Build Chest Strength | Calisthenics Push-up Progressions for Beginners


Build Chest Strength | Calisthenics Push-up Progressions for Beginners

Since going through the konmari method, I have been taking a minimalist approach in everything I do.  Not only in organizing my home and belongings, but also in how I approach my workouts.  Short, intense, and to the point has been my new fitness motto.  Today's workout encompasses all of these things while helping build chest strength.

Build chest strength to burn more fat

Building chest strength wasn't always a goal of mine.  As a young girl, I never understood the importance of strength training for the chest, and always thought this was something that only guys do.  However, the more I learn about fitness, the more I understand how beneficial a strong chest can be.

Not only does building chest strength prevent your boobs from sagging (which becomes more and more important as I age), but it also helps burn fat.  The chest is one of the largest muscle groups on the human body.  Building muscle helps burn more fat at rest.  Therefore, if you want to maximize on your body's fat burning capabilities, it is crucial to build muscle in this area.  So ladies (and gentlemen too), don't neglect those chest exercises!

Calisthenics is King

As a result of my new simplified fitness approach, I am obsessing over calisthenics training!  Calisthenics is a form of exercise that uses body weight to build strength and muscle.  Anyone who has incorporated body weight in a strength routine knows that it can be as intense as weight training.  In some cases, more intense than weight training!

Despite the occasional body weight moves in my strength training routine, I consider myself to be at a beginner calisthenics level.  Because of this, my current chest workout routine focuses on building a strong foundation by training with basic calisthenics push-up progressions.

As I begin my journey towards building this strong foundation, I look forward to sharing all of my calisthenics progressions on this blog!  Furthermore, I hope sharing my calisthenics journey will provide you with some valuable tools in your own training!

How to build chest strength with push-up progressions

Today's workout focuses on how to build chest strength using push-up progressions.  I start with the most advanced movement, working my way down to the easier chest exercises.  If you focus on these push-up progressions you will build chest strength quickly and lay that solid foundation we are looking for.  As a result, this will allow you to move on to more advanced push-up progressions!

Focus on Form

In order to build chest strength, it is important to work on perfecting your push-up form.  This will take time and diligence, but the more you can perfect your push-up form the better foundation you will build for the more advanced exercises.  I like to film myself in order to see what I am doing right and wrong.  Sometimes I feel like I am performing an exercise correctly, however I catch mistakes when reviewing the film.  This allows me to make corrections accordingly.

What is perfect push-up form?

  • Straight spine with your body forming one straight line
  • Hips aligned with spine
    • butt should not be in the air
    • hips should not be sagging towards the ground
  • Abs and core tight
  • Full range of motion
  • Shoulders, elbows, and wrists in one straight line
  • Elbows rolled inward
    • Make sure they are not pushing out to the sides when performing the movement. (think of your elbows facing toward the back of the room)

Be Consistent

If you want to build a strong foundation for your chest strength, it is crucial to be consistent with your workouts.  Aim for incorporating this push-up progression into your workout regimen at least 1 day per week.  If you stay consistent with this, you will see strength gains in as little as one month!

Chest Strengthening Workout (Push-up Progressions)

Perform each exercise to failure (with perfect form).  If you cannot perform 1 rep with perfect form, then start with the next progression.  In conclusion, focus on perfecting your form and the strength will follow!

Perform this circuit one time and rest only as needed.

  1.  Decline Push-up
  2. Push-up
  3. Up and Down Plank
  4. Incline Push-up
  5. Knee Push-up
  6. Incline Knee Push-up
  7. Elbow Plank

View the workout here and subscribe to my YouTube channel for more full workout videos: