The 13 Best calisthenics equipment in 2021

If you want to start an exercise program and aren’t sure where to begin, try calisthenics. All you need to get started is gravity and your bodyweight.

That’s it. Talk about an inexpensive and space-saving workout program! 

However, if you want to make consistent progress, you will have to add the right equipment. This will allow you to take the next step towards achieving your fitness goals.

In this guide, we will look at the best calisthenics equipment available. It’s time to take your results to a new level!

Best Calisthenics Equipment

Reviews – The Best Calisthenics Equipment

CAP Barbell Push Up Bars – Best Push Up Bars For Calisthenics

CAP Barbell Push Up Bars are a great option for users that may not want a power tower.

They are chrome plated and have slip-resistant foam covered handles.

There are also rubber foot pads for stability. This is a great option to help get more out of your push-ups.

They are portable, lightweight, and easy to use, making them the best push up bars for calisthenics.

PROS 

  • Lightweight & Portable
  • Rubber Foots Pads For Security
  • Adds Intensity To Your Pushups

CONS

  • No User Weight Limit Listed

PACEARTH Wood Gymnastics Rings – Best Overall Gym Rings For Calisthenics

One of the benefits of PACEARTH Wood Gymnastics Rings is that they are available in two sizes.

There’s a 28mm size that has a load capacity of 992lbs, and a 32mm size that has a capacity of 1500lbs.

These rings are manufactured from birchwood for strength.

The straps are 14’ long and 1.5” wide with measurements so they can be adjusted to the right height quickly. The edge of the buckle is serrated for a secure fit.

The PACEARTH Rings come with hand tape to absorb sweat and provide a good grip. These are the best Rings for calisthenics.

PROS

  • Made Using Birchwood
  • Extra Wide Straps That Include Measurements For Proper Setup
  • Includes Hand Tape For A Better Grip

CONS

  • Some Users Feel Tape Quality Is Poor

RUNFast/Max 12lbs-140lbs Adjustable Weighted Vest – Best Overall

The RUNFast/Max Adjustable Weighted Vest can hold from 12 to 140lbs, and there’s enough room left for your water bottle.

This is a “one size fits most” vest, and you can add weight as needed.

The vest uses velcro straps for a secure fit.. Use it for walking, and during your calisthenics routine for added resistance. 

This is the best overall calisthenics equipment because you can perform any exercise wearing the vest, and progressively increase resistance by adding more weight as needed.

It’s based on your personal progress, it’s easy to use, and easy to add weight. Also, it doesn’t require any space, and it’s budget-friendly.

 

PROS

  • High-Quality Weight Vest Holds Up To 140lbs
  • There’s A Pocket For Your Water Bottle
  • Includes 1-Year Warranty

CONS

  • May Not Fit All Users

 

Bowflex BodyTower – Best Power Tower 

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The Bowflex Body Tower has a commercial quality steel frame and can hold a user weighing up to 300lbs.

The dip bars have 7 height adjustments, allowing users to do as many as 20 exercises. These include dips, chins, one-legged squats, and elevated push-ups. 

One of the features that sets the Bowflex Body Tower apart is sling straps and D-handle grips. These accessories allow users to do ab, arm, and lat work.

The Bowflex Body Tower is the best power tower for calisthenics because of the quality and features.

PROS

  • Features Steel Frame Construction
  • Allows Up To 20 Total Exercises
  • Includes Sling Straps & D-Handles 

CONS

  • Some Users Complain That The Foam Grips On The Dip Bars Rotate With Use

 

Iron Gym Workout Bar – Best Doorway Pull-Up Bar

If you don’t want a power tower, the Iron Gym Workout Bar is a great option. It’s much smaller and is available at a great price point.

If your doorway is 24” to 32” wide, the Iron Gym Workout Bar will fit. It has 3 grip positions, wide, neutral, and narrow, and you can use it on the floor for triceps dips or push-ups.

It attaches to the doorway by leverage so there’s no installation required. It’s built sturdy with a max user weight of 300lbs. 

This is a versatile piece of equipment that will work in any size space. Since it does not screw into your door, you can move it anywhere.

These features make it the best doorway pull-up bar for calisthenics.

PROS

  • Held Securely In Place By Leverage – Use It Anywhere
  • There Are 3 Grip Positions
  • Holds 300lbs User Weight

CONS

  • The Description Doesn’t Mention That A “Safety Wedge” Is Included & Needs To Be Installed For A Secure Fit

Gronk Fitness Wall Mounted Pull Up Bar – Best Wall Mounted Pull Up Bar

If you have a larger area and want to use a wall-mounted pull-up bar instead of a doorway version, the Gronk Fitness Wall Mounted Pull Up Bar is the best choice.

It’s made from tubular steel, it’s 48” wide, and can handle up to 800lbs, considerably more than anyone using this bar will weigh.

It has 2 long bars, one on the front and the other on the back.

