You hear this a lot in gyms from every state in the country. This quote has also been made by guys who don't know jack shit about bodyweight training at least not in the same way they think they do. To them bodyweight exercise are warm-ups or pilates and all that funny looking aerobic type stuff. Why is that, how can they say such a thing? Truth of the matter is they have been sold a bill of goods by ghost writers in fitness magazines that in order to get strong you need to lift weights, take these supplements, have this type of protein powder and never need to use your own body as a source of strength training and muscle building. Well I feel pretty damn sorry for those dumbasses.
Have any of those guys heard of Gama, Karl Gotch, Kurt Thomas, Charles Atlas or one of the best football players in the world Herschal Walker? 9 out of 10 times only maybe 2 names they have heard of and thats really sad and i'll tell you why. All these men used almost exclusively nothing but bodyweight exercises and its made them somewhat superhuman. They busted their asses for years to build a level a strength and conditioning nobody can match. Take for example Karl Gotch, one of the greatest catch wrestlers whoever lived. He made his mark not as a famous professional wrestler but one of the most gifted trainers the world has ever known. His conditioning methods were second to none and he made some of the biggest marks on japanese wrestling. His training consisted of three foundamental exercises.....Push-ups, Squats & Bridging. One of his methods was using a deck of cards and shuffle them making the red cards push-ups and the black cards squats or vise versa.
I don't know about you but I would love to see one of those morons who believe bodyweight training are for warm-ups to try this out. He won't last more 20 cards. It takes strength to do a push-up no matter how you slice it but to take it to another and turn it into strength/endurance is a whole new ball game. This type of workout alone can jump start a person's conditioning within a short period of time. Take the time to learn the exercises before you jump into the cards.
Now can bodyweight exercises make you stronger? Well how about for starters most of my training is purely bodyweight and i'm 5'10 242 lbs. and I once deadlifted nearly 400 pounds without having too much training on it. I may be a big dude but I also have flexibility and did a whole deck of cards in just over 21 min. How about another guy by the name of Logan Christopher. This guy is 6'2 and 185, thats pretty skinny for a guy that height but he has strength that have impressed some of the strongest men in the world and most are far bigger then him. He has won a contest to determain the most conditioned athlete of the year and at the same time his training has helped him bend steel, rip phonebooks, bend horseshoes and in my opinion has one of the strongest necks around holding as much as 600+ pounds in a bridge.
Ultimate Bodyweight- Squats
Ultimate Bodyweight- Push-ups
Advanced Bridging Course