Push-ups on the bars

Perfect Dips: which muscles work + scheme

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Some people call push-ups on the uneven bars a “squat for the top of the body”, and someone advises you to forget about this exercise because of the high risk of injuries. Let’s figure out which muscles work in push-ups on the uneven bars, study the correct execution scheme and whether it is worth doing an exercise with an emphasis on triceps.

Отжимания на брусьях: какие мышцы работают + схема

Dips: What muscles work?

The main working muscles:

  • large pectoral
  • triceps
  • front delta

The core muscles (abs and back) also work statically to keep the body in the correct position.

Push-ups on the bars are considered one of the best exercises for gaining muscle mass in the upper body. The largest muscle is the pectoralis major. Most of the load goes on it. But shoulders, triceps also work intensively. And you can only do as many push-ups on the uneven bars as much as the weakest working muscles allow you.

Important! Often, in order to shift the focus in the exercise to work out the triceps or pectoral muscles, it is recommended to change the position of the arms and the inclination of the back. We do not advise doing this – always stick to the technique described in this article. Changing the position of the arms or tilting the back is exactly what makes push-ups on the uneven bars a traumatic exercise. What to do to pump triceps is at the end of the article.

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Push-ups on the uneven bars – benefit or harm?

The push-up exercises on the uneven bars do not have the best reputation. The reason is frequent shoulder injuries and a large load on the joints in general. Yes, if you are a beginner – push-ups on the bars can seriously damage. Just like squats with a barbell and deadlift.

But for those who can do push-ups on the bars with the right technique, this exercise will help to build the muscles of the upper body.

Is it possible to injure the shoulders?

Yes you can.

But with the right technique, the bars on the contrary will benefit. How to:

  • take the shoulder joints and shoulder blades back
  • shoulders do not bulge to the ears, lower down
  • bring the scapula together to the spine

Yes, push-ups on bars with the wrong technique are more traumatic than any other exercise on the upper body. But if you learn the correct technique, then this exercise, on the contrary, is useful for the shoulders and joints.

The scheme of push-ups on the uneven bars

1. Twisting the pelvis

Twisting the pelvis is a movement when you simultaneously take your ass back and lean forward.

Often, athletes either do not lean forward enough to put more weight on the triceps, or lean forward too much, twisting the upper back. Both of these poses rotate the shoulder inward.

If you take the pelvis back, tilt the body forward 45 degrees, then the shoulder joint will be in an ideal position to perform the exercise tricep press. When you go down, the elbows will move along the body (to the widest), as during the dumbbell press with a medium grip. If the position was incorrect, the elbows would go up with the shoulder girdle.

Try doing push-ups on the bars with a weighting compound on the neck (chain).

The chain will push you to the floor, which will help you feel the right angle of inclination of the back.

2. Bend your back

Twisting the pelvis and arching the back occurs simultaneously. In fact, it is almost impossible to bend your back until you take your pelvis back. Tighten your abs, pull your pelvis back and, as it were, pull yourself up (like a gymnast).

3. Do not tumble down

Often, athletes sag down and do not strain the muscles of the core. Also, try to pull yourself up. The body should be in front of the palms, and not behind them.

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4. Do not slouch and do not tumble your stomach

This is crucial. If the body sags and the pelvis is not laid back enough, the body compensates for this rounding of the spine in the thoracic and lumbar regions. At the same time, the shoulders bulge up to the ears and are pulled forward. All of this must be avoided.

5. Tighten the latissimus dorsi

The more you “turn on” the widest, the better the position of the spine. And that means shoulders. Tensioning the latissimus muscles will also help keep the elbows along the body, rather than being pulled apart. This is a critical error (raising the elbows to the sides), because of which push-ups on the uneven bars can be so traumatic for the elbows.

6. Focus on the correct shoulder position.


  • shoulders back
  • lowered to the waist
  • shoulder blades are reduced

7. Focus on lowering down

Instead of focusing on the maximum number of repetitions, try to do the negative part of the exercise (lowering down) slowly and linger at the bottom. This will improve your technique.

8. Do not push up below 90 degrees at the elbows

Many advanced lifters make a mistake – push up too deep. But this technique does not help the set of muscle mass, but only overloads the ligaments and tendons. You will not be able to push out with the perfect technique below 90 degrees.

9. Do not stretch your muscles too much.

One of the serious mistakes is an attempt to stretch the muscles as much as possible, dropping too low. But actually you are stretching tendons, not muscles. This technique can lead to severe joint pain. The tension in the muscles, on the contrary, is weakened.

If you want to tear your pectoral muscles or kill your joints, then drop below 90 degrees. But if your goal is muscle growth, then a 90-degree position at the elbows at the lowest point is ideal.

10. Stretch your socks

To bend your back and twist your pelvis, you need to stretch the gluteal muscles and hip biceps. If you pull your socks toward you, it stretches your muscles even better. Try the option of push-ups from the bars below in the video.

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11. Keep your neck in a straight line with your torso.

Do not lift your head up or down. The gaze should be directed down and forward.

When you lift your head up, you stretch the cervical spine. This creates additional stress in the trapezoid. Because of this, it is more difficult to tighten the broadest muscles for the correct technique for doing push-ups on the uneven bars.

When you lower your head down, you begin to stoop (round the top of your back). The wrong technique again.

12. The position of the body – almost like when pulling the bar in a tilt

Try to make cravings with pancakes. The back will be bent, shoulders laid back. The same position should be with push-ups on the uneven bars.

13. How do you do push ups?

Another way to feel the desired position of the shoulders is push-ups with the right technique. The elbows will move as close to the torso as possible, but not apart.

Important: do not focus on triceps!

Often, to emphasize the study of triceps, it is advised to change the angle of inclination. But this does more harm than good. Because there are other effective exercises to isolate triceps. And changing the push-up technique on the bars, you risk being injured. If you want to give the triceps more load, first bore it with insulation exercises before doing push-ups on the uneven bars.

The main points of the correct technique of push-ups on the uneven bars

  1. Learn to twist your pelvis properly. The correct position – the hips are laid back, the body is inclined at an angle of 45 degrees to the hips.
  2. Keep your back straight and stretch the top of your head. The body should be in front and above the hands, and not behind.
  3. Do not fall lower than 45 degrees at the elbows. Because this does not increase, but rather reduces the load on the working muscles.
  4. Do not stretch your muscles too much. This does not stimulate their growth, but rather relieves stress.
  5. Pull the socks of your feet towards you. So you stretch your hip biceps more, which helps twist your pelvis.