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99% of people miss this on a pushup
Pushups are a classic exercise. They can do so much:
- Get your upper body and core strong
- Improve shoulder mobility
- Build a SICK physique
But there’s a problem.
Almost 99% of the people I coach through pushups are forgetting to do 1 key thing.
if you can add this to your pushup, you’ll get SO much more out of the exercise. It’ll cook the muscles harder, make pushups more comfortable, AND better improve mobility.
Read the blog, watch the video, and listen to the podcast to learn what that fix exactly is.
The One Key Thing You’re Missing in Your Pushups
If you think pushups are too easy, don’t feel much working, or hurt, you are lacking one key thing:
A pushup requires several joints to internally rotate:
- Wrist (through extension)
In order for internal rotation (IR) to happen, the anterior thorax must expand. This is called the “pump handle action.” The air here increases available forward space for your body to move toward the ground.
But this action can only happen if internal rotation occurs in one key area:
Like the other joints, the hand internally rotates. To happen, the pisiform and 2nd metacarpal phalangeal joint head contact the ground. With increased weight bearing, the hand arch flattens. This is also called hand pronation.
Guess what most people DO NOT do?
Contact these two points.
In fact, the majority of people let the 2nd metacarpal phalangeal joint (MCPJ) head hover in the air. Instead, opting to grip the ground.
But when you grip the ground with your fingers, you’re limiting internal rotation. This deficit can cause compensations during the pushup. Whether jutting your head forward or sagging through the trunk.
The easiest way to fix this is to ensure that your hand can stay flat at all times during a pushup.
How to Fix Your Pushup Technique
Follow these steps, and your pushups will be next level:
- Get heavy through the pisiform and the base of the index finger
- Ensure that your hand stays flat at all times during a pushup.
- Don’t cheat through the elbow or shoulder to get the flat hand position.
If you struggle to maintain a flat hand position, try doing pushups with a neutral grip position. This limits the amount of internal rotation needed during a pushup. Though the contact points change during this move:
- Get heavy through the pisiform and base of the thumb.
- Have knuckles pointing directly toward the ground
- Don’t let your wrist extend and spin out
But perhaps you lack internal rotation motion? It could be that you need to perform an exercise to increase space, making pushups feel even better!
Increasing internal rotation to improve pushups
The armbar screwdriver can be a way to improve the rotation necessary to perform a better pushup.
Here are the steps:
- Lie on your back with a kettlebell in your hand.
- Grip the bell by contacting the pisiform and wrist base. Knuckles to the ceiling.
- Silently breathe in through your nose and exhale.
- As you exhale, slowly reach the kettlebell up toward the ceiling.
- Hold this position and inhale. At the same time, turn through the elbow. Your hand will be in the “handshake” position.
- Exhale and bring your arm back to the start without sagging the shoulder blade down.
- Perform five sets of five breaths per side, 2 times per day. It’s a great warmup activity.
If you keep these hand contacts, your pushups will go up another level!
- Internal rotation is a key element of a proper pushup technique that is often overlooked.
- Keeping the hand flat throughout the pushup can drive this internal rotation
- Use a neutral grip or increase the internal rotation range to improve pushup form.
What difficulty do you have with pushups? Comment below and let us know!