- Monthly Challenge is accumulating 600 pushups this month! Pushups in workouts count as well. That’s only around 20 pushups a day!
- It’s a new month, we need goals on the goal board! This month we want you to think of a goal OUTSIDE of the gym to better yourself.
- Bring a Friend day is Thursday! All classes are free to try!
Since yesterday’s post was on the pushup, it only seemed right to post Greg Glassman’s thoughts on the pushup.
The Push-up By Greg Glassman
The push-up, long a favorite among junior high school P.E. teachers and Marine Corps drill instructors, is for many more closely associated with punishment than anything else. Though common to group exercise programs, its use in serious strength and conditioning regimens is infrequent. These days, the push-up, like the jumping jack, tends to be relegated to outdoor programs where the number of exercisers and lack of equipment make it a staple due to necessity.
In an earlier time the push-up was largely regarded as a measure of a man’s strength and fitness. In more modern times much of this reputation has been passed on to the bench press, but the push-up’s passing misses the great opportunity to master a gateway movement to one of the most developmental progressions in all of fitness.
The push-up is more a family of movements than a single exercise. In fact, it is a progression that starts from the horizontal, which is the classic “P.E. push-up” and then, through gradually, incrementally, elevating the feet from the floor to a point where the athlete is eventually in a handstand, becomes the handstand push-up.
The handstand push-up, at the far end of the progression, is a challenging exercise that, when freed from the wall, becomes an extraordinary feat of strength and balance that has no peer in weightlifting movements. At the moment of performing 20 handstand push-ups without benefit of the wall, the athlete has achieved a level of strength and balance that not one in 100,000 gym goers will ever realize. The integration of strength and balance gives the handstand push-up, even though limited to bodyweight, an athletic edge that brings this movement to at least peer status with even the heaviest of presses—whether bench, overhead or jerk. Twenty handstand push-ups in the middle of the room or on parallel bars, again without the wall, confers, automatically, a single-rep military press of perhaps 150 percent bodyweight, whereas a 150 percent bodyweight single-rep military press suggests little or nothing about an athlete’s balance.
The possibilities and potentials don’t end at 20, 30 or even 50 handstand push-ups. Consider for just a moment the hand, finger and grip strength developed through performing these handstand push-ups on fingertips—at first all five fingers, then four and eventually three. Then there are the presses to the handstand that will come smoothly, easily and confidently as a bonus to the handstand push-up, but we’re getting years ahead of ourselves here.
Mastery of the basic, entry-level “P.E. push-up” is a prerequisite to the handstand push-up. Very few people have achieved mastery of the push-up, though many of you think you have. The test is simple: can you do 100 perfect push-ups? The standard for perfection, though simple, disqualifies nearly everyone. A perfect push-up is slow and deep with a body absolutely perfectly straight and taut. We’ve listed the most common push-up faults below. Not one in 50 guys with a 300-pound bench press can do 50 honest push-ups!
So, “what is an honest push-up?” An honest push-up moves slowly from full extension to a point of maximum depth without “reaching” for the ground or perturbing the body’s taut, rigid, straight-line posture, and then returns rigidly to full extension. Done correctly, the push-up is a super demanding whole-body movement. Engage as many stabilizers as possible.
“Reaching for the ground” is trying to find the bottom of the stroke early. The two most common “reaching” cheats are done by craning the neck to find the ground with the nose early or dropping the belly to find bottom early. The ideal is to retard, not advance, the body’s parts from finding bottom—nose, chest, belly, thighs, and pelvis are each in a race to see which can reach bottom last, not first.
A. “Rain Drop”
1 min on, 1 min off until completion. Pick up where you left off.
75 Power Clean 95/65
75 Back Squat
*25 Min Cap