The humble pushup is often underrated. One of the oldest and simplest exercises to date, it has survived the ages because it works. The TRX push up adds an extra dimension to this classic move, challenging your balance even further as you add the shoulder tap.
10 Reasons to do Push Ups
- It’s a compound exercise, meaning we hit multiple muscles in one move. The push up targets your chest, shoulders, arms and core.
- It stretches your muscles which increases their flexibility.
- It can enhance your cardiovascular system. Compound exercises require an elevated heart rate as your heart works to pump blood to the working muscles.
- You will stimulate Human Growth Hormone production by working multiple muscle groups, which promotes muscle growth.
- Push ups protect your shoulders. A rotator cuff injury is very frustrating and can limit movement.The push up has been found to be among the most effective ways to safeguard your shoulder joints from injury; especially in older adults as they call upon stabilising muscles, which surround the rotator cuff joint.
- The Push up can improve your posture. In order to properly hold your shoulders and back, your entire core must be strong enough to support its vertical positions. When push ups are properly executed, the muscles responsible for supporting posture are strengthened and fine-tuned.
- Strengthening your core can prevent lower back injuries, a strong lower back and a strong core come hand in hand.
- They can be done anytime, anyplace and don’t take long!
- It’s a full body workout, for free!
- Weight bearing exercises help to increase bone density which can ward of conditions such as Osteoporosis.
How to Push Up to Shoulder Tap
- Hook both feet into a stirrup each and assume the push up position.
- Sink down by bending your elbows and bring your chest towards the floor, your nose should almost touch the ground.
- Drive up and return to the start position.
- Now without rotating at the hips maintain a tight core and lift the opposite hand to tap the opposite shoulder.
- Repeat for the other side.
The TRX Row to Fallout is a killer upper body move, working your back, arms, shoulders and core.
Grab both handles and lean back with your feet in front of the anchor, row your hands in towards your chest as you pull your body up and then let your weight shift forwards as your hands pass your sides and straighten up by your ears for a fallout. Sounds harder than it is (lies, it’s hard).
TRX Fallout Front Position
Make it easier: Knock the moves down into two separate moves before working your way into the full rocking motion. Complete your row and then walk forward into your fallout.
Crank it up a notch: The closer your feet are to the anchor, and the longer the handles, the hard this exercise becomes as you're working with more of your own bodyweight.
You could even take things a notch further and add a weighted vest. Hardcore.
Practice makes perfect!
The burpee. The exercise we all love to hate. This whole body exercise has got it all, it's a combination of a (sort of) squat, plank, squat thrust and jump and in this case it's all done whilst being suspended on one leg. Ouch.
Benefits of the TRX Burpee:
Strapping a leg into the TRX adds an extra dimension of balance to your regular burpee. Good balance prevents injury and helps us perform better in everyday functional tasks.
Workouts on the TRX fire up your transverse abdominals to help stabilise your spine whilst your body is suspended. This creates a constant tension on your core, no matter what muscle group the exercise focuses on.
Good proprioception is defined as good position sense. It’s your internal awareness of your bodies positioning.This sense allows you to close your eyes and still know where your body parts are in space. Without this kinesthetic sense, you would not be able to maintain your balance with your eyes closed, or tell if your knee is bent or straight unless you look at it. Good proprioception is important for everyone at every level of fitness. The better your proprioceptive sense the better your joints can adapt to changes in position, such as running on uneven surfaces. Good proprioception is important in balance, agility, athletic performance and injury prevention
Legs are you biggest muscle group and your greatest source of power. The TRX burpee works each leg individually to develop equal strength. What we tend to find with exercises that train both legs at once, such as a leg press, is that your stronger leg does most of the work without you realising it. So to develop solid and equal strength we train the legs individually.
The shoulders work here to stabilize in the plank position and as you launch into your standing position.
Plyometrics increase your ability to perform anaerobic exercises . The explosive single leg jump here focuses on keeping your heart rate up as well as targeting your leg muscles. Plyometrics are also great for building stronger calves, a muscle we often find difficult to train.
Getting your heart rate up burns more calories and increases the amount of oxygen you uptake, increasing your V02 max.
TRX Burpee Pre Jump Position
Activate the arms with the legs
If you can, use your momentum to leave the floor
TRX Burpee - Returning to Start Position
How to TRX Burpee:
- Hook one foot into the stirrup. It should be about 30 cm off the floor.
