The push-up is a versatile body weight exercise that strengthens the upper body including chest, shoulders, triceps, and core. It’s a versatile muscle builder for all athletic levels. Small changes in hand and body position can produce big differences in the muscles you target. Today, the push-up is in the Prism Fitness Spotlight.

Beginner Options

  • Perform push-ups on knees
  • Perform on toes when strong enough to maintain proper form
  • Perform incline push-ups
    • Elevate hands on a bench, chair, or plyo box
    • Push-ups on a wall (lean into wall and push away)

Hand Position
Vary hand position to provide additional challenge for different muscle groups

  • Diamond (hands narrow and form a diamond shape with thumbs and index fingers) – Triceps
  • Narrow (hands under shoulders) – Triceps
  • Mid (hands outside shoulders) – Chest
  • Wide (hands very wide) – Chest

pushup-1hand-medballAdvanced Options/Variations
Increase upper body work and challenge core stabilizers even more

  • Decline push-up
    • Place feet on a stability ball
    • Place feet in a suspension system
    • Place feet on a bench or plyo box
  • pushup-2hands-medballPlace one hand on a medicine ball
  • Place two hands on a medicine ball
  • Wrap a strength band around your back for more resistance

Considerations for all levels

  • Keep the back long and straight (avoid hip lift or hip sag)
  • Brace core to support the low back
  • Engage glutes and thighs for stabilization

Add push-ups into your strength routine 2 to 3 times per week. Perform until you feel muscle fatigue. That’s when you’ll build muscle and feel the power of push-ups!

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