We all want to be able to pull off that picture perfect pushup… you know, just like they do in the marines. But actually accomplishing that feat can be challenging, especially if you are new to them. Don’t let pushups get the best of you. We can get you there if you are willing to put in a little bit of effort!
Step one: plank. To complete a proper pushup, you have to be sure you know how to hold a high plank properly. Start on all fours on the ground. Straighten your legs to rest on your toes. Now support your upper body by resting your palms on the mat and straightening your arms. Make sure your body is flat and solid (no “butts in the air” or swaying hips). Check to see if your arms are in a straight line with your shoulders stacked perfectly over your wrists. Now hold this perfect plank as long as you can! Plank training is the first step to busting out those precise, military style pushups.
Step two: start bending your arms, with the goal of dropping your chest to the mat. If you can’t drop your chest very far at first, that’s OK. Start with some “baby pushups”, bending your elbows to drop as far as you can before you raise back up again.
Step three: practice! If you REALLY want to conquer pushups, devote a few minutes a day to getting better at them. The more time you spend practicing your technique, the quicker your body will learn how to do them.
And finally, most importantly… don’t sacrifice your form to get in a few more reps! If you stop holding that perfect plank, drop to your knees, stick your hips in the air, or lose sight of any other form tips, your muscle memory will pick up all those poor habits. It it much harder to fix a bad habit then to take the time to train your body right the first time around.
So…. the big question… WHYYYYY do we do all those pushups?! This is an easy answer: they make us so much stronger! if you could see a muscle map showing how many muscle groups you are working when you are burning out on pushups, you would be impressed. Not only are we working those arms, we are working our back, chest and entire core as well. The more pushups you do, the more lean muscle mass you are adding to your body, which is helping you burn more calories when you’re sitting on the couch watching a movie. Pretty cool, right?!
Now, get on those pushups!!!