A gecko doing a push-up

In the present day I’m going that can assist you obtain your first push-up!

Yep, I do know that sounds tremendous assured.

However it’s as a result of I’ve a push-up development plan that’s helped a great deal of purchasers in our On-line Teaching Program crush their first push-up. 

Right here’s what we’ll cowl:

Comply with our information and also you’ll be doing “Earth Downs” very quickly:

Text that says "Push-ups? You mean Earth Downs?"

Let’s get began.

What’s the Greatest Push-up Development Plan?

As I focus on within the video above, crucial a part of your push-up development plan: consistency.

Yeah, I do know, there’s nothing too earth-shattering there.

However it doesn’t matter what your present power stage is, one of the best ways to work in direction of a push-up is to coach your push muscle tissues persistently. Regardless of the place you’re beginning immediately.

That is how our buddy Mason went from wall push-ups to common push-ups, then all the way in which to diamond push-ups.

Mason before and after

Oh, and he misplaced like 70 kilos alongside the way in which too!

I’ll focus on push-up variations you need to begin with within the subsequent part. Plus, we’ll wrap up immediately’s information by discussing simply how typically you need to prepare your push muscle tissues.

Simply keep in mind, if you need your first push-up (and you need to, trigger push-ups are superior), then you definately’ll should be in keeping with our push-up development plan.



Our first cease on the Push-up Development Plan: discovering a push-up variation so that you can develop into snug with. One thing you are able to do about 8-10 reps with, for about 3-4 units.

To begin, you’ll in all probability prepare with an elevated push-up variation:

Staci doing an elevated push-up

These will probably be simpler than an everyday push-up, for the reason that greater the elevation, the much less of your physique’s weight you’ll be lifting in the course of the motion.

Conversely, when you have been to raise your toes, you’d truly be lifting greater than an everyday push-up:

Elevated push-ups like this are a great way to bodyweight train.

Let’s present a tough breakdown of the proportion of your physique’s weight lifted for various elevations of push-ups.[1]

The Share of Physique Weight Supported by Our Arms Throughout Push-Ups:

  • 4’ Elevated Push-up (Wall): 9%
  • 3′ Elevated Push-up (Countertop): 20%
  • 2′ Elevated Push-up: 36-41%
  • Knee Push-up: 49%
  • 1′ Elevated Push-up: 54%
  • Common Push-up: 64%

The technique behind our push-up development plan is to slowly transfer you all the way down to the bottom, lifting increasingly of your individual weight as you go.

Consider it like gaining XP in a online game, so sooner or later you’ll have the ability to deal with the ultimate boss: the ground.

A witch going into a basement

It would assist to faux there’s a witch under it. 

Alright, let’s present you precisely do a few of these push-up variations.

4 Push-up Variations (to Progress to a Full Push-Up)

A figure doing a push-up

The push-up variations under will be regarded as benchmarks.

In case you can’t full 8-10 reps, nbd.

We’ll have you ever prepare on the stage under and also you’ll transfer up earlier than you realize it.

Listed here are 4 variations for our Push-up Development Plan:

Push-up Development Degree 1: Wall Push-ups

Coach Jim doing a wall push-up

Place your palms on a wall about chest weight (roughly 4′, 48″, or 122 cm). Bend your arms and get as near the wall earlier than pushing again up.

Push-up Development Degree 2: Waist-Excessive Push-ups

Staci showing you an elevated push-up

Place your palms on a floor about waist excessive (roughly 3′, 36″, or 92 cm). Bend your arms and contact your chest to the floor earlier than pushing again up.

Push-up Development Degree 3: Knee-Excessive Push-ups

Coach Jim doing a knee high push-up

Place your palms on a floor about knee excessive (roughly 1.5′, 18″, or 46 cm). Bend your arms and contact your chest to the floor earlier than pushing again up.

Push-up Development Degree 4: Knee Push-ups

Rebel Leader Steve doing knee push-ups

Maintain your self up in your palms and knees, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to knees. Decrease all the way down to the bottom earlier than pushing again up.

FINAL BOSS: Push-ups!

Here Rebel Leader Steve shows you the classic push-up.

You made it to a push-up!

Are you doing them accurately?

Our subsequent part will dive into the proper kind, since it is a information on getting your first correct push-up (I wouldn’t maintain out on you).

However first, it’s possible you’ll be asking your self a query: when do I progress as much as the subsequent stage?

For that, I’d suggest downloading our new app (it’s free to check out).

Nerd Health Journey will information you thru a exercise routine particularly designed that can assist you get your first push-up, with benchmarks and indicators on when to maneuver up. 

