This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Project Press-Up

On a flight back from training in Egypt last September Instructors Anna Wallen and Sharon Ngo were seated together. “What are your press-ups like?” “Could be better – even after years of trying – blame it on my embonpoint*. You’re an engineer – what can we do about it?” “Pencils and papers to the ready – ” So after numerous stick figures, excuses, experiments, and research, here is Anna’s Project Press-Up report, Part One.

“Done properly, press-ups are one of the simplest and most beneficial exercises there are to improve your Kung Fu and general fitness. However, as in all training, it can be difficult to get the movement exactly right. Many of us can find developing the correct muscles for press-ups problematic. This article focuses on what a press-up entails, what the common problems are and how best to correct them and build up your physique. Read More

This entry is part 3 of 3 in the series Project Press-Up

There’s no shame in not being able to do a correct press-up (Really? – Yes). You’d be surprised how many otherwise strong people struggle to do press-ups, for the simple reason that they haven’t trained them properly before. Luckily, there’s a solution to this problem: start where you are now, and get better by practising regularly. In other words – Train!

Earlier in 2018 Instructor Anna Wallen cast an engineer’s eye over the problems people have with press-ups. Her findings and suggested techniques were set out in two posts on what became Project Press-Up.

Not satisfied with just telling you all what to do, Instructor Anna now invites you to a press-up training challenge. The purpose of the challenge is for members who are interested to see how much they can improve their press-ups over a period of time by working all the elements of the press-up, and improving their technique and strength.

The Challenges:

Read More

This entry is part 4 of 3 in the series Project Press-Up

Instructor Anna Wallen continues this popular subject with Part 2 of Project Press-up. Now that you know what “embonpoint” means (see Part 1 if unsure) Anna will explain the impact of weight distribution on press-up technique and power. Whilst both men and women can be equally strong and proficient at press-ups women face particular challenges based on their physiology.  Knowing why is not enough, so Anna will also explore what to do about it.

Building up to full press-ups

“I can’t count the number of web videos with buff young hunks helpfully telling me to practise knee press-ups so I can build up to full ones.

I’m a research engineer. I did a quick calculation (it’s what engineers do): knee press-ups require my arms to lift 40% of my bodyweight (not counting the helpful seesaw counterweight of my lower legs, which reduces the work by my arms further). Full press-ups lift 55%. Ten kilos is quite a load to add to my arms in one go, and that’s not counting how much more my core suddenly has to work when I go straight. Read More