The Push-up Development Plan (Get Your First Push-up!)


A gecko doing a push-up

At this time 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 Online Coaching Program crush their first push-up. 

Right here’s what we’ll cowl:

Observe 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 talk about 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 tissues constantly. Regardless of the place you’re beginning in the present day.

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

Mason before and after

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

I’ll talk about push-up variations it’s best to begin throughout the subsequent part. Plus, we’ll wrap up in the present day’s information by discussing simply how typically it’s best to prepare your push muscle tissues.

Simply bear in mind, if you would like your first push-up (and it’s best to trigger push-ups are superior), then you definately’ll must be in keeping with our push-up development plan.



Our first cease on the Push-up Development Plan: discovering a push-up variation so that you can develop into snug with. One thing you are able to do about 8-10 reps with, for about 3-4 units.

To begin, you’ll most likely prepare with an elevated push-up variation:

Staci doing an elevated push-up

These will probably be simpler than a daily push-up, for the reason that larger the elevation, the much less of your physique’s weight you’ll be lifting in the course of the motion.

Conversely, in case you had been to raise your ft, you’d truly 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 proportion of your physique’s weight lifted for various elevations of push-ups.[1]

The Proportion 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 all the way 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 someday you’ll be capable to deal with the ultimate boss: the ground.

A witch going into a basement

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

Alright, let’s present you precisely the right way to 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 could be regarded as benchmarks.

If you happen to 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 it.

Listed below are 4 variations for our Push-up Development Plan:

Push-up Development Stage 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 Stage 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 Stage 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 Stage 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 all the way 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 accurately?

Our subsequent part will dive into the right kind, since this can be a information on getting your first correct push-up (I wouldn’t maintain out on you).

However first, you might 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 alerts on when to maneuver up. 

Plus, you get to earn precise XP so that you degree up your very personal superhero!

You can provide 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 right approach to do a correct push-up, and in addition features a few well-placed jokes from yours actually.

Right here’s the right way to full one good push-up:

Listed below are 4 frequent errors with push-ups:

#1) Be sure to hold your elbows in. Typically, inexperienced persons will flare out their elbows when doing a push-up.

A great way to think about this, is you need your physique to seem 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 consistent with your physique. We don’t need your head shifting ahead, which may put pointless stress in your neck and stop a full vary of movement.

#3) Maintain your hips consistent with your physique (no sagging). We would like 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 along with your push-up (so long as it’s pain-free). Shoot to come back all the way in which 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 to do proper push-ups, (together with superior variations to attempt).

Workouts For Reaching a Full Push-Up

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

There are two workout routines that may go a great distance in direction of reaching your first push-up:

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

First, let’s discuss push-up negatives.

“Unfavorable” in train terminology usually means solely doing half of a conventional rep, usually reducing the motion.

Coach Jim doing a push-up negative

To do a Push-up Unfavorable

Subsequent, let’s discuss Entrance Planks or Holding on the Prime of a Push-up.

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

That is essential for a number of causes:

Holding a plank is likely to be powerful for you, so let’s discuss a number of variations you’ll be able to experiment with.

Maintain Stage 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 Stage 2: Entrance Planks

Coach Staci showing you the front plant

Lie on the ground along with your forearms flat, ensuring that your elbows are aligned straight below your shoulders.

Interact your core and lift your physique off the ground in a straight line from head to ft, maintaining your forearms planted. Strive to not let your hips rise or drop.

Maintain Stage 3: Push-up Maintain

Coach Jim holding the top of a push-up

Maintain your self up on the prime of a push-up place, with the physique in a straight line from shoulders to ft.

If you happen to comply with the Push-up Problem in NF Journey, you’ll discover that just about each exercise ends with a kind of one in all these holds, since core energy is so important 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 after I mentioned the secret with push-up development is consistency?

To indicate you what I imply, it’s time to build a workout for conquering push-ups.

I’d suggest three exercises per 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 off between workouts, it’s high-quality.

Coach Jim doing elevated push-up

Oh, and in case you can solely do two exercises per week, that’s okay too. Simply do the perfect you’ll be able to (even as soon as per 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 Unfavorable
  • 60 second Plank or Maintain

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

Step #1) Warm-up

  • Arm circles: 10x/manner
  • Wrist stretches: 5/aspect

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 at all times do a extra formal warm-up routine, however simply be sure you embrace some variation of those two strikes.

Step #2) Prepare with a Push-up Variation

Earlier, we went by means of 4 variations that may provide help to get your first push-up.

After your warm-up, it’s best to prepare with one in all them.

For our Push-up Development Plan, I need 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 tougher 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 Unfavorable

After you prepare along with your push-up variation, I need you to aim 2-3 reps of a damaging push-up.

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

Any of the 4 variations we mentioned earlier could be executed as a “damaging.”

These negatives will probably be essential, as they’ll go a great 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 Prime 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 have to break up the 60-second maintain, you might:

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

Simply purpose to go longer and longer as you go. If you happen to 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 will probably be important for doing push-ups with correct kind.

Oh, and if you would like somebody to change this exercise for you (let’s say you additionally wish to do some HIIT for fats loss) our 1-on-1 Online Coaching Program can just do that.

Plus, your coach can assessment your actions by means of our app so that you’ll know your coaching accurately 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 every thing you have to get began with the push-up development plan.

Bear in mind…

The “Get Your First Push-up” Exercise is:

Do that thrice per 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 tougher. We would like you slowly however certainly 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 tougher variation (waist-high push-ups to knee-high)

Oh, and in case you want any assist alongside the way in which, I gotcha boo.

Right here’s the right way to proceed your journey with Nerd Health:

#1) Our Online Coaching Program: good for somebody who needs an skilled (like me!) to design the proper 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 group so we are able to 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 an actual blueprint for crushing push-ups, take a look at NF Journey. Our enjoyable habit-building app helps you train extra often, 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

Strive your free trial proper right here:

#3) Be part of the Riot! We want good individuals such as you in our group, the Nerd Health Riot. 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 “Energy Coaching 101: All the pieces You Have to Know” information, which can educate you precisely the right way to develop robust sufficient to rock push-ups:

Alright, I wish 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 options for a newbie?

Let me know within the feedback!


PS: Take a look at the remainder of our guides on doing push-ups:


Photograph supply: Gecko push-upFigure push-up; 102, 103, 104…; doll push-up, push-up sunset;

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