Assisted One Hand Pushup

Assisted One Hand Pushup

This exercise is an advanced pushup that can help you work toward doing one handed pushups , its called the “assisted pushup” or as I like to call it, the footstool pushup. The pec with the hand on the floor is doing most of the work and the side on the footstool is just assisting a little bit. If you cant do eight slow pushups with perfect form, this exercise is too advanced and you should do my pushup progression.

So lets cover how to do this puppy, the trick is the hand on the stool or the “assist hand”
The assist hand: The assist hand is the hand on the footstool.  To do this, slide the footstool, way away and point your hand to the side and not up toward your head like the lifting hand is. If you point toward your head, you end up bending your elbow, and before you know it you are doing a normal pushup. The assist hand fingers should be pointed away from you and the elbow straight but not locked.  If you allow your elbow to bend then you assist too much and it just becomes a normal pushup.

The lifting hand: The lifting hand is the hand on the floor.  You will find that the lifting hand will not be out in normal pushup position but rather, it will be much closer into your body and a bit more toward the feet. It might take a bit of experimentation to find the optimal place for you but this is a good place to start.  You will also have to put your feet a bit further apart than with a normal pushup to keep your balance.


The assisted pushup is really tough so don’t be surprised if you can only do a few.  Its natural to have a strong side and a weak side, and here is how to deal with it. Start with your weak side and do as many reps as you can, then do your strong side, now without any rest, go back to your weak side and do as many additional reps as you can.  If you are doing less than 4 assisted pushups on each side then its a good idea to superset normal pushups afterwards.  In other words, do assists with right hand on stool, with no rest immediately do assists with left hand on stool, then with no rest do as many normal pushups as you can.

You don’t have to use a footstool, anything that is sturdy and wont roll over works fine.  The higher it is, the less “assist” it gives.   Make sure to keep your core flexed tight during the whole exercise and don’t let your butt sag or wag in the air either – straight.

Any pushup done on the palms of the hands can be straining on the wrist. If normal pushups done on your palms bother your wrists then definitely do not try this exercise. If you have any history of wrist issues, dont try this exercise either.

So thats it, the assisted pushup that can help you work toward one handed pushups and clapping pushups. Its a great exercise you can do at home, while traveling, or at the gym. Later this year I will show you how to incorporate this exercise into some great workout plans!

Footstool-Pushup-Up-Position-4k footstool-pushup-down-position-4k