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How to Do a Push Up When You're Weak

author image Kay Tang
Kay Tang is a journalist who has been writing since 1990. She previously covered developments in theater for the "Dramatists Guild Quarterly." Tang graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in economics and political science from Yale University and completed a Master of Professional Studies in interactive telecommunications at New York University.
How to Do a Push Up When You're Weak
Pushups are not gender-specific.

The basic pushup is an exercise to strengthen your triceps, shoulders and chest as well as to prevent saggy arms. Because a pushup also employs your lower body and abdominals to stabilize movement, the exercise requires the synchronization of several muscle groups. For people who have never done a pushup or are not physically fit, the exercise can be challenging, if not impossible. Try a modified pushup, also known as a bent-knee pushup, which reduces the amount of body weight you need to lift.

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Step 1

Spread a mat or towel on the floor. Lie prone on the mat with your face down.

Step 2

Bend your knees and raise your lower legs so they form a right angle to your body. Form a cross with your ankles.

Step 3

Keep your shoulders down and your neck long. Place your hands shoulder-width apart and stretch your fingers. Tighten your behind, draw in your navel and abdomen, and squeeze your legs together.

Step 4

Breathe in deeply, and then push the ground away. Exhale as you raise your body until your arms straighten. Keep your back straight.

Step 5

Lower yourself back to the ground, taking a breath in.

Step 6

Repeat the pushup, striving to get a full range of motion. Continue to exhale as you push your body up and inhale as you lower your body to the ground.

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  • "Sports Medicine Essentials: Core Concepts in Athletic Training & Fitness…”; Jim Clover; 2010
  • FitSugar: Take the Pushup Challenge
  • “Diva: The Fitness System to Unleash Your Female Power”; Terri Walsh; 2006
  • “Weight Training for Dummies”; Liz Neporent, et al.; 2006
  • “7 Weeks to 100 Push-Ups: Strengthen and Sculpt Your Arms, Abs, Chest, Back...”; Steve Speirs; 2009
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