Will performing a few sets of push-ups every day before you brush your teeth help you get jacked? Or will this daily habit lead to injury, strain, and fatigue?
You might have had these questions in the past or are currently considering a daily push-up habit.
The humble push-up is a fantastic upper-body exercise that can yield tremendous results. But you’ll need to know the benefits, drawbacks, and progression tips before diving into doing push-ups every day. Here’s everything you need to know.
- Is It Dangerous to Do Push-Ups Every Day?
- The Advantages of Daily Push-Ups
- The Disadvantages of Daily Push-Ups
- Who Should Do Push-Ups Every Day?
- How to Progress
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is It Dangerous to Do Push-Ups Every Day?
Whether or not it’s dangerous to perform daily push-ups will depend on various factors, including your individual fitness level, form, and the intensity of your workouts.
There are some risks to be aware of, like overuse injuries, muscle imbalances, and plateauing.
To make push-ups a sustainable part of your daily fitness routine and reduce the associated risks, consider the following tips:
- You can minimize the risk of injury with proper push-up form.
- You don’t need to do push-ups every single day to see benefits, and you can incorporate rest days.
- Adding variations will help mitigate muscle imbalances.
- Take time to recover if you notice any discomfort, pain, or fatigue.
- Incorporate cross-training to engage other muscle groups and maintain variety.
Daily push-ups can be part of a healthy fitness routine, but it’s essential to approach it with caution. Consulting with a fitness professional or personal trainer can help you create a safe and effective workout plan tailored to your needs.
The Advantages of Daily Push-Ups
There are numerous health benefits to daily exercise, whether you’re doing calisthenics, strength training, or cardio. Doing a few sets of push-ups every day is a convenient way to stay in shape, regardless of your fitness level.
Here are a few of the advantages of a daily push-up habit to consider:
Increased Upper Body Strength
The standard push-up doesn’t only target the chest muscles or the arms. It’s a compound movement, engaging several upper body muscles at a time. With proper form, regular push-ups are an effective exercise for engaging the following muscle groups:
- Chest (pectoral muscles)
- Shoulder muscles
- Tricep muscles
- Bicep muscles
- Abdominal muscles
- Middle back muscles (latissimus dorsi and erector spinae)
By performing daily push-ups, you’ll gradually develop more strength and muscle mass, leading to improved upper body strength. This can enhance your ability to perform everyday tasks and other physical activities.
Improved Core Stability
Push-up variations require the core muscles for stability and control. As you perform sets of pushups each day, you will gain more core strength, coordination, and balance.
Core stability is a fundamental component of functional strength, which involves exercises that mimic everyday movements. Tasks like lifting objects, bending, and twisting will become more manageable, and you’ll have a lower chance of injury.
Over time, more core stability can also lead to improved posture, reducing the likelihood of slouching and associated back pain.
Convenient and Time-Efficient
Daily push-ups as a workout routine can be an attractive option if you have a busy schedule. The movement trains multiple muscle groups at a time, doesn’t require any special equipment, and can be performed nearly anywhere—all you need is your body weight.
Not to mention, a single set of standard pushups can be performed in a matter of minutes. You can easily squeeze in a quick workout into your daily routine, even if you only have 5–15 minutes to spare.
Improved Cardiovascular Health
Push-ups don’t just help you look good in the mirror—they also benefit your cardiovascular and heart health.
One study found that men who can perform 40 push-ups had 96% less chance of cardiovascular disease than those who could only complete 10. This study isn’t perfect, but it’s a quick look into how exercise can benefit your overall health.
Either way, a daily exercise habit is sure to benefit your cardiovascular system, and push-ups might be just the beginning.
Versatile and Beginner-Friendly
Push-ups are incredibly versatile and beginner-friendly. The movement doesn’t require any special equipment and can be performed with body weight alone. But what if you can’t perform a traditional push-up just yet?
There are countless beginner-friendly progressions you can incorporate to suit your fitness level.
Or, you can add more complex variations to your routine to emphasize different muscle groups. Either way, you can customize the exercise to suit your strength, conditioning, and fitness goals.
The Disadvantages of Daily Push-Ups
Push-ups may be a foundational exercise, but there are some drawbacks of a daily push-up habit to be aware of. Here are a few disadvantages of daily push-ups to consider:
There’s a risk of overuse injuries when performing push-ups or any repetitive physical activity. These injuries occur when a specific muscle, joint, or soft tissue undergoes excessive stress due to repetitive movements without adequate time for healing.
Traditional push-ups can affect some of the following areas:
- Shoulder joint issues
- Wrist injuries
- Elbow strain
- Chest muscle strain
- Lower back stress
The risk for overuse injuries can increase, depending on your current fitness level and if you’re using the proper techniques. Of course, 10 to 20 push-ups each morning are unlikely to cause issues, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Be sure to take a break and consult with a medical professional if you notice any sharp pain, significant soreness, or strains.
A few sets of push-ups before brushing your teeth is a great way to start the day, but it might lead to muscle imbalances if it’s your only source of strength training. Push-ups work the chest, shoulders, and triceps.
Neglecting other muscle groups can result in an uneven physique and potentially cause posture problems.
Muscle imbalances can be avoided if you incorporate other movements into your exercise routine. For example, if you’re doing 40 to 50 push-ups every morning, you should include other calisthenics exercises that target the leg muscles or the entire body.
Examples can include squats, burpees, sit-ups, pull-ups, lunges, and other challenging variations. This will provide you with a full-body workout and help you achieve your dream body.