The ends are slightly angled and there are multiple angled short bars at several points along the bar. This allows the use of any type of grip width and angle for a complete workout.

Additionally, the bar has anchors for gym rings and resistance bands.

PROS

  • Holds Up To 800lbs
  • Has Multiple Angled Grips
  • Made From Heavy Duty Steel

CONS

  • Installation May Be Hard For Some Users

 

Tribe Resistance Bands Set – The Best Resistance Bands For Calisthenics

This set comes with 5 resistance bands and each one is color-coded based on the amount of resistance.

For example, Yellow = 5 lbs, Green = 5 lbs, Red = 20 lbs, Blue = 30 lbs, and Black = 35 lbs. You can go up to 105lbs with these bands.

There’s a “Pro Accessories” kit included that comes with 2 cushioned handles, 1 door anchor, 2 soft ankle straps, and a water-resistant carrying bag. 

Resistance bands add more intensity to your calisthenics routine and do not take up much space. You can also take them with you if you like to train outdoors.

PROS 

  • Includes Up To 105 lbs. Of Resistance 
  • Compact & Portable
  • Inexpensive 

CONS

  • Does Not Include A Bar

Longang 2 Pack Adjustable Jump Rope – Best Jump Rope For Calisthenics

The Longang 2 Pack Adjustable Jump Rope measures 9’2” long and can be adjusted for length.

The extra rope stores neatly inside the handles, or it can be trimmed as desired by the user.

The handles are 6” long and are made from EVA memory foam for a good grip. This jump rope has a ball bearing system that prevents tangling when in use. 

A jump rope is a good choice for cardio. It’s suggested to perform the exercise on a mat because it’s not low impact.

Still, jump rope is an exercise that burns a lot of calories as well as develops coordination.

When you combine the features with a good price point, the Longang 2-Pack Adjustable Jump Rope is the best choice for calisthenics.

PROS

  • The Length Is 9’ 2” And Is Adjustable
  • Foam Handles For A No-Slip Grip
  • Tangle Free For Secure Use

CONS

  • May Be Hard On The Joints Of Some Users

Integlobe 4-Wheel Ab Roller – Best Ab Wheel For Calisthenics

The Integlobe Ab Roller is not a regular ab roller, it’s a 4-wheel design with a pyramid-style frame.

This is a design that will improve stability and control.

The wheels are made from rubber, and the handle is a steel shaft that runs through the frame for strength.

The wheels use steel axles for durability and feature quiet operation. 

This ab roller comes assembled so you can simply unpack it and start working your abs. The accessories include a knee mat and a jump rope.

The features of this ab roller make it the best choice for calisthenics.

PROS

  • Built Around A Solid Steel Bar For Strength
  • 4-Wheel Design For Increased Stability
  • Includes A Knee Mat & A Jump Rope

CONS

  • May Sit Too Low To The Ground For Some Users

 

URBNFit Exercise Ball – Best Exercise Ball For Calisthenics.

The URBNFit Ball has a non-slip surface and an anti-burst coating for safety. This is a great way to add stability training to your calisthenic workouts.

They are also good for improving core strength and posture while helping relieve pain. 

There are different size balls available based on user height, including 45cm, 55cm, 65cm, 75cm, and 85cm diameter, and there’s a size chart that matches up height to ball size.

The URBNFit Ball includes a pump, extra pugs, and an exercise guide.

All of these features combine to make this the best choice for calisthenics.

PROS

  • Ball Size Varies According To Height
  • Features Anti-Slip Surface
  • Improves Core & Posture

CONS

  • Some Users Find The Ball Needs Frequent Re-Filling

 

ProFitness Cross Training Gloves – Best Gloves/Wrist Wraps For Calisthenics

The ProFitness Cross Training Gloves are flexible neoprene with padded palms.

The glove extends down the wrist and has built-in wraps for wrist support and grip strength.

These have an open-back design and are meant for calisthenics, powerlifting, and cross-training.

They’re designed to fit male or female athletes, and are the best gloves for calisthenics.

PROS

  • Padded Palms 
  • Wrist Wraps For Grip & Support
  • Open-Back Design

CONS

  • Good For Calisthenics But Some Users Don’t Like Them For Powerlifting & Cross-Training

Fat Gripz – Best Calisthenics Equipment For Grip & Arm Work

If you want to focus your calisthenics training on your arms, one of the best exercises will be close-grip chin-up variations. You can add more intensity to this approach by using Fat Gripz.

If you consider that calisthenics requires a little imagination to specifically target certain muscles, you can see how an accessory like this can help. 

Fat Gripz is a thick, round piece of a hard rubber-like compound about 4” long and 1 ¾ “ thick.

They go over your pull-up/chin-up bar and force you to grip the bar harder. This in turn will activate more muscle fibers in the arms.

This is a popular powerlifting and bodybuilding accessory and it’s a great way to add intensity to your arm work.

