The Strongest Exercises to Build Chest Muscle Growth

The visual shape of the breasts is primarily shaped by the pectoral muscles and posture, so it is important to exercise your chest muscles. A handsome, pumped chest for a man or a firm, lifted and well-shaped chest for a woman is a source of pride and, if you will, a calling card for those who care about their bodies and health. But this begs the question: how do you achieve perfection?

How do you build chest muscles?

Chest strengthening exercises with your own body weight and on fitness equipment will help you develop your muscles, increase their volume and lose excess fat revealing beautifully sculpted muscles. But before developing your chest muscles harmoniously, let’s understand the anatomy.

Anatomy of the male chest muscles

Let’s start with the male chest. There it is more or less self-explanatory. At the top is the large pectoral muscle and below that is the small pectoral muscle. It is the large pectoral muscles that are most visible when you look at the figure. Hypertrophy of the large pectoral muscle is basically what determines the beautifully pumped breasts in men (and women). There are other muscles present in the chest area: the subclavian muscle, serratus muscle, pectoralis major, etc.), but they are either deep or small in volume, or almost

Are not visible from the front. The chest muscles are used to bring the arms together and pull them toward the body. Therefore, all exercises in which the arms make pulling or pushing movements involve the chest muscles in one way or another. With regular effort on these muscles, they will increase

and form beautiful and athletic breasts.

Anatomy of the female breast muscles

Now the beautiful female breasts. Some people think that there are no muscles in the female breasts. But this is not a true statement, because anatomically the pectoral muscles are present in both men and women. It’s just that in men the pectoral muscles respond faster to training, develop better and the trained muscles are visually more visible. In women, the pectoral muscles are hidden under the fatty tissue. So radically increase the female breast through training is impossible, it is possible either by increasing the amount of fat (but we must remember that fat – a harmful thing, it is deposited not only in the right places for you), or by surgery. Neither of them is particularly interesting for a young woman who is a grandmother and seriously cares about her health. And yes, even with pregnancy and breastfeeding, the breasts increase significantly in size and become, well, very attractive. But this is a slightly different topic. However, trained pectoral muscles can improve the shape of the breasts, lift them, make them firmer. Correctly chosen exercises to strengthen the breast muscles will improve blood circulation, and the muscles of the whole body and in particular, improve the condition of the mammary glands, which are responsible for the shape of the breasts, improve the condition of the skin, prevent sagging. But again, a kind of radical breast augmentation of 2-3 sizes can not be achieved by girls with the help of exercise.

Why do I need to train my pecs?

In other words, since you can’t enlarge your breasts, why exercise? The fact is that even girls in general need the functions that breast muscles perform.

1 – That is, strong arms that can hold a baby for hours on end.
2- In addition, exercising the pectoral muscles improves blood circulation and stimulates the production of substances that slow down aging. Women who exercise regularly, even in old age, look very charming.
3- Also, as mentioned above, well-developed chest muscles will support the mammary glands from within, pushing them forward and upward, making them appear more prominent and voluminous overall.
4- Finally, if you neglect the development of your pectoral muscles, you will experience an imbalance in development, especially when training your back. Your back will be developed and beautiful, but your posture will be sluggish, making your breasts appear sunken, droopy, and smaller than they actually are. Exercising your pectoral muscles will straighten your posture

How can I build my chest muscles?

It is not difficult to build muscle, but it is important to know the right approach to achieve your goal. Many beginner bodybuilders make serious mistakes, so the training becomes ineffective and there is no muscle mass gain. That’s why you need to remember the basic rules and secrets of pumping chest muscles.

General Rules

1 – A comprehensive approach. You don’t just focus on one specific area (in this case, the chest), but on the entire musculature. You also need to work your arms, abs, legs and back. Then your figure will be well-proportioned and your results will be immediate. If you cling to just one muscle group, you won’t be successful. There are no athletes with a puffy, bulky chest and thin arms and a big beer belly. You have to work your whole body

2- Warm-up and Stretching. Simple warm-up exercises, as well as stretching, help protect against injury, sprains and severe cramping. In addition, stretching promotes faster tissue growth.
3-Exercise with weights. It is essential to use weights to pump up your muscles. Remember that muscles only grow in volume at maximum loads.
4-Reduce cardio. Don’t eliminate cardio completely from your workout program, but keep it to a minimum. Such exercises will help to get rid of excess fat and should therefore be performed at the beginning of the workout. The duration of cardio should not be more than 15-20 minutes, otherwise the body will “dry out” strongly and the volume will go, away along with the muscle mass.

Exercises for pumping chest muscles

It is important to perform the most effective exercises to get results faster. This way, you can maintain your strength and get the maximum effect in the shortest time possible. Some of the most effective exercises for the chest muscles are

. Bench press (both straight and incline, using a barbell or dumbbells);
. Push-ups (it’s best to put your feet in an elevated position);
. flexing on the bars;
. butterfly (exercise on an exercise machine);
. Cross grip pull-ups on the chin-up bar.

