Curious about calisthenics and wondering if gymnastics rings are good for fitness beginners?
You’re at the start of your fitness journey and feeling excited at the prospect of getting in shape and building some muscle. But you don’t know what kind of workout to do. You’ve heard of calisthenics and now you want to know is calisthenics good (or even possible) for beginners.
What is calisthenics?
Calisthenics is an umbrella term for bodyweight exercises done with minimal equipment. Calisthenics combines strength training and gymnastics in a functional training style that builds true strength throughout the body.
Calisthenics is typically done with just your bodyweight as load (as opposed to weights like a barbell or dumbbells). It can be done on a pull up rack or rig, parallettes, or gymnastics rings.
Is calisthenics good for beginners?
Calisthenics is a fantastic choice of workout for beginners of any age, weight, or shape. Calisthenics uses your own bodyweight against gravity, so you will never put your body under excessive load like you could with gym weights.
Calisthenics builds natural progress – as you get stronger, you can do more, which in turn builds more strength. And it doesn’t just build muscle like gym workouts, calisthenics also benefits your balance, stability, core strength and self-confidence. It’s great fun, too!
What kind of calisthenics is gymnastics rings
Gymnastics rings are one of the key ways to do calisthenics exercises. They’re the ideal choice for beginners because they are relatively cheap, small, and easy to use. You don’t need a lot of space at home to use gymnastics rings, or you can carry them to the gym to use during your workout.
4 beginner exercises for gymnastics rings
Even if you’re a complete beginner to fitness, you can start doing exercises on gymnastics rings.
1 Dead hang – hanging from the rings with arms overhead. This will work on your grip, arms and back muscles
2 Plank – holding yourself in a push up position with hands in the rings. This will build strength in your arms, shoulders and chest and challenge your core and abs.
3 Support position – lifting your body off the ground by holding the rings and locking your arms out straight. This will build strength in your upper body and help you progress to harder exercises.
4 Ring rows – holding the rings at hip height, leaning backwards, and doing a rowing movement to pull your body to the rings. This is a great back muscles exercise.
Are gymnastics rings a good entry point for calisthenics?
If you only buy one piece of calisthenics equipment at this stage, make it gymnastics rings. They’re small, light, portable and versatile so you can get a great full-body workout any time. Most importantly, gymnastics rings offer you an accessible and effective way to start training in calisthenics even if you’ve never done any exercise before.
You can do a huge variety of exercises using just gymnastics rings, and this will help you build strength all over your body. With gymnastics rings you can work your upper body, back, chest, shoulders, arms, core, and lower body.
Am I too heavy or unfit for gymnastics rings?
No, gymnastics rings are a great choice for beginners of any age, weight, shape or size. Unless you have been told not to do calisthenics exercises by an expert (like a physiotherapist) then you can definitely find a few gymnastics rings to get started with.
The beauty of gymnastics rings work is that you are using your own bodyweight against gravity, so you cannot force yourself beyond your current strength abilities. As you practice, you’ll get stronger, and you’ll be able to do more. Gymnastics rings provide true natural progression.
5 benefits of gymnastics rings for beginners
1 Easy to get started
No need to get fit first or build up your strength, just suspend the rings from something safe and away you go!
2 Beginner friendly exercises
There are lots of exercises you can do on gymnastics rings even if you’ve never done any fitness or strength training before
3 See progress quickly
Gymnastics rings work will build strength quickly and you’ll see and feel the benefits in your training sessions and in daily life
4 Fun and motivating
Training on gymnastics rings will bring out your inner athlete or tap into your playful side – either way, it’s a lot of fun.
5 Good for your joints
Gymnastics rings work with your natural bodyweight and gravity, so there won’t be any harsh loads going through your joints. In fact, calisthenics is great for joint health.
How to start with gymnastics rings as a beginner
Put your gymnastics rings somewhere you will see them (if you have a home gym set up) or take them with you to the gym so they get used!
Decide on 4-6 beginner friendly exercises and work on them for a month.
Go slow and be patient, remember this is the start of a long relationship with calisthenics.
Take days off, even if your new gymnastics rings routine feels easy or you want to make faster progress.
Gravity Fitness is your new best friend for calisthenics equipment, advice, and content designed to make your fitness journey easier. Shop our store for quality wooden gymnastics rings strength tested to 400kg, and keep an eye on our socials for training tips.
Check out the Gravity Fitness store for functional fitness equipment and calisthenics kit including pull up bars, pull up racks, and wooden gymnastics rings.