Junior Student’s Corner
by Charlie Romeo
The ability to complete your full push-ups is often one of the most challenging aspects of a student’s requirements. This article will give some tips on how to better meet these requirements. As someone who used to struggle with push-ups, I hope these will help you in your training.
Tip 1: Develop Proper Form
It’s common for students to develop the strength to complete their full requirements, but to be doing so with improper form. This only creates more of a challenge: to unlearn and relearn how to do a push-up. A good way to develop proper form is to watch yourself doing push-ups. Try filming yourself, and while watching back, make sure your back is straight, your hips are aligned, your head is up, and your hands are underneath your shoulders, and fingers pointed straight ahead.
Tip 2: Develop Strength
I’ve never been a fan of knee push-ups because there’s no easy way to transition from knees to full body. Instead, use an incline to build your strength. For example, start doing push-ups on stairs, with your feet on the floor and your hands a few steps up. Ensuring you have proper form, work your push-ups on this incline and you’ll find there’s much less weight to push up against. When you’re comfortable, move down a step, and repeat until you’re able to do your full requirement on the floor.
Tip 3: Develop a Practice Schedule
You’re not going to improve by ‘winging it’, structure is essential for improvement. Set up a schedule so that you can keep track of your progress. For example, you can set up a schedule to work your push-ups three times a day: before breakfast, after school, and before bed. Consistency is key!
Tip 4: Patience
The last and most important tip is patience. You’re not going to drastically improve your strength in one week; this is a long process that takes effort and perseverance. Your instructors are here to assist in your progress as a martial artist, but only you hold the responsibility to improve yourself.
Sibok Lloyd’s Tip
You don’t have to be able to do your full set of new push-up requirements the day after your grade. It is better to build up to the new requirement gradually, with proper technique, than to cheat by doing improper push-ups.