Push-ups are one of the basic exer­cis­es designed to increase mus­cle mass. This train­ing move­ment works the arms, back, chest, and part of the abs at the same time, and is an excel­lent alter­na­tive to the bench press in the prone posi­tion. Reg­u­lar push-ups will help the ath­lete strength­en and build mus­cles, as well as achieve a clear­er relief. Using long peri­ods of push-ups until you lose strength in train­ing will help devel­op endurance and per­for­mance. For a more detailed study of all the main mus­cle groups that are includ­ed in the work dur­ing this move­ment, it is nec­es­sary to use var­i­ous tech­niques for per­form­ing the exer­cise.

Exercise Options

Exercise Options

Push-ups most often dif­fer in the width of the arms — this allows you to shift the phys­i­cal load on the mus­cle that needs enhanced study.

  • Wide stance of the palms.

In this vari­ant, the arms are spread to the max­i­mum width, but tak­ing into account the bend of the elbow joint, the angle of which should not exceed 90 °. The main part of the ten­sion falls on the pec­toral mus­cles, allow­ing them to accel­er­ate their growth. To com­pli­cate this posi­tion, a slight ele­va­tion under the feet is used; at home, a small bench or high chair is suit­able for this. Begin­ning ath­letes are advised to put an ele­va­tion under their arms — this will facil­i­tate the exe­cu­tion of the ele­ment and allow you to hone your tech­nique before using the clas­sic ver­sion.

  • Medi­um hand posi­tion.

This option is ide­al for work­ing out and increas­ing the tri­ceps mus­cles of the hands (tri­ceps). To com­pli­cate the exer­cise, you can use the push-up tech­nique on your fists or fin­gers. To adjust the com­plex­i­ty of the ele­ment, you can exper­i­ment with set­ting stops.

  • Nar­row hand place­ment.

This vari­a­tion is con­sid­ered the most dif­fi­cult, as the palms are placed direct­ly under the chest. The exer­cise works out the pec­toral mus­cles, del­toid mus­cles of the shoul­ders, tri­ceps and pro­motes the growth of mus­cle mass. Not rec­om­mend­ed for wom­en’s fit­ness train­ing, as it con­tributes to the visu­al expan­sion of the shoul­ders, which neg­a­tive­ly affects the pro­por­tions of the female fig­ure.

In addi­tion to chang­ing the width of the place­ment of the palms, you can use load meth­ods such as:

  • Push-ups on one hand.

This option is suit­able for men with a strong mus­cu­lar frame and devel­oped tri­ceps. It is not rec­om­mend­ed for girls because of a pos­si­ble change in the shape of the breast: the mus­cles will pro­trude under the mam­ma­ry glands and spoil the over­all impres­sion of the fig­ure.

  • Push-ups with claps.

Most­ly designed to devel­op endurance and coor­di­na­tion of move­ments.

  • Fin­ger­tip push-ups.

To per­form them, men must have strong wrist mus­cles and strong fin­gers. You can strength­en them with dumb­bell rota­tions or exer­cis­es with a carpal expander.

  • Reverse push-ups.

A great option for girls who want to tight­en the low­er line of the arms, strength­en the tri­ceps. To per­form them, you need to sit on a chair, rest your palms on the seat and move your pelvis for­ward, leav­ing your body in the air and stretch­ing your legs in front of you. Next, bend the arms at the elbows, low­er­ing the body down, and then return to the start­ing posi­tion.

Advanced ath­letes can increase the load on the pec­toral mus­cles by mas­ter­ing the hand­stand and push-ups from this posi­tion, which requires, in addi­tion to strength and agili­ty, a good sense of bal­ance.

Schedule a fitness workout

Schedule a fitness workout

Like any oth­er exer­cise, push-ups require a thought­ful approach, since the phys­i­cal load should increase grad­u­al­ly, as the mus­cles adapt to the unusu­al ten­sion. To track the result and the cor­rect dos­ing of phys­i­cal activ­i­ty, a push-up sched­ule is drawn up, which is a table that takes into account the fol­low­ing infor­ma­tion:

  • the num­ber of exer­cis­es per­formed;
  • the num­ber of sets per­formed for each ele­ment;
  • time spent on train­ing;
  • rest time between com­plet­ed ele­ments;
  • Expect­ed Result.

A method­i­cal approach to keep­ing a sports diary will help you accu­rate­ly track the pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of train­ing and increase phys­i­cal activ­i­ty in a time­ly man­ner. In addi­tion, it makes it eas­i­er to find the caus­es of the “plateau” effect that most ath­letes expe­ri­ence from time to time.

Push-up techniques for proper physical activity

When com­pil­ing a push-up pro­gram, it is nec­es­sary to take into account the phys­i­cal data of a per­son and the lev­el of his sports train­ing. When choos­ing a method­ol­o­gy, they start from the degree of com­plex­i­ty of a fit­ness les­son, which can be designed for begin­ner ath­letes; peo­ple with good phys­i­cal fit­ness; advanced and pro­fes­sion­al ath­letes.

  • For peo­ple aim­ing to improve phys­i­cal strength and lose weight, the fit­ness pro­gram starts with a small num­ber of sets and rep­e­ti­tions, which con­tin­u­ous­ly increas­es from ses­sion to ses­sion.
  • Work­outs for girls can be facil­i­tat­ed by push-ups from the knees and hold­ing hands with a wide grip. Such ele­ments are eas­i­ly mas­tered on their own at home and can grad­u­al­ly be replaced with a clas­sic ver­sion.
  • For ath­letes of an aver­age lev­el of phys­i­cal train­ing, sets of exer­cis­es are used, where the min­i­mum num­ber of sets with the max­i­mum num­ber of rep­e­ti­tions is used. Approach­es are grad­u­al­ly reduced, and by the end of the cycle there is a min­i­mum num­ber of them.
  • Fit­ness pro­grams include com­plex ele­ments such as close stances, fist/finger push-ups, and hand clap­ping.

The ide­al option for com­pil­ing a pro­gram is to con­tact a pro­fes­sion­al train­er who will draw up a fit­ness plan based on the athlete’s per­son­al data. If this is not pos­si­ble, then you can use the stan­dard schemes that are avail­able in large num­bers on the Inter­net. The first few ses­sions will help you adapt the pro­gram for your­self, choose the opti­mal num­ber of approach­es and rep­e­ti­tions, and also cal­cu­late their increase so that phys­i­cal activ­i­ty is not crit­i­cal for the body.


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