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Push-ups: NOT a Numbers Game

Updated on March 3, 2016

Let’s get one thing right. ‘Pushups’ are NOT about the numbers. It’s literally about pain. That’s right. You must be wondering ‘but why is all of this so painful all the time?’ NOH. Take that thought, turn it into a crumpled ball of sh*t and throw it away. Because we all know, NO PAIN – NO GAIN!

So as I was saying. Push-ups; one could say the Push-up is the founding father of all exercise. It’s the most common. Most convenient. Most effective exercise you could ever do. It’s the foundation upon which all strength based exercise were made.

The ancient art of the Push-Up exists since the dawning of mankind’s sense of aesthetics. Well, sorry to break it to you, but we’ve been doing it wrong. Yes, you heard. Wrong. All along.

Whoopie you just did 50 push-ups *clap clap*. Now do them properly. 10 pushups max. I bet you.

While pushups are not a numbers game they are definitely a ‘form game’. It’s quality – not quantity.

It’s not about how many pushups you CAN do it’s about how much you CAN’T do while using proper technique.

The pushup is a great exercise for the upper body and your core. It helps build muscle, tone it and increase stamina.

Here are some tips that’ll get your pushup game to where it’s meant to be:

Hand to shoulder positioning:

Focus placing your hands on the floor under the shoulders. Basically the hands have to be parallel against each other and right under or in FRONT of the shoulders.

Look Straight at all times:

Your body goes where the eyes go. It aligns itself based on your line of vision. Looking straight straightens your form and avoids putting unnecessary pressure on the neck. This can also hurt your form by the way – so avoid looking down.

Elbows Direction:

A very common way of doing a WRONG pushup is by flaring your elbows outwards on the decline whereas the elbows must bend ‘inwards’ or ‘to the sides’ not ‘outwards’. The elbow should form a 45 degree angle.

Tighten Core:

Pushing upwards forces the body to ‘banana arch’ sometimes, and that is just WRONG form. You’re not really pushing your body up at this point, your just frantically lifting your upper torso and pounding it to the floor and up. No. Tighten your core. Imagine a tighten your belly right before a basket ball’s about to hit you in the stomach.

Breathe in. Breathe out:

On the decline, fill that body with oxygen through the nose. When that chest touches the floor, while you’re looking straight and your elbows pop inwards – expunge the air out through the mouth. This hardens the core and pushes the muscles further for maximum gain.

Take your time: When going down. Take 2 seconds at the least. When you’ve declined completely, push your body up in a way that looks like you’re PUSHING the ground away. This must be done in ‘1’ second.

Now that you’ve got these tips. You can finally do a proper pushup! And not those silly frantic electro-flogged beached seal movement you call pushups. Done properly, you’re on the way to a rock solid bod.


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    • MartinRoy87 profile imageAUTHOR


      2 years ago from London

      Thanks mate :)

    • Boxing2016 profile image

      David Reed 

      2 years ago from US

      Thanks for guiding on elbows direction because I always face a problem in elbows direction.


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