The Keys to Doing Proper Push-Ups

I love push-ups! Seriously, the push-up is truly one of my favorite exercises of all time. It works a ton of major muscle groups, it’s super ‘functional’ (if I dare use that word), you don’t need anything but your own body weight to perform it … the list of benefits could go on and on.

For starters, here is a short list of the muscles a push-up works:

Pecs
Shoulders
Triceps
Biceps
Abs
Quadriceps
Obliques
Glutes

It’s a highly functional movement – there are many occasions in everyday life where one has to push themselves up off of the ground. It’s also a very ‘scaleable’ exercise – one can start from the knees or with hands against the wall to make the exercise easier. Once you progress to a standard push-up and need an additional challenge, you can elevate your feet and even progress to the handstand push-up. Other variations include the push-up with rotation, push-up with hands on a medicine ball, push-up with hands or feet on a stability ball – this is just to name a few.

Here is a video showing what standard push-up form should look like:

The keys to doing a proper push-up are the following:

-Body stays in a nice strait line – no sticking the butt in the air or letting the hips sag; also the head and neck stay in line with the rest of the body
-Full range of motion – touch your body to the ground – this is the same if you’re doing push-ups from the knees
-Everything stays nice and tight – glutes, abs, quads
-Slow tempo – about two seconds down and two seconds back up

Here is a great article for even more info on how to do a proper push-up from CrossFit.com. Now that you have the basics, start doing those push-ups!

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