With regular training and a stable regimen, you can dramatically increase the size of your chest muscles after just 2 months. Excellent results can be achieved in 3-4 months. Do not think that sport is hard work, it is actually a fun activity that keeps your body in great shape and always looks good. For anyone interested in motivation, it is often enough to look in the mirror and realize that a normal male figure is unthinkable without well-developed pecs.

How to build upper chest muscles

The large pectoral muscle is a single unit, so whether you can pump the upper or lower part of it separately is very questionable. Just as there are no separate upper and lower abs – it is one and the same muscle that contracts as a whole. However, the great pectoralis major is composed of several bundles that can be emphasized with a little modification of exercises. Exercises that shift the load to the upper pectoral muscles

. Bench press on an incline bench,
. Push-ups with your feet on a platform,
Arm extension with dumbbells on an incline bench,
. Upward arm curvature in a crossover with a lower block,
Push the barbell back with a reverse grip.

The key principle here is that by changing the horizontal position of the body to an incline, we shift the load to the arms, shoulders and upper chest muscles, thus avoiding the formation of “hollows” under the collarbones on the chest. Do not forget that in the most difficult and injury-prone incline exercises, the weight of the load (barbells, dumbbells) must be reduced.

How to build lower chest muscles

Accentuation of the lower chest muscles also (as with upper chest training) is achieved by tilting the body (only now in the opposite direction). The most effective exercises are as follows:

.Chair push-ups (since these are easier than regular floor push-ups, you can use a backpack with weights as a weight),
.flexing on the bars,
.Arm reduction in a crossover with an overhead block,
.Arm extension with dumbbells on a bench bent overhead,
.Lift the barbell onto an overhead incline bench.

When performing a barbell press or dumbbell extension on an incline bench, reduce the weight of the load.

How to build chest muscles at home

Home workouts have been gaining prominence lately, and there’s no need to worry that they’re any less effective. The only thing that can suffer when you don’t have access to a gym and no machines at home are some isolation exercises. But these are used professionally, in cases where the muscular system is already very developed and individual muscles are lagging behind. In general, you can perfectly develop chest muscles at home. You will need a minimum of equipment: only dumbbells and an ergometer. If you have a chinning bar or uneven bars – you will not even dream of the best.

One of the best exercises is push-ups. Push-ups can be done from the floor (and if it’s hard at first – from the couch), dumbbell presses can also be done on the floor.

Other good exercises are push-ups on planks, dumbbell presses on an incline bench, handstand with dumbbells.

Exercises for chest muscles with dumbbells

Dumbbell exercises are a great option for those who can’t go to the gym, have a barbell and bench at home, and are ready to work with weights. Dumbbells are inexpensive and you shouldn’t overlook such a great weight lifter, especially since there are some great dumbbell exercises to develop your chest muscles. There are 3 great dumbbell exercises that will really give your pecs a jolt.

  1. Arm extension with dumbbells. This exercise is performed lying on a bench, on the floor, on a couch, anywhere. For this exercise, take dumbbells in your hands, lying prone, lift them above you on your outstretched arms so that the palms of your hands face each other. Then, bend your elbows slightly, pull them away to raise the dumbbells up to chest level. Then lift your arms back up to the starting position. By changing the angle of the body position, you can shift the load to the upper parts of the pectoral muscles, or the lower parts of the pectoral muscles – this was discussed above
  2. Dumbbell Press. In this exercise, lie down, take the dumbbells in your hands, bend your arms at the elbows and push them apart, keeping the dumbbells parallel to your shoulders. Then straighten your arms and lift the dumbbells upward. Then lower the dumbbells back to the starting position. You can also use this exercise when lying obliquely, with your head up or down, to shift the load to the upper or lower parts of your pecs.
  3. Dumbbell Pullover. Task – while lying down, bring your arms back with your elbows facing up, grab one dumbbell (or two together if one is not heavy enough), then with your arms slightly bent, lift the dumbbells above your head, then slowly lower to the starting position.
  4. Dumbbells are convenient to take dumbbell sets that allow you to dose the load easily. In addition, dumbbells have another advantage – they allow you to put different loads on different sides of the chest if there is an imbalance (one side of the pectoral muscles is more developed).

Chest muscle pull-up

Handsome Muscular Male Model With Perfect Body Doing Pull Ups

There are various ways to build strong pecs. Pull-ups can also help develop pectoral muscles, but they are not the best exercise for this muscle group. It is more stressful on the arm muscles than on the pectoral muscles. Also, like all bodyweight exercises, it has limited accumulation potential. With active training you will soon reach the point where your weight is too little. If the problem with load can be partially solved by using weights (for example, attaching barbell weights to your belt), the problem with insufficient chest muscle involvement will be more difficult to solve.

