Thursday, April 1, 2010
Push-ups: The Best Most Complete Upper Body Exercise in the World
By Lt. Col. Bob Weinstein, USAR-Ret.
The push-up is hands down the best, most complete upper body exercise in the world. Here are a variety of ways to perform push-ups. A push-up demonstrates the portability and flexibility of the human body when it comes to staying in shape. From a health standpoint, you do not need one single piece of equipment or some special place to stay lean and strong. Whether it is in your living room, bedroom, hotel room, on the patio, in the yard, the break room at work or in your office, you can immediately enjoy taking care of your strength training.
600 Push-ups 30 Variations (The Health Colonel Series)
Let us move on to the best and most complete upper body exercise in the world. It is the push-up. All right, now get down with me for this one. Let’s do it! Get down on all fours. Your feet are together and your body is straight. Your arms are a little more than shoulder-width apart and are spread in line with your chest. Go down to a 90-degree break in your elbows and come back up. Now, wasn’t that easy? Yeah, I know. For a lot of you out there, it’s pretty strenuous. That’s OK. If you find you can only go down partially, you will still be working those muscles and you will get stronger and eventually be able go all the way down. I recommend to my clients to practice the regular push-up even though they cannot go all the way down and push their body back up. This approach is better than just performing knee push-ups.
The wide (extra wide) push-up is performed the same way as the regular push-up with one exception. This time your hands are spread as wide as you can get them without collapsing. Your body is closer to the ground this time in the starting position. You will notice how the chest now enjoys a very beneficial workout along with your arms.
Now get down for another great variation of the push-up. This time your hands are close together and your feet are spread about shoulder width for stability. Go down to the point where your chest is almost touching the ground and come back up. Feel those triceps work? You will notice that this one feels more strenuous than the regular push-up.
FOUR COUNT PUSH-UP
Now let’s put some real excitement into the push-up. These are regular push-ups with a twist. This time you will stop and pause between each motion. You will notice that you will get even more benefit from this strength training exercise. It’s a four count. Here we go and ONE, lower your body (pause); TWO, raise it back up (pause); THREE, lower your body (pause); FOUR, raise it back up (pause). That’s one repetition. Try five to ten reps and count them out loud. The count is one, two, three, ONE; one, two, three, TWO; one, two, three, THREE; and so on.
KNEE PUSH-UPS, 45 DEGREES
Get down on your knees for this push-up, which simply means that you will be pumping less body weight. Your legs are at a 45-degree angle. You can
actually perform all of the previously mentioned push-ups using this position.
KNEE PUSH-UPS, 90 DEGREES
This push-up position will allow you to lessen the body weight even more than the 45-degree angle push-up. The various types of push-ups described previously can be performed using the 90-degree push-up.
Please mention the author when using this article.
The author is Lt. Col. Bob Weinstein, USAR-Ret.