Perfect Pushup Workout
The push-up is one of the most utilized upper body exercises in the fitness world. While one of the benefits of push-ups is that you don't need anything extra to perform a push-up, there is a piece of exercise equipment that promises to recruit muscles better than the normal push-up.
The Perfect Pushup is just that piece of equipment because it allows for greater range of motion in the exercise because you are elevated from the ground. Thus, you're promised an overall better workout than the traditional push-up.
Read more: 10 Push-Up Variations for a Stronger Body
The Perfect Pushup
The Perfect Pushup was created by a former Navy SEAL. With two handles set on top of a circle, an individual can place his or her hands on the handles in an elevated push-up position. It features rotating handles that allow your hands to easily change from one position to another. For example, you can start with your hands facing your body and easily rotate them to have your palms facing one another without any stress on the wrists. The Perfect Pushup also places less stress on your wrists due to the change in position of your hands.
How to Perform a Standard Perfect Pushup
Perform a push-up on the Perfect Pushup just like a one you'd do on the floor.
Place your hands on the Perfect Pushup so that your palms are facing your body. Extend your legs behind you with the balls of your feet on the ground so that you're in a plank position.
With your abs engaged, your flat back and your glutes squeezed, slowly lower your chest down to the ground. Return to an upright position to complete one repetition.
You'll notice that as you lower down to the ground, your hands will rotate so that your palms are facing one another. As you push away from the ground, your hands will rotate back to the starting position.
With the Perfect Pushup, your workouts can vary based on your hand position. Options include placing your hands in a standard, narrow or wide position -- which one you chose is based on the muscles you'd like to train. Regular push-ups target the pectoralis major, the anterior deltoids and the triceps brachii. The wide push-ups will target the same muscles with a concentration on the pectoralis major. Narrow push-ups put more emphasis on the triceps.
Read more: What are the Benefits of Push-Ups?
For a fully comprehensive chest workout, incorporate the Perfect Pushup into your routine with the following exercises:
Three times a week with at least 48 hours separating workout days, do:
- Three sets of 12 (3 x 12) of wide Perfect Pushups super setting with floor-based diamond push-ups.
- Three sets of 12 (3 x 12) of Regular Perfect Pushups super setting with military push-ups (push-ups done on your fists)
Super setting refers to a technique during which one exercise immediately follows another without any notable break.
Floor-based diamond push-ups have been proven to work better without the Perfect Pushup. Although you can use the Perfect Pushup for them, ones on the floor create the greatest pectoral and triceps activation.
A study performed at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse, looked at 13 male students with prior strength-training experience and found that when comparing subjects'performance of the standard push-up and the wide push-up using the Perfect Pushup equipment, the pectoralis major, anterior deltoid and triceps brachii "were more highly activated" using the Perfect Pushup. There was no difference in muscle recruitment when the narrow grip, or diamond, push-up was performed using the Perfect Pushup versus the floor.
The Perfect Pushup induces greater muscle activation than the traditional push-up
The narrow push-up without the Perfect Pushup has the highest level of pectoral and tricep muscle activation, even while performing a modified push-up on knees.
- The Perfect Pushup: American Council on Exercise
- The Perfect Push-up: Is It Really Better?: The Cooper Institute
- Dynamic and Electromyographical Analysis in Variants of Push-Up Exercise: Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research
- The Metabolic Costs of Reciprocal Supersets vs. traditional resistance Exercise in Young Recreationally Active Adults.: Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research
Collette Stohler is the author of Passport to Fitness. She is also the creative director and co-founder of the travel blog, Roamaroo. She was an All-American Track and Field athlete & Olympic trials qualifier in Olympic Weightlifting. She attended the University of Pennsylvania and received a master's degree from the University of Miami.