For this purpose, you can use reverse grip or cross grip, perform tractions right after push-ups, etc. But in general, it should be noted that without the use of other exercises, tractions alone will not be able to build pectoral muscles. However, it is unlikely that anyone will seriously limit themselves to just tractions.

Pull-ups are an excellent exercise that develops the muscles of the arms, shoulders, chest and back. This makes it perfect for beginners who want to improve their health, build muscle, develop strength, and see progress. But if you want to go further and get bigger and stronger, then pull-ups will move into the warm-up area and give way to more serious exercises.

However, as part of a backyard or cottage outdoor exercise program, pull-ups are of great benefit to the athlete and aesthetic pleasure to spectators.

Who can benefit from tractions to develop pecs?

. For beginners who want to strengthen and develop their upper body and arm muscles.
Those who, for whatever reason, cannot go to the gym and do not have barbells and bars available.
. For those who want to further master complex gymnastic exercises (“prince’s exit,” “God walk,” etc.).

Techniques for doing pull-ups

The technique for pulling up is very simple. Walk up to the bar, grab the bar with the right grip, bend your arms at the elbows and lift yourself up so that your chin is over the bar. Then gently lower yourself downward.

  1. The movement should be done smoothly, without jerking, using muscle strength rather than inertia. The time of ascent to the highest point should be equal to the time of descent. Remember, the exercise is already very stressful and stretches the muscles and ligaments involved, so jerking can cause injury.
  2. Try to breathe through your nose. As in other exercises, the exhale should accompany the effort – in this case the lift – and the inhale should accompany the lowering to the starting position.
  3. Don’t straighten your elbows all the way and relax your muscles – this puts dangerous tension on your elbow and shoulder joints. Try to keep your shoulders low and tense throughout the exercise.
  4. Don’t set records for the number of pull-ups at a time as soon as you notice progress. You must completely master the technique, practicing it to the point of automaticity. Work according to plan, making a schedule of load growth.
  5. The basis of muscle growth is load growth. Here the main load is the same (your own body weight), so at the beginning the progress will be expressed in the growth of the possible number of repetitions, and then (when you can pull up more than 15 times) this load will be too little, so you need to add more approaches, and then loads (for example, putting on backpack with heavy load or attaching something heavy to the belt).

The subtleties of doing pull-ups to develop pectoral muscles

1- Tight grip. The wider your palms are on the chin-up bar, the more stress is placed on your back muscles. Therefore, use a tight grip when trying to work your chest.
2-Tilting the body back slightly increases the load on the pectoral muscles.
3-Do the exercise slowly and gently, trying to feel your muscles working.
4-The reverse grip is better suited for developing the pecs.
5-Perform partial pull-ups – in the part of the amplitude where the pectoral muscles are most tight.

How does a beginner learn how to do pull-ups?

Not everyone can learn to do pull-ups at one time. As a rule of thumb, a well-developed young man without excess weight who can push off the floor 10-15 times can do at least 1-2 pull-ups. Then all that remains is to train regularly and progress. But what about those who can’t even pull themselves up once?

  1. You need to carefully study the technique of pulling, choose the easiest variant (for you) and start with it.
  2. Ask your partner for help. Let him or her push you up during the exercise. As a rule, the most difficult part is the last third of the trajectory.
  3. Place a stool (or chair) under the bar so that by standing on it you keep your head above the bar. Now grab the bar, lower yourself to the lowest point with your legs tucked in, and pull yourself up with a little help from your legs. Try to push up with your legs looser and looser, and after a while your arms will become strong enough to pull yourself up without the help of your legs.
  4. use a special rubber harness. Fasten it with one end to your waist and the other end to the chinning bar. It will relieve some of the pressure and make the pull-up much easier.
  5. Horizontal pull-ups. Try to find low bars in a playground somewhere in the yard, at the height of your chest, hang under them with your arms outstretched, so that your body with straight legs forms a straight line. From this lying position, pull yourself up to the bar.
  6. Use negative pull-ups. Try jumping up or down from the chair to the top position of the classic chin-up bar pulls. Then slowly, as slowly as possible, lower yourself down. Negative reps load your muscles almost as much as positive reps.
  7. Try to strengthen your grip, especially if your fingers don’t hold up, and don’t let yourself hang from the bar for more than 20 seconds. At first, you can just hang like a sausage, trying to hang longer. Then, you can use magnesia to prevent your hands from slipping, use hand straps or hooks. But don’t overuse these accessories – try to do without them as soon as you are able to pull yourself up properly.
  8. If the reason for the failure of tractions is excess weight, weakness not only of muscles, but also of joints and ligaments – undertake cardio training, review the diet in the direction of calorie deficit, perform various exercises to strengthen muscles and ligaments. Push-ups, dumbbell exercises and resistance bands are also fine. The most important thing is to warm up before approaching the chinning bar.
  9. Don’t use rocking and shaking. Beginners often think this is easier. But these movements put a dangerous strain on your joints and increase the possibility of injury, especially when your ligaments and muscles are not yet strong enough. Don’t take any chances. The calmer and slower you do the pull-ups, the more your muscles will work and therefore grow faster.

