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The single most important exercise

Running. Yoga. Barre. Pilates. Basketball. There are so many ways to get fit. However, one exercise pushes its way past the rest. 

That’s right. We’re talking about the push-up (sometimes called a press-up by our friends across the pond.) 

The benefits of push-ups

Push-ups are beginner-friendly, budget-friendly, and busy-human-friendly. 

Since push-ups rely on body weight, you can do them from the comfort of your home or at a hotel, park, or gym. This move works multiple muscles simultaneously (hello, time-saver) and can improve performance or aid in rehabilitation after injury. 

How to do a push-up

Here’s how to complete this simple yet challenging, equipment-free exercise in just a few easy steps:

  1. Get down on all fours with your fingertips pointed forward and your arms slightly further than shoulder-width apart. Your arms should be straight without locking your elbows. 
  2. Extend your legs so they make a straight line with your back. Your feet should be a few inches apart, and your weight should be on the balls of your feet. 
  3. Lower your body until your elbows bend at a 90° angle. Don’t forget to keep your legs and back in a straight line!
  4. Push yourself back up to the starting position. 

When you’re just getting started, you may find it easier to complete push-ups with your knees on the ground. There’s no shame in exercise modification! Just be sure to keep your thighs and back in a straight line, and listen to your body.

Which muscles do push-ups work?

The humble push-up is so much more than just a chest exercise. This exercise also works the triceps, anterior deltoids, core muscles, and lower back muscles. Of course, it also works the chest, including the pectoralis major and minor.

The dangers of poor push-up posture

You’ve probably heard the saying, “more pain, more gain.” Well, that’s 100% false regarding poor push-up posture. In fact, improperly completing this move will reduce your gains and increase the likelihood of experiencing pain and injuries. 

Instead of strength and svelte arms, you can expect shoulder, neck, and back injuries, muscle strains, and unnecessary joint stress. 

How can I improve my push-up posture?

Can you remember the first time you learned that Worcestershire sauce isn’t actually pronounced like it’s spelled? You didn’t know you were saying it wrong until someone pointed it out. 

Exercise is the same. You can’t look in the mirror and do your push-ups properly, so you may not even know your hips are sagging or your head isn’t in alignment with your body. That’s why taking classes with professionals who motivate you while monitoring your form is so important. 

The trainers at Enhancewell Fitness focus on inspiring you, enhancing your experience, and kindly correcting your form so you can maximize your gains. Sign up for a group class or private session to perfect your push-up posture and see real results. 

Thankfully, you don’t have to choose just one exercise to complete for the rest of your fitness journey. However, once you master the push-up, you can get a workout at any time, in any place, without any equipment. 

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