Plus, you get to earn precise XP so that you stage up your very personal superhero!

You can provide it a free take a look at drive proper right here:

What Is the Correct Type for a Push-Up?

The video above walks you thru the proper strategy to do a correct push-up, and likewise features a few well-placed jokes from yours actually.

Right here’s full one good push-up:

  • Along with your arms straight, glutes clenched, and abs braced, steadily decrease your self till your elbows are at a 90-degree angle or much less.
  • Attempt to preserve your elbows comparatively near your physique, and preserve notice of after they begin to flare out as you get drained.
  • As soon as your chest (or nostril/chin) touches the ground (or your arms go all the way down to a 90-degree angle), pause barely after which push again up till you’re on the beginning place.

Listed here are 4 frequent errors with push-ups:

#1) Be sure you preserve your elbows in. Typically, learners will flare out their elbows when doing a push-up.

A great way to consider this, is you need your physique to seem extra like an ARROW from the highest, not a T.

This infographic on the right push-up kind exhibits you need I imply:

As you can see, you want your arms to be like an arrow, not a T when doing push-ups.

#2) Hold your head consistent with your physique. We don’t need your head shifting ahead, which might put pointless stress in your neck and stop a full vary of movement.

#3) Hold your hips consistent with your physique (no sagging). We would like you in a single straight line as you push your physique up and down:

A gif of Coach Jim doing push-ups in a small space.

#4) Try and do a full vary of movement along with your push-up (so long as it’s pain-free). Shoot to return all the way in which down, so your chest is touching the bottom or the article you’re doing push-ups in opposition to.

If you’d like extra assist right here, we’ve a full information on do correct push-ups, (together with superior variations to strive).

Workouts For Reaching a Full Push-Up

These LEGO characters are on a mission to grow some muscle.

There are two workouts that may go a great distance in direction of attaining your first push-up:

  1. Push-up Negatives
  2. Entrance Planks or Prime of Push-up Holds

First, let’s speak about push-up negatives.

“Detrimental” in train terminology typically means solely doing half of a conventional rep, usually reducing the motion.

Coach Jim doing a push-up negative

To do a Push-up Detrimental

  • Maintain your self up on the high of a push-up, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to toes.
  • Decrease down and contact the bottom, then let the knees relaxation on the bottom that can assist you push again up.
  • You are able to do a push-up unfavourable from an elevated floor too.

Subsequent, let’s speak about Entrance Planks or Holding on the Prime of a Push-up.

The plank is a great bodyweight exercise to engage your core muscles.

That is vital for a number of causes:

Holding a plank may be powerful for you, so let’s speak about a number of variations you may experiment with.

Maintain Degree 1: Knee Planks

Coach Jim doing a knee front plank

Maintain your self up in your forearms and knees, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to knees.

Maintain Degree 2: Entrance Planks

Coach Staci showing you the front plant

Lie on the ground along with your forearms flat, ensuring that your elbows are aligned immediately below your shoulders.

Interact your core and lift your physique off the ground in a straight line from head to toes, protecting your forearms planted. Attempt to not let your hips rise or drop.

Maintain Degree 3: Push-up Maintain

Coach Jim holding the top of a push-up

Maintain your self up on the high of a push-up place, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to toes.

In case you comply with the Push-up Problem in NF Journey, you’ll discover that just about each exercise ends with a kind of certainly one of these holds, since core power is so essential for push-ups.

Oh, and if you wish to simply strive Nerd Health Journey to see what I imply, you are able to do so proper right here:

The Push-up Exercise Plan

a doll doing a push-up

Bear in mind earlier after I stated the secret with push-up development is consistency?

To point out you what I imply, it’s time to construct a exercise for conquering push-ups.

I’d suggest three exercises every week for a Push-up Development Plan, with a relaxation day between.

Might be Monday-Wednesday-Friday or Tuesday-Thursday-Sunday.

So long as there’s a time off between exercises, it’s effective.

Coach Jim doing elevated push-up

Oh, and when you can solely do two exercises every week, that’s okay too. Simply do the very best you may (even as soon as every week).

The “Get Your First Push-up” Exercise is:

  • A Heat-Up
  • 3 or 4 units of a Push-up Variation for 8-10 reps
  • 2 or 3 reps of a Push-up Detrimental
  • 60 second Plank or Maintain

Let’s dive into every of those a bit extra.

Step #1) Heat-up

  • Arm circles: 10x/means
  • Wrist stretches: 5/facet

Arm circles for push-ups will appear like this:

Arm circles like so are a great way to get your heart rate up before doing HIIT.

