How to do Shoulder Tap Push-ups

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Difficulty: Medium

Impact Level: Normal

Target Body Parts: abs, triceps, chest, shoulders


Start at the top of the push up position with your hands on the floor, arms straight and underneath your shoulders. Step your feet back behind you and lift your knees. Engage your glutes, tense your legs and brace your core to keep your body rigid.

Keeping your elbows in towards your ribs and your forearms vertical, bend at the elbows to lower your body towards the floor. Your head and shoulders should move forwards of your hands as you get closer to the floor. Use your full range of motion to lower your chest in between your hands, as close to the floor as you can, then push your hands into the floor, keeping you body tensed, to move it up away from the floor back to the start position.

Then shift your weight on to your right arm, so that you can lift your left hand off the floor at tap your right shoulder with it. Then place your left hand back on the floor underneath your left shoulder and re-center your weight evenly into both arms.

From here, lower down into your next push up and when you get back to the top position, shift your weight on to your left arm, lift your right hand and tap it to your left shoulder. Place it back on the floor and repeat your next push up and shoulder tap.

Watch out for elbows flaring out to the sides away from your ribs. They should always point back towards your feet. Another common mistake is to lower down without moving your head and shoulders forward of your hands. These mistakes can lead to injury so focus on quality of movement rather than quantity. If you can’t maintain quality in this movement, try some of the easier versions of this exercise to build up strength and technique first.

How to make Shoulder Tap Push-ups easier

Build up your push-up strength with our Push Up on Knees and basic Push Up exercise before try this exercise.

How to make Shoulder Tap Push-ups more challenging

Progress from this exercise with our Push-up and Rotation and Alternating Push-up Plank movements.

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