Wareing's Gym - Virginia Beach Gym & Personal Training
×

How-To: Conquer Push-ups

Yes, push-ups can be intimidating. But you can do them! Push-ups are an amazing exercise. They work multiple muscles, including chest, shoulders, triceps and abdominals. And, push-ups are convenient. You can do them anywhere. They can be a real game changer for a fitness routine, building a solid foundation and increasing confidence.

How to Do a Push-Up

  • Start in a high-plank position. Place hands shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows and inhale as you lower your chest toward the floor. When your chest or chin are just above the floor, that’s the bottom portion of your rep.

    Note: Elbows should be at a 45-degree angle (or a bit wider from your body or closer to your body depending on comfort). Fingers should be splayed, with your middle fingers pointing toward 12 o’clock.
  • Exhale as you press your body upward—think about pushing away the floor—and keep your core tight. When your elbows are fully extended, and your body is back in a high-plank position, you’ve completed your rep.

Push-Up Tips

  • Keep your lower back flat. Avoid letting your hips sag or your back arch. Engaging your core and tucking your pelvis will help.
  • If modifying your push-up, do so by elevating your hands rather than dropping to your knees to achieve full range of motion.

Push-Up Modifications

  • Hands Elevated Push-up (easier than traditional)
    • Place hands shoulder-width apart on a low box, a chair or a table. Assume a high-plank position with your feet, knees, hips and shoulders in a straight line. Brace your core and keep your elbows tucked in close to the sides of your torso. This is the starting position.
    • Bend your elbows and pull shoulder blades together to lower your chest to your base.
    • Press through your palms to straighten your arms back to starting position. This is 1 rep.
  • Dead-Stop Push-up (harder than traditional)
    • Start in a high-plank position with your palms flat, hands shoulder-width apart, shoulders stacked directly above your wrists, legs extended behind you, and your core and glutes engaged.
    • Bend your elbows and lower your chest to the floor.
    • When your chest hits the floor, raise your hands up so your chest is resting on the floor. Place your hands back down and push through the palms of your hands to straighten your arms. This is 1 rep.
  • Decline Push-Up (harder than traditional)
    • Place your toes on a box, bench or step. Get into a high-plank position with your palms flat, hands shoulder-width apart, shoulders stacked directly above your wrists, and your core and glutes engaged.
    • Bend your elbows and lower your chest to the floor.
    • Push through the palms of your hands to straighten your arms. That’s 1 rep.

Nice work! Set an attainable initial goal for yourself, such as 10 push-ups 3-5 times a week and build upon your success. You’ve got this!

Wareing's Gym

Get Started

Choose Your Option

Jump right into classes or opt for our one on one personal training experience for 30 days to get you geared up.