A few months ago I put together a push up tutorial for beginners, followed by six bodyweight variations for you to try. I trust that you have been practicing morning, noon and night since then, and that you’re finally ready for the next installment.
Well today is your lucky day; today I have another six variations for you to try. Many of these are pretty advanced, so if you’re finding them difficult GOOD – they should be. So let’s get into it.
Decline push ups
These are great for the shoulders, chest and triceps. Start by kneeling in front of a bench or stable chair. Place your feet on the bench behind you and your hands a bit wider than shoulder-width apart; lift yourself up until your body forms a solid plank.
Lower yourself down as if performing a regular push up – you’ll notice a lot more shoulder involvement than in a regular push up. Press back up through the palms of your hands – that’s your first rep done! This variation does require a lot of core involvement, and is not a great idea for anyone with lower back weakness.
Slow push ups
Time under tension is a technique that focuses on keeping your muscles under constant strain, helping to increase strength and growth. And because the movement is so slow and controlled, there’s no hiding bad technique. Here I’m going down for the count of five, and up for a single count, but you can mix it up – down for two, up for two, down for six, up for four etc.
Push up with pulse
This is a great little one for teaching you about control. Perform a regular push up, then on your next push up, extend your arms only halfway (your elbows will still be bent) before lowering yourself again. Your third push up will be a regular push up, your fourth a pulse.
Continue this rhythm.