With Bootcamp Body we’ll be giving you our favorite Brooklyn Bootcamp exercises and Brooklyn Bootcamp exercise combinations. Bootcamp exercises will get you in shape, build strong lean muscle and burn off fat. Best of all Brooklyn Bootcamp exercises can most often be modified to work with any type of fitness equipment that you might have (or not have!). If you’re in the area, come try these exercises in our Brooklyn Bootcamp in Prospect Heights – Pura Vida Urban Fitness: 184 Underhill Avenue, Brooklyn NY. Your first class is FREE.
Today’s Brooklyn Bootcamp Body exercise: The Pushup
The incredibly simple, yet oh so effective push up, is versatile, easily modifiable, and takes absolutely no equipment. Pushups build core strength because you’re stablizing your mid-section isometrically, as well as work your pectoral muscles (chest), deltoids (shoulders) and triceps (backs of your arms). You can modify the push up in many ways to not only make it easier or harder, but also to effectively stress different muscles more or less. Today we will touch upon the standard pushup and a couple of modifications to make it either easier or harder – but keep an eye out for future articles on a wide range of pushup variations.
Purpose: Improve core stability, improve pectoral, deltoid and triceps strength.
The Brooklyn Bootcamp Move: The top of a push up position can also be called a plank position. In the plank position you should be able to take a ruler or dowel and if you place it along your back your body will be in alignment with the dowel (so your hips aren’t too high up in the air, nor are they sagging – which places a great amount of stress upon the lower back). Most people find that the simplest/most comfortable pushup hand placement is about a hands-width outside of the chest. So from a plank position – with the hands directly under the shoulders – move each hand about one hands-width further from your body (so the right hand slightly to the right and the left hand slightly to the left). Maintaining the plank position of your body, lower yourself nearly to the ground (you can place a tennis ball between your chest and the ground to measure a good height). Your thumbs should be more or less in line with your nipples (if you drew a horizontal line across your chest). Push back up to the original plank position.
Brooklyn Bootcamp Form Check: 1. Keep your body aligned – a sagging butt leads to unwanted stress on the lower back. 2. I often see people take a nose dive towards the floor. Try to keep your gaze slightly in front of you. Lead with your chest not with your forehead. Do as many as you can without modification, but once you get to the point where your forehead is leading the way or your butt is sagging, modify the pushup.
Modifications to make this Brooklyn Bootcamp move easier - place your knees on the ground. Often, people tend to leave their butts behind – remember to maintain a straight alignment from the knees through the crown of the head.
Modifications to make this Brooklyn Bootcamp move harder – there are SO many ways to make pushups harder – try an unstable surface or bring your hands so that your index fingers touch and your thumbs touch. Keep your elbows your arms close to your body as you go towards the ground and return to the plank position (thus putting more emphasis on the smaller triceps muscles).