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Planche Pushup Progressions

The planche pushup is an advanced gymnastics movement and an incredible feat of core and shoulder strength.  It is essentially a pushup done with the hands being the only contact between the body and the ground (that means the feet are up in the air!).  To develop this advanced move, there are some simpler movements that can be worked on to help develop the necessary strength and balance.

Start in a regular pushup position, and bring your hands down as close to the hips as you can.  The fingers can begin to rotate outwards towards the feet to help take pressure off of the wrists.

From this position, squeeze your entire body as tightly as you can (think abs and glutes) and push yourself up, making sure that the chest doesn’t come up ahead of the rest body.

Planche Pushup Progression - BottomPlanche Pushup Progression - Top

Once you can successfully do these pushups, you can increase the difficulty by raising the feet up onto a box, or walking them up a wall.  The shoulders must stay well in front of the hands to maintain balance in the proper position.

If you put your feet up on a wall, you can push yourself forward with your toes to try and shift more of your weight onto your arms.  Be careful not to fall on your face.

To increase the work done by the arms, try using parallettes, or for even more of a challenge, rings set low to the ground.  Combine with raised feet for more difficulty.

To focus more on the balancing aspect of the movement, check out the frog stand and other planche progressions used to work up to a static planche.

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