Pushups are a great exercise, as they work several different upper body muscles (triceps, shoulders and chest), with no equipment required.
If you add pull-ups, then you should be working most of the major upper body muscles in just a couple of moves (in this case, biceps, shoulders and back). However, pull-ups are a tough exercise to start out on. Lateral pull-downs on the bowflex are a good substitute. Bent over dumbbell rows are another good substitute, but of course, they require dumbbells.
The motion you describe (twisting and flinging) also works the core - definitely include some planks and side planks to strengthen these muscles as well.
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