Superman push-up is a variation which takes the fitness routine to a new level and intensity. It is a drill which will completely destroy the abs and gives it strength – like no other. However, it is advisable not to try it – unless you’ve ticked many other variations of push-ups on your list. It is one of the toughest workouts. You will be counted in a selected group of people – if you accomplish it successfully.
It is a calisthenics exercise which is fundamentally a bodyweight exercise that mainly focuses on the abs. You start in the up position as you would do in a regular push up, but once you come down, you explode upward and push your hands outward – as if you’re flying like a superman. If you manage to pull your legs up, then you become completely airborne and get parallel to the ground.
Technique – How to master the perfect superman push up?
It is no joke to pull off even a single set of superman push up. An immense amount of hard work and endurance needs to pay out, just to get you started with it.
1. The superman push-up is performed in a horizontal position. The hands are extended beyond your head, unlike in regular push up – where you place your hands beneath the shoulder.
2. To ensure that you’re in the right position, it is advisable to lie on your stomach with your arms and legs fully stretched. Your palms must lie flat on the floor, and the feet should be six inches apart.
3. To start workout – tighten your core and lift the chest, thighs, and stomach of the floor. This will put all the weight on the hands and toes.
4. Hold the weight of the body in top position for a moment and explode in the air, before bringing it back to the floor and complete one repetition.
It is necessary to keep the body aligned and straight. Make sure that the hands and legs are straight and start feeling like a superman – who is flying.
Benefits of Superman Pushup
An effective ab exercise
Superman push-ups help you to contract all of your abdominal muscles completely. To keep your body straight while moving up and down with movements, an incredible amount of strength is required. These push-ups also help to improve and strengthen the lower back.
To be able to perform even one repetition of superman pushup, immense strength is required in the lower back muscles and abs. Since they are incredibly difficult to perform in an outstretched position, it is always fruitful to start with little modifications.
Rather than getting your hands fully outstretched, you can initially start by keeping it close to you and gradually taking it away – as you gain strength and feel comfortable doing it. A point will come in your fitness routine, where you will absolutely feel like a superman, as your hands and legs will be airborne in a fully outstretched position.
But initially, keep the arms over your head. Try doing 10-15 of those and then starting moving your hands gradually. It will allow you to develop muscle strength and build up yourself. After performing the superman push up for a while, you will feel the incredible strength in your abdominals.
The ridges between the abs will grow much deeper and tighter. Your core will become super powerful, once you know, how to perform the true superman push up.
Strengthening the Muscles By Superman Pushup
In Superman pushup, the shoulders are extended as much as the torso, up and above from the floor. This is done because of the contraction of the biggest muscle in the back, latissimus dorsi and pectorals muscle in the chest.
To keep the torso and the thighs in the straight line, the abdominal and the hip flexors contracts – as you perform the movements. It makes your ab muscle more rigid and powerful, as you press up and down.
Though it mainly works on your abs, it also enhances your oblique, shoulder, glutes, lower back, chest and middle back – up to a certain degree.
How to Build Up Towards a Superman Push up
To be able to perform a single superman push up, you will need to master the plank push up and teach your muscles to gain incredible strength. Train for it, build up the core strength required. Crunches are not going to give you the core strength needed. Instead, they enhance the rectus abdominis muscle. Your abs might look good in the mirror, but they are not yet ready to perform a successful set of superman push up.
It becomes essential to train with plank position on your forearms and toes. Try to hold longer to build up the strength in transverse abdominis. It will increase the stability in your deep ab muscle and will make it more rigid as you push up and down. It also enhances the stability of other supporting muscles that makes the superman push up more possible to accomplish.
Superman Pushup Progression
Once you have required strength, you can move towards the progression of Superman Pushup. Trust me this is one of the most complicated exercise routines and can cause severe injuries to the body if not done correctly.
1. Start with explosive pushups and get comfortable with them. (start practicing this in an inclined position to avoid injuries and build strength or on knees).
2. Once you’re comfortable with explosive pushups, start adding Plyo Pushups and reach a minimum of 20 reps without breaking.
3. Next step is to master Front clap Pushup. 20 reps in a set without breaking is a must before moving towards the next exercise.
5. Next up is half Superman, that means only the upper part of your body goes up in the air. Your feet stay on the ground at all time.
6. Partial flying superman pushup. Your whole body goes up in the air, but you don’t stretch the hands and the legs too much up in the air.
7. Go for the complete Superman pushup!
Frequency of superman push up
For a beginner, it is impossible to try a superman push up. You need to build towards it. Gain the core strength as discussed above, and with time, you will be able to accomplish the superman push up successfully. So for a newbie, it is a straight no, as you might cause serious damage to your muscles. And you might also lose some front teeth trying.
For an intermediate, if you’ve successfully gained the core abdominal strength required, it is advisable to perform a 1-2 set of 8-12 reps, for not more than 3 days in a week. Overdoing of anything can result in serious consequences. Know the limits, and push forward to the next level of beast mode.
For advanced level athletes, ‘Congratulations!’
Not many can reach the advanced level when it comes to Superman push up. You belong to a small set of people, so take a moment and feel proud of yourself. But don’t get too carried away. Follow the regime, like you have been and keep building the core strength. Do it for five days a week and keep flaunting your achievements in front of others.
Challenge Yourself with Superman Pushup Variations
Different variations can be performed to avoid boredom and just to make it more challenging. You can perform the superman push up, by putting on a heavy belt across your waist. Or you can ask someone else to put some weight on your back. You can also try out the superman push up, using a different kind of elevated surface. Though this variation is not advisable, as the superman push up – in itself can be quite challenging for most of the fitness fanatics.
Superman Push up vs. Handstand Push up
Both of these push-ups are reckoned as an advanced level workout to develop strength and muscle in the upper body. Both of these variations make use of the body weights to provide resistance, but they enhance different groups of body muscles.
Both of these push-ups are performed in different body positions. Superman push up is performed horizontally, while the handstand push up is performed vertically. The superman push up works directly on your abs, chest, lower and middle back, glutes and shoulders. The handstand push up works on your shoulders, triceps, deltoids and other muscles of the upper body.
It is extremely necessary to build up the core strength to perform both of these workouts. If you do not have the core strength in your abdominals, it is next to impossible to accomplish even a single set of these push-ups successfully. So be patient, and keep working step by step towards these beast mode push-ups. The rewards for these workouts are highly productive and recognizable.
You can perform the superman push up almost anywhere and everywhere. It doesn’t require any gym equipment, weights or other fancy supporting objects. All you need is a phenomenal core strength, and the never give up attitude towards it. It might be extremely difficult at the start, but if executed step by step, while building the necessary core strength – it is not impossible to accomplish it. Yes, it might take some time, a lot of time – but your patience will pay off. You will be able to feel the strength like never before and experience a new energy altogether.
Keep ticking the boxes of different push-up styles, and it will help you progress towards the not so elusive goal – The Superman Push Up.