Benefits of Tractions

1-The simplicity of the exercise technique. Tractions are difficult to perform completely wrong. There are nuances, but in general it is very easy to learn the technique of this exercise.
2-Lack of complicated and expensive equipment. Of course, you need at least one pull-up bar. But even if you don’t have one at home, you can easily find a spinning bar in the backyard, the bottom rung of a fire escape, any horizontal bar or pipe that is at eye level.
3-The exercise is basic, multi-joint and engages almost every muscle in the upper body – it’s simply essential for beginners.
4-For advanced lifters, pull-ups can also present a number of surprises: there are many variations of this exercise that are very difficult for even a very strong person to perform, such as one-arm pull-ups.

The disadvantages of tractions

1-Pull-ups are not very good for the pectoral muscles. You have to use various tricks to include them, or do pull-ups in combination with other exercises (push-ups, dumbbell pull-ups, etc.).

2-Pull-ups are not easy to learn from scratch. A strong enough person can perform the exercise at full strength. A newcomer to the gym (and with extra weight) will need to do cardio and strengthen their upper muscles with other exercises for at least a month before they can do a full pull-up.

3-There is little potential to increase the load on the pectoral muscles specifically. For this reason, pull-ups most often remain a supplemental exercise in pectoral muscle development.

Other pull-up variations

Parallel Grip Tractions. Many horizontal bars have horns on the back perpendicular to the main bar so you can grab them with your hands so that your palms face each other. The same grip can be used to pull up high bars or ladders (as long as your head goes through).

Army Traction. Grasp the bar with a mixed grip, palms side by side. The bar will be perpendicular to the plane of your body. Pull up by tilting your head slightly to go around the bar. On each repetition, try to keep your head on either side of the bar.

Horizontal pull-ups. Pull-ups from a near-horizontal position are not only used to prepare beginners for regular pull-ups, but they can also provide additional load for an advanced athlete if performed truly horizontally – placing the feet on a second bar or other support at the same height as the bar on which the arms are resting.

Cross Arm Tractions. This is a very difficult exercise. You have to grab the bar in such a way that your hands are crossed – the left palm is on the right, and the right palm is on the left. This type of pull-up greatly complicates the familiar exercise and puts a lot of strain on your chest muscles.

Tractions for advanced lifters

Do pull-ups with weights. If you already do more than 20 pull-ups, you can hang a backpack with a weight on your back, or hang a weight (such as a barbell) on your belt.

One-arm pull-ups. You should try to master this exercise if you do pull-ups more than 30 times at once. At first, you can try a variation of this exercise with support – for example, grabbing a towel hanging from the bar with your other hand.

There are other types of pull-ups that are very difficult. But as already mentioned, they develop other muscles much better than the pectoral muscles. Therefore, those who want to build the chest, should not only do pull-ups, but also other exercises – presses with barbells or dumbbells, push-ups from the floor, or push-ups on uneven bars.

Push-ups for chest muscles

You can build your chest muscles with push-ups. They are a good core exercise that provides the load needed to grow large and small chest muscles. There are two types of push-ups: floor push-ups and bar push-ups. They are completely different exercises that engage different muscle groups in addition to the pectoral muscles.

Floor push-ups for chest muscles

Two things to note in advance. First, what will be said about push-ups is said in terms of the pec swing. Second, we will limit ourselves here to general recommendations. In each individual case, many specific conditions must be taken into account. There are those who can not lift themselves even once from the ground, and those who do push-ups with a refrigerator on their back – and for them such a load is not enough. In addition to the degree of, fitness and individual body type, there are also health limitations, differences in the tasks to be performed and much more. Today we will touch only on the use of floor push-ups for the development of pectoral muscles for beginners, that is, those who have a certain level of fitness, but want to further develop chest muscles with the help of push-ups.

One more thing. It is necessary to take into account that the exercises should be performed as a complex. You should not limit yourself to only push-ups. Initially, we proceed from the point of view that a person should develop harmoniously and evenly. Therefore, while developing the muscular system we should not limit ourselves to load only one muscle group, or stop on one type of exercise. And don’t forget to warm up, in particular, warm up the shoulder joints, elbows and wrists before push-ups. Otherwise, it’s easy to get injured during some exercises.

