Fitness Goals

Exercise Spotlight: Push-Ups

Rynnie Cotter

Push-ups are a great calisthenics exercise for everyone, from beginners to lifelong fitness enthusiasts. What makes the push-up so great is that it’s one of the simplest, yet most beneficial exercises for both strength and muscle gain. Not only does the push-up help build strength and muscle, but it proves to be a very versatile exercise. The push-up can be modified in a variety of ways, by either giving you more of a challenge or by making the exercise a little easier to complete. 

How to do a Push-Up 

When completing a push-up, you use your own body weight as resistance. This works not only your upper body, but also your core. To complete your first push-up, start with your hands on the floor. Place your hands shoulder-width apart and keep your arms straight. The next step is to place your feet behind you and lift your knees. You are now in the push-up position. Make sure you brace your core, tense your legs, and activate your glutes.

Once you’re in the proper push-up position, bend at the elbows as you lower your body towards the ground. During this movement, keep your elbows in towards your ribs. Lower your chest as close to the ground as you can get. Then push yourself back up to the starting push-up position.

The important thing to remember when completing a push-up is to maintain proper form. Never let your elbows flare out to the sides, but instead keep them next to your ribs. Also make sure your head and shoulders move forward, beyond your hands, as you lower yourself to the ground. Technique is important when it comes to fitness, as maintaining proper form helps prevent injury. If you can’t perform a traditional push-up, feel free to modify the exercise by completing the push-up on your knees. Remember, keep yourself safe.

What Body Parts do Push-Ups Target? 

Push-ups are a great exercise to incorporate into any level workout routine, as they target a variety of muscles in the body. Along with developing and strengthening the abdominal muscles, push-ups target the triceps, upper back, chest, and shoulders. Push-ups especially help develop upper body strength. 

What are the Benefits of Push-Ups? 

There are many benefits to incorporating push-ups into any fitness routine. Push-ups not only promote full-body fitness, but also increase functional strength. Because push-ups are a compound exercise, utilizing multiple muscle groups, the exercise actually strengthens the cardiovascular system. Push-ups also help strengthen the shoulders, improves posture, and help to prevent lower back injuries. You really can’t go wrong incorporating push-ups into your fitness routine.

Try Something New

Once you’ve got the standard push-ups down, don’t be afraid to give yourself a bigger challenge. Your physique, as well as your overall health and fitness will greatly benefit from incorporating advanced push-up variations into your routine. Some popular push-up variations to try are decline push-ups, spiderman push-ups, dive bomber push-ups, diamond push-ups, or explosive push-ups. As you’re trying out these new push-up variations, make sure you still maintain proper form. Preventing injury is essential to achieving your overall health and fitness goals. 

Overall, push-ups are a great exercise to incorporate into any fitness routine. They can be adapted to challenge individuals at all levels of fitness and can easily be done at home. If this article has left you with any questions or has encouraged you to scope out more weight loss or fitness advice in general, check out Sworkit. Through Sworkit’s certified fitness trainers all of your fitness questions and concerns can be answered.

On Sworkit’s app, you can even click on the “Ask a Trainer” link. This will give you one-on-one advice from a real trainer in the fitness industry. Don’t be shy, take charge of your fitness goals today with Sworkit. 

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