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The pushup is an effective way to hit your entire upper body. But if you really want to make your pecs pop, change up your hand positions.
During a standard pushup—when your hands are directly beneath your shoulders—your triceps take part of the load, says BJ Gaddour, C.S.C.S
However, more of your weight is transferred to your pectoral muscles when you place your hands wider than your shoulders. And the farther out your hands, the greater the challenge on your pecs.
Gaddour uses this pushup variation to prime his chest muscles before the bench press. It can be tough on the small muscles in your shoulders, though, so begin with 5 to 8 reps of the regular pushup to warm up.
Then, walk out your hands a few inches to your sides. Do 5 to 8 more reps.
Finally, move your hands to the widest position possible that still allows you to maintain perfect pushup form. Your body must maintain a straight line from head to heels. Do 5 to 8 reps.