Like any piece of equipment used for calisthenics, it’s a budget-friendly investment that requires no meaningful space. It’s sold as a two-pack and available in different thicknesses.

PROS

  • Forces You To Grip Harder – Adds Intensity To Arm/Back Work
  • Easily Slips On Your Chin-Up Bar 
  • Durable Hard Rubber-Like Substance

CONS

  • Not Suggested For Small Hands Or Users With Wrist Problems

Gorilla Mats Premium Large Exercise Mat – Best Mat For Calisthenics

Not every person that trains using calisthenics may want a mat or have room for one.

Some do, and for those users, there’s the Gorilla Mats Premium Large Exercise Mat.

This mat is 6′ x 4′ x 1/4″, so it’s a big mat, but it provides plenty of room to train. 

You can use it for any routine, it’s durable and has a non-slip surface. It will protect your joints and your floors.

This mat is well built enough to offer a lifetime warranty. It comes with a towel, steps, and a storage bag.

There are bigger sizes available, but this size will fit most home exercise areas. These mats are the best choice for calisthenics.

PROS

  • Large Enough To Train Seriously On
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • Your Choice Of Colors

CONS

  • Some Users Feel It’s Not Thick Enough

Buying Guide – How To Choose The Best Calisthenics Equipment?

What Is Calisthenics

Calisthenics is based on bodyweight exercises and uses minimal equipment. It uses gravity and body weight as resistance initially and the equipment you use will help increase resistance and intensity. This is called progressive overload and is one of the main principles of progress. 

Calisthenics is a space-saving program. Since there’s a limited amount of equipment required, the only space you need is an area large enough to perform the exercises. It’s easy to get started and there’s no cost. You can add equipment as you want to, and most pieces are budget-friendly.  

Benefits

Here are some of the benefits of calisthenics:

  • Calisthenics involves basic functional movements like standing, running, pushing, pulling, and balancing. Therefore, calisthenics is good for flexibility, balance, and provides a good full-body workout.
  • They can help burn fat because a good calisthenics workout involves the entire body and burns more calories.
  • It requires increased oxygen, making it beneficial for the cardiovascular and respiratory systems.
  • Calisthenics is inexpensive, space-saving and it’s easy to get started.
  • It’s convenient and can be done anywhere and anytime. 
  • Calisthenics improves muscle mass and strength.

Common Exercises 

You may remember doing pushups in school. That’s just one of the exercises that make up a good calisthenics routine. Other common exercises include squats, pullups, pushup variations, jump rope, ab work, dips, burpees, and plank, just to name a few. 

Equipment You Can Use

Perhaps the biggest benefit of calisthenics is that you don’t need much equipment or space. You can use minimal pieces of equipment, such as a doorway chin bar, push up bars, a jump rope, exercise ball, and gloves/wrist wraps. 

Many advanced exercisers use resistance bands, a weighted vest, or gymnastics rings to make their workouts harder. Some people use a mat if they don’t have a carpeted exercise area. 

The biggest piece of equipment that some users use is a power tower. This is big enough that you’ll need to make sure you have space for one. As always, measure your space and make sure there’s enough room height. For example, the Bowflex Body Tower listed in this guide is 77″ tall. 

Getting Started

If you’re new to calisthenics, the best approach is to do a basic routine using only your bodyweight. Exercises should include squats, push-ups, pull-ups, close grip chin-ups, close grip pushups, and ab work. This is as basic as it gets. From here, you can add more exercises, such as burpees or the plank. 

Also, as you progress, you can start to add in equipment. Maybe a jump rope for cardio, perhaps push-up bars, a ball, or a weighted vest. As you review this guide, you will see there are several equipment options. As noted, the great thing about using equipment like the kind presented here is that it’s a form of progressive overload. This principle is crucial to your results. 

Conclusion

Calisthenics is a good training approach for anyone that does not want to invest in an elaborate, expensive home gym. It doesn’t require any space and virtually anyone can do it. As you move forward, your choice of equipment can make a big difference in your progress. 

The best overall piece of equipment for calisthenics is the RUNFast/Max 12lbs-140lbs Adjustable Weighted Vest. This vest allows you to progressively add weight and can hold from 12lbs up to 140lbs. It fits securely and it’s portable. You can jog with it, walk with it, and perform your calisthenics routine with it. 

If you want to target specific muscle groups, such as the chest, the CAP Barbell Push Up Bars are a great choice. These small, portable push-up bars let you work your chest and shoulder muscles. You can also focus on your triceps by doing close-grip pushups, and target different parts of your chest depending on how wide you choose to place the bars. 

If you aren’t sure what to do for cardio, the Longang 2 Pack Adjustable Jump Rope is the best choice. This is an easy exercise that’s fun to do and burns calories. The rope is length-adjustable and the handles are no-slip foam for a good grip. 

Calisthenics is a workout program that will work for everybody. 

Why wait, get started today!

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