October 08, 2021 9 min read

I know that you're probably thinking, "I can't do close grip push ups, I don't have the strength!" or "close grip push-ups are too hard." Well, think again.

Close-grip push-ups are a great way to help build upper body strength, and they are also perfect for your back. So, if you want to get started with close grip push-ups today, this blog post is going to show you how!

This post will teach you how to do close grip push-ups. They are easy to learn. Keep your hands next to each other when you do them and they will work the muscles in your upper body!

What is a Close-Grip Push-Up?

A close grip push-up is a variation of the traditional upper body exercise. In a close grip push-up, you place your hands on top of each other and bring your chest down to the floor.

Sportsman wearing blue shorts and black t-shirt doing exercise for arms

Keep your back erect and only bend at the elbows. If you want to try a new exercise routine that will do wonders for your upper body, then the close grip pushup is what you need.

It's not as hard as it sounds! If you can already do push ups, this variation is fairly straightforward.

While there are not many variations of push-ups, this close-grip version is great because ittargets your chest and arms and builds strength in those areas. Of course, you should always try to do a traditional push-up first and then move on to the close grip if you need more challenge.

What Muscles Do Close Grip Push-Ups Work?

The muscles that are jacked when doing a close grip push-up are the following:

  • triceps brachi
  • pectoralis major
  • serratus anterior
  • coracobrachialis
  • biceps brachii
  • deltoid anterior
  • supraspinatus
  • latissimus dorsi.

The biceps also play an active role during a close grip push-up. The biceps are used in close grip push-ups very effectively. They're commonly used to pull the upper arm towards the torso, but they also have arole in  stabilizing the shoulder joint during this movement.

When you do a close grip push-up, the biceps are recruited to help terminate the movement of the shoulder joint and assist in extending at the elbows.

These muscles work together with your chest and back to move your upper body during a close grip push-up. For this set of muscles to work correctly, they must be balanced so that one muscle does not overpower another – especially if you want to avoid any injuries!

That's why it's essential to align your shoulders and hips directly over each other. If either is out of alignment, you could experience pain and discomfort while doing these exercises.

Positions For Your Feet During Close Grip Push-Ups

As described above, doing close grip push-ups requires you to be in alignment. So, where should your feet be?

If you are a beginner, keeping your toes on the floor is fine.

This is becauseit can help  build strength in your legs that will be necessary to get better at your reps. You can eventually work up to trying these push-ups with your feet elevated to challenge yourself. First, however, it's crucial that your hips stay down and not come up toward the ceiling when you lower into the exercise.

If that happens, then try elevating your feet or doing the push-up with bent knees until you feel confident enough to lower your hips back towards the floor as you press back up.

Stabilizing Your Body During Close Grip Push-Ups

It's essential during close grip push-ups to keep your core stable, or else you could risk hurting yourself! For example, you don't want your hips to drop down toward the ground or raise towards the sky. Instead, make sure you press your belly button into the ground and engage your core by squeezing it tight as you lower yourself down.

Not only does this help to stabilize your body, but it will also challenge your core muscles once you start adding weight by placing a weight on your back!

How To Properly Perform a Close Grip Push Up

If you can't do a traditional push-up, try doing them against a wall with support at either side of you. If you still can't do one with proper form, then place one hand right next to another so that they are touching. It's essential that when you get started doing close grip push-ups that you get your form down first.

Then you can move on to doing them with your hands touching each other. If, for whatever reason, you still aren't ready to try close grip push-ups with your arms next to each other, then do a wall push-up instead!

For a simpler method, follow these simple tips to master your close grip push-ups:

  • Start by practicing on the ground or an elevated surface as your strength builds up over time; slowly lower yourself closer toward the floor until there are no spaces between your hands when they are on the ground. Continue this process of slow progressions until you can perform a full range of motion close grip push-ups at full speed and control!
  • Do a wall push up - Do a hand's close push up (from the bottom of the push-up position, move your hands together) Do a traditional push-up on the floor Do a traditional push-up with your feet elevated Repeat 3 and 4 doing five reps each every workout day
  • You should do these reps in order. It's essential to go from most accessible exercise (first) to hardest (last). Then once you are ready, start over with one rep of wall push-ups before continuing with two reps, etc. 
  • If you are doing a traditional push-up on the floor, make sure your hands are shoulder-width apart. Once you can do three sets of 20 reps of these close grip push-ups with perfect form, you'll be ready for more advanced variations!
  • You can try switching it up by holding a weight plate to your chest or back as well if you want to challenge yourself even further. The possibilities are endless, and remember that there is no rush – always focus on using a proper technique before adding any extra weight!

Benefits of Doing Close Grip Push-Ups

If you're looking for a way to tone your arms and strengthen your upper body, then close grip push-ups are the exercise for you. Not only do they target your chest muscles, but they also work out your arms, shoulders, and back too.

Additionally, they're an excellent workout for people who don't want to use a lot of space in their living area.

So follow this routine and see how quickly your upper body can get stronger!

