The push-up is a bodyweight exercise which builds muscle and strength in the Pectoralis Major (Chest). But the triceps and front deltoids receive stimulation as secondary movers in the movement. Now, the push-up can be a very challenging movement so it can be performed on your knees to make it easier. This is a great way to build enough strength to do a standard push-up.

But, the push-up is also great when you don’t have access to a gym, however, it’s also a great functional movement. The variations are endless and you absolutely build a great chest with this very effective bodyweight exercise.

In This Exercise:

  • Target Muscle Group: Pectoralis Major
  • Type: Strength
  • Mechanics: Compound
  • Equipment: N/A
  • Difficulty: Beginner/Intermediate

Exercise Instructions

  1. Get into the basic push-up position on your hands and balls of your feet with arms extended. 
  2. Keep your body and head straight in one line.
  3. Move your hands directly under your lower chest and keep your shoulder blades back.
  4. Flex your lats then lower yourself down and slightly forward to within a few inches of the floor. 
  5. Press back up while contracting your chest muscles and simultaneously move your body back so that the hands are directly under the lower chest. 
  6. Repeat.

Variations & Tips:

  • Choose from the several push-up variations to increase the difficulty of the exercise.
  • You can do the push-up on your knees or on the wall if you don’t have sufficient strength.
  • Do not arch or round your back during the exercise.
  • The pushup works the chest primarily but the triceps and front deltoids get worked secondarily.

Watch: How to do the push-up

Watch: How to do advanced push-up variations