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  1. #1
    Registered User motoxbluedog's Avatar
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    How much weight in a pushup ?

    Hi, I currently weigh 84kg and out of interest I performed a push up on a set of bathroom scales with my hands on the floor and my feet on the ground at full stretch.

    The weight I was exerting down on the scales was 60kg in a normal pushup. It was about 64kg if I raised my feet slightly on an object.

    It dose'nt feel like I'm lifting 60kg when I do pushups. Is there a loss somewhere in the system.

    Have I gained a mechanical advantage somewhere with my feet being a pivot point/leverage etc ?

    I figure the higher my feet go the truer the amount of weight I am pushing. Maybe an engineer can help.
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  2. #2
    Registered User blazing_hellion's Avatar
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    Not really an expert but i think it seems easier beacuse its a very natural movment. just my guess. plus your using you entire upperbody either to directly move yourself or to stabalize yourself.
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  3. #3
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    I have always wondered that myself. Makes you think how much you are actually lifting with other excercises too, like a squat. I have no idea just wanted to keep this thread going lol
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    i think the only way to find out would be through trial and error. For example, find a weight that you can do 5 reps on say the bench press with, and then add weight to a push up until you get to the point where you can only do 5 reps at the same time in a workout that you performed the bench press with. Take the weight you benched and subtract the weight you added to the push up = the weight pressed during the push up.

    Of course this is not really accurate because although they are somewhat similar exercises they activate very different neural muscular pathways. It would be a good estimate of difficulty though
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    Registered User jwagz's Avatar
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    simple machines

    i'm pretty sure your feet act as a lever during pushups, therefor making it easier mechanically. no clue on how much weight.
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  6. #6
    Registered User scott0086's Avatar
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    I think I heard somewhere before that a pushup is just under 2/3 body weight... You'd have to put a scale under your hands to know for sure.
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    I remember thinking about this before. I actually did a pushup on a bathroom scale. Basically, the starting and ending position of a pushup is roughly 70% of your bodyweight, but remember, this was for my body and everyone is different.
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    Source: http://www.articlesnatch.com/Article...ifting-/486282

    Studies have been conducted in which push-ups were performed on force plates. They indicated the following:

    1. Women performing traditional push-ups lift the equivalent of 71% of their body weight. For example, a 120 pound woman lifts about 85 pounds.
    2. Men performing traditional push-ups lift the equivalent of 77% of their body weight. Thus, a 150 pound man lifts about 115 pounds.
    3. Modified push-ups, performed with the knees on the ground rather than the feet, reduce the amount of weight lifted. Women lift the equivalent of 55% of their body weight, while men left about 56%. So a 120 pound woman lifts about 66 pounds and a 150 pound man lifts about 84 pounds.
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  9. #9
    Registered User RobSil's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by scott0086 View Post
    I think I heard somewhere before that a pushup is just under 2/3 body weight... You'd have to put a scale under your hands to know for sure.
    I am going to assume that the OP edited their post to include the part about using scales to measure the weight at 60kg?
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  10. #10
    Registered User TheKilljoy's Avatar
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    I've always wondered this too.

    what's funny is when you run into someone who has never lifted and thinks they can rep their bodyweight on the benchpress for reps because they can do xx amount of push ups
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  11. #11
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    Push-ups are a closed chain movement, so maybe that added stability lets you push more weight than an open-chain movement like a barbell press or an even more unstable one like a dumbbell press.

    Women performing traditional push-ups lift the equivalent of 71% of their body weight.
    2. Men performing traditional push-ups lift the equivalent of 77% of their body weight.
    3. Modified push-ups, performed with the knees on the ground rather than the feet, reduce the amount of weight lifted. Women lift the equivalent of 55% of their body weight, while men left about 56%
    This surprised me as I guess mentally I had that "WOMEN HAVE BOOBS SO THEIR UPPER BODY WEIGHS MORE COMPARATIVELY" mindset, yet on average I suppose the way they tend to store more fat weight on legs and hips compared to how guys stored it on their stomach and lower back still ends up giving them less.

    That and, I think men tend to do more upper body training whereas many women avoid it due to fear of being bulky.

    There's probably some variation too like naturally large-breasted women being of the higher % and your asianish deliciously flat-chested pettanko surfboards having a lower % of their weight in a pushup meaning they should add some weight sooner I guess.




    Of course, whatever the percentage is, the differences shrink the more inclined you get as they approach 100% weight on hands in a handstand pushup.

    I suppose the reverse could be said to, the more declined you get (hands higher feet lower) the greater the percentage differences are going to be.
    Last edited by Tyciol; 08-04-2010 at 11:01 AM.
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    Good-Bro Original DiabeticLifter's Avatar
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    its also due to simple science. your doing the push up on a pivot as stated where as a bench press motion is dead weight. the same thing happens with pulley's in a system, the more you have the easier it is to move the same weight
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    Registered User punisher73's Avatar
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    Weight is just the pull of gravity on an object, so when you take other factors into play it can make a weight seem heavier or lighter than it is.

    For example, try lifting a 100lb drag dummy that police/firefighters use. It FEELS alot heavier than lifting a 100 lb barbell.

    Even lifting 100 lbs on an olympic bar that has rotating sleeves seems easier than a plain barbell even with equal weight.

    I remember one guy in the police academy with me, I have NEVER seen someone mess up a push up like this. It is hard to describe, but he basically kept his legs straight and still, and only bent at the waist to do the push up. It was so weird looking it is hard to describe. It just looked wrong though. But, he could do alot of them and couldn't lift for **** in the weight room.
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  14. #14
    Sub 200 Bet Day #22/163 Get2thechopper's Avatar
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    Just did a press up and held myself above the ground, 1 hand of each of my scales.

    Digital one said 101.2 lbs. (On my right arm)

    Ill have a rest (just did some kettle bells) and see what my mechanical scale says

    Also, I weigh 284 lbs, but most I ever bench pressed was 90 Kg (200 lbs) years ago. No way I could bench 220 lbs now(77% of my weight)

    * I can do 1 set of 6 press ups at 284 lbs of body weight, normal press up. I guess it isn't an exact science (or is it?) but there is is some data from me anyway!

    Yup, mechanical gives the same reading.
    Last edited by Get2thechopper; 06-23-2013 at 07:11 AM.
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