Calisthenics with weights and DIY weights

By performing calisthenics with weights, you will increase your muscle mass and also your strength. And who does not like that? 🙂 In here you will learn how to attach weights to you, how to hold it, how and what to backpack for a weight and the most important how to make your own weights.

There are a lot of different types of weights you can try, and I really mean it, a lot. There are ankle weights, weight vests, weights that you attach to your waist or just put heavy chains on your neck or a weight sleight, and many more. I will talk about the weights that most of your have heard.

  • Ankle weights
  • Weight vest
  • Waist belt
  • Chains
  • DIY weight

Ankle weights


Ankle weights are little bags filled with sand that you can attach to your ankles. You can add them to increase the resistance when you perform mostly pulling exercises.
You can perform pull ups, dips, leg raises, front lever, basically every exercise that your legs are off the ground. I was playing basketball with them, for gaining explosive strength. Regular training with the weights is inevitable just to maintain the strength that I have, but I prefer to do that by performing different leg exercises.

Weighted vest


There are different weighted vests, but I recommend buying a vest that will be impossible(for now) to pull up or push up with. Because in the beginning you can remove some of the weight plates and make the vest lighter.

You can perform exercises like squats, lunges, pull ups, push ups, muscle ups and many more, those are just the ones I can think off right now, but the possibilities are endless.



You’ve probably seen it in the gym or on a YouTube videos, guys putting 2,3 or even more set of chains on their necks while performing dips, push ups or pull ups. The purpose of the chains while performing, for an example, dips is to perform the exercise with extra weight on you, and maybe if the chain is very long and swings from side to side it may be more difficult than a weight vest with the same weight, the swinging chain will make you work harder. You can order chains from Amazon.

Weight belt


You can get a belt or a chain to hang the weights on it, you can hang kettlebells or plates on it. (But if you are looking to buy weights for this purpose, I recommend you to buy KBs, because you don’t need barbells for them and you can do some cool exercise with them, like KB swings, sumo squat, KB raises and many more. You should buy the plates only if you have barbels. You can make your own belt and here is how:
DIY belts

All you need is a chain, snap clip and something to put around the chain to make it comfortable for you, you can train only with the chain if you want, whatever suits you. You can order snap clip from Amazon and you can find chains in Amazon too, you can find everything in Amazon. You can put a towel around the chain to make it more comfortable.

You can order a weight belt if you don’t like to make your own, it is approximately 5-7$ more expensive than the DIY belt.

DIY weights.

Fill a normal bag with sand, just half a bag of sand and put stretch folio and/or tape around it to make it safe. This is made to lower the risk of popping up. You can put the weights in a backpack and perform pull-ups or dips with it, squats, whatever you like.

Benefits of training with weights

  • Increased resistance which means an increase of strength and muscle mass(which, of course, depends on your rep range).
  • Performing with weights will help you to get to the next level or the next progression. For an example weighted pull ups will help with your one arm chin up and front lever rows.
  • Increase in explosive strength – You can increase your explosiveness by performing different jumps with the ankle weights on you.


In my opinion, if you are a beginner or intermediate  you don’t need to perform weighted body-weight exercises, all you need to do is change leverage on your muscles and you will start performing heavy reps again. For an example, Advanced tuck front lever is harder to perform than the normal pull up, if it is hard to perform the advanced tuck front lever, just try the tuck front lever rows. Straight bar dips are harder to perform than the normal dips. Close grip pushups are harder to do than the normal push ups. You get the idea right?

And here is why I think that you don’t need weights:

Right now I am somewhere between beginner and intermediate level and it has been a year since my last weighted pull up(I did one set, a month ago, with 22 KGs, just to satisfy my curiosity and that is it), since then I learned full front lever(3 seconds hold), human flag(2 seconds hold with a bad form) and I am still working on the Advance tuck planche.

But one day I will start working out with weights again.

If you liked this article, check out the article about the Calisthenics equipment, right here!

Do you like to do weighted body-weight exercises? If you have questions, feel free to ask me anything, I would be happy to answer them.


By | 2015-11-01T20:20:18+00:00 June 15th, 2015|Equipment, Reviews|0 Comments

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