You probably already know what it takes to perform 20+ sets or standard push-ups – and you may be doing this with ease by now. The truth is, this classic exercise program can help build your endurance level since the upper body quickly responds to consistent 8-20 reps. Diamond push-ups are similar to regular push-ups, only requiring small tweaks to change the difficulty of the move and the targeted muscles. So let’s settle the score between diamond push-ups vs regular push-ups.
The diamond push-up is a sizeable step up in the difficulty level of the standard push-up, so do not be surprised if you fail initially. However, it is well worth the time as it helps to sculpt your upper body aesthetically. It is also the best push-up variation that can help you develop your triceps, a muscle that makes up 2/3 of your arm size. But like most exercise programs, you need to get the form right in order to achieve the end goal.
How to do a diamond push-up
- Get into push up position on your knees, with your hands together under your chest and back flat. Position your hands in such a way that your index fingers and thumbs form a diamond. Depending on the flexibility of your thumbs, this might look like a triangle. This is your start position for the diamond push-up.
- Allow your elbows to break, then lower your chest toward the ground. While doing this ensure your back remains flat throughout the exercise.
- Push back up to full arm extension, and repeat the process for the desired number of reps.
What muscles do diamond push-ups work?
The diamond push-up works mainly on the triceps, the muscles that run through the back of your arm. The triceps work with the biceps at the front of your upper arm. Enabling the retraction and extension of your forearm. It also plays a crucial role in helping to stabilize the shoulder, the joint with the highest range of motion.
Diamond push-ups also work the chest muscles, particularly the anterior deltoids and pectoralis major. The primary function of the biceps brachii is to work as a stabilizer, ensuring the joints are steady while the obliques, abdominis, and quadriceps also act as stabilizers, helping to maintain your posture.
Diamond Push-Ups Variations
The diamond push-up is particularly intense, so if getting through a handful of reps is proving difficult for you at a time, feel free to drip your knees so you can complete more reps. If you are struggling with the workout routine, another savvy strategy will be to revert to the standard push-up version in order to build your strength.
On the other hand, if you are just fine with the intensity of the diamond push-up, you can progress by trying out the workout with your feet elevated. You may place your feet on a bench or a gym ball for the exercise. The challenge of stabilizing yourself on a gym ball as you push yourself will work your core strength.
Benefits of diamond push-ups
Apart from emphasizing on the triceps, the diamond push-up brings some other advantages compared to the regular push-up.
Increased activation of the triceps
The narrower position of the hands during this exercise means that you place more of the pressure on the triceps. According to a study conducted by the American Council on Exercise (ACE), they discovered that the diamond push-up exercise is the most effective for working out the triceps off all the push-up variations. This makes the exercise an ideal option for those looking to strengthen their triceps or better define them.
With your hands closer, there is a smaller support base for your body. With your feet coupled together, the diamond push-up has a significant balance component. It will definitely work out your core more, particularly the internal and external obliques, the muscles responsible for the rotation of the trucks.
Great chest workout
Many people think diamond push-ups hardly have any effect on the chest. However, this is not the case. The narrow position of the drill exerts more pressure on the pectoralis major and pectoralis minor, compared to the standard wide position. Therefore it is wrongly thought to work the chest out more.
Push-ups generally work the shoulders, particularly the anterior deltoid. However, the diamond push-up takes this a notch higher by exerting more pressure on the shoulder joint, better preparing you for progressions and further variations.
Now the question is: how many diamond push-ups will be ideal for a start? One more! To achieve the best results, set a target of 5 sets of 20 reps. That way, you will better prepare yourself for more difficult variations with a bench or gym ball.
Diamond push-ups are an incredible workout routine for building the strength and size of your triceps, deltoids, and chest muscles. When the standard push-ups feel too easy, they are a great way to progress and advance your variations. Now you can work your way to the top of the fitness ladder with the push-up that builds maximum muscle.
What are your thoughts on the diamond push-up?
Let us know what your thoughts on the diamond push-ups are. I really enjoyed the extra challenge this exercise gave me at first, especially since my upper body is definitely weaker than my lower body. Thank you for reading, now get up and get comfortable with this push-up variation!