I know a lot of people struggle with push-ups. There are, of course, a lot of ways to train your body to perform push-ups. Most people tend to focus on volume: Do more push-ups more frequently. This does work to some degree. I remember when I would just keep doing push-ups all day long, whenever I had a free moment. Just drop and do 10-20 quick push-ups. By the end of the day, I had done anywhere between 150 to 250 push-ups. It certainly helps.
But, my real breakthrough in push-ups came when I started experimenting with isometric push-ups. You’ll find a lot of variations of what people mean by isometric push-ups, but it basically involves doing push-ups very slowly and holding your body at different points in the range of motion. It creates constant tension in the muscles and builds up incredible strength. For mine, I started out with a goal of a 1-minute push-up: Take 30 secs to slowly lower yourself to the bottom of the push-up (do not rest on the floor) and then take 30 secs to push yourself slowly back up to the top of the push-up. Then I worked up to 2-min push-ups. A full minute to slowly lower down and another minute to slowly push back up.
You become very aware and feel every muscle and joint in your body tightening and locking to hold you steady. It’s an incredible core workout too. For me, I built up incredible strength doing this and regular push-ups feel so easy now. But, I think the most important thing you learn is how your body works. With regular fast push-ups, there is no time to really notice the little details. But, when you slow things down to a super, super slow state; you are going to notice in deep, painful detail what works and what doesn’t. How to position your hands, shoulders, elbows, etc. to maintain optimum strength and control.
This deep knowledge of how your body performs at its best will carry over to help you dominate regular push-ups.
Try them today! Here’s a video of me doing one.