A gecko doing a push-up

At the moment I’m going that can assist you obtain your first push-up!

Yep, I do know that sounds tremendous assured.

But it surely’s as a result of I’ve a push-up development plan that’s helped a great deal of shoppers 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 Finest Push-up Development Plan?

As I focus on within the video above, a very powerful 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 energy degree is, one of the simplest ways to work in direction of a push-up is to coach your push muscle mass persistently. Irrespective of the place you’re beginning in the present day.

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

Mason before and after

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

I’ll focus on push-up variations you must begin throughout the subsequent part. Plus, we’ll wrap up in the present day’s information by discussing simply how typically you must prepare your push muscle mass.

Simply bear in mind, if you need your first push-up (and you must trigger push-ups are superior), then you definitely’ll must be per our push-up development plan.



Our first cease on the Push-up Development Plan: discovering a push-up variation so that you can change into comfy 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 might be simpler than a daily push-up, because the greater the elevation, the much less of your physique’s weight you’ll be lifting through the motion.

Conversely, if you happen to had been to raise your ft, you’d really be lifting greater than a daily push-up:

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

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

The Share of Physique Weight Supported by Our Fingers 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 right down to the bottom, lifting an increasing number of of your personal weight as you go.

Consider it like gaining XP in a online game, so at some point you’ll be capable of deal with the ultimate boss: the ground.

A witch going into a basement

It’d assist to fake there’s a witch under it. 

Alright, let’s present you precisely how one can 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 may be regarded as benchmarks.

When you can’t full 8-10 reps, nbd.

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

Listed below 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 fingers 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 fingers 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 fingers 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 fingers and knees, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to knees. Decrease right 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 appropriately?

Our subsequent part will dive into the proper kind, since this can be 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 following degree?

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 degree up your very personal superhero!

You may give 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 technique to do a correct push-up, and likewise features a few well-placed jokes from yours really.

Right here’s how one can 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 hold your elbows comparatively near your physique, and hold observe 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 right down to a 90-degree angle), pause barely after which push again up till you’re on the beginning place.

Listed below are 4 frequent errors with push-ups:

#1) Be sure you hold 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 look 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) Maintain your head according to 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) Maintain your hips according to your physique (no sagging). We wish 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 to do a full vary of movement together with your push-up (so long as it’s pain-free). Shoot to return all the best way down, so your chest is touching the bottom or the thing you’re doing push-ups in opposition to.

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

Workout routines For Attaining a Full Push-Up

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

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

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

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

“Adverse” in train terminology usually means solely doing half of a standard rep, usually decreasing the motion.

Coach Jim doing a push-up negative

To do a Push-up Adverse

  • Maintain your self up on the high of a push-up, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to ft.
  • 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 detrimental from an elevated floor too.

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

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

That is necessary for a number of causes:

Holding a plank is likely to be robust for you, so let’s speak about a number of variations you’ll be able to 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 together with your forearms flat, ensuring that your elbows are aligned straight underneath your shoulders.

Interact your core and lift your physique off the ground in a straight line from head to ft, conserving 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 ft.

When you comply with the Push-up Problem in NF Journey, you’ll discover that just about each exercise ends with a kind of one among these holds, since core energy is so crucial for push-ups.

Oh, and if you wish to simply attempt 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 once I mentioned the secret with push-up development is consistency?

To indicate 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.

May very well be Monday-Wednesday-Friday or Tuesday-Thursday-Sunday.

So long as there’s a day without work between exercises, it’s high-quality.

Coach Jim doing elevated push-up

Oh, and if you happen to can solely do two exercises every week, that’s okay too. Simply do the very best you’ll be able to (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 Adverse
  • 60 second Plank or Maintain

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

Step #1) Heat-up

  • Arm circles: 10x/manner
  • 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 possibly can all the time do a extra formal warm-up routine, however simply be sure you embrace some variation of those two strikes.

Step #2) Practice with a Push-up Variation

Earlier, we went by way of 4 variations that may enable you get your first push-up.

After your warm-up, you must prepare with one among them.

For our Push-up Development Plan, I would like 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 Adverse

After you prepare together with your push-up variation, I would like you to aim 2-3 reps of a detrimental push-up.

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

Any of the 4 variations we mentioned earlier may be completed as a “detrimental.”

These negatives might be necessary, as they’ll go a good distance in direction of constructing energy for a daily 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 High of the Push-up

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

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

If you might want to break up the 60-second maintain, you might:

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

Simply goal to go longer and longer as you go. When 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 might be crucial for doing push-ups with correct kind.

Oh, and if you need somebody to switch 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 just do that.

Plus, your coach can assessment your actions by way of our app so that you’ll know your coaching appropriately and safely.

The best way to Obtain Your First Push-up (Subsequent Steps)

A man doing push-up in sunset

That ought to provide you with all the things you might want to 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 Adverse
  • 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, bear in mind to maintain pushing more durable. We wish you slowly however absolutely rising the problem of the exercise (identified within the biz as “progressive overload.”)

This could possibly 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 if you happen to want any assist alongside the best way, I gotcha boo.

Right here’s how one can proceed your journey with Nerd Health:

#1) Our On-line Teaching Program: good for somebody who needs an knowledgeable (like me!) to design the appropriate 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 possibly can schedule a free name with our crew so we will get to know you and see if our teaching program could be a great match. Simply click on on the picture under for extra particulars:

#2) If you’d like a precise blueprint for crushing push-ups, take a look at NF Journey. Our enjoyable habit-building app helps you train extra continuously, eat more healthy, and degree 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 a part of the Insurrection! We want good folks such as you in our group, the Nerd Health Insurrection. You’ll meet people from all totally different walks of life, all of whom are attempting to degree up their lives. 

Join within the field under to enlist and get our “Power Coaching 101: Every thing You Must Know” information, which can train you precisely how one can 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 degree are you on?

Are we lacking any useful strategies for a newbie?

Let me know within the feedback!


PS: Take a look at 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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