1 – Classic floor push-ups

1- The starting position is almost the same as the straight-arm plank: feet close together, palms parallel, almost below the shoulders, whole body straight, face down.

2-Lower yourself as gently as possible while inhaling, keeping your body straight and your abs tight. Do not lie on the floor – leave 2-3 cm to the floor. Hold for a few seconds at the lowest point.

3-Sollevare fino alla posizione di partenza, espirando. Non raddrizzare i gomiti fino in fondo per non metterli in pericolo.

4-In this exercise, keep your elbows close to your body without spreading them like a lizard.

This is a classic and familiar exercise that works all the muscles of the upper body – large pecs, delts and triceps – quite well. It also uses the back and abdominal muscles to maintain a static position. In other words – it’s great for beginners looking to strengthen their arms, shoulders, chest and back muscles. For more advanced levels it can be weak. This is why it is sometimes included in warm-ups.

2 knee push-ups

This exercise is designed for anyone whose fitness level does not allow for classic push-ups, for those who are recovering from serious injuries and illnesses, as well as for beginners among beautiful ladies who have never worked out before.

The technique is completely identical to classic push-ups, the only difference is that you do not lean on your toes, but on your knees. The load on the chest muscles is very weak and is useful only if you do not have enough strength to perform classic push-ups.

3 bench presses

Another weakened variation of the classic push-ups, but still giving a slightly greater load on the muscles. The initial position is the same as the classic push-ups, but we do not lean on the floor, but on the edge of a bench (chair, sofa, etc.). The technique is exactly the same. The higher the support (bench), the lower the load and the easier it is to do the exercise. The lower the bench, the closer the exercise is to the classic version

4 push-ups with wide arm positioning

1-Place your hands wider than your shoulders. The wider they are, the harder it is to do the exercise and the more stress is put on your pectoral muscles. Palms can be slightly spaced apart for comfort. The feet are also wider than in the classic variation.

2- Slowly lower yourself as low as you can, stay at the lowest point for a few seconds, then rise back to the starting position.

3-It is important to maintain the correct position of your arms throughout the entire exercise: they should be at approximately right angles to your body. Do not move your elbows backwards, as this not only takes some of the load off your chest muscles, but also creates a risk of injury to your joints.

The good thing about this exercise is that much of the load is taken off the triceps and transferred to the large and small pectorals. In addition to them, the anterior delts are also engaged. This is an exercise for an intermediate level of training.

It is usually recommended that you perform 3 to 5 sets of 10 to 15 reps in each, a little more if your strength permits.

5- Standing push-ups

This is an exercise for an excellent level of fitness. It brings the body’s center of gravity closer to the arms and greatly increases the load on the working muscles, especially the upper large pectoral muscle.

1- The starting position is similar to the wide-armed push-ups. Only here the feet are placed closer together and on a bench (or any other support). The higher the legs are, the harder it is to do the exercise.

2- Slowly lower yourself without touching the floor, hold for a few seconds and then slowly return to the starting position. The slower you do the exercise, the more you put a strain on your chest muscles.

3- Watch the position of your hands. Don’t pull your elbows back.

6 -Push-ups with clapping

This exercise is for those who have already mastered both wide arm push-ups and high push-ups – and for whom that exercise is no longer sufficient. To put your muscles under stress and develop explosive strength, coordination, speed and agility, you can perform complex exercises such as the clap push-up.

1- Assume the starting position as in a classic push-up.

2- Lower yourself slowly.

3- From the lowest point, snap upward to pull your hands off the floor and clap.

4-After clapping, lower yourself to the starting position.

If you can’t do a clap right away, try some simple plyometric push-ups first – that is, the same thing, but without a clap. From the bottom position, push up, taking your hands off the floor, and then lower yourself to the starting position.

Other types of push-ups

In addition to all of the above, advanced lifters can try push-ups on one arm, on their fingers, with loads (such as with a heavy backpack on their back), etc. You can also put more emphasis on other exercises such as dumbbell curls, bench press, overhead block pulls, butterfly in the trainer, etc.

Push-ups on bars to pump chest muscles

Push-ups on bars are one of the best exercises for the pectoral muscles. Push-ups on bars work almost every pectoral muscle – pecs, triceps, anterior delts – and actively involve other muscles. Push-ups on bars are most commonly used to train the chest muscles or to train the triceps. Different pushup techniques are used to emphasize the muscles that need to be developed.

Pushups on bars with emphasis on chest muscles have a number of nuances:

1- Tilt the body forward: necessary to transfer the load from the triceps to the pectorals.
2- Elbows should be spread, not pressed against the body.

3- In the top position, don’t straighten your arms all the way down so as not to unload the load on your pectoral muscles.
4-The lowest point you can go down is determined by the maximum extension of your pectoral muscles. You don’t want to go lower, because then the triceps will work instead of the pectorals.

