T Nation

Bench press vs push ups??


#1

I was curious whether anyone could give me some advice. Can push ups(or variations of) stand alone as a chest work- out or should they be done as a warm up to incline or flat benches.


#2

gordmx,

I am no Matt Furey (he likes body weight only exercise). But, I do think that push-ups can be of great value.

I would suggest doing them in variations when regular push-ups become to easy. The following are some of the ways that I do them when I grow tired of barbell or dumbbell bench pressing:

  1. Feet elevated on a chair
  2. Hands together or far apart
  3. Weighted push-ups witha plate of any size on your back.

I push-ups as they are a full body exercise. Meaning that your entire body is involved in the exercise. I think because of this push-ups in many ways are superior to bench pressing and some other barbell exercises for the athlete.

Either way they are good for a chage of pace. I usualy do 2 or 3 sets each of the above. Good luck!


#3

I dont feel that doing body weight exercises are better than weighted exercises. I do however feel that they can definately have there place in ones training regimen. I often will do pushups to finish off my workouts, sometimes with my feet on a bench to stimulate the upper chest and sometimes my feet on the floor, and m hands on a bench to stimulate the lower chest. Basically you can do them in addition to your workout, but I wouldnt say you should make your entire workout consist of them. J


#4

Pushups offer a different type of load than a benchpress*. Too bad it's a bit tough to increase the load this way.

*Closed chain vs. open chain.

I don't think I've seen a discussion on the board yet on closed chain vs. open chain movements.


#5

They are a very good excersize.

I like doing sets of the triad

Regular, wide, diamond...

Fingertip pushups are also good for hand strength and stamina.

But to choose pushups alone over doing things like bench press and dips is something I wouldn't recommend..


#6

There are some that believe push ups are superior to bench just as chins are better than pulldowns (closed v open chain muscles), the difficult part is getting sufficient load. I have seen articles with some real hard variants.


#7

i like pushups when i cant make a chest workout at the gym (vacation , a move , etc). fingertip pushups are great. try explosive (ie. clapping pushups) as well. 10 sets of 5 is great! also 1 arm/1leg pushups (PLENTY of load with this one). i like to do 6-12 sets of 2reps each side. for the 1 arm pushup , use an opposing arm and leg. these are also killer for core strength.