O.K., everyone had to do push-ups in gym class when they were younger. But do you know the correct form to get the most out of your push-up? Hitch Fit is here to save you from your push-up woes. Technique is everything with push-ups…and the worse your technique is, the more of a chance you have of hurting yourself (or getting no results!). So get on the floor and give us 20 (or even better…50!).
Push-ups are one of the easiest ways to get toned and work your core. Push-ups use your own body weight for resistance so you can do it virtually anywhere and with no equipment. In your living room? Yup. At the park? Yup. In the airport? I guess…if you’re really ambitious! Nix the monthly gym membership fees and get down on the floor!
The Perfect Push-up:
The Usual Suspects
We’ve identified 4 common “fake” push-ups. These are push-ups with incorrect form and they can rob you of your best workout, or even cause injury. Learn the correct form and stop these bad habits in their tracks!
1. The Looker
Put your head down! When you’re in push-up form, make sure you’re looking down at the floor. This keeps your head aligned with your spine so you don’t strain your neck muscles. To stay in form, focus on one spot on the floor as you go up and down.
2. The Carpal Tunnel
When doing push-ups, most people put the brunt of their weight on the bottom of their palms and wrists. This is a no-no! Your wrists aren’t built to have that much pressure on them and you could hurt yourself. Put the pressure on the outside of your hands. Stay away from this bad habit by acting like you’re gripping the floor.
3. The Saggy Push-Up or the Teepee
Have you ever seen a saggy push-up? A pointed push-up? These are bad! Many people drop or raise their hips during push-ups. It’s important to not do this, and keep your torso aligned with your hips. Doing the correct form engages your abs and ensures a better workout.
4. The Mr. T
“I pity the fool” that does a push-up like this. You may think your arms are supposed to be in-line with your chest during a push-up (like a “T”). Sorry to say, but you’re wrong! You want to drop your arms lower and place your hands next to your mid-chest region. This tip will help work your chest, shoulders and triceps equally.
Hitch Fit’s Quick Tips for the Perfect Push-up
- Inhale as you go down toward to floor and exhale on your way up
- When in doubt, tighten your abs and glutes
- Fully extend arms in “up” position
- For more of a challenge, elevate your feet (for example, on a chair) for more resistance
Since you now know what not to do, stay away from these “fake” push-ups! Follow these simple rules and you’ll be on your way to a great workout. Now drop down and give us 20!