Are Dips Really Necessary If You Train Push Ups Hard? All You Need To Know Here
It’s a question that’s probably been popping into your head as you’ve been cranking out push-ups in your training routine: are dips really necessary?
After all, if you’re working hard on perfecting your push-up form, adding an extra exercise to target the same muscles doesn’t seem very necessary.
But is it worth skipping dips completely? In this blog post, we take a look at the benefits of both exercises and help you decide which one is right for you, or whether its beneficial to incorporate both into your fitness program.
Are dips really necessary if you train push ups hard?
The simple answer is yes, dips are still beneficial if you’re already training hard with push-ups. While both exercises target the chest, shoulders, and triceps muscles, they target them in different ways. Push-ups primarily focus on your chest muscles – especially the middle portions of your pecs – while dips will also hit your triceps and the lower portion of your pecs. What’s more, dips allow you to use a greater range of motion than push-ups do, allowing for more muscle activation. If you are new to working out/lifting, it would be advised that you use a dip machine or use resistance bands to help get your technique down, or maybe build your strength up by doing dips off the floor with your feet supported. Dips can be tough on your shoulders and wrists so if you have any weakness or previous injuries it may be wise to skip this exercise until you feel able to. Ultimately, it is beneficial to incorporate both exercises into your training routine for a well-rounded program, as they target different muscles and provide unique benefits. If you’re working hard on improving your push-up technique and form, don’t skip dips completely – they are still valuable to add to your routine.
What’s the difference between the two?
The main difference between dips and push-ups lies in the fact that dips involve lifting your body weight, while push-ups do not.
In other words, you will be able to lift more weight when dipping than when doing a push-up, making the exercise more intense.
Dips allow you to work your triceps and lower chest more effectively than push-ups do, but also work your stabilising muscles more, as you are supporting your whole body weight.
Push-ups on the other hand focus more on the middle chest and shoulder muscles and involve you lifting around 66% of your body weight.
The other thing between the two exercises is the angle at which you’re working the muscles. Dips involve a much steeper angle than push-ups, allowing for more range of motion and muscle activation.
With both exercises being on different planes of motion, they can be combined to form a comprehensive workout program that hits all the necessary muscles and challenges the body in different ways.
Whereas a push-up is considered a more accessible exercise because it doesn’t require any equipment, dips are more challenging and require more commitment to do properly.
What muscles do they work?
Both exercises target the chest, shoulders and triceps muscles, but in different ways.
Dips work your lower pec muscles, triceps and stabilising muscles more than push-ups do. They also involve a greater range of motion which leads to greater muscle activation.
Dips can feel uncomfortable and awkward if the bars are too far apart or you lack the physical strength to be able to competently do a given set of reps.
Push-ups, on the other hand, target the middle section of your chest more and place some emphasis on the shoulders and triceps as well.
This exercise doesn’t require any equipment, so it’s more accessible for those just starting out in their fitness journey.
In terms of the muscles they work and whether or not they are beneficial, it’s ultimately up to you and your goals. If you’re looking for a well-rounded program, both exercises are beneficial in different ways and should be included.
However, if you’re looking to target a certain muscle group more specifically, then one exercise may be better than the other.
Ultimately, both exercises are great additions to any workout program and can help you reach your fitness goals.
How long have you been training?
It is important to note that if you are new to working out/lifting, it would be advised that you use a dip machine or use resistance bands to help get your technique down, or maybe build your strength up by doing dips off the floor with your feet supported.
Dips can be tough on your shoulders and wrists so if you have any weakness or previous injuries it may be wise to skip this exercise until you feel able to.
There’s nothing to say you can’t do dips as a newbie, far from it and there are plenty of benefits to be had from doing them, just proceed cautiously and with a good warm-up first.
It is also important to start with a weight you can manage and build up as your strength increases, just make sure you give it time and you don’t overdo it.
Overall, if you’ve been training hard with push-ups then incorporating dips into your routine is still beneficial. Both exercises complement each other and target different muscles, allowing for a well-rounded program.
