Killer Push-Up Variations

by Tom Reynolds on March 3, 2011

The push-up is a classic for a reason.  Push-ups can be done anywhere, are one of the best exercises possible for shoulder health, and can be modified to be suitable for beginners and even challenging for elite level athletes.

Here are a few of my favorite push-up variations:

Spiderman Push-Ups

Spiderman push-ups are a great warm-up for the hips and upper body. Make sure to keep your hips strong and in line with your body. Dont cheat! Bring your knee all the way to your elbow.

Plate Weighted Push-Ups

This is a great way to make push-ups more challenging. The closer you put the plate to your head, the more challenging it will be. Make sure to keep your core tight the entire time.

Sliding Pushups with a Chest Fly

This can be done with a slide board like in the video, dumbbells that roll, or even two wash cloths on a wooden floor. This is a great way to train your chest in a way that will still be easier on the shoulders than benching variations.

Dumbbell Push-Up Series

Martin Rooney put together a great push-up series here. Find a weight that is easy at first to make sure that you aren’t cheating your body angle. Keep your hips in line with your feet and head the whole time.

Note that even though this is a circuit, Harrison pauses briefly between the exercises to make sure that he isn’t cheating with momentum. His form stay strict the whole time

Add some of these to your routine and be surprised at just how good of a workout you can get off of such a simple exercise as the push-up.

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  • Stefan Palmer

    I tried out the pushups to the fly this morning! Love it!

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