How To Do Inverted Push Ups Properly

Inverted push ups are a variation of the standard push up. However, as the name alludes, its movements involve an inverted aspect.

That said, it does engage similar areas. It builds strength in the larger upper body area i.e., the chest, shoulders and abdominal region.

The exercise is scapular stabilisation combined with pushing and pulling movements.

To do this exercise:

  • Lean a bar support on a wall-like surface and ensure that the strips are suspended
  • Count four steps from the bottom and put your foot over the bar
  • Lay down on the floor, with your face down with your hands at the width of your shoulders and your elbows extended.
  • Try to use your trunk region as a plank, with scapular stabilisation
  • Activate your abs and glutes to stabilise the hip
  • Bent your arms with the elbows pointed outside, until your head gets closer to the floor
  • Turn to starting position, extending the arms and stabilising the scapula and hip

Note that you don’t have to use a bar support alone you can use a step, or another solid object to rest your feet on



When you push your body into the ground and then pull yourself away from it, the chest is often always engaged.

This is because in order to lower your body at a regulated momentum, the chest has to play a role.

Whilst the shoulders will handle support and arms do the flexion work, the chest carries most of your body weight.

Therefore. allowing you to make the necessary controlled movements to complete the inverted push ups


The shoulders perform a pivotal role in performing the inverted pushups – literally. This is because typically, the shoulders help you maintain stability throughout varied ranges of motion.

This remains the same when doing inverted pushups. When you pivot yourself on the ground, it is your shoulder that provides the stability to hoist yourself up and down.


The forearm and elbow enable you to flex the arm and at the same time works in tandem with the shoulders to stabilise movements.

In order to raise yourself up and down you need to flex your arm which is facilitated by the elbow.

The forearm on the other hand holds the weight and acts as a bridge to the shoulder. This therefore provides you with the ability to hoist yourself up and down with stability.


When you descend and ascend while doing the inverted push ups, you’re forced to contract various parts of the body that are engaged, this includes the core.

By contracting the core, you engage it and strengthen it. Therefore, with every rep, you use your core in the necessary movements allowing it to adapt by becoming stronger.



Since the inverted push up is mostly a strengthening exercise, it increases the strength levels in your upper body.

This improves the ability to do certain athletic activities better i.e., jumping. Having a strong core and general upper body strength increases your ability to jump higher and hold yourself in the air for longer.

It also improves upper body stability which can be beneficial in activities such as running.


A lot of injuries come about as a result of instability and weakness in areas such as the rotator cuff or joints.

However since these areas are strengthened by the inverted pushups, it provides stability and strengthens these muscles thus preventing the likelihood of injury.


Doing the inverted push ups requires a number of muscles to work together i.e., the elbow and forearm and chest and shoulders.

Doing this consistently ensures that these muscles adapt and thus work together much better hereby bringing about efficiency in doing the exercise.

However this does not stop at just the exercise, the muscle coordination built from doing the inverted pushups trickles into day-to-day activity.



To do this exercise:

  • Grab onto the dip machine handles and lift yourself up so that your arms are locked out.
  • Bring your upper body forward over your hands and bend slightly at the waist so that your chest is almost parallel with the handles.
  • Bending at the elbows, lower your body towards the floor until your elbows reach about a 90- degree angle.
  • Push yourself back up to the starting position and repeat


To do this exercise:

  • Start in a straight arm plank position with your shoulders stacked above your hands and your feet hip-width apart.
  • Extend your right arm forward, then place it back down into the plank.
  • Extend your right arm to the side, then place it back down into the plank.
  • Keep your body in a straight line and extend your arm under your body, pull your right leg toward your core, and tap your right foot with your left hand.
  • Return to the plank position.
  • Do all of your reps, and then repeat on your opposite side.


To do this exercise:

  • Grip the front edges of a chair or bench with your hand
  • Hover your glutes in front of the seat, feet flat, and legs bent so thighs are parallel to the floor.
  • Straighten your arms. This is your start position.
  • Lower your body toward the floor until your arms form 90-degree angles.
  • Then, engage your triceps to press back to start.


To do this exercise:

  • Lie on a mat on the floor, face up, legs extended.
  • Place your hands underneath your lower back and glutes so your pelvis is supported.
  • Begin to raise your legs toward the ceiling, pressing your thighs together and keeping the legs straight.
  • Lift until your hips are fully flexed and you can’t go any higher with straight legs, then lower back down and repeat.



In order to do the inverted push ups you need to slightly lean and ensure your neck is neutrally aligned.

Failure to do this causes excessive strain on the back which can lead to back injuries.


An effective inverted push up is found on a slight bend to the elbow. Keeping your elbows rigid puts too much stress on the elbow joints.

Consequently, this can lead to injury


The inverted push up is a higher impact variation of the standard push up. As such, it increases the strength levels in your upper body

More than that it also allows you to do day to day physical activities much more efficiently and easily