Three Close Grip Pushup Superman

This week I have a combination exercise for the Home Exercise of the Week.  Combination exercises are great to add an extra challenge to your workout and you can target many muscle groups in one move.  The more muscles being used the more calories you will burn and the higher your metabolism will be.

The combination exercise I would like you to try this week is the Three Close Grip Pushup Superman.  I say three pushups but you can definitely do more or less before the superman.  The idea here is to do enough rounds of this in a set so you get around 10 to 15 total reps of each.

With the Three Close Grip Pushup Superman you will be working your triceps and lower back muscles primarily but you will also be working your chest, shoulders, and upper back muscles.

Let’s take a look at the key points to doing this exercise properly.

  • start by doing the pushups from your knees if you find you can’t go down all the way on the pushup portion of the exercise.  You can build up to doing the pushup from your toes over time.
  • keep your abs tight and body straight the whole time (no bending at the waist)
  • throughout the pushup you will want to keep your elbows tucked in to your sides…this will allow your triceps to do most of the work
  • keep your head in line with your spine throughout
  • during the superman part of the exercise keep your arms straight out in front of you and raise them up as high off the floor as you can while at the same time lifting your straight legs up as high as you can
  • hold the superman for a second or two then go right back to your close grip pushups

So there you have the Three Close Grip Pushup Superman.  Your lower back and arms will thank you for this one but I’m fairly certain you won’t be thanking me once you add this to your routine! 😉

Close-Grip Pushup

The Home Exercise of the Week this week is the Close-Grip Pushup also known as the Military Pushup.  This is a great exercise to work your tricep muscles, inner chest muscle, anterior deltoid (front shoulder), as well as your core!

This is generally more challenging than a regular pushup because the tricep muscles are the prime mover whereas your chest does more of the work in a regular pushup.  Since the tricep muscles are smaller than the muscles of your chest they won’t have as much strength.

If you are new to performing the Close-Grip Pushup, you will most likely find that your elbows tend to flare out from your body because your chest takes over and does the work to compensate for the weaker tricep muscles.  You will want to try and keep your elbows tucked in to your body as much as possible to avoid this.  Over time, as your triceps get stronger, it will be much easier to keep your elbows from leaving your sides.

Another key point to remember when performing this exercise is to always keep your body as straight as possible.  There is a tendency, especially from the kneeling position, to just move your upper body down towards the floor while leaving your butt up in the air.  You will want to make sure that your hips come down with you so you get the full benefit of the exercise.

So there you have the Close-Grip Pushup!  Add this effective exercise to your routine and you’ll be on your way to sculpting strong and shapely arms!