Sunday, March 15, 2009

Push up tip: Save your wrists!

I started the 100 push ups challenge and so far it's been, well, a challenge. I've had to repeat week 2 twice now because the first time week 3 was just too hard. Note that I decided not to re-evaluate myself at the week 3 mark as they suggest, I decided to stay in column 2. After my second week 2 I had to mostly take a week off because my wrists were hurting.

The traditional push up is not the greatest thing for your wrists so I personally would not recommend doing too many of them at a time. An alternative is knuckle push ups, but I find these uncomfortable also. I scoured the internets and many people recommend "push up bars" to ease the wrist strain. They mostly end up being bars or rungs that sit on the floor for you to grip. They end up looking sort of like the bars on a pommel horse, if you replace the pommel with the floor. To continue with this visual, you'd then lay between the bars with the bars on each side of your shoulders. Then it is as simple as gripping the bars instead of placing your hands on the floor and doing a push up like normal. The result is the pressure and weight are still on your palms but no longer are your wrists at a poor angle.

As far as what kind, you can find plenty of options at a brick-and-mortar store or somewhere online like Amazon (I think I saw some for $15 there). I have a better option though. I realized a pair of dumbbells can accomplish the same task, while also giving you a pair of weights to use with other exercises. I ended up using a set of 12lb dumbbells that I already had and they work great. Any dumbbells can be used as long as the weighted ends are large enough to raise the bar high enough to allow your fingers to comfortably slide under.

With the above solution I'm back at it and really enjoying the challenge. I'd highly recommend taking it on yourself! Just make sure you have your set of dumbbells ready...

1 comment:

  1. I don't see what the problem is with painful pushups. They never hurt my wrists. As long as you hold them in an upright position, and don't let the icecream melt onto your hands, there's no reason you should be getting injured.