Two different exercises
These exercises require two different approaches and it’s important to take into consideration your own strength, fitness level, and any previous injuries before you start. But, if you’re looking to build muscle and strength, then dips are a great addition to your routine.
Dips are beneficial if you’re already training hard with push-ups. Whether you choose to add them depends on your own fitness level and goals, but they can be an effective way to work your muscles in a different way.
To not do dips would be a great shame if you are able to do them because they can really help with improving chest, shoulder, and tricep strength. But like any exercise, they must be done correctly to avoid injury.
If you really don’t like doing dips for any reason such as shoulder pains or just not enjoying them, that is totally fine and shouldn’t be a problem. You can still get great results without them by focusing on other exercises.
The key is to find the best combination of exercises that work for you and your goals, allowing you to reach them in the most efficient way possible. Regardless, dips are still a great exercise to consider if you’re already pushing yourself with push-ups.
Just remember to start slow and increase the weight when you feel comfortable. With the right form and technique, dips can be a great way to intensify your workouts.
Pros and cons for both exercises
Both dips and push-ups are beneficial exercises, but they have their own pros and cons.
The pros of dips are that they allow for a greater range of motion which leads to more muscle activation.
If you don’t have access to dip bars, then you can still do them at home with two chairs or a bench, or simply do them off the floor without any equipment.
You will also need to engage more stabilising muscles when performing dips which can help with overall strength and balance. They also target the lower chest and triceps more than push-ups.
The pros of push-ups are that they’re easier to do and you don’t need any equipment. They are easy to do anywhere and anytime and can be modified to suit different levels.
This exercise predominantly works the middle part of the chest muscles with extensive work on the shoulders and triceps as well.
The cons of dips are that they can be hard on the shoulders and wrists, so you may need to bear this in mind if you have any weaknesses or previous injuries in the areas mentioned.
The cons of push-ups are that they don’t allow for as much range of motion and can be difficult to progress with.
For a well-rounded program do both
If you’re looking for a well-rounded program that can help you to reach your fitness goals, then it is advisable to include both dips and push-ups in your routine.
Though dips are beneficial, if you can’t do them or don’t enjoy them, push-ups provide many of the same advantages.
However, if you are able to incorporate them into your program, then they will complement each other and help you to target your muscles in different ways.
Start slow and increase the weight – by doing them on the floor, then progressing to using resistance bands and then finally being able to support your entire body weight – when you feel comfortable and with the right form and technique, you can get the most out of your workouts.
Related: Why is bench press so hard?
Imbalances or injuries
As with any exercise, it’s important to be aware that there may be imbalances or injuries present which could make doing certain exercises more difficult.
If you have any doubts or weaknesses in certain areas it’s always best to get them checked out before starting a new exercise program.
If you are looking to incorporate dips into your routine and have any doubts, then it’s best to start by doing them off the floor. This will help you to build strength and stability in the areas needed before progressing to full-bodyweight dips.
Although it’s true that dips are beneficial and can help to intensify your workouts, it is not essential to do them. Push-ups will still work the same muscle groups and can help you to achieve your goals.
So if you’re already training hard with push-ups and you don’t have any issues with dips, then feel free to add them into your routine to help complement those gains.
However, if dips feel like too much or you have any doubts about doing them, then don’t feel like you have to. Push-ups will still provide plenty of benefits to your workout program.
In conclusion, dips are still beneficial if you’re already training hard with push-ups. They target the chest muscles in different ways and also hit the lower portion of your pecs, triceps and shoulders.
However, it’s important to start slow, listen to your body, and increase the weight when you feel comfortable. With a well-rounded program that includes both exercises, you can get the most out of your workouts and reach your fitness goals.
Remember to be aware of any imbalances or injuries which may make certain exercises more difficult to do and always consult with a professional if you are unsure. Good luck!
Do you include dips in your routine or maybe you don’t? Let me know in the comments below.