Push-ups are an amazing exercise for women. Do you do them often enough? Hopefully, you are practicing some type of push-up at least twice a week. I like to use variations of push-ups with my clients that keep things interesting while still helping them to perfect the movement.
If you are still working on improving your basic push-up technique, you can go back and read my article on “How to Rock at Push-ups” and keep working hard at that.
Why You Need Variation
Today, I wanted to share with you a variation that you can use to continue to get stronger in your upper body while adding some elements of conditioning and mobility to the push-up. I’m a traditionalist by nature, and I believe in getting strong and proficient at the basics before adding too many implements. However, variety is important not only for mental improvement but also to avoid overtraining certain movement patterns and not getting better at others.
The Inchworm Push-Up
With that said, I want to introduce you to the Inchworm Push-Up. Here you are taking the traditional push-up and adding the “inchworm” in between reps. If you have never done the inchworm, it’s a tremendous stretch for your hamstrings and calves and also requires some great shoulder mobility and strength to move through the motion.
When you add the inchworm to your push-up, you are increasing the amount of overall movement you are doing and recruiting more muscles in the body, which leads to a higher work rate.
Here are a few tips for this exercise:
• Start in a push-up position with the abs braced tight
• Walk your legs in toward your shoulders without bending your knees.
• Go as far as you can. Ideally your legs should be straight with your heels on the floor, but you have to gauge your own mobility (this will improve with practice).
• Once you are in the furthest position, walk your arms out back to the push-up position.
• Re-brace your abs and perform a perfect push-up.
• Repeat the walk and push-up for 8-10 reps or for a certain distance (i.e., 20-50 feet), depending on your fitness level and the space you have available.
Here’s a quick video to demonstrate the movement. Give this a try on your upper body day or as a supplement to a full body session. Be sure to leave a comment about how it went for you.