Front Lever Tutorial

By Jamie Geraghty – Bar Monkey

Font Lever Tutorial

Front Lever Progression

In this blog post we are going to teach you five steps towards achieving your front lever, one of the most popular moves in Calisthenics and a move that will put you up there on a pedestal as someone that can defy gravity! This one of the biggest renowned strength movements in Calisthenics and here we are going to breakdown how you can achieve it.

Step One: Lat Pulldown
  1. Aim from this movement is to get used to pushing the bar down to engage your lats/back muscles. As you start to push the bar you should feel your body start to elevate.
  2. False grip. Hands over the bar. You can either place your thumbs over or under the bar, it is each individual’s preference.
  3. Arms shoulder width.
  4. Main thing to focus and visualize on in this movement is pushing the bar down.
Step Two: Knee Raises
Front Lever Progression
  1. Aim from this movement is to begin engaging your core and to strengthen this area in order to be able to perform the full front lever.
  2. Again, your hands are over the bar, thumbs can be over or under. Arms shoulder width.
  3. Bringing the knees up into the chest. Strong breath out as you go up.
  4. Really focus on controlling your body on the way down, don’t allow any swing.
Step Three: Tuck Lever
Front Lever Tutorial
  1. In the tuck lever you are aiming to combine both movements you have worked on previously, the pulldown and knee raise.
  2. Hands over the bar thumb under or over, arms shoulder width.
  3. When you push against the bar you are also trying to raise your knees up into your chest.
  4. Your hips should be level with your shoulders and arms locked out.
  5. Hold this position.
  6. Focus on strong breaths out as you are trying to hold the position
Step Four: Single Leg Tuck Lever
Progressive Front Lever Tutorial
  1. In this version we initially get ourselves into a tuck lever position.
  2. From there we extend one leg out. Everything from the previous movement stays the same.
  3. When we extend the leg out what usually happens is that our hips begin to sink. You really need to focus on glute engagement at this point and keeping those hips up.
  4. When we begin to focus on one aspect of this movement usually something else slips, for example arms may begin to bend. Important to recognise the total body aspect to this movement. We must try to keep everything engaged.
  5. Arms locked out straight – Push
  6. Core engaged
  7. Hips elevated – Squeeze glutes
  8. Focus on strong breaths out as you are trying to hold the position
Step Five: Front Lever
Progressive Front Lever Tutorial
  1. Moving into the full movement it’s important to remember all the points from each step and use them to build up to this.
  2. Hands over the bar, thumbs over or under, Arms locked out – Push.
  3. Core engaged tight.
  4. Squeezing glutes to keep hips elevated.
  5. Strong breaths out as you try to hold the movement.
  6. We would work on going from the tuck position into the full movement, when you can then hold this we would work on going up from a hanging position.

There you have it! Five steps to achieve your front lever and defy gravity! This movement will also give you a really strong back and core. The fact it requires total body tension gives you greater connection to your entire body and muscle groups. For further progressions and other variations you can check out the full tutorial at the beginning.

Hope this helps, look forward to seeing how people get on in their quest for the front lever!

Bar Monkey Out!

Jamie Geraghty

Jamie Geraghty is the creator of Bar Monkey, a Calisthenics group from Dublin, Ireland which promotes self-expression through movement. For more information on any of their programmes you can check out