zig
0

Notifications

  • You're all caught up!

Push-ups and Pull-ups for Muscle Definition

by
author image Steven Trolio
Steven Trolio is a certified personal trainer through the National Strength and Conditioning Association. He currently works with a variety of clients ranging from elderly adults to high school athletes. He is also a student at Cleveland State University and has a strong passion for powerlifting.
Push-ups and Pull-ups for Muscle Definition
Feet-elevated push-up Photo Credit shironosov/iStock/Getty Images

You don't need to do a large amount of exercises to gain great results from training. When addressing upper-body strength and muscle definition, it's pretty hard to beat the classic push-up and pull-up. These two exercises combined do a fantastic job of stimulating the entire upper-body musculature.

Push-Ups

For increased muscle definition, there are a number of ways to make push-ups significantly more challenging. A 2011 study from the "Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research" found that feet-elevated push-ups result in higher resistance when compared to standard push-ups. This is because these is a 10 percent increase of body weight being lifted. You can also add external load to the exercise with a weighted vest or through band resistance for an extra challenge. Performing multiple push-up variations in a variety of different repetition ranges can optimize the resulting muscle definition.

Pull-Ups

Pull-ups performed with a full range of motion are also a great upper-body muscle builder. Each repetition should be completed with the chest touching the bar to get the most out of the exercise. A 2010 study published in the "Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research" concluded that pull-ups were superior to chin-ups in terms of lower trapezius and latissimus dorsi activation, making them the best option for back development. For best results, hold a one-second pause at the top of each rep to increase tension in the back and arm muscles.

You Might Also Like

Related Searches

LiveStrong Calorie Tracker
THE LIVESTRONG.COM MyPlate Nutrition, Workouts & Tips
GOAL
  • Gain 2 pounds per week
  • Gain 1.5 pounds per week
  • Gain 1 pound per week
  • Gain 0.5 pound per week
  • Maintain my current weight
  • Lose 0.5 pound per week
  • Lose 1 pound per week
  • Lose 1.5 pounds per week
  • Lose 2 pounds per week
GENDER
  • Female
  • Male
lbs.
ft. in.

References

Demand Media