My friend is training with me doing calisthenics. He is consistent with his training and diet, gaining weight when weighed at the end of every week. I did a little bit of research for him as to why he hasn't seen any results. From my research I've seen some academics saying that if someone is a non-responder he can change up the reps, volume, etc to see results. But some others say that in studies they found out that they have an inflammatory response to weightlifting and so more volume will do them harm.

Is this a medical issue he is facing? Is that inflammatory effect genetic? What I can do to make him happy and grow?

Sorry for my grammar. English isn't my native language. Thanks.

1 Answer 1


Is this a medical issue he is facing?

I do not know, we do not diagnose medical issues on this site.

Is that inflammatory effect genetic?

Inflammation is simply blood rushing to the area to heal the irritated muscle, and is an important part of healing. You just don't want to overwork yourself and cause too much injury. Different people have different tolerances for overuse injuries. The key is to simply listen to your body. If it feels like your tendons are starting to hurt or you are always tired, you are pushing yourself too hard and should go a bit easier.

What I can do to make him happy and grow?

I'm going off your assumption that he is a non-responder to your current workout. The term non-responder started showing up in studies around 2001 in like this one, where they noticed that certain individuals in the study would improve their endurance by as much as 100% while others actually lost endurance even though they were following the same routine. Since then other studies like this and this show that changing the training stimulus might be the solution for non-responders. If you are finding you are not getting results, try different workouts, different movements, different frequencies until you find one that works. Studies can tell you what is optimal for the average person, but you need to find what works best for you/your friend.

  • From the articles that ive read it states to either increase or decrease volume. But how to know whats best for him? He is dking fine training he doesnt have any complaints expect that he isnt seeing any results. He was training from 16 but his physique barely has changed. He was doing weights before calisthenics. What do you mean about training stimulus? Changing rels and sets? Jul 7, 2021 at 19:43
  • The studies that I linked changed up how they were working out through the intensity. So they had one group do sprint interval training, and the other jogged. Then they swapped the groups. So perhaps changing the reps and sets could help, but I would have him do different variations. Instead of pushups, try pike pushups, handstand pushups etc. This will change the movement pattern itself and the intensity thereby increasing or decreasing volume. Find a movement that he really likes, and he might start progressing faster. Jul 7, 2021 at 21:01
  • It's best to start really easy and slow, and work your way up. Also take a break every 6-8 weeks to give your body a break. He could be overtraining if his diet is in check
    – Ace Cabbie
    Jul 9, 2021 at 0:00
  • @Ace Cabbie. But hes not having any complaints. He isnt working out sore and actually takes a day off between workouts. I dont know what the problem is. Point beign he is really in a down mood of not seeing results and that his bodyfat levels also changed due to the high calories he eats. Not so much but still Jul 11, 2021 at 15:29
  • Start measuring lean mass and bodyweight or even see a fitness trainer. Calculate if he actually is gaining. Diet might not be enough protein, carbs, or high enough. Calisthenics also don't make you gain muscle really well, it's for athletic ability. I promise though to take 7 days off then start with an easy workout. I've been working out for 7 years and I still start with a beginner workout and add exercises to ease my body into it. And days off between workout is a must anyway. I'd start with a 3 day full body workout with 4-6 exercises each day and work way up
    – Ace Cabbie
    Jul 12, 2021 at 14:34

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