Maybe you don’t have access to a gym. Or perhaps the idea of weights doesn’t tickle your fancy. Or, it’s possible you like doing planches, muscle-ups, and iron crosses.
Well, then, you must be a calisthenics athlete, and you must know Athlean-X and Thenx.
But which of the two bodyweight programs is actually better? Let’s find out.
What Is Athlean-X?
The Athlean Xero plan was created by Athlean-X (or Jeff Cavaliere) to give those who prefer training with body weight a plan to follow. Jeff is a celebrity trainer and probably one of the biggest fitness influencers on the planet.
A large focus of this plan is the idea that you don’t need a lot of time and you don’t need any equipment whatsoever.
Included in the Athlean-X Xero plan are:
- 5 weekly workouts with videos to take you through each session
- The “X Factor” Meal Plan
- A bunch of guarantees of weight loss and muscle gain
This 6-week program aims to deliver higher-intensity workouts that won’t keep you in the gym for longer than necessary. The plan was designed for beginners to advanced individuals.
2 Athlean-X Pros
- Low on time but big on results. This plan understands you’re very busy, so the workouts are short and intense – get in and get out without spending any extra time in the gym.
- You get a bunch of extras for your money, such as the X Factor diet plan, the ‘90-Day Extra Mile Guarantee,” and challenges you can use in other programs as well.
2 Athlean-X Cons
- The claims are a bit much seeing as Athlean X promises weight loss and muscle gain. This is possible – don’t get me wrong – but only to some individuals, and it’s certainly less probable to those only using bodyweight training like this plan does.
- It’s rather expensive, costing around $79.95. A reasonable price, sure, but for what you’re getting for your money? I’m not so sure.
What Is Thenx?
The Thenx app was created by Chris Heria, someone who specializes in bodyweight training and calisthenics. Unlike other training apps that simply give you a workout and send you on your merry way, this app also includes a sense of community.
You’re able to see what other athletes are doing via the explore function. There are also various workouts included, not just one or two.
See, whether you’re in a volume or hypertrophy phase, Chris has ensured that the appropriate workouts are always available to you.
Workouts are subdivided into different sections:
- The Beginner Program teaches you the basics of muscle control and contraction, along with somebody control.
- The Intermediate Program is more progressed and will look to teach you a bunch of skills.
- The Weight Hybrid Program will combine weight and bodyweight training to make sure you build the muscle needed to do calisthenic movements (overhead presses could help shoulder movements, etc.).
The Thenx app also allows you to see a history of workouts completed, so you can always go back to a different program to relearn something. As you can tell, this isn’t like other apps. This is a complete community for those that love calisthenics.
2 Thenx Pros
- The amount of information on the app is staggering, to say the least. With hundreds of workouts for you to do and even more to incorporate into your own designs, it really offers you the world on a plate.
- There’s even a free version that gives you access to some of the workouts and information (but obviously not all of it). The paid version includes more specific workouts, like workouts to master a tricky skill like the planche.
2 Thenx Cons
- When looking at the online reviews, it’s not looking good. Obviously, this doesn’t mean the app is terrible, but there are enough bad online reviews to make you question whether or not your money is well-spent. A lot of the reviews are (worryingly) about how the workouts are too hard, which is a common complaint from beginners in regard to the Focus T25 Alpha Phase..
- We and others have complained about poor customer service. They can be a tad slow, which can leave a bad aftertaste in your mouth if you choose to cancel.
Athlean-X vs Thenx Conclusion
The biggest factor you need to look at is the fact that at least some part of the Thenx app is free. You can’t deny that free information (especially of that quality) is going to FAR outdo what Athlean-X offers for free, which is nothing.
Athlean-X is an influencer and general strength coach designing a bodyweight program. On the other hand, Chris actually specializes in this particular sport – it’s what he does!
This is what he’s known for. You have an individual who’s spent years collecting information on this one niche and has created a whole community from it.
This leads me to my last and final point. Sure, a workout program is great and all, but an app where you can post and see what others post? That is miles ahead of the other, and best of all … it’s cheaper as well!
Athlean-X does provide good information, yes, and the workouts are stackable in some of your other workouts, too. However, this still doesn’t outweigh what the Thenx app offers. The community and history of workouts completed – it’s just a more robust offering for the price.
Overall, if it were my money and me doing bodyweight training, I’d put my money toward the guy who specializes in this. If you were going to bet on one winning a calisthenics contest, who would you bet on?
See what I mean…