If you would love to be able to do press ups safely and effectively you could follow the progressions in this and my previous blog from last week. Here is part 1 from last week, and now follows part 2. Of course you can skip parts, but doing them all should ensure success and thereby due respect from your family and friends.
Once you can complete high plank for 45 seconds or thereabouts x 3 it is time to try the next phase :
Number Four – Modified negative press ups. ‘Negative’ is used to describe the lowering phase of an exercise; the eccentric contraction, where the muscles are lengthening under tension. During this part of the move the muscles can generate more force, and gaining strength in this phase will help with the concentric or shortening phase of the cycle. With knees on floor, hands wider than shoulder width, slowly lower chest towards floor, to a count of 5-6 seconds, then get back up again in the easiest way you can. (i.e. not by doing a press up). Do 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps.
Number Five – Full negative press ups. Assuming high plank position, with hands wider than shoulders, lower chest towards floor, then put knees down on the floor in order to press back up. Aim for 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps.
Number Six – nearly there …. Modified press ups. This is the press up on knees, sometimes called 3/4s position. The shoulders are in line with the knees, i.e. neutral spine position. To encourage core stability, grip the floor with fingers and squeeze the thighs. Aim for 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps.
Number Seven – You have arrived! Full press ups. Two sets of 5-12 reps.
Good luck on your press up journey. Other exercises are available!