- Bend over at the hips, pushing them back and reach your hands down to the floor.
- Once your hands meet the floor, jump your free foot back into the plank position.
- Pop back up to a single leg hold by jumping your free leg forward towards your hands.
- Once you return to the start position, explode of your free leg with a jump towards the ceiling.
- Take it from the top!
To take it down a notch:
To make this easier, knock out the jump up at the top. If you opt for this version, try to aim for the full move after some practise.
Crank up the intensity:
Add a single leg push up for the plank position. This will now involve more of your chest and shoulders, as well as firing up your abdominals to help you stabilize.
This move is a great challenge for high intensity intervals or a whole body workout, give it a go and tell us how you get on!
Having a strong core is vital for everyone whether you practise a sport or not. A strong core will allow you to stay healthy in everyday life and will prevent related injuries such as a sore back. Try some of these suspension trainer ab exercises to really see results.
The main muscles which make up a strong core are:
- The External Obliques: The muscles which run along the sides and front of your stomach.
- The Internal Obliques: These muscles sit behind your external obliques and run in the opposite direction.
- The Transverse Abdominis: These muscles are the deepest abdominal muscles which wrap around your spine to protect and stabilise it.
- The Rectus Abdominis: These muscles are the glamour muscles, located at the very front of your abdomen, it is these muscle which create the elusive six pack.
Core Suspension Training
In order to develop a strong core, you need to train your abdominals like you would any other muscle group, with a variety of exercises using multiple ranges of movement in multiple planes of motion, to maximise training results.
Suspension training can maximise your core strength because it puts your abs under constant tension. The premise of suspension training is that when you are suspended you are unstable and because of this every single exercise you perform on a TRX or suspension trainer fires up your abdominals as your core is forced to constantly work at keeping you stabilised and hold your body balanced using your own body weight as leverage. When we then start adding exercises designed to target your waist, not only will your abs be on fire, but you’ll fire up your results too!
With all these exercises, it is important to keep good form; squeeze your shoulder blades together to prevent arching your back and keep your core tensed to protect your spine. Suck your stomach into your spine and then imagine you're pulling it up towards your rib cage to engage your Transverse Abdominis.
Grab your handles and face away from the anchor. Begin with the straps by your sides and slowly with control, fall forward as you bring your arms straight up above your head to align with your ears in one swift movement. Keeping your arms straight return them back to the starting point. The further away your feet are from the anchor point, the easier the exercise is as you are using less of your body weight as resistance.
TRX Mountain Climbers
For this one you need to start in a plank position; hands underneath your shoulders with your feet in the trainer’s stirrups. Make sure you have shortened the length or the straps. Keeping your hands stable, crunch and bring each knee in towards the chest individually for a suspended mountain climber.
TRX Oblique Crunch
This one really works your obliques, to the sides of your core. Start in the same position as the previous exercise, but this time both legs move in unison. Crunch your knees in diagonally towards your elbow and then straighten up into your regular plank, now match up the other side.
TRX Pendulum Swings
Pendulum swings start in the plank position, with your shoulders over your hands. This exercise requires you to balance and hold your core steady under momentum. Swing your legs side to side to gather some momentum, then begin bending the knees to perform a crunch on either side of your swing. This really targets your core from every angle.
Pull and Twist
Grab both handles and stand so that you are facing the anchor point. The closer your feet are to the anchor, the harder this will be as you're using more of your bodyweight. Lean back with your arms extended in front of you, pull your body weight up maintaining a neutral spine and twist your arms to point to the left, return to the start and repeat for the other side.
Spiderman crunch to plank up downs
Head back to the ground and return to your plank position, this time you’re going to bring each knee up towards your elbow. You should look like spiderman climbing, hence the name. Complete one per side and then progress into your plank up down. From your hand plank, take each arm down to an elbow plank and then return to start. All of this counts as one complete rep.
From runners to cyclists, triathletes to yogis. Whatever your sport, a strong set of abdominal muscles is crucial in every exercise. To increase power, strength, speed, balance, agility and coordination, a strong core is the centre of all training.
The TRX trainer is renowned for its challenging abdominal exercises and good beginner strength is needed for even the simplest of its exercises as suspension training causes your abdominals to fire, braced under constant tension.
Our TRX workout comprises of 10 exercises, each getting progressively harder as you dig deeper into the challenge.
