Can’t tell your macros from your micros? Neither can we. That’s why Healthista’s bringing you a brand new series called Fitopedia: decoding fitness lingo. This week, David Marshall, owner of Royal Docks Crossfit, explains push and pull movements
Ever heard of someone doing a ‘push day’ or ‘pull day?’ It sounds a bit strange, but it’s actually one of the most common practices in the weightlifting community.
‘Push’ muscle groups contract when weight is pushed away from the body and lengthen when the weight is pulled back. ‘Pull’ muscle groups contract when weight is pulled toward the body and lengthen when it’s pushed away.
‘Push’ muscle groups contract when weight is pushed away from the body. ‘Pull’ muscle groups contract when weight is pulled toward the body.
‘A lot of people like to split their upper body workouts between pushing workouts and pulling workouts,’ says David Marshall, owner of Royal Docks CrossFit. ‘In pushing movements, we often use our chest, shoulders and triceps; in pulling movements, we tend to use the muscles in our back, predominantly our lats, sub-scap muscles and our biceps.’
Instead of splitting weight training days by specific muscle groups, it might be more beneficial to use push and pull days. It puts less stress on your joints, and it allows for more variety in your workouts. Not sure where to start? Try the classic ‘push/pull/legs’ split. Dedicate one day to push muscle groups (chest, shoulders and triceps,) one day to pull muscle groups (back and biceps) and one day to legs (quads, hamstrings and calves.)
A push and pull split puts less stress on your joints, and it allows for more variety in your workouts.
David Marshall is the owner of Royal Docks CrossFit. You can visit their website here.