I’ve been doing diamond push-ups every day for a week – here’s what happened to my body
As if regular push-ups weren’t hard enough to master (go to any gym and see tons of people doing them incorrectly – arching back, flaring elbows, etc.), someone decided the diamond push-up was an idea. Brilliant: Now here’s the difference Is that true Targets the triceps.
The name comes from the shape you create on the ground with your thumb and index fingers to perform the motion. It’s also known as the triangle pushup (which is a bit confusing, unless you form a triangle shape with your hands) and triceps, which tells you everything you need to know about the purpose of the exercise – the positioning of the hands is designed to overload the upper arm muscles.
In addition to the triceps, the diamond press (like all forms of movement) works the pectoralis major and minor (chest muscles), deltoids (shoulder muscles) and, to a lesser extent, the core muscles. In short, it’s a great upper body workout. To be honest, it’s also the kind of move that looks impressive in the gym. It is also worth noting the ability to do push-ups several times It is a sign of good cardiovascular health (Opens in a new tab)So don’t neglect this essential step.
How to do the diamond press
Let me start with this: Don’t try the diamond pushup until you’ve mastered the basic movement. This isn’t just running before you can walk — it’s trying a triple axel before you learn how to balance on your ice skates. It will end badly.
So, when you’re ready, start in a high plank position, forming a straight line from toes to head, arms directly below your shoulders. Unlike the traditional push-up, you can place your hands close together. Now use your index fingers and thumbs to form a diamond shape on the mat (I recommend using a mat for this motion). With your core and glutes engaged, slowly lower toward the floor, ensuring, as far as possible, that your elbows travel along your ribcage rather than flare outward. Go as low as you can while maintaining form, then slowly straighten your arms to return to the starting position. That’s one rep. At first, aim for three sets of 8-10.
Looking for more workout inspiration? Here are 5 pushup variations that will challenge your chest strength, plus everything you need to know about how to do pushups, and variations to try.
I’ve been doing diamond push-ups every single day for a week, and this is what happened
I had an idea this was going to be difficult and I was right, which isn’t usually something that bothers me. On the first day, I aimed for three sets of 10 and didn’t enjoy a single one of them. In the end, I was breathing heavily and realized I wasn’t thinking about good form – I just wanted to get past them. I also found it difficult to get close to the ground, but what bothered me most about this movement was the pressure it placed on my palm area just below my little finger, near my wrist. In a standard pushup, the pressure is evenly distributed across the palms, but that wasn’t the case here—every rep was uncomfortable. This, of course, distracted me from focusing on good form.
For the rest of the week, I used a mat. There was still some discomfort the second day, but I was able to focus on getting in shape – and it wasn’t that good. Not even a little bit. I wasn’t engaging my roots, which meant I was sagging a bit in the midsection. I corrected that but what I found difficult to process was the fact that my elbows were pointing slightly outward, instead of back toward my feet. This was a result of the position of the starting hand; Turning them toward each other to form a diamond or triangle naturally causes the elbows to slide outward. I finished the sets but I’m still not convinced of the need for hand placement. Another thing to watch: You may be tempted to drop your head to give the impression that you are landing close to the ground. Of course, you only give this impression of yourself, and it’s a waste of time. Don’t move your head. Focus instead on getting your chest as close to the ground as possible.
On days three and four, I was able to complete four sets of 10. Before I tried to move, I warmed up my muscles with some dips and bicep curls, which helped. I felt like I was getting better, and I was feeling the effort afterwards in my triceps and across my shoulder blades. This is the point where I start to get some satisfaction from the challenge, but not this time.
The last three days, I was able to keep my elbows closer to my body (though not as close as I would have liked) and completed sets with less difficulty than I felt at the start of the week.
the movement Do you Target your triceps intensely, but here’s the thing — so will doing other bodyweight moves, like triceps dips (which you can do on a bench) and close-up pushups. The latter simply involves placing your hands closer than they would in a standard pushup, but—and this is crucial—don’t turn them toward each other, which means your elbows naturally slide back and forth, not in and out, as you lower and lift. I added a set of close-ups on day six and found them to be much smoother and as intensely focused on my triceps as the diamond set.
Some people swear by this move, but I’m not convinced it’s essential for those who want to work their triceps. Other movements do a similar job and allow for more natural movement while matching the level of effort. You might love it, and good luck if you do, but for me, the shine faded too quickly.
There is nothing I love more than a fitness challenge! Read what happened when I took on week-long challenges focusing on Russian twists, Supermans, and triceps extensions here.