What are isometric push-ups and why are they useful?

What are isometric push-ups and why are they useful?

What are isometric push-ups and why are they useful?

July 9, 2014


Photo by Irina Baranskaya

Irina Baranskaya

What are isometric push-ups and why are they useful?


After watching the movie “Edge of Tomorrow” and finding a little inconsistency in it, I decided to re-read the book on which it was based. In the book, I also found the answer to my second question: what did Emily Blunt do during training? It turns out that she was doing isometric push-ups, a type of push-up that develops endurance, strengthens muscles and makes them stronger and more voluminous.

Isometric push-ups are often included in strength training and power yoga, rehabilitation programs or special military training programs, and personally I think that they are completely undeservedly supplanted by the plank (it also belongs to the category of isometric exercises), which literally flooded all social networks. It’s time to restore justice. 😉

What are isometric push ups

So, isometric exercises are strength training, during which the length of your muscle does not change, the joints do not move. You just freeze in a certain position for a certain amount of time. They develop endurance, give tone, strengthen muscles and increase them in volume. Isometric exercises are part of various strength training and special preparatory programs for the military.

We have already talked about the bar, now let’s talk about isometric push-ups. Basic option for beginners:

  • Stand in the starting position for push-ups (emphasis on hands, legs together, palms slightly wider than shoulders, stomach retracted, there are no deflections in the lower back).
  • Start lowering as if you were doing a regular push-up, and pause halfway to the floor for a certain number of seconds.
  • An option for girls is to do push-ups from the knees.

During isometric push-ups, the chest, triceps, abs, lower and middle parts of the back are included in the work.

Isometric push-ups can be varied and complicated by changing the position of the hands, alternately raising the legs, or adding other simple changes. For greater clarity, I have prepared for you several videos demonstrating different options.


The position of the hands can be different: you can put your hands shoulder-width apart and place your elbows along the body; slightly wider than shoulders and elbows to the sides; emphasis on the palms, fingers or fists.

You can also add isometric push-ups to the standard ones. For example, they did push-ups 10 times, then made a spring for 8 counts and then froze for another 816 accounts.

The time that you can stand like this should be increased gradually, as in the case of the bar. For example, there is a variant with three isometric exercises (squats, push-ups and a plank), in which you need to stand for five minutes, moving from one to another. You can start by setting a goal – to stand in isometric push-ups for 30 seconds, and then increase the time to a minute. Well, then already set your own records – it all depends on your perseverance and willpower. 😉

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