  1. They Improve Muscle Strength - There has been done onthe effect of different hand positions on muscle strength and size. They found that changing hand position during training can induce muscular hypertrophy through increased levels of mechanical stress (that means it breaks down your muscle fibers leading to bigger muscles). The same experiment showed that the best rep range for building strength was 5-12 reps per set while doing three sets (which we will do in this routine). Since you'll be doing 20 reps per set for this routine, it will increase the amount of time under tension and give you some size gains from those micro-tears.
  2. They Improve Muscle Endurance - What's better than gaining more muscle strength? That's right – gaining muscle endurance! Push-ups are an exercise that can help you do just that. If your goal is to have a more muscular chest and triceps, then clearing the 40 rep mark on these push-ups will start seeing results happen before your eyes.
  3. They improve Balance & Stability - When done with proper form (and by using all three components of fitness: cardio, strength training, and flexibility), close grip push-ups will develop not only broad chest and arm strength but also your overall balance and stability. In addition, by training your body to do this exercise with ease, you'll be developing a broad, solid set of muscles that help you get through daily activities like carrying groceries or walking up the stairs without feeling any discomfort.
  4. They Improve Mobility & Flexibility - If you want to increase muscle strength, your muscles must be mobile enough to do so. If you're not mobile, it will be tough for you to develop good form while doing close grip push-ups (plus lack of mobility can lead to injury). But if done correctly, these push-ups will help loosen up tight muscles in your chest, arms shoulders which may benefit some of your daily activities like working on the computer or driving.
  5. They Tone & Tighten the Arms, Shoulders & Back - Anyone who has done push-ups knows that they are one of the most effective exercises to make your arms toned and tight (in a good way).
     Bodybuilder man with perfect abs, shoulders,biceps, triceps and chest,
    But, unfortunately, we see people every day at the gym doing pointless bicep curls all day long instead of making their triceps stronger with push-ups; these close grip push-ups target more than just your chest – it also works. Out your shoulders and back!
  6. They're Good for Losing Weight - If you're looking to burn calories, then different cardio exercises can help with that goal. However, if you're looking to lose weight and keep it off, you need to look into strength training. All of that running or elliptical machine time can lead to muscle loss (the opposite of what we want). By doing close-grip push-ups, you're burning calories by building muscle which will help you burn more calories without doing additional cardio exercises!
  7. They Improve Bone Density & Strength - The saying "Use it or Lose it" applies well when talking about bones. The best way for a fitness enthusiast to strengthen the bones is through high-impact exercises like running, jumping rope, and strength training with weights. You should never take up weightlifting if your goal is skinny arms, though; this type of exercise builds muscle and improves bone density which is always suitable for women since we tend to lose a lot of it as we age.
  8. They Can Build Muscle Mass Fast - Here's what happens: if you're doing 20 reps of close-grip push-ups and feel like you can do more than 40, then increase your weight (like you should be doing with all exercises). If done correctly, this type of exercise will burn about 15-20 calories per minute – so even though this routine may look easy on paper, but you'll be sweating bullets in no time! In terms of the quality of muscle mass that close-grip push-ups build, it's not going to be as dense as a bicep curl, but it does give the same type of "toned" look that you crave. More than anything, just having the ability to do over 40 close grip push-ups is considered very impressive by most trainers and bodybuilders.
  9. They're Awesome to Do at Home - If you don't have much time or money to go to a gym, then these types of exercises are certainly your best bet! We see fitness goers complain about spending $100+ on their monthly gym membership every day, yet they never go, so it's not worth it. But if you can afford something like that, then more power to you; what we're trying to get across, though, is that even if you only have 10 minutes, then doing close grip push-ups can be done in your room (use a stack of books or even your bed to reach the bar). 
  10. They Tone the Triceps & Biceps - Push-ups are probably among the best exercises to help develop your triceps and bicep muscles (but especially your triceps because it takes about 75% of the effort). If you do too many reps without taking breaks, this muscle group will become highly fatigued, but if done correctly with good form, close grip push-ups can help sculpt your arms in no time!

If you're looking to tone your arms and want something practical, then this is the best exercise, hands down – no machine or rep scheme can come close to doing what these can do for you in such a short amount of time.

However, if done incorrectly, these exercises will not help you at all, so it's essential always to use good form and break when needed (so you don't over-train your muscles). So, if your workout routine doesn't have any arm/shoulder workouts included, then definitely consider adding them in.

Wrapping Up

We've talked about the benefits of doing close-grip push-ups, but what are some key points to keep in mind? First, make sure you do this exercise correctly by keeping your back straight and not arching it.

Second, don't use momentum or swing your body when you're pushing up. Third, breathe out as you come down and inhale as you go up. Fourth, focus on squeezing your muscles at the top of each repetition for an extra burn!

Finally, Steel Supplements has everything that's needed to take care of all these muscle-building needs, so visit their website now if interested in learning more about how they can help with any fitness goals. While you’re at it, check out Steel Supplement’s Shredded AF to complement your close grip push-up reps!