Friday, January 21, 2011

Eric Cressey - High Performance Training without the Equipment: 5 Pushup Variations

Eric Cressey is the MAN if you want to know how to keep your shoulders healthy. Oh yeah, he is also pretty damn strong and a very knowledgeable strength coach. Here are some excellent push-up variations - good for your chest, and better for your shoulders.

High Performance Training without the Equipment: 5 Pushup Variations

Written on January 20, 2011 at 8:07 am, by Eric Cressey

I’ve written several times in the past about how it’s important to not only balance your upper body pushing and pulling exercises, but also make sure that you have a similar volume of open- and closed-chain exercises in the pushing component. In other words, you need to have plenty of pushup variations to “cancel out” all the bench pressing variations in your strength training program.

There’s a problem, though; most of you can do a ton of pushups, and are in need of something more challenging that can take this beyond simply a warm-up. With that in mind, I wanted to use today’s post to highlight some pushup variations we use quite frequently at Cressey Performance. While a few might require some of the cooler amenities (e.g., chains, slideboard) we’ve got at our fingertips, most are drills you’ll be able to perform without them. Without further ado, here are five pushup variations to throw some variety in your strength and conditioning program.

Pushup Variations #1 and #2: Feet Elevated and Band Resisted Pushups

I combine these two not only because they were both in the same video that I’d taken for Show and Go, but also because they represent two of the most convenient solutions for the typical lifter.

Elevating the feet not only makes the movement a bit more challenging from an anti-extension core training perspective, but it also increases activity of the serratus anterior, as I wrote HERE. Believe it or not, while this modification makes the movement harder as a whole, it can often take away symptoms completely in some folks with shoulder pain.

In the case of the band-resisted pushup variation, the resistance accommodates the strength curve. In other words, the band deloads at the bottom of the movement where you’re the weakest, and picks up resistance as you go further up toward the top of the movement, where you’re the strongest.

Go read the whole post and watch the video demonstrations.

1 comment:

dancilhoney said...

I consider myself extremely fortunate to be able to work out with eric cressey and have the opportunity to absorb his knowledge regarding weight training, nutrition, and meditating.