The pushup is one of the most popular exercises in the world. Every day, hundreds of thousands of push-ups are done in gyms everywhere, and unfortunately many of those reps are wasted. In this video, I’m going to show you the biggest mistake people make when performing this popular chest exercise and how you can easily and instantly fix it for better results.
What most people do when they perform pushups is they set a target number in their heads or at the very least, concentrate on counting the reps as they perform them. Different than most other exercises, this one becomes one that has the counting of the reps become the major motivator, and the more of them you do supposedly the more you get out of the exercise.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. In an attempt to make the numbers go up, what often times happens is the range of motion used on the exercise becomes shorter and shorter. Even if this is just by an inch or two at the top and bottom of the exercise, the impact this has on the effectiveness of the exercise is significant.
Not sure you believe me? Fair enough. Let’s try it out for yourself. Take whatever number you think you normally do on the pushup and use that as your benchmark. Now, do the exercise as I show you in the video. Take a nice steady cadence from rep one to the last. No slow down of the exercise is allowed at all. The second you notice a decrease in rep velocity it ends your set, as if you couldn’t complete the rep at all.
Now, make sure at the bottom of the rep that you touch your chest firmly to the ground (without letting go of the tension completely) and fully extend your body back up to the top by locking out your elbows. You may notice that you only have an extra inch or two of motion at the top of the exercise to get you into full extension, but that is fine. Normally, this is not a large movemeent that needs to be made, however it is very impactful in terms of how much more it will take out of you to finish the set like this.
It is not uncommon for you to see a 60 percent drop in your performance on a set of push-ups by just making these two simple switches. Don’t worry. It’s not about the number of reps that you can count up, it’s more important that you make the reps you do perform count. Stop focusing on just racking up junk rep after junk rep and worry about getting the ones you perform to work the muscles you’re trying to work as hard as possible.
The pushup can be a great exercise for developing the chest, triceps and shoulders. It is something you can perform anywhere without any equipment at all, and as you’ll see, get much more out of it in a shorter period of time if you trade in the length for some intensity. I saw a humbling drop from about 100 reps of pushups to 40 just by implementing the changes I showed you here.
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