RTS Coaching: Make the Arrow on Push-ups


Lots of talk on push-ups lately, and for good reason.

Great exercise.

FANTASTIC exercise.

But again, not always executed the way we would like.

One of the most common questions has to do with arm and shoulder position. Quite simply, where should your elbows be relative to your torso?

Should they be tucked in tight?

Flared out wide to the side?

Or somewhere in between?

Let’s take a deeper look and figure this out!

Now that you’ve seen the video, a few quick notes:

  • A really tucked in elbow position has a tendency to over-recruit the lats. And as we’ve learned, too much lat has a tendency to pull you into an anterior pelvic tilt/deep lumbar lordosis. (If you want more info, here’s a short tutorial: Lats vs. Abs.)
  • A really flared elbow position buts a ton of stress and torque on the shoulder joint. If you value your shoulders, please don’t do this!
  • The ideal position for most clients/athletes is an “arrow” position, with the elbows at a 45-degree angle relative to the torso.

If you aren’t already using the “arrow” cue in the gym, give it a shot next time you’re doing push-ups. I guarantee it will clean up your technique!

All the best


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