If we imagine what the main function of the pectoral muscles is – bringing the arms together – then it becomes quite obvious that the forward flexion combined with the elbows spread creates a mechanical system in which it will be the pectoral muscles that will try to bring the arms together (lifting the body into the upper position), while the weight of the body will prevent it. So, we will have a great opportunity to work our pecs with a load equal to their own weight.

How to do push-ups on bars for pectoral muscles?

1- It’s simple: grab the bars and jerk up to the top position with your arms straight. Keep your elbows straight as you lift upward.
2- Bend your body forward, pulling your legs back. As you inhale, slowly lower yourself to stretch your pectoral muscles as much as possible.

3- Keep your elbows as wide as possible without pressing against your body.
4- With an exhale, gently move upward. As mentioned before, do not straighten your elbows all the way down.
5-The range of motion won’t be too great, because in extreme positions the triceps will inevitably be engaged, stealing the load from the pecs, and we don’t want that.

What should you pay attention to when doing push-ups on the bars with emphasis on the chest?

First, the nuances above: wider grip (if possible), sideways elbows, leaning the body forward and not straightening the elbows in the upper position.,

Secondly, you should always consider that this exercise is very prone to injury. It is dangerous for the joints – elbows and shoulders. To avoid them, you need to warm up before this exercise. And not just a general warm-up, and before working on uneven bars with full power do at least one or two sets of warm-up without loads or with the lightest loads. In fact, it’s best to perform this exercise at the end of your workout – ideally after the bench press.

Third, you need to pay attention to your technique and how you engage and work your chest muscles, because it’s their power that matters more than the number of reps or heavy weights.

How many sets and reps?

You should aim for the usual 4-5 sets and 10-12 reps. If you can do more reps, it’s a sign that you should increase the load. Don’t try to do 20, 30, 40 reps, etc. because it will not contribute in any way to the growth of your muscles. It’s best to wear a special belt and strap 10 pounds on it. If you can’t, for any reason, use loads, it’s better to increase the number of sets (not reps!), do this exercise after other chest exercises (bench press), do isolated ‘finishing’ chest exercises (like dumbbell cand urls), or apply other tricks, but don’t increase the number of reps.

Muscle progress is based on load growth. So it’s ideal to belt up and lift weights as soon as you feel you can perform 15-20-25 reps. But even here there is a nuance: the belt with the weight will change the center of gravity and the position of the body will become more vertical, and our task is to maintain the maximum inclined position (ideally as close to horizontal as possible). Therefore, when attaching weights to the belt, pay attention to the position of the body. By the way, this is why many athletes hang a chain around their neck, and not the weights on the belt.

And again, do not try to put 100 kg on your belt even if you can keep the body tilt (which is unlikely). This exercise is dangerous – it often happens that you look like you’re ready to take on more weight (and maybe your muscles are prepared for it), but in reality your joints and ligaments aren’t ready for it. This is ,why we don’t want to set any records – it’s best to use medium weights in your work approaches. You can do a little more reps, a little more sets. And when all the possibilities of loand ad growth are exhausted, you need to use other exercises for the development of chest muscles. What they are you can find in a general article on how to pump your pecs. Girls can also do push-ups on uneven bars – don’t be afraid of common myths about women’s chest training.

Bench press for chest muscles

The bench press is one of the most popular exercises in gyms. Forty years ago it was considered the main exercise to develop chest muscles (and the upper body in general). Today there are different opinions about it. But even today, the question “how much do you bench press?” is a pretty popular means of social differentiation for athletes. As one of our great poets sang:

“Well, you better not be afraid of me,

When I bench press a hundred and fifty!”.

The bench press is only mandatory for powerlifters, as it is one of the competitive movements in their sport. For everyone else this exercise is not strictly necessary. But it is, regardless of the passage of time, one of the best exercises for the development of chest muscles.

The bench press can be performed in several variations, so to understand if you need it and which variant suits you best, you must first define your goals. Also, learn the mechanics of this exercise, its variations, pros and cons.

If you want to develop strength and increase ,the size of the muscles of the chest, arms, and scapular girdle, in other words – to get bigger and stronger, this exercise is the most suitable. It

Work is also actively involved:

  • The middle and posterior deltoid bundles,
  • all muscles of the arm (from the biceps and brachioradialis to the forearm and hand muscles),
  • back muscles,
  • leg muscles.

As we can see, the bench press doesn’t bore the rest of the body’s muscles by actively loading the pecs, triceps, and delts. In addition, the benefits of this exercise include:

  • A good increase in strength performance. The bench press helps increase strength.
  • Variability in exercise. Can be performed with barbells or dumbbells, on a horizontal bench or an incline bench.
  • For example, the barbell press allows you to work more weight than the dumbbell press because of the synchronization of the arm and chest muscles.
  • It develops not only the target muscles but also the stabilizing muscles, as it is a free-weight exercise, unlike similar exercises on simulators.

