Pushup Progressions


Here is a simple horizontal push progression in our continuing series of progressions. We like to look at “loading tools” and “teaching tools”. For teaching tools we like planks, squeezing an airex between the knees to tighten the core, and chin tucks. I like to cue “chest down, not chin down” as most people “peck” with their head.

For loading we use both weight vests and plates. Plates are quicker, vests work better. Depends on your situation.

1-Incline Pushup- my standard joke, “the only good use for a Smith Machine” Make sure the wrist stays stiff.

Heres another version

2- Pushup- nothing fancy here but we want to get to flat ground with great form.

a simple progression is to add a weight vest

3- Feet Elevated Pushup- an exercise bench works great here

4- BOSU Pushup ( feet elevated)- I’m not a huge BOSU fan but I do love upper body instability.

5- Weighted Pushup ( feet elevated) –

6- BOSU/ Weighted/ Feet Elevated- heres one of my 60+ clients with a great demo

7- Rings/ Weighted/ Feet Elevated

The bottom line is you can really progress pushups. Don’t view them as a bodyweight exercise, view them as a strength exercise. If you can do ten, make it harder.

5 Responses to “Pushup Progressions”

  1. […] influence reaches far beyond the gym’s three Massachusetts locations though. With a blog full of valuable training tips and an informative podcast that shares many of the renowned gym’s fundamentals with athletes […]

  2. ha ha that’s what i have been saying for the last 3 years about the smith machine too ha ha

  3. mboyle1959 Says:

    Just FYI. Not a plyo pushup fan. Great way to get shoulder tendonitis and sore wrists. I prefer med ball chest passes.

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  4. This push up progression is awesome! Works great for athletes who come in with no prior experience in resistance training. I have also read up on progressing into the plyo-push ups using a similar technique from another blog called gotstrengthblog.com

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