How to do a Push Up

Authored by Fitbod

About Push Up

Sets Logged
5,414,219
Popularity Rank
15th
Difficulty
Intermediate
Chest Strength
86 mSCORE 18th
Equipment Required
    Bodyweight-only
Primary Muscles
Secondary Muscles

Instructions: How To

Push Ups may be the most recognizable exercises out there. It’s one of the best bodyweight exercises you can do, and is a great way to develop functional strength in your upper body for pushing movements. It’s fantastic for beginners, or anyone with limited equipment, while still being a great addition for even the most seasoned lifters.

  1. Start with your elbows fully extended and your hands placed on the floor just outside shoulder-width apart.
  2. Brace your core by breathing into your stomach and flexing the abdominal muscles to create a straight and rigid posture from your heels to your shoulders.
  3. With your hips and knees extended throughout the exercise, flex your elbows to descend your chest to the floor while keeping your elbows at a 45 degree angle to your torso.
  4. Return to the starting position after your chest has reached the floor.

Common Mistakes

  • Flared Elbows

    Flaring your elbows out can sometimes help you lift heavier weights, but it places more tension on your shoulders. The ideal position can vary slightly from person to person, but try to keep your elbows around 45 degrees from your torso, and make small adjustments from there.

  • Flat Back

    Don’t allow your hips to sag or raise up during this exercise. It’s very common to see this especially as you become fatigued during your set. Keeping your core engaged will help you keep your spine in a neutral position. It can also help to think of this exercise as a plank first, and the movement as a secondary piece to this exercise.

Reps & Weight: How much to lift

Use this calculator to see Fitbod's possible first recommendations for you. This would be your starting line, based on more than 4.5 billion logged sets from 1.1 million users.

  • beginner
    3
    sets
    6
    reps
    1 Set Max
    7
    reps
  • intermediate
    4
    sets
    7
    reps
    9
    reps
  • advanced
    4
    sets
    7
    reps
    9
    reps

Enter your stats to calculate your Reps & Weight