A Press Up is a classic exercise, which I'm sure you have tried before but you may not be familiar with the proper technique. This exercise primarily works the upper body including the triceps, pectoral muscles and abdominals. There are several variations of press ups depending on your ability.

The most basic press up can be done from your knees with your body at an incline. We achieve this by placing out hands on a block or step, the higher the block, the easier this will be. You should be creating a straight line from the knee to the top of the head and a triangle between your two hands and where you are looking; infront and between the two hands. Lower yourself down so your chest comes between your thumbs and towards the box. To help with the push phase of the movement we can use our breath; exhaling as we push up and inhaling as we come down.

A man's upper body at the base of the press up

This can be progressed to the same movement but from our toes rather than the knees. You should still be creating a straight line from the toes all the way up to the top of the head and maintaining that triangle looking just ahead of your hands so that your head stays in line with your back.

The next variation is a classic Kneeling Press Up. In this progression you will set yourself up with that same straight line from the knees to the top of the head and the same triangle for line of sight. You will bring yourself down so that your nose, chest and hips all lightly touch the floor before pressing yourself back up.

The final variation is a full press up. For this exercise you will, again, have a straight line all the way through the body, pressing down so that your nose, chest and hips lightly touch the floor before pressing back up.

Which variation should I choose?

I would suggest starting with a harder option which is manageable, but challenging and then when you notice your form start to slip, to try a level down.

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