There are many ways to do a Push Up, but before you start with Push up variations, make sure that you do your regular Push Up perfect to make the most of it.
Push Ups are one of the most fundamental Bodyweight Exercises and are very popular. The movement is simple, can be done everywhere and it’s very effective because you are using a lot of muscles at the same time. Sounds good right? The problem is that a lot of people concentrate on quantity instead of quality when doing push ups. To avoid this you should focus on these 4 points to make your push ups perfect:
Lets start straight with the number one:
THE BODY POSITION
A push up isn’t only a triceps, chest and shoulder movement. Most people neglect their tension in the abdominal muscles, the hips and the legs. Often they form an arched back & lack body tension. To avoid this tilt your pelvis backward & keep your butt squeezed tight. The movement gets a lot harder with this, but it‘s also more effective.
The second point is
THE ARM POSITION
The arm position doesn’t really matter in terms of the perfect execution. A perfect push up can be done with a wide or a narrow grip, but it’s important to place your wrists in a nearly vertical line under your shoulder when you do the standard push up. There are still exceptions for that rule for example when you're doing pseudo planche push ups, which puts the focus more on your shoulder or when you're doing spinx push ups, which are a triceps dominant movement. If you are working with standard push ups and choose a wider grip, it involves the chest more than a close grip. A close grip also sets the focus more to your triceps. The only thing you should avoid completely are outflared elbows, because this puts a lot of stress on your shoulder, which can lead to injuries. The closer you place your arms to the body, the more your elbows point backwards. The wider you place your arms, the more your elbows go away from your body, but they still point more backwards than outwards.
The third point is
THE RANGE OF MOTION
This is quite simple. Just don’t cheat! Go all the way up and all the way down and let your body straight. Don´t decrease the range of motion by bringing your head or your hips down. When you don't use the full ROM, your risk of injury might get higher. When you move in a certain range you will strengthen the surfaces of your joints in that range. Now if it happens that you go out of this range, whether by accident or not, you might get injured, because the surface of the joint isn't used to that range. Injury means rest for a long time and that means you get weaker. Don't do it!
The last point is
THE SHOULDER BLADE MOVEMENT
This is a very neglected point. When you are going down your shoulderblades come together and when you are going up they go apart. You should also focus on pushing them downward instead of upward, which means away from your ears, but don´t forget there is still difference between a passive and an active way of this shoulderblade movement. If you are too weak in the shoulder girdle your shoulderblades come together, because you are not able to hold your body against the gravity. You can see this especially at the top of the movement. When you are going down, always focus on the tension and an active shoulderblade movement. Don’t let yourself fall down into your structures. If you consider all those points and try it on your own you will notice that it is much harder to do. Maybe your amout of maximum repetions will drop, but that doesn’t matter. Always focus on quality over quantity and you will be rewarded with progress and a healthy body. Always keep in mind: No matter what exercise you do, also put quality over quantity. Give yourself some time to learn the right technique, even for seemingly easy exercises.