cal·​is·​then·​ics | \ ˌka-ləs-ˈthe-niks How to pronounce calisthenics (audio) \

Definition of calisthenics

1 : systematic rhythmic bodily exercises performed usually without apparatus
2 usually singular in construction : the art or practice of calisthenics

Examples of calisthenics in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And how about a bodysuit for doing calisthenics with those Dior dumbbells? Blue Carreon, Forbes, 6 Oct. 2021 Standard and Poor’s downgraded the credit worthiness of the U.S. after the 2011 debt ceiling calisthenics. Fox News, 15 Sep. 2021 Strength training via body weight means performing calisthenics such as sit-ups, lunges, squats, push-ups, pull-ups planks and step-ups. Melanie Radzicki Mcmanus, CNN, 19 Aug. 2021 Even so, the songs -- featuring the composer's trademark mix of musical styles and playful lyrical calisthenics -- prove catchy and touching, particularly in Andres' words about sharing Marta, who was destined for bigger things, with the world. Brian Lowry, CNN, 5 Aug. 2021 As Bikila did calisthenics in the infield, Tsuburaya headed to the finish line looking exhausted and pained. New York Times, 18 July 2021 Those who don't know it will have to participate in some silly calisthenics ... for all to see, as it's broadcast on TVs to the bar inside. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 23 June 2021 Later rabbis prescribed spiritual calisthenics to keep these prayer thieves at bay. Allan Ripp, WSJ, 20 May 2021 Before, instructors would order the recruits to run one day and concentrate on strength the next with a series of calisthenics. Sig Christenson, San Antonio Express-News, 14 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'calisthenics.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of calisthenics

1827, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for calisthenics

Greek kalos beautiful + sthenos strength

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The first known use of calisthenics was in 1827

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Last Updated

12 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Calisthenics.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for calisthenics



English Language Learners Definition of calisthenics

: physical exercises that are done without special equipment


noun plural
cal·​is·​then·​ics | \ ˌka-ləs-ˈthe-niks \

Kids Definition of calisthenics

: exercises (as push-ups and jumping jacks) to develop strength and flexibility that are done without special equipment
Hint: Calisthenics can be used as a singular or as a plural in writing and speaking. Calisthenics is an important form of exercise. This morning's calisthenics were tough.


noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction
variants: or British callisthenics \ -​iks How to pronounce calisthenics (audio) \

Medical Definition of calisthenics

1 : systematic rhythmic bodily exercises performed usually without apparatus
2 usually singular in construction : the art or practice of calisthenics


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