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Best Push-up Routines for Basketball Players

Best Push-up Routines for Basketball Players

Best Push-up Routines for Basketball Players

Push-ups are, perhaps, one of the best exercises to perform for muscular strength and training.  And, although, many basketball athletes overlook the significance of the simple push-up, performing these push-ups routines will not only help you to gain strength and endurance, but also the upper body physique needed to compete effectively on the court.

Below, we are going to discuss the best push-up routines for basketball players.  Push-ups are an essential workout for basketball not only due to the physical strength you will gain but also the mere fact that basketball requires the ability to maintain a defensive position for extended periods of time whilst jostling against an opposing player for the basketball.

Similarly, completing a push-up is relatively easy and can be done in the comfort of your own home. Whether you’re looking to get in a quick workout or are adding push-ups to your workout routine, doing so will have plenty of benefits.

Overall Benefits of Push-ups for Basketball Players

Push-ups are one of the best exercise routines for basketball players and are especially useful due to their ease in completing and the ability to complete without additional resources, tools, or equipment’s.  Push-ups are also a fast and effective exercise for building strength and can be done virtually anywhere and at any time.

Traditional push-ups are especially beneficial for building and strengthening your upper body.  Push-ups work triceps, the pectoral muscles, and shoulders.  Done properly, push-ups can also strengthen the lower back and abdominal core muscles.

Push-ups are also a great way to support cardiovascular strength.  While push-ups are traditionally thought of as a muscular exercise, which is true, due to their relative difficulty and level of exertion needed to complete, your heart rate will likely rise, and your heart will need to work even harder to pump enough blood and oxygen throughout your body.

Lastly, push-ups are one of the best and easiest ways to burn calories and lose weight.  On average, your body will burn 7-calories per minute of completing a push-up.  This can add up quickly and can help to supplement any dietary or workout routines which you have already embarked on.

Risks of Push-Ups for Basketball Players

Generally, push-ups are a low-risk exercise and one that doesn’t require too much practice to perfect.  However, one risk of completing push-ups in a daily routine is the risk of muscle challenge and the risk of plateauing due to muscle memory.  This can be easily overcome by changing up your push-up routines and the form of the push-up you complete.

The main risk in completing a push-up, particularly for basketball players, is the risk of injury.  However, this risk can be severely negated by practicing proper form and technique.  Proper technique includes keeping your back straight and your core engaged.  In addition, your butt should be down and not lifted.  Essentially, your body should form a straight line and should not be arched.

Traditional Push-up Routine for Basketball Players

Before moving to more advanced push-up techniques, it is important to ensure that you fully understand how to perform a traditional push-up.  While more advanced techniques may seem appealing and may offer more muscular isolation, they will not be properly performed without a deep understanding of a traditional push-up.

  1. Begin by kneeling on the floor or an exercise mat, brining your feet together behind you.
  2. Bend forward, keeping your palms flat on the ground, position yourself in a plank position.
  3. While your palms are flat on the floor, move them to a shoulder-width distance, with your fingers facing forward and extended.
  4. Begin lowering your body to the floor, maintaining a rigid torso and keeping your head aligned with. Your spine.
  5. As your elbows flare out, continue lowering yourself to the ground until your chest or chin touches the floor.
  6. Once you have reached the floor, push yourself up with your arms until you are back at the original starting position.
  7. Repeat this downward and upward motion 10-times for five total sets.

Diamond Push-Ups

The diamond push-up is a bit more advanced than the traditional push-up.  With the diamond push-up, you will be focusing more attention on your triceps and shoulders, isolating those two muscle groups for more advanced muscular gains.

To perform a diamond push-up, simply place your hands together so that your index fingers and thumbs touch to form a diamond shape.  Once you’ve established proper positioning, simply continue to perform a push-up as you normally would, maintaining the diamond shape throughout the downward and upward position.

Clapping Push-Ups

The clapping push-up doesn’t necessarily increase muscular strength towards a specific muscle group; however, it is a more difficult push-up, therefore it increases your overall strength and can significantly increase your heart rate and heart health.

To perform a clapping push-up, simply perform a regular push-up as you normally would.  However, as you move in an upward movement, forcefully push your body off the ground, completing a clap as your body reaches the top of the height position.  Quickly regroup your hands to ensure you don’t fall and perform the push-up motion again.

One-Handed Push-ups

One-handed push-ups are significantly more difficult than traditional push-ups.  Rather than utilizing both hands to complete a push-up, you will only lift your body with one arm.  This push-up technique focuses all the strength training on one arm, increasing muscular size and strength, as you will be lifting your entire body weight with one-arm.

Plank/Push-Up Set

One of the best push-up routines for basketball players is the plank/push-up set.  This set is meant to push your body to its limit while working on your upper-body and core strength.  Completed over a 3-minute set, you will alternate between planks and traditional push-ups during the time limit.

Begin by completing 30-seconds of traditional push-ups.  Once completed, hold in a plank position for 30-seconds.  After the 30-seconds, resume another round of push-ups for 30-seconds.  Continue alternating between planks and push-ups for a total of 3-minutes.


Push-ups are, by far, one of the best workout routines that a basketball player can complete.  They are generally simple to complete and can be done practically anywhere and at any time with no special equipment or tools.  Push-ups will not only increase your overall strength but will also help with your heart health and can be done at a pace that you feel comfortable with.