The Push

The Push Pattern

The third foundational movement pattern is the push. The push can be broken into the horizontal push pattern and the vertical push pattern. This is probably the most popular upper body movement but when done correctly most push variations incorporate the whole body. Using the push is another great way to develop strength, power, and build muscle. 

Why You Should Use the Push

In your everyday life you do things like push like a door open, push a couch across the floor, and lift items over your head so learning the proper pushing form is beneficial to you. The push is a great movement to strengthen your pecs, triceps, shoulders, and core. Strength helps keep your body healthy and injury-free so use the push build these areas

How to Perform the Push

The most basic form of the push movement pattern is the push-up. 

  1. Start in a plank position with arms extended.
  2. Grip the floor with your hands. Pretend you are trying to rip a piece of paper apart with your hands. This creates tension and gets the elbows in a good position.
  3. Create tension through the entire body forming a straight line from the back of the head to the feet.
  4. At the top, you do not want your shoulder blades pinching together. Instead, think of pushing your spine toward the ceiling; creating more of a rounding.
  5. Lower down under control, squeezing the shoulder blades together at the bottom. Keep tension throughout the entire movement. 
  6. Then press through the floor to complete the rep. 

It is hard to type how to do a push-up so check out the video below for a better explanation. Not everyone’s form is going to be the same. Someone might prefer hands closer, some wider, some might have longer arms so her form will look different than a person with shorter arms. There are also tons of variations to make it so you can perform the push pattern pain-free. Find what works best for you.


  • Hand elevated push-up
  • Band assisted push-up
  • Push-up
  • Plyo Push-up
  • DB Bench Press
  • Neutral Grip DB Bench Press
  • Incline DB Bench Press
  • Barbell Bench Press
  • Neutral Grip Bar Bench Press
  • Incline Barbell Bench Press
  • Overhead DB Bench
  • Overhead Barbell Press
  • Push Press
  • Many more

If you want to figure out what the best variations of push you should use reach out for a movement assessment. Together we will find the best variations. An assessment will also help determine if you are able to press overhead. If you lack shoulder and upper back mobility overhead lifting is probably out of the question. To schedule an assessment email me at trevor@tagpn.com. To apply for coaching click here.

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