BENGALURU : If you take a stroll through Jayamahal Park, you might chance upon a bunch of men and women pulling themselves up on the bar, performing bar-rolls, monkeying around or simply chilling. These fitness enthusiasts have formed an urban calisthenics community and call themselves Calisthenics Beasts. Urban calisthenics is a form of street workout where an individual performs exercise routines in urban areas. They train to perform advanced calisthenics skills such as muscle-ups, levers, and various freestyle moves such as spins and flips.
Started in 2015 by Ashwin Haridas, Calisthenics Beasts as a community aimed at getting the youth fitter through bodyweight exercises. The community was soon joined by Suhail Pasha, Shahaan Umer and Hemasree S, all of whom now coach anyone interested at the public park in Jayamahal and gyms in Indiranagar.
“I came across Calisthenics Beasts during a fitness competition and approached them after they won in every category present. They not only trained me, but also had me winning my first national competition within a span of just six months,” says Anupama Shivacharya, a media professional.
The biggest advantage of calisthenics is you need minimal or no equipment to perform. You can also practise anywhere in a limited space. The group works out in open air and is more of a community than a commercial gym. “Be it a stressful, happy or gloomy day, reaching Jayamahal Park and working out with these amazing mentors, friends and athletes has become an integral part of my life. Each day, I can feel my strength growing and I am flourishing as an athlete. I love that we meet on time and get to spend time with this family of calisthenics enthusiasts who like to keep physically and mentally fit,” says Ashish Bhattarai, a chartered accountant.
The community believes that calisthenics serve as a great outlet for people who are looking to skip the gym or can’t make it to one. A park with parallel and pull-up bars is all they need to build strength, flexibility and mobility. Hemasree S, a dentist, said, “Calisthenics Beasts is not just a place to work out but also gave me a sense of belonging to the community that accepted me for who and what I am, supporting my dreams. Calisthenics Beasts not only helped me build strength physically but also made me a better person.” If anybody wishes to join this fitness community, you can walk up to them at the park or get in touch with them on Instagram, Calisthenics_Beasts.