What Do Push-Ups Do for Your Muscles?


Quick Answer

Push ups strengthen muscles in the chest, arms, shoulders, back, neck, and abdomen. In addition, push ups provide stability to the torso and promote muscle endurance, good posture and overall fitness.

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Full Answer

Because the push up can be performed at any place and at any time with no fitness equipment, many people consider it to be the most versatile form of body weight exercise. In addition, unlike free weight exercises, which focus on a specific muscle or a single muscles group, push ups simultaneously exercise a variety of muscle groups at the same time. The most apparent muscle groups trained by push ups are in the arms. The biceps, triceps and shoulders, which carry the weight of the body in a push up, are trained to sustain a greater amount of weight than they are used to. Increasing the number of reps in a set of push ups further stresses these muscles, causing them to fatigue and subsequently rebuild with greater stamina. At the same time, because proper push up form requires that the back remain flat during execution, push ups also train the body to maintain a straight-backed position and strengthen the abdominal, oblique and lower back muscles. This means that push ups also promote good posture, which in turn helps to prevent pain and injury to the neck and the upper and lower back.

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