Staggered Push Up

A Staggered Push Up is a variation of the standard Push Up.

The difference lies in the position of the hands.

In a Standard Push Up the hands are in a parallel position to each other.


Staggered Push Up

In a Staggered Push Up one hand is placed in a higher position than the other hand, but the same motion is used to perform the movement.

This bodyweight exercise becomes more challenging because the staggered position places your core in an unstable position, more stress is placed on one arm at a time and it places a greater amount of stress on the chest.

Benefits of the Staggered Push Up

There are many benefits to doing the Staggered Push Up.  These are health related benefits and performance related benefits.

Health Related Benefits:

  • Strengthen the joints in the upper body to prevent osteoarthritis.
  • Smooth out strength imbalances on each side of the body.
  • Strengthens major muscle groups.

Performance Related Benefits:

  • Improves core muscle strength.
  • Neutral spine position improves posture.
  • Forces your core and body to deal with uneven loads.
  • Improves performance in other upper body exercises.

How to do a Staggered Push Up

  • Place yourself in a Push Up position.
  • Place one hand next to your shoulder and your other hand below the other shoulder.
  • Keep the hands about 1.5 times shoulder width apart.
  • Put your back and neck in a neutral position.
  • Engage your core and glutes.
  • Breathe in before you lower your body to the ground.
  • Lower your body until your chest touches the ground.
  • Push your body off the ground and breathe out.
  • Switch hand positions.
  • Perform another repetition.

Staggered Push Up Dos

  • Ensure your back and neck is in a neutral position.
  • Engage your core.
  • If the exercise is too difficult to perform on your hands and feet, switch to your hands and knees.
  • Make sure your chest touches the ground at the bottom of the movement.

Staggered Push Up Don’ts

  • Letting the hips sag towards the ground.
  • Rounding of the back.
  • Not drawing on your abdominals and engaging your core.
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