A push-up is a push-up, right? Wrong. Most people don’t know the proper way to do a push-up, and even more people don’t realize how many different variations of push-ups exist. When done the right way, push-ups can be the way to great upper-body strength and weight loss. Learn about 10 different types of push-ups, and how to do them the right way.
- Traditional Push-up
This doesn’t require much explanation, as your grandmother probably knows how to do one. There are two important things to remember. For one, you should keep your chin up, as if you were looking a few feet in front of your hands. Secondly, you should take about four seconds to complete one rep.
Get in traditional push-up position. Instead of the traditional hand placement, place your hands close together so that each thumb is touching and each index finger is touching. When you go down into a push-up, you’ll be working your triceps more than your shoulders.
This is exactly as you might expect. Put your arms out as wide as you can and perform a push-up. It’s much more difficult than a traditional push-up, so don’t get discouraged if you can’t do your normal amount of reps.
The pike is a great way to work your shoulders. From a standing position, bend down and place your palms on the ground several feet in front of your feet. Your butt should be in the air, and you should be using your shoulders to bear your weight as you go up and down.
- Leg Up
To make things a little harder, you can do this type of push-up. Getting into a push-up position, lift one leg a few inches off the ground. As you perform your reps, keep your leg off the ground. After your set amount of reps, switch legs.
If you have a heavy bag laying around on the ground, this is a great push-up. Put your feet on the bag (or any elevated platform about a foot off the ground) and your hands on the ground. Do push-ups with your feet elevated, placing all of your bodyweight on your upper body.
Get into push-up position and place a medicine ball under one palm. Do one rep of a push-up, and roll the ball to your other hand. Do another push-up, and roll the ball back to the other side. Continue with this pattern.
When you drop down into a push-up, explode up so that your hands come off the ground. Land with your palms down and in push-up position.
- Slow Motion
These push-ups are done slowly, to really develop your upper body muscles. Start in a traditional push-up position and go down very slowly. You should count to ten before you reach the ground. Come back up as slowly as you come down.
This is a very difficult push-up, but one that you might give you bragging rights at the gym. Go down into a push-up position. Pick one leg up off the ground, and bring that knee to your opposite elbow as you drop down to the floor. As you come up, bring your knee back and drop that leg to the ground. Lift your other leg off the ground, and repeat.