- Target Muscle Group
- Exercise TypeStrength
- Equipment RequiredBodyweight
- Force TypePush (Bilateral)
- Experience LevelIntermediate
- Secondary Muscles
Abs, Shoulders, Triceps
Bird Dog Push Up Overview
The bird dog push up is a combination push up progression that combines the push up and the bird dog exercises.
The bird dog push up primarily targets the muscles of the chest, while also providing a core stability challenge with the added on bird dog motion.
Bird Dog Push Up Instructions
- Assume a quadruped position on the floor with your hands under your shoulders, toes tucked, and knees under hips.
- Extend one leg at a time and assume a pushup position with the legs straight, elbows extended, and head in a neutral position looking at the floor.
- Slowly descend to the floor by retracting the shoulder blades and unlocking the elbows.
- Descend until the upper arms are parallel or your chest touches the floor.
- Push back to the starting point by extending the elbows and driving your palms into the floor.
- Reach with the opposite arm and leg and maintain balance while not allowing the hips to rotate.
- Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.
Bird Dog Push Up Tips
- Your arms should resemble an arrow in the bottom position, not a “T”.
- Your spine should remain rigid throughout the entire exercise, think of the pushup as a moving plank.
- Squeeze your glutes and brace your abs before descending to keep the ribcage neutral.
- Keep the chin down and don’t look forward.
- Imagine you’re trying to push your thumbs together while completing the movement, this will improve activation of the pecs.
- Don’t allow the head to jut forward, the chest should touch at the same time as your nose.
Think about trying to push yourself as far away from the floor as possible.
- Ensure you push all the way through the floor at the top of the repetition and allow your shoulder blades to move around your ribcage.
- Most folks cut the repetition short and don’t garner the full benefits.