Pushups build strength and muscles, hammer the front core, allow the shoulder blades to move freely and challenge the entire body to work as a single functional unit.
But pushups are not as exciting as the bench press. Part of the problem? They are often viewed as a beginner exercise reserved for noodle-armed lifters. Another Problem? They are not challenging or "fun" enough for experienced lifters. Let's change that.
These push-up challenges can humiliate even the toughest lifters, no matter how much they can bank. The best (or worst) is that they can be done anywhere, anytime, which means there is no excuse to skip them.
. Push-Up + T-Hold Ladder
This is guaranteed to do three things: trigger a brutal pump all over your torso; Keep your shoulders healthy and happy; Serve a large piece of humble cake.
Here's how it works:
- Do 2 pushups, followed by a 10-second T-Hold.
- Do 4 pushups followed by a 10 second T hold.
- Do 6 push ups followed by a 10 second T hold.
- Do 8 pushups followed by a 10 second T-hold.
- Do 10 pushups, followed by a 10-second T-hold
When you reach 10 pushups, work your way down the ladder again:
- 8 pushups and a 10-second T-hold
- 6 push-ups and a 10-second T-Hold
- 4 push-ups and a 10-second T-Hold
- 2 push-ups and a 10-second T-Hold
Note: For reasons of length, the video only shows the ascending part at 1.5 times the speed.
Not only do you get 50 pushups in a short time – which leads to massive metabolic loads in the chest and triceps – the T-Hold part throws the upper back into the mixture.  Why is that important? Because a strong upper back protects the shoulders from pain and injuries. Pushups are a great exercise, but they need to be balanced through targeted work in the upper back.
In this case, the T-Hold targets the posterior deltoid muscle and its surrounding muscles for a total of 90 seconds, which can work wonders for combating (and compensating) frontal shoulder pain.
2. Descending Movement Area Push-Ups (ROM)
This sequence is a mixture of a mechanical drop set and a partial repeat protocol. The range of movement of the push-up is gradually reduced, making the movement "easier" when fatigue sets in.
The idea is that you extend a sentence at a point where you would otherwise need it. Stop due to an error. The execution is simple:
- First place an object with a height of about 2 to 4 inches (Airex pads, books, pillows, etc.).
- Do as many pushups on the object as possible before stopping 2-3 repetitions before the failure.
- Add an additional 2-4 inch object immediately after stopping and do another set to be just about to fail.
- Continue to raise the target until the range of motion is practically nonexistent, at this point move a few inches with each repetition.
What sets this apart from other push-up finishers is that it shifts focus away from the chest and more towards the triceps. The set continues due to the increasingly smaller range of motion.
This is similar to Louie Simmon's popular protocol on the triceps of death, except that it is a push-up rather than a bench press.
Pushups for real strength
The toughest push-up you'll ever do