• Product: Raising The Bar Book Review
  • Price: $39.95 USD (Retail)
  • Cheapest Place to Buy: DragonDoor.com
  • Size: 224 pages
  • Guarantee: You will be challenged physically!
  • My Rating: 4 out of 5


Al Kavadlo’s Raising the Bar book shows you exactly how you can develop the body of your dreams and amazing functional strength with just a pull up bar.

Al explains how, utilizing just 3 basic moves, you can make incredible strength gains.

He showcases the all the horizontal bar exercises and workout routines that he personally follows and teaches.

Al’s advice will definitely give you the knowledge base required to develop a program that suits your fitness requirements and sculpt a great looking physique.

Al is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and is well known and well respected in the world of functional strength training, calisthenics and body weight exercises by those “in the know”.


What’s to like?

Pretty much everything. The book is well written and well laid out and is a great complement to his other book about Calisthenics called “Pushing the Limits”.

The exercises are all shown in “progressions”  using both a detailed explanation and photos. Oh, if that is not enough, you can also get Raising the Bar on DVD.

It is a great guide to “old school” calisthenics bar training techniques which have begun to find favor in exercise circles of late due to the exceptional levels of functional strength that can be developed.

The beauty of this book (and Calisthenics in general) is that the exercises are totally scale-able. This means that whether you are an absolute beginner or a seasoned athlete, you will find the exercises challenging.

Al absolutely nails the key principles on developing a great looking physique without having to spend countless hours in the gym lifting weights. Many guys think that building body strength is spending long hours in the gym, but Raising the Bar will quickly change your perception of this.

Essentially, if you develop the level of functional strength required to perform the “basic” exercises detailed by Al, then a great physique is just an added bonus.


The Weights vs Body Weight controversy!….

This book will probably annoy “lifters” but that is purely because it dispels many of the myths and misconceptions surrounding muscle building and sculpting the male body.

Throughout this book, Al shows how bar training and Calisthenics can provide you a strong, functional, and more aesthetically pleasing physique than heavy weight room training ever can.

If you are one of those “lifters”, you are probably thinking that Calisthenics and the workouts and training exercises detailed in this book are for the “athletically challenged”, you could not be more wrong.

While many athletes endeavour to get stronger by lifting heavy weights and barbells, how many of them are truly strong? How many could do a true 1-arm pull-up? Al’s routines have some incredibly difficult exercises that will challenge even the most hardcore athletes.

While heavy weight room training builds large and bulky muscles, Al’s workouts, as with true Calisthenics, will help you sculpt long and lean muscle with plenty of flexibility to. This approach to body strengthening and sculpting will give you a more aesthetically pleasing physique.

Al is so confident in his bar athletics program that he calls it the “missing element” to sculpting the ultimate male body.

Still not convinced?….Check out the video below and tell me if or when you last saw any muscle bound, gym goer show off this kind of “functional” strength.



Whats not to like…

To be honest, there’s not a lot I don’t love about this book. It is a great resource for Calisthenics training.

However, when I’m advised by an “expert” to do something I like to know why. Its just curiosity plain and simple. That and the fact that I am always trying to increase my knowledge base and so knowing and understanding the “why” is important to me and Raising the Bar didn’t cut it in this area.

The “why” may not interest many of you, but if you would like to know more about the “why” I would suggest reading Convict Conditioning by Paul “Coach” Wade.

In my opinion, it is the only downside of Raising the Bar.



If you want to discover the secrets to developing amazing levels of functional strength while also sculpting an awesome physique, Raising the Bar is one of the best books available.

If you absolutely have to know the “why” as well, then this book is not for you. However, there are other books available that cover this aspect. If you are like me and like to continually expand your knowledge on a subject, you will no doubt end up reading or buying more than one book on Calisthenics anyway.

Raising the Bar is available in both eBook and paperback format. There is even a DVD. How sweet is that! If you want to check them out for yourself, simply click on your preferred format below and you will be sent straight there:

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Take care and I’ll be blogging again soon. Enjoy!


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