Push-ups on one hand

Push-ups on one hand: all the nuances of exercise

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This is one of the most difficult and, at the same time, the most effective endurance exercise. Push-ups on one hand in its performance are much more difficult than standing on one leg with closed eyes and a side bar. If you manage to master it, you will become the object of envy and admiration for men and women.



Interesting facts about one hand push up

Master of martial arts Bruce Lee wrung out 50 times on two fingers of one hand.

Late powerlift from the United States in 73 years began to intensively engage in sports. Now 80-year-old Willie Murphy quite easily performs diamond push ups without focusing on one hand.

Actress Demi Moore for the role in the movie “Jane’s Soldier” was a real warrior school led by a retired Marine. She mastered and independently in the film she wrung out on one hand.

The record of push-ups on one hand for one minute was recorded in 2010 – the Georgian schoolboy Giorgi Basilashvili fulfilled it 157 times.

Repeatedly put and beat his own records in the endurance exercise resident of Great Britain Paddy Doyle. He performed 400 push-ups on one hand in 10 minutes and 2521 times in 60 minutes.

Canadian native Doug Pruden also set records in this kind of competition: 546 pushups in 10 minutes and 1382 for half an hour.

If you think that there are no women’s records, you are mistaken. American Alicia Weber for 10 minutes was able to wring out using only three points of support, 180 times in 10 minutes.


one hand push ups


What muscles are involved

Athletes who have mastered classic push-ups and want to improve their skills, move to more complex options – push-ups with reduced support points or weighting.

It is interesting to know which muscles work during push-ups on one hand: remember that they are a kind of classical front squat. Proceeding from this, it can be said that the same groups of muscles that are involved in ordinary push-ups are subjected to a double load. But, with this there is one important difference that can be seen in the table.

The role of muscles in the exercise With conventional push-ups With push-ups on one hand

The main ones – assume the maximum load



Trapezius muscle


Large pectoralis muscles

Anterior cog muscles

Straight and oblique muscles of the press

Gluteus maximusus



Trapezius muscle


Large pectoralis muscles

Anterior cog muscles

Straight and oblique muscles of the press

Gluteus maximusus

The widest back muscle

Auxiliary – help maintain the body exactly The widest back muscle



Calf muscle



Calf muscle

In the table it can be seen that in the usual push-ups the latissimus muscle of the back undergoes a lesser load due to the distribution of the body weight into two arms and two legs, helping to keep the body level. In exercises on one hand, it is one of the main muscles. This is due to the fact that in this position it is much more difficult to keep a balance. To do this, it is necessary to use, and strain the extra large muscles of the body-stabilizers, to which it refers.


See also: Exercises in the front delta


how to do push ups with one hand


At first glance, easy implementation, in fact, is quite complex. Without preliminary preparation, it will not be performed. Even advanced athletes who are good at coordinating the work of their muscles and are able to hold a long balance.

There are several auxiliary techniques that help to perform push-ups with one hand at the beginning of their development. If during the exercise one leg is left wider, the hand can be moved closer to the shoulder. In this way, the load moves from the hand to the chest.

Benefits of Exercise

This exercise is one of the most effective in the development of strength, endurance, balance and pumping muscle of the upper body. In the process of push-up on one hand, the same muscles are worked out as with classical push-ups. But, their implementation has its differences and features.

Intensity and load

The working, supporting hand in this exercise is one. Therefore, the intensity of work and load on the muscles will be twice as high as in the classical exercise. To sustain such power of the people who are able to control their body, physically developed and have incredible endurance.


Not all athletes manage to keep balance in push-ups, using four points of support. In order to stay on the three limbs, you need to strain all the muscles. Dropping and rising in such a rack, the balance is incredibly difficult to hold.

Pushups on one hand, the benefit of which is to strengthen the ligaments, tendons, muscles, training agility and endurance. In addition, regular training is facilitated by:

    • weight loss;
    •  lifting the muscles of the cortex;
    • the proper functioning of the digestive system;
    • strengthening of bone tissue;
    • training of the respiratory system.

To make the exercise profitable, you must adhere to the technique of execution and do not overdo with the number of approaches and repetitions.

How to do one hand push up – Technique of execution

Different trainers have their own techniques for performing push-ups with an emphasis on one hand. They are quite variable and suitable for athletes of varying degrees of training. Some exercises are difficult to perform, but are more effective for pumping muscles. Other techniques are easier to implement, they are like beginners, their effectiveness will be lower.


one arm push ups


In this version of the exercise, the body should be in the same position as in the classical push-ups with some features:

  • points of support will be three, instead of four, they should be placed in the form of a triangle;
  • The working arm is placed under the body;
  • The body from the heels to the crown should be straight;
  • Shoulders are at the same level during the exercise and are parallel to the floor;
  • legs are shoulder width apart, can be closer.

There are general requirements for push-ups with an emphasis on one hand, the main technique of which is as follows:

  1. The starting position – the working arm is under the shoulder, closer to the middle of the chest, the legs stand on the toes at a distance of shoulder width or slightly wider, the back is straight. The second hand can be put palm on the buttocks or on the back surface of the thigh.
  2. On inhaling, bend the elbow at the elbow, lowering the chest as low as possible. In perfect execution, the bottom point of the chest should not be more than 10 cm from the floor. When lowering and climbing, bend in the waist or “walk” with shoulders is prohibited.
  3. Straining the arm muscles, push yourself into the starting position. Exhalation.

To go down “touching the chest of the floor” from the first time does not work for anyone. First you need to start to go down a few centimeters and not fall at the same time. It is necessary to gradually lower the level of your “bottom point” until your chest is 10 cm from the floor.


Keep the balance will be much easier if the pelvis is shifted towards the working hand, and the shoulder of the free hand will be raised. This option is suitable for beginners in push-up. Adapting to this method of training will not give good results, and at competitions such technique will not be counted.



The most important value in push-ups from the floor is the position of the hands. The options of push-ups without one hand depend on this. We offer to get acquainted with the most popular of them by the level of the load: from the most simple to the most difficult.

Varieties Features
Partial support on the second arm or sesquialemane The second hand acts as an insurer. Especially for this, it is put on the ball, chair, stone, dumbbells, so that it is at the level of the body, but not used as a stop.
The second hand on the back side or L7 Let’s take an example when the working hand is left. You put her hand on the floor, with the back of your right hand you also rest on the floor. In this case, the palm of the left hand will look like the letter “L”, and the right hand – the number 7.
Hands above the legs or inclined Push-ups occur on a slight elevation above the floor – step-platform, bar, bench, chair. The legs are on the ground on the socks.
Negative Pushups occur on one hand. For lifting, the second hand is used, which, after a jolt from the ground, is put back behind the back.
Push-ups on the fingers, fist, back of the palm A complicated version of this exercise, where the area of ​​contact of the hand with the floor is reduced to the fingers, fist or back of the palm, which rests the athlete.
One arm and one leg The difficulty level is increased because only two support points are used – one arm and one leg. “Free” limbs need to keep the canopy.
Plyometric or bouncing Instead of normal lifting to the starting position, you must make a strong push with your hand, so that the upper body “jumped” over the floor. You need to land on a slightly bent arm. It is forbidden to descend on an even hand, it can be broken.

Contraindications and precautions

Push-ups from the floor on one hand are quite a difficult exercise. You can even say that it is suitable for advanced athletes. Despite this, he has a minimum number of contraindications. Under the ban fall people with injuries of the joints of the shoulder, elbow and wrist.

In order not to harm yourself and get the maximum benefit by doing the exercise, the following precautions should be taken into account:

  • beginners in sports need to wait with the development of push-ups when using one hand. To begin with, they must learn to keep balance and correctly perform classical push-ups;
  • to strengthen the muscles of the cortex and a smooth transition to heavier loads it is recommended to periodically press on the elbows using the technique of one hand;
  • switch to push-up using three points of support is when you have mastered the technique of classic push-ups on two hands and can properly perform them at least 50 times. This is a good training of the muscles of the arms and shoulder to such a heavy load. And it is extremely necessary in the presence of a lot of weight in the athlete;
  • if you feel tired, when you have to do a few repetitions before the end of the exercise, take a deep breath and bring the matter to the end. Thus, the endurance is trained in addition and the work of muscles is improved. With the following workouts this will help you a lot;
  • tired fatigue strife. If in the previous case you were able to overcome it, then it happens that there is already no strength to carry out the exercise. During such fatigue the working arm hurts, and the tremor in the muscles becomes uncontrollable. Stop if you start to feel these symptoms. At such times, the risk of falling and, correspondingly, injury, increases;
  • if during exercise in the joints or muscles there is discomfort, or pain, it is worthwhile to postpone its performance until the next workout. Classes in this state will bring the body more harm than good;
  • sharp sharp pain in any part of the body is a signal that you need to immediately stop exercising. You can not improve your performance, but to aggravate your condition, possible trauma, it is easy enough.


how to do one hand push ups


What is the perfect push up on one arm?

Everyone has their own criterion of “ideality” push-ups on one arm. However, I will give you my personal requirements for the right technique. Let’s make a list:

– The shoulders should be parallel to the ground;
– Legs should be no wider than shoulders;
– Twisting the body should be minimal;
– The body should be straight (when viewed from the side);
– You should go down until the distance between the surface and your chest becomes no more than 10cm.

If your technique does not correspond to at least one of the points, then you should stop fooling yourself and begin to train real Ideal Pushups on One Hand.

Common mistakes

Blunders in training are for many professionals, not only for beginners. We offer a list of the most popular mistakes when doing push-ups on one hand:

  • Lifting the “free” part of the shoulders or pelvis above the other part. Thus, the workload on the working hand increases and the exercise becomes impracticable;
  • Burying the body on the working hand. If the whole mass of the body piles on your arm, you will immobilize it. It is not possible to press in this position;
  • Fall on the hand. This is possible if initially there was not the right rack or the balance in the body was disturbed. It is fraught with a serious fracture;
  • Displacement of the pelvis. If it seems to you that putting the pelvis aside and it will be easier to perform push-ups is a deep mistake. So you can get stretching or jamming in muscles and ligaments;
  • Downed breath. Do not hold your breath, or vice versa. We breathe calmly, evenly.