Think you’re a push-up master? This challenge is for you!
Perhaps one of the most basic and versatile exercise movements, the standard push-up activates nearly every muscle in your body, which yields toned muscles and increased endurance.
Specifically targeting the triceps, pectoral muscles and shoulders, when done with proper form, traditional push-ups can also strengthen the lower back and core by engaging (pulling in) the abdominal muscles.
For a short 21-day "skill enhancement" challenge, push-ups are an ideal movement, as you will be targeting the same group of muscles daily, which will create consistent incremental gains.
In collaboration with Master Trainer Shaun Zetlin,author of the Push-Up Progression book series and other popular push-up challenges, KKR Wellness Works has designed a challenge that will allow you to benchmark your existing level and start a customized plan toward the goal of 25, 50 or 75 consecutive push-ups, depending on your starting point.
By the end of the challenge, you’ll not only feel like a rockstar, your shoulders, arms and core may look the part, too!
Check out the KKR push-up World Record Holders.
During this year's Sweat Equity Challenge, the KKR World Record Holder Push-Up Contest took KKR by storm. Almost 100 KKR employees took to the challenge of testing how many push-ups they could do in just 30 seconds. In case you missed it, check out the kick-off video, along with the male and female winners below!
Ken Mehlman (NY, Public Policy & Affairs): 34 push-ups!
OVERALL FEMALE CHAMPION!
NICOLE ROMANO (NY, CLIENT & PARTNER gROUP): 40 push-ups!
OVERALL MALE CHAMPION!
Connor McQueeney (NY, Finance, Tax and Accounting): 46 push-ups!
Form TIps from Master Trainer Shaun Zetlin
Follow the tips below to ensure you're performing your push-ups correctly and safely:
Hands positioned a little more than shoulder-width apart flattening your palms
Feet, heels, legs, and knees close together, with knees off the floor and fully extended, weight balanced on the toes
Spine in the neutral position (upper back and glutes aligned) while bracing your core and engaging your glutes
Shoulders over your elbows with your elbows positioned at 45-degrees while squeezing your shoulder-blades when lowering downward
A Note on Safety
When done correctly, push-ups are a proven fitness game changer. Because it's a bodyweight movement, the danger of injury is very low. We've designed the challenge to consider safety, building gradually through the 21 days. That said, if you suffer from any of the below, this challenge may not be for you!
Wrist Pressure: Performing push-ups puts a lot of strain on your wrists, according to the American Council on Exercise. If you suffer from wrist injury, there are ways to strengthen your wrists during push-up training. Please seek expert guidance before jumping in!
Shoulder Injuries: Practicing a proper push-up requires significant shoulder strength, reports the American Council on Exercise. If you are suffering from a shoulder injury, you should not perform any type of push-ups without first talking to your doctor. Doing push-ups when your shoulders are not strong and healthy could lead to further injury. If you feel pain or hear a clicking noise in your shoulders while performing push-ups, stop immediately and contact your doctor.
Spine Weakness: When performing any kind of push-up, it's important to keep your head and neck in a straight line, according to the American Council on Exercise. If you have spine weakness, consider working with a personal trainer who can look at your push-up position and tell you whether or not you are keeping your spine in proper alignment. Also, keep your abdominal muscles engaged as you perform your push-ups to help align your spine and prevent back injury.