Ten Types Of Push Ups For An Awesome Physique

The No Weight Way To Getting Built

Push Ups have been, and always will be the king of body weight exercises. No other movement so effectively provides un-weighted resistance to the entire upper body, but that’s not all. Push Ups also work your core, glutes and quads. Even though the major muscle group worked is the chest, this exercise is a full body blast.

Once you master the standard push up, you’re ready to move on to more advanced variations. However, keep working on the standard version until you can complete a set of 100 without a break.


Standard Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps

Execution:

  • Set yourself on the ground, face down with your hands slightly wider than shoulder width apart. Your feet should be touching.
  • Keeping your body in a straight line and eyes facing the floor, raise up by pushing through the hands until your arms are fully extended. Tense your buttocks and tighten your abs to prevent your body sagging in the middle or lifting into a ‘v’ position.
  • Lower yourself until your chest is a few inches off the floor then explode back up to the locked arm position.

Video:


Single Leg Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps, Front Deltoids, Glutes, Core

Execution:

  • Assume a standard push up start position, but lift one leg off the floor.
  • Lower down so your chest is a few inches off the floor and push through the hands until you return to the start position.
  • Alternate between which leg is raised to work the body evenly.

Video:


Clapping Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps, Front Deltoids

Execution:

  • Assume a standard push up start position.
  • Explode upwards pushing your entire upper body off the ground and clap your hands.
  • Quickly return the hands in front of the body.
  • As your hands come back into contact with the floor bend the elbows and lower to a few inches off the floor.
  • Exhale as you explode up. Try to keep the body as straight as possible.

Video:


Chest Tap Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps, Front Deltoids

Execution:

  • Begin in a standard push up position.
  • Explode up the same as a Plyometric Push Up, touching your chest with both hands at the top of the movement
  • Bring your hands back down in front of you to catch yourself and lower down in preparation for your next rep.

Video:


Archer Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps, Front Deltoids, Side Deltoids

Execution:

  • Assume a standard push up position, but have one arm extended fully out to the side at 90 degrees to the body. This arm is just for support.
  • Do a conventional push up, using just the arm that is in the standard push up position to do the work. Your aim is to isolate the arm and chest on that side of your body.
  • Work both sides of the body evenly.

Video:


Grasshopper Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps

Execution:

  • Assume a standard push up position.
  • As you drop down into the bottom of the push up position, bring your left knee across to touch your right elbow.
  • Breathe in as you lower down and exhale as you push up out of the movement.
  • Alternate sides so your right knee comes to your left elbow.

Video:


Muay Thai Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Pectorals
Secondary - Triceps, Front Deltoids, Latissimus dorsi (underarms/back)

Execution:

  • Assume a standard push up position. Spread your feet a little wider for balance.
  • Explode up as high as you can, clapping your hands behind your back in the upper most position.
  • Quickly bring the hands back in front of you exhaling as you lower down. Land as soft as you can, absorbing the landing impact.

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Dive Bombers

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Front Deltoids
Secondary - Pectorals, Triceps

Execution:

  • Assume a start position with your legs wide and your hands shoulder width apart. Your butt should be up in the air so the body is creating an upside down ‘V’ shape.
  • Bend the elbows to swoop down and forward coming close to the ground in a curving motion so that the shoulders go past the hands.
  • Push up so the body finishes in a cobra (bent back) position.
  • Now, reverse the motion back to the start position.
  • Inhale on the way through, exhale on the return.

Video:


Aztec Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Core
Secondary - Pectorals, Triceps, Front Deltoids

Execution:

  • Assume a standard push up position.
  • Drop down into the bottom of the push up position, then explode upwards so your feet and hands come away from the floor.
  • Touch the tips of the toes with your fingers and quickly return to a fully extended body position.
  • Catch yourself and lower back to the start position.

Video:


Superman Push Up

Major Muscles Involved: Primary - Core
Secondary - Pectorals, Triceps, Rear Deltoids, Lower Back

Execution:

  • Lie face down flat on the floor, arms and legs fully extended.
  • Push through the hands lifting the body off the floor so the feet and the hands are the only part of the body touching the floor. The body should only come a few inches off the floor.
  • Return to the prone lying position.

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Author: Steve Theunissen
Author Bio: Steve Theunissen is the Nutrition Souq Bodybuilding and Workouts Editor. He is a former gym owner and personal trainer. Steve is the author of 5 hard copy books and dozens of e-books on the subject of fitness, bodybuilding and weight loss.