The one arm press up, unique bodyweight exercises difficulty rating for one rep – 8 out of 10
Average time taken to master 2 months.
The one arm press up when done correctly is a difficult bodyweight exercise to master but is well within the reach of most people who have the dedication to persevere with the training required to nail it.
I should first point out that we are not talking about the – Rocky style – legs and arms as wide as the Grand Canyon version here, but one done with your feet less than shoulder width apart and the pushing arm pinned in tight against the chest.
This method takes the exercise to a whole different level and is much harder than the one most people do when they demonstrate a one arm press up, however, when you master the real deal, you can take pride in the fact that you are doing something that very few who have not worked long and hard are capable of doing so it is well worth a couple of months training to achieve.
Method of progression
The technique used to progress in this skill is simple all you have to do is start practicing on an incline. Experiment and find a sturdy bench, table or if possible a smith machine or power rack that enables you to adjust the height to your present capabilities and of you go. When you can manage 5 good reps at that height go to the next pin down on the rack or if you are using a bench or table find a lower one, but do not drop more than 8 or 10 inches at a time and build up again until you can once again do 5 reps, after that it is just a case of repeating the sequence.
After just a couple of months most people will easily achieve the perfect one arm press up but keep in mind the more you weigh the longer it might take you to achieve, however, all is not lost because the bigger you are the more impressive the skill is, so no excuses, go for it.
Start by assuming the position with two hands and once you feel balanced and stable place the free hand tight behind your back.
From the moment you assume the press up position keep your whole body rigid, paying particular attention to the core muscles.
Keep the pushing arm pinned in tight against the chest.
Imagine you are twisting the hand of the pushing arm into the floor and away from your body at the same time, this action helps keep the pushing arm tight against the chest and will help create the necessary tension needed in the muscles of your upper body. If your are doing a right handed press up this means imagining the hand turning clockwise and anticlockwise if you are doing a left handed press up.
Make sure you develop the habit of always doing full reps which means touching the bar with your chest on an incline press up and the floor in a proper one.
Always look directly ahead to help keep your body correctly aligned.