The push-up is one of the most effective strength development exercises for upper body muscle growth. It's a concentrated body-weight exercise that trains the muscles in the chest, shoulders and arms. Some physical fitness experts consider push-ups to be the quintessential resistance exercise because execution of perfect push-ups derives several benefits.
Push-ups are beneficial for gym-goers of various levels of physical fitness. Performing the perfect push-up requires discipline and careful attention to form. You should incorporate push-ups into your regular workout routine to enhance muscle growth in your upper body. This can be accomplished by integrating push-ups as part of a segmented chest workout, or as a warm-up or cool down exercise.
Fine-Tuning Your Form
The general principle of a perfect push-up is to engage your upper back, shoulders and arms in unison while dropping to the floor before fully extending your arms to push yourself up. Although that might seem like a simple feat to accomplish, perfecting your push-up form may require some fine-tuning.
Your body is completely engaged, from your toes to your nose, when performing a push-up. The muscles in your body contract while you're suspended off the floor, which sometimes makes it difficult to repeat perfect form when executing multiple sets of push-ups. Tuck your thumbs in so that they're touching your palms. This will help you better target the muscles in your chest. It's also important to note that push-ups should not be rushed. You will maximize the strength development benefits of performing push-ups by slowly bending your arms to reach the floor and then slowly extending upward to the starting position.
Stabilizing Your Hips and Ankles
Concentrate on stabilizing your hips and ankles when practicing your push-up form. A perfect push-up does not yield any movement away from the arms. You must also maintain a straight line when executing a push-up. Keep your head down while suspended in the starting position and try not to jerk your head when moving toward the floor. You can practice stabilizing your body in perfect form while flat on the ground. Place your hands shoulder-length apart and keep your back flat. You shouldn't arch any part of your body when executing a push-up. Your arms should form a 45-degree angle at the bottom of the push-up position. Try not to focus too much energy on the upper body, as this could cause you to sway your hips or arch your back.
When trying to perfect your push-up form, you might endure common mistakes. It's sometimes difficult to determine if your form is indeed "perfect." For this reason, it can be beneficial to practice your push-up form in front of a mirror, either at the gym or at home. This will allow you to visually recognize flaring movements in your arms and arching in your back. A perfect push-up is a flat push-up.
Pay close attention to each part of your body in order to make sure that you're locked into perfect position. Tighten your buttocks to decrease your natural tendency of arching your back and keep your elbows tucked at shoulders length so that your arms don't waver in the wrong direction. Make sure your feet are either grouped together or equidistant. Practicing your form will ultimately help you perform the perfect push-up and better enable you to sustain muscle gains over time.
John Shea is a team sports fanatic and fitness aficionado. His work has been published across a wide platform of online audiences in the realm of health and fitness. His passion for fitness is exemplified in his writing, as he aims to help readers improve their overall well-being.