Can’t get enough of them.
Like gulping down ice cold water on a hot sunny day.
That’s why you are still looking to quench your thirst for more.
After going through the 14 Bar Brother beginner routines and beyond the 6 month workout plan.
You might feel a little bit lost. What’s the next step?
Where do you go from here?
These intermediate calisthenics workout plans will keep you busy for the coming time.
Whether you think you are already training hard or not, these routines will give the word ‘hard’ another meaning.
Both in terms of strength and cardiovascular adaptation.
Kill the human flag. Murder the muscle up. And breakthrough the back lever.
Search no more and gulp down these routines.
They will quench your thirst, trust me.
Calisthenics Workout Routine Time
These routines require a strong foundation.
Don’t jump into them too early, or you might end up hurting yourself.
If you combine a strong foundation with these specific drills, new levels of skill will unlock to you.
Essentially there are 5 intermediate strength skills which you want to aim for:
- Front lever
- Back lever
- Muscle Up
- Pistol Squat
These intermediate skills are covered in the routines.
Different skills will have a different effect on your body and doing just one skill comes at the expense of something else.
Those are factors to keep in mind when building the body you want.
How do you start? 4 simple steps.
1) First set a a clear goal in terms of what skill(s) you want to master.
2) Find a routine that matches your specific goal.
3) Determine how often you are going to train for that specific goal. This needs to be at least 3 days a week.
4) Take action.
It’s not rocket science and while it’s easy to do.
It’s also easy not to do.
Now that you’ve written down those goals. Let’s get started.
Routines For The Muscle Up
If you are like most people it’s probably the muscle up that caught your attention first.
9 out of 10 times it’s the number one goal on the list of beginners.
The quality of the execution plays a very big role in what you actually get out of the move.
There is a big difference between a strict and a kipping muscle up.
The former uses very little motion generated from the legs, while the latter does the opposite and tries to maximise motion from the legs.
And as a result increases the ease of the exercise at the cost of the adaptive forces.
The muscle up is a combination of both pulling and pushing exercises which makes it an integral compound movement for people beyond the beginner level.
If you aren’t too sure about the quality of your muscle up, make sure you read The Minimalist Guide To A Muscle Up For Beginners.
Routines For The Back Lever
Generally the back lever is the first ‘intermediate’ foundational skill that most people achieve.
The postition of the body provides you with a biomechanical advantage which makes it much easier than the front lever.
A good back lever in turn can contribute to a better front lever and the same goes the other way around.
The skills aren’t both indicative however.
Someone with a good front lever will generally also have a back lever, someone with a good back lever doesn’t necessarily have a good front lever.
A big emphasis in the back lever is placed on the ability of the shoulders to stay active in the horizontal position.
A skin the cat and the tucked back lever are essential exercises to develop what is referred to as protraction of the shoulder blades.
Where the shoulder blades are pushed away from each other actively.
For more information read The Back Lever Progression For Beginners.
Routines For The Front Lever
The front lever is a foundational high level skill that will put a great emphasis on a strong core and especially strong lats.
Contrary to the back lever the front lever focuses on retraction, or the pulling together of the shoulder blades.
The combination of both active lats and retracted shoulder blades will allow you to stay in the air horizontally.
Easier variations such as leg raises and back levers will help you in the development of the front lever.
Routines For The Planche
The planche is one of those skills many people wish to have, but few actually achieve.
The required level of strength coming both from the shoulders and lower back is beyond what most people can even comprehend.
Nevertheless it’s a great goal to have and an amazing isometric exercise for higher level skills.
Planche work can be combined with front or back lever work in order to balance both pushing and pulling with straight arms.
This implies that all the strength comes from the shoulder connection.
Whereas with the muscle up, part of the bicep/tricep is used to a greater extent.
For a more detailled explanation read Your Road To The Straddle Planche.
Routine For The Human Flag
Similar to the front and back lever, the human flag is a straight arm element.
The emphasis in this case is placed mostly on the obliques or the sides of the abs in addition to the shoulder and the lats.
While it’s a great sight to see and a nice goal to have, it doesn’t translate to more advances moves in a way that would make you want to choose it over the back lever, planche or front lever.
But if it’s on that bucket-list of yours, it’s definitely a great goal to have.
Pistol Squat Routine + 1 Bonus Leg Killer Routine
It is well documented that leg training aids in overall upper body strength.
Not training your legs only backfires in the long run.
Contrary to the shoulders which are capable of very complex movements, the legs rely mostly on intensity.
They carry your entire weight during the day and are therefore mostly consisting of different types of fibres which need to be recruited in a different way.
These routines will make sure you know you’ve had a leg day the day after.
If you are still struggling with pistols, make sure you read The Guide To Learn The Pistol Squat.
3 Levels Of Intermediate Training Schedules
At an intermediate level you have the basics down.
Not only do you have them down with good quality, but you also integrate them into your warming up.
The basics become a conditioning tool to get your muscles and body ready for the higher strength requirements of intermediate skills.
Ready to jump in?
Level 1: Intermediate Rookie
You want to see some results, but aren’t really committed.
The rookie level is the bar minimum of training required to see any type of results.
Chances are that if you are at an ‘intermediate level’ already you probably workout more than 3 days a week consistently.
If you aren’t or never have, you most likely lack connective tissue strength.
Still, if you are looking for an easy workout schedule for intermediate training.
This will provide you with a good schedule to rely on.
Level 2: Intermediate Beginner
You are looking for a high intensity training schedule with ample rest.
The intermediate beginner level will give you less rest than the rookie schedule and a higher intensity.
But in between days you will still have enough time to recover even if you don’t actively focus on it.
Combining pushing and pulling schedules with both bent and straight arm focused skills.
In addition to a better balance between leg and upper body strength for an overall stronger body.
Level 3: Intermediate Veteran
You are serious and willing to train most if not every day.
At the veteran level you’ll have to focus on your rate of recovery for a significant amount of time.
The harder you train the harder you’ll need to recover.
Without proper focus on recovery you will not sustain this type of training for a long period of time.
As with any routine or workout schedule, it all depends on your goals.
These 3 workout plans serve as a tool which you can use to design your own plan.
Keep in mind that your warming up is a key to a good workout.
At this level if you haven’t been focusing on flexibility you will find yourself in a tight suit.
The front pike is a good place to start working on flexible hamstrings with calisthenics.
NEVER make concessions on your warming up and your flexibility.
At the intermediate level, you probably already know this.
Still, it cannot be repeated enough.
Make Your Own Calisthenics Workout Plan
No workout plan is the same.
As you progress from beginner to intermediate, you’ll realize that the name of the game is: “Individualization”.
You’ll need to develop the skill to draw your own picture.
What do you want to achieve? Are you really ready?
Part of development and becoming better is realizing that you will need to start taking responsibility for your achievements.
If it were easy every Bar Brother would do these exercises.
The secret? It’s all about perfecting the basics first.
You need to make sure that your basics are flawless.
You need to be able to do them with your eyes closed.
I know you are thirsty for more.
But when you drink the water.
Remember the spring.
Beast Mode ON!
PS. This article was written by Rich Andoh
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