For those of you that are working on your very first push up, it’s not impossible; it’s a worthy goal. Don’t get discouraged.
Here’s a video demonstration of three of my favorite ways to help with your push up
In the video I give you three strategies to build up to your very first push up on your toes or, if you’re already doing push ups then these are great strategies to help you do more quality and quantity push ups.
A lot of people don’t understand that it’s core strength and stability and shoulder girdle stability that really helps with the push up.
The first thing that really helps with your push up ability is a simple plank.
Do the plank right!
Ensure that you are doing the plank properly so that your core is engaged.
Here are a few tips:
· The shoulders need to be down and back.
· Squeeze the shoulder blades together and open up to the chest.
· You can do the plank on your toes or on your knees to make it easier.
· You can even straddle your feet to make a wider base for support.
· Open up your palms and try to keep your ears in line with your shoulders, hips, knees and toes.
· You should be able to draw a straight line from your ears to your toes.
· When the shoulders are down and back, you can maintain a flat back more easily.
· Avoid having the back rounded with the shoulder blades protracted or away from spine.
· Keep the hips down, find that sweet spot where you feel your abs grab and hold that position.
The second tip to increase the quality and quantity of your push up is to build strength by doing eccentric contractions in the movement. Many think that the ‘pushing up’ portion of the movement is the strengthening part when in fact it’s the lowering portion of the movement, or the eccentric contraction, the lengthening of the muscle that helps build strength.
Work the Negative!
Now as far as a push up goes, there are lots of different ways to get your first push up, but one of my favourite ways is to get work on that eccentric contraction.
Here are a few tips:
· Get into the perfect push up position with your belly on the ground.
· The thumb side of your hand should be right just beside the shoulder with your ears in line with the shoulders (that is, don’t tuck the chin in or look upwards).
· It doesn’t really matter how you get up into the high plank position. You can get come up anyway you can.
· Slowly lower your body under control until your body comes to the ground, belly on the floor.
· Rest and then get up any way you can again.
Eventually, you’re going to be able to do that push up, when you’re actually pushing your body off the ground. Whenever you do push ups, make sure you’re working on that full range of motion where your chest actually touches the ground. If you need to rest at the bottom of the movement, that’s perfectly fine.
A lot of people will only move the top 2-3 inches when they’re doing the push up. These don’t really count as a push up. Work the full range of motion by touching your chest to the ground, or hover about an inch above the ground.
The third tip is to modify correctly. I’d much rather see you do an inclined push up in a full body position than to do a floor push up from the knees. Increasing the incline helps to modify the position while still maintaining the full body position that calls upon your core in the same way a floor push up would.
These three strategies: working the plank, the eccentric contraction and modifying appropriately are really going to help you get your very first push up on your toes or increase the quantity and quality of your push ups.
The push up, when paired with cardio burst exercises are your ticket to a bikini belly in record time.
Here’s my BEST belly flattening program (that includes push ups of course!).