Chair Push-up Test

Original Editor - Kehinde Fatola
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Purpose[edit | edit source]

The chair push-up test, also known as stand-up test or chair sign, is used to test for the posterolateral rotatory instability (PLRI) of the elbow joint and the evaluation of its lateral collateral ligament. [1]

Technique[edit | edit source]


The patient is in a seated position in a chair with the two hands resting on the seat by the sides or the chair arms. The patient actively pushes up to transition into a standing position. Pain, apprehension, clicking or locking produced during the transition is indicative of posterolateral rotatory instability (PLRI) and failure of lateral collateral ligament. [1]

Evidence[edit | edit source]

The test was evaluated in a small study of patients undergoing surgery and its sensitivity was found to be 87. 5%. Specificity could not be calculated due to the absence of true negative cases. [3]

Clinical Tip[edit | edit source]

The test produces elbow extension and forearm supination which are most likely to reproduce PLRI symptoms (pain, clicking, etc.). Anticipating the outcome, the patient may not be enthusiastic about this test and apprehension or an unwillingness to perform it may show.

Variation[edit | edit source]

The active floor push-up test has the patient lying prone with their hands resting flat on the floor, approximately level with their head. The patient then attempts to do a push-up using their arms only. [1]

Related Tests[edit | edit source]

  • Posterolateral pivot shift test
  • Posterolateral rotatory drawer test

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Hattam P, Smeatham A. Special Tests in Musculoskeletal Examination. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone, 2010.
  2. Chair Push up Test AKA Stand Up Test | Ccedceminars. Available from; (Accessed 27/March/2021)
  3. Regan, W., Lapner, PC., 2006. Prospective evaluation of two diagnostic apprehension signs for posterolateral instability of the elbow. J. Shoulder Elbow Surg. 15 (3), 344–346.