Push ups or press ups

The ultimate upper-body exercise is the Push up or Press up. So what’s the difference in the two names?

“Press-up” is from the British origin and “Push-up” is American. So it’s up to individual preference what you want to call this amazing, basic human movement. It is one and the same thing.

Now for the couch potatoes – WHAT IS A PUSH-UP?

It’s the ultimate body-weight exercise. It offers so many variations that it strengthens the entire body.

It is easy to do, cheap, and simply brutally effective! A great full body workout.


Actually a very basic calisthenics move, performed in a prone position. Simply raise and lower the body by using the arms. In other words, a person lies facing the floor with a straight back. Hands are next to the chest and you raise the body up and down by bending and straightening the elbows.

Why then are sooo many peeps struggling with this simple body weight movement?

Firstly it can be exactly due to that “body weight” description. You have to be able to handle your own body weight and if you are carrying a few extra “dumbells” around, well its not going to be what it should be.

When one does a successful push-up, the core musculature needs to be embraced. The last thing you want is to do it with a rounded spine (“banana back” push-ups) This incorrect posture can also be seen when individuals execute a basic prone plank with a weak core section. Retract the shoulder blades (scapulae), engage the glutes (squeeze your butt muscles) bend elbows next to the chest and grip the floor with flexed feet. More than sometimes, one (or both) of the glute muscles are inactive (not firing), and that can also make things difficult.

The chest muscles must be placed exactly between the hands or in the case of a prone plank, in between the elbows. This position enables the core to be in full working order (bracing the core). Straightening the elbows, and making sure the thought pattern is to ‘ push your body away from the floor’.

It is clear already how this amazing movement trains the muscles to work together and obviously become stronger. This then leads to involving much more than just upper body. Sure it is the ultimate upper body exercise – strengthens chest, shoulders, arms, upper back and abdominals. The benefits of push-ups exceed the shallow thinking of many that it strengthens the chest………………. NO! not only chest! It does a tremendous job of defining your abs, triceps, upper back, butt muscles, shoulders and torso. … The benefits of this amazing movement surely are plentiful.

While doing push-ups, you have to focus all the time on the correct execution thereof to obtain results. The large muscles of the body is involved and that can only assist in a fitter you. As amazing as this move is, an individual still has to avoid too many push-ups daily in the same position. For safety as well as ultimate results, the positioning of push-ups need to be altered. And that is exactly the beauty of this great move. As with all our muscles, we have to ensure muscle balance firstly – working opposing muscle groups and secondly avoiding overuse injury through postural issues and overload.

Also keep in mind that as your muscles get stronger, the weight of your body will be less challenging to lift. Therefore we have to vary our positioning. Lets look at some basic variations :

  • Traditional push-up. The basic prone position

  • Wide-grip push-up. Engages the shoulders more.

  • Close-grip push-up. Engages the triceps more.

  • Clap push-up. Improves power and explosiveness.

  • One arm push-up

  • One leg push-up

  • Eccentric push-up

  • Concentric holding push-up

  • Spider man push-up

  • Decline push-up

  • Incline push up

  • Rotational push up

  • Hand stand push up

  • Split arm position push up

  • Extended arm position push up

  • Push ups on balance equipment

  • Push ups with resistive equipment

  • Renegade row push up

  • Partner resistive push ups

  • Travelling push ups

Add as many more variations as your heart desires — AFTER you have mastered these twenty push up variations.

Push ups are also THE MOVE that gets used in Fitness Testing all over the athletics lines. The basic formula is to see how many of these push-ups an individual can do in One Minute. Females do the knee push-ups while males do the normal straight line on feet versions.

And NO ………….. 10 falls under the POOR result!

ONE PERSONAL REQUEST FROM ME TO ALL “COACHES AND TRAINERS” OUT THERE – Please do not use push-ups as a penalty to your athletes – rather teach them correctly with adequate progression and rewards for achievement!!

#stress #fitness #workout