Depending on your level of fitness, you can quickly stall out and plateau when performing push-ups each day. It’s a classic exercise that can help you take great strides on your fitness journey, but you’ll need to incorporate more challenging activities to make progress.
Your body adapts to the stress, and you might stop seeing significant improvements.
To get the maximum benefits, ensure you’re incorporating other calisthenics variations or strength training routines. The specifics will depend on your fitness goals, but doing so will help you continuously develop muscle mass, strength, and power.
It Can Be Boring
One of the overlooked downsides of a daily push-up goal is that it can quickly become boring once you gain more muscular strength. Over time, your body will adapt to the stress, and the movement will become easy.
It can turn your daily goal from a fresh challenge to something akin to brushing your teeth or putting on deodorant.
This doesn’t mean it will stop providing benefits to your cardiovascular health, strength, or stability, though. But, if you’re someone who needs more variety or likes to keep things fresh, a more well-rounded routine might suit you better.
Who Should Do Push-Ups Every Day?
Starting the morning with a few sets of 12 to 15 push-ups or more can be a fantastic way to start your day. This small habit can increase your energy levels, help you maintain a good level of physical fitness, and provide you with more stable mental health.
Assuming you’re using the correct form and aren’t overworking yourself, who should do push-ups every day?
Individuals in some of the following situations might benefit from a daily push-up habit:
- Fathers or busy professionals who need a quick way to incorporate strength training.
- High-school or college students who want an easy way to stay accountable in the morning.
- Those looking for an accessible way to develop a healthy morning routine.
That said, daily push-ups might not benefit everyone. Individuals in some of the following situations might want to avoid daily push-ups:
- Individuals with previous injuries to the shoulders, wrists, chest, or elbows.
- Individuals new to physical fitness who need more recovery time or push-up progressions.
- Pregnant women will need to consult their doctor beforehand.
- Fitness enthusiasts who have comprehensive strength training routines might be overexerting themselves or receive little benefits.
Overall, a daily push-up habit can benefit many individuals as long as they use the proper form and don’t overdo it.
How to Progress
If you’re embarking on a daily push-up goal, you’ll need a few tricks on how to build more muscle mass and breakthrough plateaus.
In a short period of time, you can progress from a few sets in the morning to 100 push-ups a day, all the way to more challenging calisthenics movements and beyond. Here are a few considerations to keep in mind:
Use the Correct Technique
Regardless if you’re performing 1 or 100 push-ups a day, it’s critical to use the correct technique. The wrong form will reduce the effectiveness of the exercise and place additional strain on the wrists, elbows, or shoulders.
Here’s how to perform a push-up the right way:
- Assume a standard plank position. Place your hands flat on the ground, slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Your fingers should point forward or slightly outward.
- Extend your legs straight behind you, with your toes touching the ground. Your body should be rigid, creating a straight line from top to bottom.
- Inhale as you begin to bend your elbows, slowly lowering your body toward the ground. Maintain a straight torso and prevent your hips from sagging or back from arching.
- Continue lowering yourself until your chest is just above the floor. The elbows should be around a 90-degree angle, but this will vary.
- Now, exhale as you press through your palms and extend your arms to raise your body upward.
- Fully straighten your arms at the top, but avoid locking your elbows. That’s one rep.
Standard push-ups will quickly become easy if you perform them every day.
You’ll need to incorporate more complex variations to continue challenging yourself and your muscles.
Push-up variations and progressions use a different range of motions. This will emphasize other muscle groups, helping you develop more strength, stability, and coordination. A few push-up variations to consider include the following:
- Decline Push-Up
- Diamond Push-Up
- Incline Push-Up
- Archer Push-Up
- Pike Push-Up
You will find some of these much more accessible than others, depending on your fitness levels. Try to include challenging variations into your daily routine so you can continue to make progress on your calisthenics journey.
Make Time for Rest
A daily push-up habit can go a long way for your physical and mental health. It can be a convenient way to jumpstart your morning or cap off the day with something productive. But like any other form of exercise, it’s critical to pay attention to your body.
Make sure you’re getting enough rest and taking days off if you notice any pain, strain, or significant fatigue.
Skipping a day might seem like a loss, but it’s essential if your body needs a break. Overworking your muscles can lead to fatigue, stress, injury, and a weakened immune system. Take 1–2 days off if you’re feeling noticeably bad, and pick up where you left off.
Be sure to contact your primary care doctor if you notice significant muscle soreness, pain, or fatigue that persists for more than a couple of days.
Get Enough Protein
Muscles require protein for recovery, repair, and growth. A daily push-up habit means you’re continuously breaking down muscle fibers.
If you’re not eating enough protein, your progress will start to stall, and you may even begin to lose muscle.
Ensure your diet is filled with high-quality sources of protein. There are countless protein-dense foods to choose from, but here are a few options to consider:
- Whey Protein
- Lean Beef
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What Happens if I Do Push-Ups Everyday?
Doing push-ups every day can be beneficial if you have the correct technique and pay attention to your body. You can improve your upper body and core strength. It will also benefit your cardiovascular and mental health.
How Many Pushups Is OK for a Day?
There isn’t a right or wrong answer, as it depends on your physical fitness level. Three sets of 15–20 push-ups can go a long way, depending on your strength. Pay attention to your body and take days off. Take a break if you notice any pain, discomfort, or significant fatigue and soreness.
Do You Need Rest Days for Push-Ups?
Yes, you will need to take rest days when performing daily push-ups. Muscles need time to recover so they can repair and grow stronger. You might perform push-ups every other day and do a lower body exercise on your days off. The type of rest day you take will depend on preference and fitness goals.