Tips on how to nail the correct push-up form and technique. By Li Yuling
Push-ups are an effective upper body workout. This move not only tones your arms, but strengthens your shoulders, chest and core as well. More often than not, you’re doing it wrong – and your man might be too. Here’s how to master this difficult move.
To start, get on all fours. Place hand directly under shoulders. Extend one leg outwards followed by the other, tightening core to support torso. Heels should point upwards with toes tucked under. Align head with spine and keep gaze on floor. Slowly bend elbows, lowering body towards floor. Elbows should stay close to sides of body. Press upwards through arms, straightening elbows. Keep torso rigid and head aligned with spine.
Do not allow lower back to sag or hips to hike upwards. Another common mistake that occurs when trying to do a push-up: elbows flare outwards and excessively to the sides. This puts unnecessary stress on the shoulder and elbow joints, warns Amirrudin Ong, a coach at Ritual Gym. Over time, you may develop structural imbalances in the shoulder girdle, which can lead to injury.
The Proper (Man) Push-Up
To prevent this, keep elbows close to the ribs, and do not allow shoulders to slouch at any point. Ritual ambassador Sarah Hodgens demonstrates the correct form and how to do a proper push-up:
The Modified Push-Up
If you don’t have the strength to do the push-up in good form, try the modified push-up. When lowering yourself to the floor, do it as slowly as you can. Do not drop chest and hips abruptly. When completely lowered, push upper body upwards through arms. Lift knees and butt to return to starting position.