I used to be able to do about 50 push ups at a time with no problem when I worked out semi-regularly. I stopped when suddenly while doing push ups, as I'd be getting near the end and straining to get those last few, the muscles in my neck (just under my chin) start to feel like they're really pulling/strained. If I stop doing them, I don't really have any neck pain or problems afterward but it's kinda scary while it's happening. I'm just wondering why might this be happening?

  • any chance you stop breathing regularly due to exertion? Aug 30, 2011 at 14:38

1 Answer 1


It sounds like as you push yourself to complete the 50 push ups your body is getting out of proper form.
Here's an article with a video on push up form: the first part of his speech is a person's tendency to push their head forward as they get tired - doing this myself, I can feel the tension increase on my neck and cause the strain you're describing.

Instead of pushing yourself to complete 50, push yourself to complete 35 or 40 with great form. Just like weight lifting, we tend to get caught up in numbers (bench x amount, etc.) instead of focusing on proper form.

  • 2
    Agreed, repition is key to be able to build the correct muscles. I tell my girls all the time that doing something slower and correctly is far more important than doing it incorrectly, risking injury and not building muscle memory.
    – user1877
    Aug 30, 2011 at 19:13
  • This is good advice for any exercise; form should almost always take precedence over quantity.
    – eykanal
    Aug 30, 2011 at 19:59

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.