01. TRX Plyometric Lunges
Hold both TRX handles at a medium length and sink into a lunge. As you hit the bottom of the lunge (knee just off the floor), explode off both feet and switch legs (whilst airborne) to lunge on the alternative leg. Perform a minimum of 10 to pass this move.
02. TRX Pistol Squat (Single-leg Squat)
The pistol squat is perhaps one of the toughest body weight exercises there is, requiring leg strength, balance, flexibility, supple joints and advanced coordination. Holding onto the TRX will help you with balance, but the leg strength is all down to you. Grabbing both TRX handles, extend one leg in front of you and sink down into a squat, driving off the single supporting leg to return to standing. Let’s see 6 per side before you check off number two!
03. TRX Wall Row
Grab your TRX handles facing the anchor as though you were about to perform a row, except now we’re taking it off the ground. Place one foot a time onto the wall so you are fully suspended and now perform your row, keeping your back flat and drawing yourself up until your hands meet the sides of your rib cage. This is a tough exercise as you are now fully suspended and controlling your full body weight whilst also maintaining a tight core in order to balance against the wall. If you can’t reach a wall from your attachment, try placing your feet on a high step. Do 12 rows before you move on.
04. TRX Single-Leg Burpees
For exercise 4, loop your handles so that just one is taut and hook in your foot over the bottom stirrup. The handle should hang around knee length. Now, facing away from the anchor, you’re going to burpee or ‘squat thrust’ as they are more formally known. Take you hands down to the ground as you jump the free leg back into extended plank. Explode off this leg and jump back to standing. This is an intense full-body plyometric exercise. A total of 10 is required, that’s 10 per leg.
05. TRX Triple Threat Abdominals
Our next move is a triple threat; you’re going to need abs of steel for this one. Facing away from the anchor, come onto all fours and attach your feet into the stirrups, lift your knees off the floor so you are in a floating plank position, this is your start point. From here, complete the following sequence: push, pike, crunch. For the push-up, sink your chest down to the floor engaging your abdominals to prevent your feet from swinging in the stirrups. Next, the pike, lock your knees and keep your legs and arms extended whilst bringing your feet forward towards your hands. Your bum should lift into the air and it should feel like you're trying to fold in half. The third part to this move is a suspended crunch, return to your plank and then tuck your knees in towards your elbows, bum down this time. Hint: You need to shorten your straps so that as you pike your feet remain elevated.Completing all three moves counts as one rep. Hit 10.
06. TRX Row to Extended Plank
Grab both handles and lean back for a body weight row. Palms face each other as you pull your body up, elbows shaving the rib cage. This is the turning point where, maintaining a neutral spine, you now bring your hands up past your head and into a fallout position, shifting your body weight forward simultaneously until your hands are straight above your head. Your body weight should shift backwards and forwards between these two moves. Another 10 will see you through to TRX exercise three. A row plus a plank counts as one.
07. TRX Single-Handed Push Up
To complete the seventh move, loop your TRX handles through one another so that one handle is taut. Hold one handle and come to the ground to set up for a single hand push-up. One hand is going to remain suspended in the TRX, whilst you push up using the other. Sink down until your nose is scraping the floor for your push up and then explosively drive off and extend both arms, the TRX arm should now be fully extended supporting your weight, whilst your other arm hovers above the ground. Give me 8….. per side!
08. TRX Chin Up
For the TRX chin up, shorten your straps and loop both handles through so that they stay together, then grab them with palms facing towards you (chin ups palms face you, pull ups palms face away). Suspend completely so that you are hanging, cross your legs or tuck them behind, just make sure they don't touch the ground. Pull up until your chin faces your hands and then relax back down. Let’s go for 5, 10 if you're showing off.
09. TRX Handstand
This one is advanced. You're going to start by hooking both feet into the stirrups, your hands facing the anchor. Taking both hands to the floor, lift one leg off the ground and begin simultaneously walking your hands back whilst you lift the second leg off the floor, driving both feet back into the stirrups. Continue walking your hands back until you reach a vertical handstand. The ultimate balance challenge this needs advanced core and shoulder strength and is a tricky one to master.
10. TRX Handstand Push Ups
Set up the same as move 9 and walk into a TRX handstand, but this time, once you’re in the handstand position, lower your chest towards the floor to complete a handstand push-up. Perhaps the toughest TRX move there is, master this and you have exceptional calisthenic skills, a show stopping party trick and of course, most importantly scored a 10/10 in our TRX challenge.