This Close-Grip Pushup Tweak Builds Serious Arm Size | Men's Health Magazine Australia

This Close-Grip Pushup Tweak Builds Serious Arm Size

If there’s a limitation to the close-grip pushup, it’s that you only have your bodyweight during a close-grip pushup, and after awhile, that gets easy. But it doesn’t have to be that way, says Men’s Health’s Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., and you can elevate the close-grip pushup to add more challenge. That’s the idea behind the mixed-style close-grip […]

If there’s a limitation to the close-grip pushup, it’s that you only have your bodyweight during a close-grip pushup, and after awhile, that gets easy. But it doesn’t have to be that way, says Men’s Health’s Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S., and you can elevate the close-grip pushup to add more challenge. That’s the idea behind the mixed-style close-grip pushup, which will juice your triceps far more than the classic version. “We’re doing two things here,” says Samuel. “First off, we’re locking in good form. We’re also piling in time-under-tension and challenging ourselves with a pause.”

It’s a strong formula for blowing up your triceps, and it helps address one key problem with close-grip pushup form: Very often, people have a tendency to flare their elbows. “You’ll focus on that here,” Samuel says. “The mid-rep pause isn’t just a pause. It’s an opportunity to check in with your body, making sure that glutes and abs are tight and your elbows are close. If they’re flared out, you can always take the opportunity to reset and re-squeeze them together.”

You’ll come out of that two-step close-grip pushup, then immediately do a full close-grip pushup. “The blend of moves helps each other: You’ll carry your good form reinforced on the two-step pushup into the standard close-grip pushup and be powerful and strong,” says Samuel.

The best part about the move: It requires no gear. “You can do this anywhere,” says Samuel, “for an instant triceps pump.”

  • Start in pushup position, glutes squeezed and abs tight, hands slightly narrower than shoulder-width. Your shoulders, elbows, and wrists should be stacked.
  • Keeping your elbows close to your body, lower into the bottom of a pushup. Press back up. When your upper arms are a bit above parallel to the ground, pause. “Check in with your body now,” says Samuel. “Use this as a chance to reset your form.” Complete the close-grip pushup rep by straightening your arms.
  • Lower into another close-grip pushup, then drive straight up.
  • That’s 1 pair of reps. Do 5 to 6 pairs of reps per set. Do 3 sets.

Use the mixed-style close-grip pushup in a variety of situations, says Samuel, because it’s a versatile move. It can easily be a finishing move in a full triceps workout, or it can be a vicious finisher on chest day. Or just use it as a bodyweight triceps move in a full-body, all-bodyweight workout. “It also works great on Friday nights,” says Samuel, “as a way to pump up your arms right before heading out to hang out.”

This article originally appeared on Men’s Health

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