When we think about bodybuilding, we automatically think of huge steroid-filled guys heaving weights, and, it’s not… bodybuilding is anything you do to build a better body – body weight exercises included.
In weight lifting, the most talked-about lift is the bench press. It incorporates many muscle groups, and is the strongest upper body lift a person can perform – a lift which proves on the whole, how strong a persons upper body is.
But why am I talking about the bench press in an article which is supposed to be about push ups? Because, the bench press and push ups are almost identical, barring a few small differences. In fact, you’d be surprised just how much you are ‘lifting’ by performing a press up – they are by no means an easy option.
Just like the bench press, and most like any other kind of exercise with weights or without, there are variations upon variation. It’s also just about impossible to tell you what the ‘basic’ push up is because there are so many opinions on that, too – but I’ll tell you my own view of a basic push up, and the variations I use.
Basic Push Up: Place your hands flat on the floor, fingers pointing forward, at slightly wider than shoulder width apart. Keep your legs straight behind you, toes planted into the ground, with your abdomen slightly clenched for midsection stability.
In this ‘ramp’ position, lower yourself to the floor, so your nose touches – making sure you aren’t using your neck and ‘cheating’ but actually lowering yourself, and then push up until your arms are almost – but not fully – locked out straight.
And that’s a push up!
Simple variations you can make in your push ups are the width at which you place your hands. A wider width places more emphasis on your pectorals, whilst a narrower grip places more emphasis on your triceps.