Written by: Mike Moran OS, CPT
The two mistakes I see a lot.
- Lack of body tension and awareness
- Elbows pointed out 90 degrees to the sides
This leads to sloppy reps, poor form, and injuries.
The push up is a much overlooked exercise in favor of more complex solutions.
Done correctly though the push up can make you stronger,build muscle and make your joints stronger.
One thing to remember is what you put into the exercise is what you will gain from it.
Like most strength training your setup will be paramount for your training.
The push up is a moving PLANK.
SO let’s go over the PLANK form.
Get on the floor face down with your hands just wider than your chest and pushed into the ground to hold your body up with the weight of your body on your hands and toes. Pull your kneecaps up and squeeze your butt while bringing your lower ribs to your hips to get your stomach muscles to engage. You should feel tension in your abs,quads and glutes.
Now for the PUSH UP
From this position take a breath in of air and maintain that tension as you use your arms,back and chest to lower your body to the floor.Think of screwing in your shoulders and it might help to slightly externally rotate your hands out. This should help keep the elbows pointing behind you. Keep the tension in your chest and exhale as your push up your entire body with your chest and arms.
That is one clean push up. With proper technique this can become a phenomenal exercise for upper body strength.