EXERCISE OF THE WEEK: PUSH-UPS

Benefit to Posture

Because a pushup works your core so thoroughly – you have to keep your abs engaged, hips and glutes raised and back strong throughout the movement – your posture benefits. Proper posture relies on a strong core muscle group, which a push-up helps you achieve. Good posture helps you avoid neck and shoulder tension, lower back pain or injury and instability.

Proper Push-Up Form

You can only reap the benefits of push-ups if you’re doing them properly – even if you’re modifying the move as you begin, such as lowering your knees to the ground. To do a proper pushup:

Step 1

Start in a plank position with your arms extended just below shoulder level and your palms flat on the ground. Keep your feet close together and rest on the balls on your feet. Your back should be straight and your weight evenly distributed.

Step 2

Lower your body until your elbows are at 90 degrees and push back up. That is one rep.

If it’s too difficult to do a push-up on your hands and feet, lower your knees to the ground or do an incline push-up by placing your hands on a counter or wall and leaning forward at a 45-degree angle.

Improve Your Push-Ups

Increase the benefits of a push-up to your body by improving your push-ups overall. Start with whatever number of push-ups you can with good form, and then work on increasing the number of reps you do. If you started with a modified push-up on your hands and knees or on an incline, work your way up to a full push-up position, which will further engage your core.

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