Diamond Pushups

If you are looking for a challenging way to modify standard pushups, diamond pushups are the way to go. These will put a higher demand on synergistic muscles which are also called secondary movers. When doing a diamond pushup you should put your hands close together right under your chest muscle group. Knowing how to do a diamond pushup properly is essential in achieving primal result.

Which Muscles Do Diamond Pushups Work?

Calories Burned: The diamond pushup can also help you burn more calories during your workout. “My Fitness Pal” estimates that this type of pushup when accompanied by additional body weight exercises may help you burn 180 calories in only 15 minutes. Like all other exercises, the amount of calories burned will depend on how much you weigh.

1. Chest

The primary mover for all types of pushups (diamond pushups, standard pushups as well as other variations) is the chest muscle group, also known as the pectoralis major. That is because this is the large muscle group that is responsible for the majority of your upper body’s pushing movements.

2. Deltoids

Generally speaking, when you do a diamond pushup your body will be in a similar position to where it would be for a standard one. One of the key differences, however, is that diamond pushups require your buttocks to be higher up than your shoulders which means more of the lift depends on your shoulders (deltoids) instead of your chest. That is because while when you start the diamond pushup your chest would be over your hands, your head is over your hands when you lift yourself up during the pushup. Your goal for this pushup is to flex the arms only using the elbow while allowing your forehead to reach your hands.

3. Triceps

When you start a diamond pushup, you should do so with your hands right below your chest. Because you flex from your elbows the upper part of your body will be able to lower so that your chest is able to touch your hands. When you do the diamond pushup this way, your triceps (the back of your upper arms) are responsible for emphasizing the lift, ensuring that your triceps receive a great workout during the process.

4. Abdominal Core

No matter whether you are doing a diamond pushup or the standard variation, your abdominal core is responsible for keeping your body stable. Simply maintaining a stable body during the entire pushup will be enough to properly train these core abdominal muscles, providing you with an excellent workout.

How to Do Diamond Pushups Properly

The diamond pushup can be difficult to accomplish and your form during the pushup is very important. Read through the steps carefully before attempting to pushup so you know how it should be done.

Step 1: It is important to start the pushup on your knees so you can ensure that everything else is in the right position.

Step 2: Once you are kneeling, put both of your hands in front of you on the floor, making sure they are about shoulder length apart from each other.

Step 3: Bring your hands together so that they near the center of the area between them. At this point the tops of your index fingers should be touching and so should the edge of your thumbs. This positioning of your hands will create the image of a diamond shape, which is responsible for giving the pushup its name.

Step 4: Make sure that both your elbows and wrists are lined up with your chest.

Step 5: After you have checked your position carefully, ensure that your fingers are still facing forward and take the weight off of your knees. Now your body should be laid out in a straight line with your feet and hands providing all of the needed support.

Step 6: After you have lifted your knees off the floor, ensure that your pelvis is straight and pull your abdominal muscles in tightly.

Step 7: Be sure to keep your back straight throughout the entire exercise as this is essential for your posture and form.

Step 8: Now you can begin bending your elbows so you can lower your body down towards the floor. Continue lowering your body until your chest reaches the top part of your hands.

Step 9: Take a brief pause before continuing the diamond pushup. Then push yourself back up by extending your elbows. This will bring you back to the starting position so you can repeat the process as many times as you would like.


  • Be sure that your body remains straight throughout the entire pushup. If your form starts to droop, you should stop the pushups. It is more important to focus on quality over quantity; in other words fewer perfect diamond pushups will produce more results than more poor quality ones.
  • It is important to remember that this exercise is very challenging to master. If you have problems with it, you should begin by doing the diamond pushups on your knees. When you feel you are ready, try doing the pushups on your feet.

If you would like a video demonstration of the diamond pushup to help clarify, check out the following video. Be sure to pay special attention to the form as this is essential to ensuring that all areas of your body receive a proper workout.

If you enjoyed the diamond pushup and would like to challenge yourself with other variations of pushups, check out the following video for more ideas.

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