But this exercise also has significant disadvantages that should be kept in mind when deciding whether or not to do the bench press. First of all, there is the danger of injury. The bench press must be performed with a partner who can support you. Otherwise, there is a risk of dropping the bar. Also, if you perform the exercise incorrectly or with too much weight you risk injuring your shoulder joint or tearing your pectoral muscles. It takes a very long time to recover from such injuries, which means that progress stops and even backslides from the positions achieved.

Is it possible to train the pecs without doing the bench press?

Yes, it is possible. There are other exercises. Floor push-ups, push-ups on uneven bars, arm presses, dumbbell curls, pull-ups, etc. But there is no need to avoid the bench press. You just need to assess your abilities, choose the optimal variant of the exercise and strictly observe all safety requirements.

Bench press

is a basic multi-joint exercise, so it is suitable for both beginners and experienced lifters.

The bench press engages:

  • pectoral muscles,
  • triceps
  • The anterior deltoid bundles.

Lie down on a bench press bench. Grasp the bar with a straight grip (palms away from you), with your hands slightly wider than your shoulders. Then remove the bar from the racks. Take a deep breath, lowering the barbell to the center of your chest. After that, hold your breath, and with an exhale push the barbell upward on your straight arms.

When working with heavy weights, be sure to ask someone to support you or perform the exercise in a power frame.

The bench press in a frame allows you to do without an assistant, as the barbell initially rests on special limiters set at your chest height. In this case, you must first squeeze the bar and then gently lower it.

It is possible to lower the barbell not to the center of the chest, but closer to the neck, a style called “guillotine” which is more stressful for the pectoral muscles. The grip in this case should be wide.

The bench press allows many variations, including the negative press – work with the maximum weight, which can be squeezed only once or twice. In this case, the participation of an assistant is mandatory, who will not only ensure, but help to remove the bar from the racks and lift it from the chest. The idea of this exercise is to slowly lower the bar to the chest, yielding to the pressure but controlling the movement. The force developed by the muscles in this case will be even greater than in a normal bench press.

It is mandatory to follow the technique and safety rules of the barbell bench press. The barbell must be held in a finger lock (the thumb grabs the bar on the opposite side of the fingers), so you can control its position at all points of the trajectory.

Do not neglect the help of a partner, or perform the exercise in a power frame, make sure to check the height of the limiters before you begin.

Do not lower your elbows below the level of your back to avoid injury to your shoulder ligaments and pectoral muscles.

Dumbbell press

Assume the starting position lying on a bench. Dumbbells are on each side of your chest with your arms bent at the elbows. Take a deep breath and then squeeze the dumbbells onto your outstretched arms. You can also bring the dumbbells slightly closer together at the beginning of the trajectory. Exhale and gently lower the dumbbells back to the starting position.

This exercise is even more suitable for beginners, as the barbell press requires more preparation.

Try not to lower your elbows too much, especially as you increase the weight of the dumbbells.

Dumbbell press on an incline bench

Performed in much the same manner as the previous one, but with the bench placed at a 15-35 degree angle to the horizontal. The angle shifts the load to the top of the pecs.

Pressing dumbbells (especially heavy weights) also requires either the participation of a helper or the utmost caution and precision in the movement. Dumbbells have an advantage over barbells because they can move independently, and allow greater freedom of position, for example, of the wrists. But therein lies the danger, because the dumbbell press has even greater demands on the synchronism of arm movements. In any case, if you are just starting out, don’t hesitate to take a couple of lessons from an experienced coach, and ask him/her to supervise you until you master the technique. Only after you have mastered the proper technique should you begin to increase the load.

Presses with barbells and dumbbells allow you to work your chest muscles, build strength and increase their volume. These exercises are good because they ensure good growth at all levels of training, as you can increase the load (the main growth factor) almost indefinitely. And the presses are suitable for both men and women. Even girls can ignore various myths and do squats on barbells or dumbbells to improve the shape of their chest.

Pectoralis muscle trainers

The best workout machine for chest muscles is the butterfly or butterfly as it is simply called. The exercises on this machine (arm curls) are not fundamental. They are designed to improve and train the relief of already developed chest muscles. This exercise is not suitable for beginners in the gym – those who are at the beginning of their way of building muscle mass.

The chest muscle exerciser consists of a short straight bench, a vertical backrest, a rack with weights, and two levers that lock during the exercise. There are two versions available: for straight arms, for straight arms bent at the elbow, and special supports for elbows.

What muscles are involved in this exercise? The main muscle working is the pectoralis major, and the pectoralis minor, anterior deltoid, serratus anterior, latitudinal muscles, shoulder rotators, oblique abdominals, as well as the biceps, triceps, and muscles responsible for wrist flexion are activated. This is a long list for a seemingly simple exercise. But intentionally worked are the muscles of the chest.

