CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - A push-up is a great exercise that anyone can do at home and does not require any equipment.
But like any exercise, proper form is key.
Fitness Trainer Tamatha Crowson shared some of the most common push-up mistakes and how to correct them.
"Probably number one would be letting the lower back sag or keeping the hips way up in the air," Crowson said. "We want to think of our body as being a flat board, so you have a straight plane from the back of your head all the way down to your heels."
Crowson suggested placing a broom stick on your back to help align your body.
"A lot of people will sacrifice quality for quantity," Crowson said. "They try to get a lot of push-ups in a short amount of time without paying good attention to form."
Losing form could keep you from using the right muscles or engaging the core.
"Slow and controlled is always the way to perform a push-up," Crowson said. "Even if you can't get as many reps."
Another big mistake is pinching the shoulder blades together.
"Pulling the shoulder blades back, you're not activating the peck muscles, the chest muscles, and the front of the shoulders," Crowson said. "Think about when you come up, kind of reaching towards the ceiling without humping your back."
Finally, hand placement makes a huge difference.
"This is another really, really big one," Crowson said. "You want your hands to be just wider than shoulder width, finger tips could be facing forward or just slightly turned in. What is see a lot is people having their hands way out, turned in way like that, or even too close."
She said having your hands too close will target your triceps muscles, while too wide can cause a lot of shoulder problems.