Hands Up for Pushups

Let’s talk about pushps.  They all began in gym class in elementary school or middle school when the gym teachers had to test your physical health and made you complete as many crunches and pushups as you could (and in my case, I had to do them while half of my class watched me).  They always held a negative connotation and you have always dreaded them, right?  Well, pushups just got a bit more exciting.

There are so many variations of pushups, it is truly unbelievable.  Also, each variation is an excellent full-body workout.  In any given pushup position, you will be working arms, shoulders, chest, core, back, and legs.  Everything is working to bring your body up and down.  They are always a good challenge, and can always be made harder.  Push yourself!

These are just a few types of heart-pumping, sweat-inducing pushup varieties:

  1. Wide-grip pushup. This pushup is just like your standard pushup but it involves a wider stance to work your chest harder.  Place your hands further than shoulder width apart and feel the burn!
  1. Narrow-grip pushup. These specifically target your triceps.  Place your hands just a few inches apart from each other beneath you in pushup position.  Bend your elbows and feel those triceps working hard!
  1. T-pushups. These are my personal favorite.  Begin in standard pushup position.  Now, lean to one side so you are at a side plank with your feet stacked and raise your arm.  Return to standard pushup position and repeat on the other side.  This is a full body workout and particularly works on strengthening the obliques as well as arms, shoulders, and core.
  1. Feet-elevated pushups. These require, you guessed it, for your feet to be elevated.  Find a bench outside or a chair or even your bed and place your feet on it in pushup position. Now do a set of regular pushups but you will feel more work for your shoulders, chest, and scapular stabilizers, or the muscles that connect your neck, mid back, and shoulders together.
  1. Elbow pushups. These are just pure torture but extremely effective.  In plank position, go on to your elbows so your forearms are on the ground.  Now, one arm at a time, return back into a full plank position with your hands on the ground beneath you at shoulder width apart.  Repeat this up-and-down movement and you will be shredding your arms in no time.

These are excellent moves to incorporate into your workouts.  For beginners, these moves can also be performed on the knees.pushups  Challenge your friends and see who can do more reps or last the longest!  Create your own pushup variation, or see if you can do one of the pushups listed above continuously throughout your favorite song.  These are difficult moves but you will see the results with determination.

Stay healthy and be strong!

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