Push Ups Vs Bench Press On 9 major difference.

Push Ups Vs Bench Press

Push UpsBench Press                      

Is push up  (body-weight exercise) as effective as Bench Press (weight exercise) ? If your interest range training then you've probably heard the discussion where the body weight training or weight training is the best form of exercise. In this article we will compare push ups and bench press on all important points. We will clear up the myth and give you the facts.

9 major points we gonna cover is
  • Mechanics 
  • How to Progress
  • Grip Width & Wrists Position
  • Weight Placement
  • Range of Motion
  • Shoulder-blade Movement
  • Body Position
  • Imbalances
  • Breathing
Lets start with 


First we will take a look at the mechanics of both movement. Basically the both are similar in terms of shoulder and arm movement the difference is that your hands are fixed an the ground  pushing up your body-weight when you do push up. 
While it's opposite when you do the bench press here you moves your arms up and down while your body is fixed on a bench. 
This  difference is key point and affect the pros and the cons for both movements. This lead us to the most discussed point of this topic how to progress.

How to Progress

While you can adjust the resistance for bench press easily by adding up more weight. It's much more complicated for push up you can use a weight vest but most vest are limited to a certain weight and decrease the range of motion a little bit.
It also possible to add resistance with a partner the partner can adjust the intensity by changing the lever and pushing more or less weight of his body on your. The lever can be adjust by leaning forward or backwards with the shoulder or by moving the feet forwards or backwards.
The downside  of this is that it's hard to measure how much resistance he actually adds to your push up. One day it could be more and the next day it could be less and you could probably never get the exact same resistance again.
 If you don't want to use the vest or a partner you can also vary the intensity with your own bodyweight you can change the leaver or the amount of contracting fibers to make exercise easier or harder.]
To change the leaver you put hands and feet closer together or further apart by positioning your body more horizontal or more vertical. To change the amount of contracting fibers you face between bilateral or unilateral execution with archer push ups or one arms push ups while in an archer push up the straight arm gives you a certain amount of support the one arm is hardest progression you can do for a normal push up because you have to move same weight with just one arm and half the amount of contracting fibers.
The one arm is also a lot more challenging in terms of stabilization for your care and legs.
The downside of this exercise is that lead from one to another progression it's very big. 
For bench press you can add a small and exact amount of weight this will allow you to vary the intensity very easy and precise. 

Grip Width & Wrist Position

Now take an eye on width of your grip and the wrist position no matter if you do push up or bench press you can vary the grip on both exercises easily you either place your hands wide or closer together. When it comes to wrist position you should aim for neutral and stable wrist when you do the bench press.
When you do push up you can do them on your hands push up grip
On rings or on your Knuckles. Some beginners struggle with the normal hand position because that wrist is not used to do this motion in risk preparation and mobility exercises into your warm up and training and you can point your fingers backward.

Weight  Placement

The placement of the weight is also different while the fourth in bench pressing is concentrated above your wrists the weight is spread over your complete body in the pus up mare on the upper , less on the lower body.

Range Of Motion

Now lets move on to the range of motion. The basic push up and bench press have nearly the same range of motion with the push up you reach  the ground with your chest while the bar touche the chest on the bench press . if you want to increase the range of motion for better chest stretch you can do it on both increases for the bench press you can use dumbbell to get deeper and for the push up you can use ring or push up grips to increase the range of motion .

Shoulder Blade Movements

when it comes to your shoulder whole movements those have similarities but also differentials the key on both movements is to bring the shoulder blades together and open up your chest in the push up you move your shoulder blade forward and downward in the top positions where you aim for a hollow body while it's opposite on the bench on the bench you pull them backward together and downward together the whole time.

Body Position

This difference leads straight to the body position while on the push up you aim for a backward tilted pelvis and the neutral spine all respectively. around the back in the top position you aim for a slightly arch back on the bench  press. How much you arch depends on your training goal a power lifter will use a bigger arch then a bodybuilder because the arch will deserve the range of motion little bit is a arch is in general occurs because you retract your shoulder blade this will force the body to extend the spine a little bit and helps you to stabilize your shoulder the position of your legs will also trigger your posture chain when you push your legs into the ground you engage your hamstring and glutes which force your body even more to extend but when you do a push up you are in a plank position so the gravity pull you down to the frond that is why you activate your anterior chain to stabilize the movement in a bench press you lay on your back and there is now down pulling force that you have to work against the weight is also not spread over your whole body like in the push up. it's just right above your wrist this difference results in the different body positions.


To avoid imbalance you should aim for the right grip and arm placement on both exercise if you choose the wrong grip one side has to push more than the other and this can lead to imbalance and injuries in the long's the same for push ups if your body is more rotated or placed to one side. as already mentioned you can do push ups on ring and bench pressing with dumbbells you will see imbalance even clear because every arm has to push more itself.


The breathing is the same in both movement no matter if you move the bar or you body when moving downward breath in  when moving upward you breath out.

As you can see push ups & bench press both have the advantage and disadvantage the best option would probably be to implement both exercise into your workout to get most out of this kind of movement  but even if you decide to do only one you will be able to build up your strength muscle mass and endurance  no matter which one you choose.

If you have any further Question just leave a comment.

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