Basic Calisthenics Training Program – Pushing exercises

In this post I will discuss the basic pushing exercises you can start with.

And here are the exercises:

  • Push ups
  • Diamond push ups
  • Bench dip and Dips
  • L-sit

Are you just starting out with strength training? OK, this article is just for you. I will explain some of the basic exercises, that you can start with right now. If you can not perform any of those, I got something for you too.

And again, developing your muscles right is very important for your strength training journey. If you have a bad posture(that will make you pay in the long run, believe me, I am suffering from that right now, so work on your posture first, than on your strength) consult with a professional, who can help you fix it. And after that start working out.

The main muscle group that those exercises work are:

  • Triceps(Triceps branchii)
  • Shoulder muscles(Anterior, Middle and Posterior Deltoids)
  • Chest muscles(Pectoralis major)

And here is a little tip for all the aesthetic guys. Your triceps are 2/3 of your arm muscles, it is not your biceps. If you want bigger arms, work  your triceps too.

Push ups


Back to the basics people. Yes, for some people it is easy to perform this exercise, but for the people who can not do one rep, I would recommend doing push ups on the wall(not completely parallel to the wall, make it hard for your self) and after that push ups on the chair, but I don’t recommend the knee push ups, because with the wall push ups and chair push ups(elevated push ups) you gain strength in your core area, which will help you a lot with the normal push up.

With Push ups the main muscles working are the Pecs, triceps and delts. And if you change the position/grip of your hands you put more emphasize on different muscle groups. For an example close grip(more on that later), triceps, pecs and delts and wide grip push ups, delts and pecs.

And here is how to perform the push ups:

  • First thing, get into push up position(the first picture in the collage), back straight, core tight, arms extended, legs straight. You get it, keep your body straight, and keep the tension off the lower back, by keeping you core tight.
  • Start lowering your body by bending your elbows. Keep your elbows close to the body. Body straight. Touch the ground with your chest. Inhale while you are lowering.
  • Push your self off the ground, by keeping your form straight all the time.

Close grip push ups/diamond push ups


For some one who just learned normal push ups, the diamond push ups will be very difficult, so before that build up the strength needed for this push up. And if you really want to do it, do the diamond push up negative. Which means only the lowering part(the negative part) or diamond push ups on the chair. If you can not do this push up, this will help you a lot with your progress towards this goal.

As I said before, this close grip push ups emphasizes greatly on your pecs, delts and triceps.


The only difference with the normal push up is the position of your hands. Try to form a diamond with your hands and try to keep your form straight, just like the normal push up.



Bench dips


It is also knows as tricep dip. Again just like the diamond push up, if you can not perform it, you can do bench dip negatives. Until you can do the full exercise. Or you can put your legs closer to you and perform the full exercise with legs close to you. You can use a bench or a chair for it. Put this exercise at the end of your exercise, because it takes less energy to perform it, than the push ups or normal dips. So what I recommend is to use your energy for the hard exercises and leave the ones that are easy at the end.

This exercise puts emphasize on your delts and triceps.

And here is how to perform the bench dip, put the bench behind you:

  • Put your hands on the bench, hands shoulder width apart, legs extended.
  • Start lowering your body until your elbow forms a 90 degree angle. Inhale on your way down.
  • Push off the bench and exhale at the top.



I really like this exercise, because you can do it on parallel bars(just like those on the picture) or you can do it in you home with two chairs. This is maybe the hardest of the exercises on the list, so when you have the strength and the confidence try it out. If you are performing it for the first time, you will feel a stretch in your chest and maybe your triceps, don’t worry about it, your muscles never did this move and it will take some time to get used to it. This exercise will help you to build up the strength needed in your delts, triceps and pecs, for all the intermediate and advance moves you want to do.

And here is how to do it:

  • Grab the parallel bars(check if your hands are parallel with each other).
  • Start lowering your body, inhale while lowering, stop when your elbows form 90 degree angle.
  • Push your body off the bars and exhale at the top.

L sit


I really like doing this exercise, because it puts a lot of tension on my triceps. You have to hold it as much as possible with straight arms(no bending). If you can not perform it, do it with legs tucked in, after that, one leg extended, the other tucked, until you can do the full L sit.

And here is how to perform the exercise:

  • Put your hands, shoulder width apart on the ground.
  • Push off the ground, get your legs up. Elbows straight.
  • Make small steady breaths.
  • Form a 90 degree angle with your body.

Before any activity, warm up every joint in your body, it will take you 10-15 minutes.

What pushing exercises do you like to do and on what move are you working on?



By | 2015-05-31T09:07:35+00:00 May 30th, 2015|Basic, Blog, Exercises, Pushing|0 Comments

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