I NEVER call them “girly” push-ups. One of my BIGGEST pet peeves! I really, really wish everyone would stop calling them that as well.
I’ve got MANY reasons for this, but the most important ones are…
1. It creates a comfort zone for women, where they don’t expect more of themselves. There’s nothing wrong with modified pushups… but they can be a fantastic stepping stone to harder modifications. But if you don’t think you can do it (or that they aren’t designed for you), you won’t try them!
Ladies are MORE than capable of handling full pushups (hello! here!), but like anything else you build up to them gradually. It took me YEARS to do my first full one. Far too many women have NO idea they are capable of regular pushups: they just don’t try ‘em.
2. It creates a shame zone for men who are still working up to basic push-ups. It makes them hesitant to try the modified version, for fear of being deemed ”ladylike” (which is another issue for another day. No time for gender politics right now, but I could go on and on).
Many men can benefit from working their way up and building strength with modified versions, especially if they have injuries (wrists, back) that make other variations too challenging.
Modifications have their place in EVERYONE’s routine, and even the fittest people need to modify their exercises to suit their bodies. The goal with modifications is to HELP you get the most out of your fitness. Not to hold you back OR to make you feel ”less than”.
Ladies, try stepping outta the modified zone. If you can do 12 modified pushups, it’s time to get on all fours! Even just ONE. One is the gateway to TWO. Two is the gateway to THREE.
Fellas, if regular pushups are just NOT in the cards right now, drop to your knees. Screw anyone who would DARE comment. Screw em. Secure men wouldn’t comment anyways.
If you’re not up to full pushups for ANY reason (injury specifically), you can still make modified pushups more challenging. Try adding weight (a vest, backback or plate), a resistance band (each end under a hand and looped around your back), stagger them (one hand slightly more forward to the other, or elevated on a book, dumbbell or block), or slow them down: the slower you go, the harder they are.
And whatever you do, for once and for all: they are modified push-ups. NOT “girly” pushups.
Working Your Way to Perfect Pushups…
Decline Pushup With Climbers
Bag Drag Pushups
Elevated Pike Press
Thanks to Nancy for posting the pic on my wall! Love it!