you can achieve your fitness goals and improve your overall physical health.