BENT-KNEE PUSHUPS (work the shoulders and triceps)
“This is not a sissy pushup, “says Steinfeld. “It’s a must-do to warm up the muscles and develop good technique.” Keeping your back straight, support yourself on your knees and palms. Your arms should be straight and shoulder-width apart. Slowly lower your upper body to the floor, keeping your trunk straight. Raise back to the starting position.
INCLINE PUSHUPS (emphasize the upper chest)
Stand facing a wall, about 2 to 3 feet away, arms straight out in front of you. Touch the wall with palms flat and support your weight. Slowly lower your chest to the wall, keeping your knees and back straight. Push back out.
DECLINE PUSHUPS (work the lower chest, triceps and shoulders)
Assume a bent-knee pushup position in front of an exercise bench or a chair. Using your arms to support your body weight, elevate both feet behind you on the bench or chair. Keep your knees locked and your back straight as you lower your chest to the floor and push back up. Since raising your legs throws more weight onto the upper body, this exercise is harder than the preceding ones. Do 6 to 10 repetitions.
STANDARD PUSHUPS (work the triceps, chest and shoulders)
Lie face down on the floor with your palms at shoulder level, fingers pointing forward. Push yourself up until your body weight rests only on your palms and toes. Some variations: * To accent the chest, place your hands wider than shoulder-width apart. * To target triceps and back muscles, bring hands close together, so that thumbs and index fingers touch, forming a diamond pattern on the floor.
CHAIR DIPS (work chest, triceps and shoulders and improve shoulders’ range of motion)
Place two benches or chairs of equal seat height shoulder-width apart. Kneel between them, place one hand flat on each scat, and extend your legs behind you so your weight is evenly supported by your arms and your feet. Lower your upper body just below the plane of the seats or benches, or as low as you can without pain. Hold the position for a second, then raise yourself back to the starting position. Work up to 10 repetitions.