Wrist stretches for push-ups will appear like so:

Coach Jim doing wrist stretches backwards

You’ll be able to all the time do a extra formal warm-up routine, however simply be sure to embrace some variation of those two strikes.

Step #2) Practice with a Push-up Variation

Earlier, we went by means of 4 variations that may allow you to get your first push-up.

After your warm-up, you need to prepare with certainly one of them.

For our Push-up Development Plan, I need you to alternate between two variations:

  • On Day A, do 3 or 4 units of a push-up variation that you are able to do 8-10 reps in.
  • On Day B, do 3 or 4 units of a push-up variation that you are able to do 5-8 reps in (so a more durable variation).

For instance:

  • On Monday possibly you do 3 units of waist-high push-ups for 10 reps.
  • Wednesday, you are able to do 3 units of knee-high push-ups for 8 reps.
  • Then Friday, again to the waist-high variation.

Step #3) Do a Detrimental

After you prepare along with your push-up variation, I need you to aim 2-3 reps of a unfavourable push-up.

If these are too powerful, merely do a better variation, like knee push-up negatives:

Any of the 4 variations we mentioned earlier will be completed as a “unfavourable.”

These negatives will probably be vital, as they’ll go a great distance in direction of constructing power for an everyday push-up.

Step #4) Plank/Maintain for 60 seconds

We’re going to finish our “Get Your First Push-up” Exercise with a maintain:

  • Entrance Plank
  • Holding the Prime of the Push-up

Select whichever variation you want, however try to carry the place for a full minute, with as few units as doable.

A plank, like so, is a great way to engage your core.

If you should break up the 60-second maintain, you may:

  • Do three units of 20 seconds every.
  • Do two units of 30 seconds every.

Simply goal to go longer and longer as you go. In case you can’t make it to a full minute, don’t stress. Simply work on holding a knee or elevated plank.

These holds will assist strengthen your core, which will probably be essential for doing push-ups with correct kind.

Oh, and if you need somebody to change this exercise for you (let’s say you additionally need to do some HIIT for fats loss) our 1-on-1 On-line Teaching Program can do exactly that.

Plus, your coach can evaluate your actions by means of our app so that you’ll know your coaching accurately and safely.

Obtain Your First Push-up (Subsequent Steps)

A man doing push-up in sunset

That ought to provide you with the whole lot you should get began with the push-up development plan.

Bear in mind…

The “Get Your First Push-up” Exercise is:

  • A Heat-Up
  • 3 or 4 units of a Push-up Variation for 8-10 reps
  • 2 or 3 reps of a Push-up Detrimental
  • 60 second Plank or Maintain

Do that 3 times every week, with a day of relaxation between exercises, and also you’ll be good to go.

Wayne is stoked that he made his small change for weight loss.

As you proceed on the Push-up Development Plan, keep in mind to maintain pushing more durable. We would like you slowly however certainly rising the problem of the exercise (recognized within the biz as “progressive overload.”)

This might be:

  • Including one other rep (8 reps of waist-high push-ups to 9)
  • Including one other set (3 units of knee push-ups to 4)
  • Transferring as much as a harder variation (waist-high push-ups to knee-high)

Oh, and when you want any assist alongside the way in which, I gotcha boo.

Right here’s proceed your journey with Nerd Health:

#1) Our On-line Teaching Program: good for somebody who desires an professional (like me!) to design the best path for conquering push-ups. We’re all totally different, so why not have a coach information you thru a program that’s custom-made for you?

You’ll be able to schedule a free name with our crew so we will get to know you and see if our teaching program can be a great match. Simply click on on the picture under for extra particulars:

#2) If you’d like an actual blueprint for crushing push-ups, try NF Journey. Our enjoyable habit-building app helps you train extra often, eat more healthy, and stage up your life (actually).

Plus, our 6-week Push-up Problem has helped fairly a number of Rebels obtain their first push-up!

Katie talking about how she got her first push-up using NF Journey

Attempt your free trial proper right here:

#3) Be part of the Rebel! We want good individuals such as you in our group, the Nerd Health Rebel. You’ll meet people from all totally different walks of life, all of whom try to stage up their lives. 

Enroll within the field under to enlist and get our “Power Coaching 101: All the pieces You Must Know” information, which can train you precisely develop sturdy sufficient to rock push-ups:

Alright, I need to hear from you now:

Are you able to do a correct push-up?

If not, what stage are you on?

Are we lacking any useful ideas for a newbie?

Let me know within the feedback!


PS: Try the remainder of our guides on doing push-ups:


Picture supply: Gecko push-upDetermine push-up; 102, 103, 104…; doll push-up, push-up sundown;


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