How to do the exercise. Before starting on the simulator it is necessary to adapt it to your height by adjusting the height of the seat and choosing the optimal weight for a student. Knees should be bent at right angles and rested firmly on the floor. Shoulders and forearms form a right angle, shoulders parallel to the floor. Now the technique itself.

  • Sit on the bench with your back straight and pressed firmly against the backrest. Your legs are spaced far enough apart to maintain stability. Place your palms around the dumbbell; if the trainer has elbow rests, press your elbows firmly
  • Bring your hands together in front of you as you exhale and hold this position.

Professionals recommend doing three sets of 10-12 times.

There are a few subtleties when performing the butterfly exercise:

  • Movements should be done smoothly without jerking.
  • The back should not come off the back of the tool.
  • Proper breathing will give you stability.
  • Do all reps in one approach with no breaks. Take a 1-2 minute break between sets.
  • At the final point – when you join your arms, you must lock, at which point the load in the pectoral muscles remains, unlike other pectoral muscle development exercises.
  • The arms should not be completely relaxed when extending backward but should remain in control throughout the exercise. The arms should remain parallel to the floor at all times.
  • Stretch your arms back 1.5-2 times slower than when you bring them together.
  • Forcefully placing your arms behind your back and fully straightening them can cause joint injuries. Keep your arms slightly bent at the elbows
  • It is best to leave this exercise for the end of the workout, performing it after the core exercises.
  • Se le parti del corpo destra e sinistra non sono uniformemente sviluppate, è possibile fare l’esercizio con una sola mano.
  • The butterfly exercise is great for recovering from injuries.

The butterfly exercise is great for recovery both women and men benefit from this exercise. When the chest muscles are stretched, blood flow increases, the inner part of the chest develops and the muscles gain relief. Women’s breasts tighten, lift, and improve tone and thus attractiveness. When incorporating this exercise into your workout cycle, it is important to understand that it does not help you gain weight like the basic exercises, but belongs to the category of polishing the relief rate from injuries.

What other chest muscle exercises can I use?

Crossover exercises (with lower and upper pulley blocks) allow you to minimize the load on the other muscle groups and maximize the load on the major and minor pectorals.

The Hammer Bench Press simulates a bench press by virtually eliminating the stabilizer muscles and focusing on the upper pectorals.

The barbell press on the Smith erector also allows the entire load to be concentrated on the pectorals, turning off the stabilizer muscles.

It must be understood that machine work is necessary for professional muscle and strength development work. Isolation exercises are practiced to better develop those muscles that fall behind when performing basic exercises with free weights. For beginners, these exercises are not necessary and can even be harmful because of the imbalance in the development of the muscular system that will occur.

Breast workout for men and women

The effectiveness of chest muscle training depends on proper load distribution and regularity of training, as well as adequate rest and a balanced diet. The anatomy of pectoral muscles in men and women is almost identical, and the physiology of muscle work is also almost the same, so the methods of development of chest muscles are the same.

How to pump a man’s chest muscles

Men can do chest workouts without any restrictions – the more developed the muscles and the better the relief – the better. The main thing is to maintain a balance so that the chest is not more developed than the back and legs. For the rest – just a proper diet with enough protein and persistence in regular training.

How to build chest muscles for women

Yes, it’s good for girls to pump their breasts too. At least for those who have natural breasts. You can start with floor push-ups and then do the same things as men: press-ups, dumbbell lifts, push-ups on bars, trainers, etc. – As for willpower and determination. In case you’re worried about shrinking your breasts, making them stiff, etc., you’ll want to do the same. – Here are two articles: Myths about women’s breasts from one woman’s personal experience and Men’s perspective on myths about women’s breast training.

For men with well-developed muscles, the general rule of thumb is that the less fat, the better the relief and the more interesting the look. For women, the opposite is more likely to be true. The “rounded” shape that pleases the male eye is created to a greater extent by adipose tissue. So, for a physically well-developed and fit girl (no hanging fat folds) drying will lead to the opposite result, not improving, but worsening the look. The more prominent your muscles, the thinner and wiry your chest and butt will become, turning you into a “skinny fat guy” who will not attract the attention of fans. Acquaintances instead of ecstatic raptures will rather sympathetically ask, “You’ve lost so much weight…. Are you sick?”

That’s why girls need to exercise in moderation when it comes to fat burning and drying out. If you see less and less envy and more sympathy in the eyes of others, it’s time to stop. Give yourself a few pounds, and harmoniously round off your advantages, enliven the disappearance of the envy of friends.

The main thing – is not succumbing to discouragement and regular exercise. Do not forget about good nutrition, which is important to train your pecs, and keep your energy and optimism!