If you haven’t already started incorporating pushups into your exercise routine, start now! Pushups are great for the entire upper body including your chest, shoulders, biceps, and triceps, and are a real challenge for your core and buttocks. Whether you’re a beginner or a fitness professional, this functional bodyweight move is a must in your fitness routine and here are 10 push-up variations to try.
1. Wall push-offs and wall push-ups
This type of push-up is performed on an incline (your upper body higher than your lower body) with a wall or a step. The greater the angle of your body and the floor, the easier it is. Place your hands on the incline and lower them into a push-up. Then push yourself up forcefully until your hands detach from the incline, hold your core firmly and then go straight back down into the next push-up. Make sure you land with soft elbows to avoid hyperextension.
Are you a beginner?
Start with simple wall prints (with your elbows slightly bent) before adding pushups.
2. Inclined push-ups
Are wall push-ups too easy for you? Then you are ready for the next level. Use a chair or a box and do your pushups with it. Make sure that your hands are just below your chest and that yours are Core muscles are tense.
3. Knee push ups
This type of push-up is performed on the floor. Support your body with your knees instead of your toes. You can lift your feet and cross your calves in the air or rest them on the floor, whichever is easier for you. Get into the push-up position and place your hands directly under your shoulders. Put your knees on the floor and contract your core. Slowly lower your upper body to the floor using the arm and shoulder muscles. Then push yourself back up to the starting position. Keep your back straight; Your upper body should remain stable.
4. Push-up squats
Start this exercise in a normal push-up position. Tense your core. Now place your knees on the floor and do a push-up. When you’re done, straighten your legs again, control your body tension, and start over.
With this exercise, you slowly build body tension, which allows you to hold the position longer.
5. Side to side pushups
In this variation, you start with your hands on the floor closer than shoulder width (as with the narrow push-up). Keeping your knees (or feet) on the floor, raise your right hand, and keep moving it to the right as you do a push-up. Push up and bring your right hand back to the center. Repeat on the left side.
6. Up & down push-up
This exercise strengthens both arms and improves body tension. Start in the push-up position with your arms outstretched. Now get into a low plank and then push yourself up again. Keep your body as stable as possible without swinging your pelvis. Hold your legs and torso tight. If you need a break, you can hold each position for a few seconds before moving your arms up and down.
The closer the legs are together, the more difficult it is to hold the position.
As the name suggests, this is a push-up that is performed in an elbow plank. Get on your elbows in the plank position (make sure your elbows are directly below your shoulders). Lower your chest to the floor and squeeze your shoulder blades together, then pass through your forearms to push yourself back up.
7. Commander pushups
First, do a regular push-up on your hands and toes. After a push-up, attack your core and bring your right knee to the outside of your right elbow and then back. Do another push-up and repeat the knee-to-elbow on the left side. This variant will really machine the slopes!
8. Pike push-ups
This type of push-up mainly works your shoulders and Triceps. Start from the yoga position “downward facing dog“. Your weight should be on your toes and palms, with your arms close to your chest. Now bend your elbows and lower your torso to the floor. Then push yourself away from the floor again. The strength should come from your shoulders, not your hips. The shorter the distance between your legs and hands, the more difficult the exercise and the harder your shoulders will be.
The first time you try this exercise, place a pillow on the floor to avoid injuring yourself if you fall on your face.
9. Push-up socket
Start in plank position on your hands with your feet together. As you lower yourself into the push-up, jump your legs into a wider position and then jump back in as you push yourself up. This variation will really get your heart rate up.
Do you want more challenge?
Try jumping into a push-up position while moving your arms and legs.
10. Alligator push up
The challenging part of this type of push-up is to combine the movements of the commander’s push-ups. As you move your elbow toward your knee, drop into a push-up, come up, and extend your leg at the same time. Repeat on the other side. You can make this exercise even more difficult by moving forward while doing the push-up combo.