Making good health simple: Perfect your push ups

Straight leg push-up formation
Straight leg push-up formation

With gyms recently opened and at least some social distancing precautions expected to continue through the summer, it might be hard to keep up the routines you are used to doing. However, it is still important to stay active for a healthy body and mind. Instructors from 43 Degrees North will be sharing quick exercises with the Insider that you can do at home.

Looking for a quick, get it done efficient whole body exercise that will strengthen your chest, arms and core? Something that you can add everyday almost anywhere to help you feel stronger? Do you want to tighten up arms and add more muscle tone?

If you said yes to all those questions, it’s time to add push ups to your daily workout! Just adding 2-3 sets of 12 push ups three times a week, will increase strength, add muscle tone, and help you feel great!

Straight Leg Push Up

1.Get down on all fours. Place your hands slightly wider then your shoulders.

2. Straighten arms and legs into full plank position.

3. Holding core tight, lower upper body down so that chest is just above the ground. Be sure to keep head and neck in neutral alignment with your spine. Careful not to drop your head as you lower.

4. Pause and then push your body back up to full plank. Keep that core tight!

5. Repeat!

Push Up Modification

You can modify, using an elevated surface. For example, place hands on an elevated surface such as a step, bench or window sill. Keep core strong, rub cage down. Lower so that chest is just above elevated surface and then press up.

Modified Push Up on Knees

1. Get down on all fours, resting on knees. Place your hands in front of you, slightly wider then your shoulders.

2. Straighten arms  and holding core strong into modified knee plank position. Think about body weight settling equally between hands and fleshy part just above the knee cap.

3. Lower upper body down so that chest is just above the ground. Be sure to keep head and neck in neutral alignment with your spine. Careful not to drop your head as you lower. (*See elevated modification if needed or for variety.)

4. Pause and then push your body back up to full plank. Keep that core tight!

5. Repeat!

 

(Kerry Barton  is a certified fitness instructor And teaches group exercise at 43 Degrees North Athletic Club.)

Author: Kerry Barton

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