What are the benefits of push ups?

Written by wendy rose gould
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What are the benefits of push ups?
(David Kitchenham, www.morguefile.com)

Push ups are a great form of exercise for several reasons. First, a push up is something that anyone can do whether or not they have money to spend on fitness equipment. Second, they do not require any extra skills, making them a possible form of exercise/weight training for anyone. Third, the results of consistent push ups are visible after a relatively short period of time. Aside from these obvious benefits of push ups, there a number of non-obvious reasons you should consider adding them to your routine.

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Full Body Workout

Many people don't realise just how many parts of the body a push up affects. But, when you break down the physics of a push up, you get a better picture of how beneficial they are for your entire body. For example, push ups work your fingers and hands, biceps, triceps, shoulders and forearms, upper and lower back and even your abdominal muscles. In addition, they strengthen your leg muscles, including your hamstrings, quads and calves.

Build Endurance

Anyone will tell you that push ups are not easy to do, especially when they are done in large numbers. However, with consistent practice and dedication to improving your form, you can build your endurance levels. That, in turn, makes it possible for you to move on to bigger and more demanding forms of exercise. Strength and endurance are also important for other parts of your life, even things that don't require a lot of physical exertion.

Muscle Growth

Whether you're a body builder or not, muscle growth is an important part of your health. More muscle means a stronger, healthier body and they create lean and defined lines throughout your body. By increasing the amount of push ups you do on a regular basis (and by speeding up and slowing down, too) you will notice an increase in muscle mass. Push ups also produce a human growth hormone that helps boost total muscle growth.

Prevent Injury

Push ups help you avoid injuries when doing other weight-training exercises. This is especially the case if you warm up your body with push ups before each work out. Because push ups are such a total body conditioner, you'll find that doing other forms of weight training (especially on equipment) comes easier and more naturally for you. As a result, you'll be less likely to strain your muscles and cause an injury.

Free

Gym memberships are costly and the same goes for fancy fitness equipment (both of which are often neglected). Push ups, on the other hand, aren't just inexpensive—they're literally free to do. That means you won't spend a lot of money on a piece of equipment that goes unused. You don't need to enter a gym in order to do a push up, either. This makes them an extremely attractive form of exercise, especially when you consider their effect on your entire body and the other benefits that accompany consistent push-up routines.

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