Chest

Alternating Floor Press Guide

chest

  1. Lie on the floor with two kettlebells next to your shoulders.
  2. Position one in place on your chest and then the other, gripping the kettlebells on the handle with the palms facing forward.
  3. Extend both arms, so that the kettlebells are being held above your chest. Lower one kettlebell, bringing it to your chest and turn the wrist in the direction of the locked out kettlebell.
  4. Raise the kettlebell and repeat on the opposite side.

Leverage Incline Chest Press Guide

chest

  1. Load an appropriate weight onto the pins and adjust the seat for your height. The handles should be near the top of the pectorals at the beginning of the motion. Your chest and head should be up and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  2. Press the handles forward by extending through the elbow.
  3. After a brief pause at the top, return the weight just above the start position, keeping tension on the muscles by not returning the weight to the stops until the set is complete.

Drop Push Guide

chest

  1. Position low boxes or other platforms 2-3 feet apart.
  2. Move to a pushup position between them, supporting yourself by placing your hands on the boxes.
  3. With good posture, drop from the platforms by pressing up and moving your hands to shoulder width, cushioning your landing by absorbing the impact through the arm.

Incline Dumbbell Press Guide

chest

  1. Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand atop your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
  2. Then, using your thighs to help push the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
  3. Once you have the dumbbells raised to shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  4. Be sure to keep full control of the dumbbells at all times. Then breathe out and push the dumbbells up with your chest.
  5. Lock your arms at the top, hold for a second, and then start slowly lowering the weight. Tip Ideally, lowering the weights should take about twice as long as raising them.
  6. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  7. When you are done, place the dumbbells back on your thighs and then on the floor. This is the safest manner to release the dumbbells.

Variations:

You can use several angles on the incline bench if the bench you are using is adjustable.
Another variation of this exercise is to perform it with the palms of the hands facing each other.
Also, you can perform the exercise with the palms facing each other and then twisting the wrist as you lift the dumbbells so that at the top of the movement the palms are facing away from the body. I personally do not use this variation very often as it seems to be hard on my shoulders.

Barbell Incline Bench Press – Medium Grip Guide

chest

  1. Lie back on an incline bench. Using a medium-width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  2. As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on you upper chest.
  3. After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: it should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  4. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  5. When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Caution: If you are new at this exercise, it is advised that you use a spotter. If no spotter is available, then be conservative with the amount of weight used. Also, beware of letting the bar drift too far forward. You want the bar to fall on your upper chest and nowhere else.

Variations:

You can use several agles on the incline bench if the one you are using is adjustable.

Single-Arm Push-Up Guide

chest

  1. Begin laying prone on the ground. Move yourself into a position supporting your weight on your toes and one arm. Your working arm should be placed directly under the shoulder, fully extended. Your legs should be extended, and for this movement you may need a wider base, placing your feet further apart than in a normal push-up.
  2. Maintain good posture, and place your free hand behind your back. This will be your starting position.
  3. Lower yourself by allowing the elbow to flex until you touch the ground.
  4. Descend slowly, and reverse direction be extending the arm to return to the starting position.

Decline Dumbbell Flyes Guide

chest

  1. Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and lie down with a dumbbell on each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  2. Once you are laying down, move the dumbbells in front of you at shoulder width. The palms of the hands should be facing each other and the arms should be perpendicular to the floor and fully extended. This will be your starting position.
  3. With a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, lower your arms out at both sides in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, the arms should remain stationary; the movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  4. Return your arms back to the starting position as you squeeze your chest muscles and breathe out. Tip: Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  5. Hold for a second at the contracted position and repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Variations:

You may want to use a palms facing forward version for different stimulation.

Cable Crossover Guide

chest

  1. To get yourself into the starting position, place the pulleys on a high position (above your head), select the resistance to be used and hold the pulleys in each hand.
  2. Step forward in front of an imaginary straight line between both pulleys while pulling your arms together in front of you. Your torso should have a small forward bend from the waist. This will be your starting position.
  3. With a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, extend your arms to the side (straight out at both sides) in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, the arms and torso should remain stationary; the movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  4. Return your arms back to the starting position as you breathe out. Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  5. Hold for a second at the starting position and repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Variations:

You can vary the point in front of you where your arms meet.

Butterfly Guide

chest

  1. Sit on the machine with your back flat on the pad.
  2. Take hold of the handles. Tip: Your upper arms should be positioned parallel to the floor; adjust the machine accordingly. This will be your starting position.
  3. Push the handles together slowly as you squeeze your chest in the middle. Breathe out during this part of the motion and hold the contraction for a second.
  4. Return back to the starting position slowly as you inhale until your chest muscles are fully stretched.
  5. Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Variations:

You can use pulleys or an exercise band to perform this movement. Also, there is a variety of the Pec Deck Machine where you place your forearms on the pad, with the elbow and a 90 degree angle. You then squeeze your elbows together.

Dumbbell Bench Press Guide

chest

  1. Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand resting on top of your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
  2. Then, using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width.
  3. Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. The dumbbells should be just to the sides of your chest, with your upper arm and forearm creating a 90 degree angle. Be sure to maintain full control of the dumbbells at all times. This will be your starting position.
  4. Then, as you breathe out, use your chest to push the dumbbells up. Lock your arms at the top of the lift and squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then begin coming down slowly. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.
  5. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.

Caution:

When you are done, do not drop the dumbbells next to you as this is dangerous to your rotator cuff in your shoulders and others working out around you.

Just lift your legs from the floor bending at the knees, twist your wrists so that the palms of your hands are facing each other and place the dumbbells on top of your thighs. When both dumbbells are touching your thighs simultaneously push your upper torso up (while pressing the dumbbells on your thighs) and also perform a slight kick forward with your legs (keeping the dumbbells on top of the thighs). By doing this combined movement, momentum will help you get back to a sitting position with both dumbbells still on top of your thighs. At this moment you can place the dumbbells on the floor.

Variations:

Another variation of this exercise is to perform it with the palms of the hands facing each other.

Also, you can perform the exercise with the palms facing each other and then twisting the wrist as you lift the dumbbells so that at the top of the movement the palms are facing away from the body. I personally do not use this variation very often as it seems to be hard on my shoulders.

Barbell Bench Press – Medium Grip Guide

chest

  1. Lie back on a flat bench. Using a medium width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  2. From the starting position, breathe in and begin coming down slowly until the bar touches your middle chest.
  3. After a brief pause, push the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out. Focus on pushing the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position at the top of the motion, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.
  4. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  5. When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Caution:

If you are new at this exercise, it is advised that you use a spotter. If no spotter is available, then be conservative with the amount of weight used. Also, beware of letting the bar drift too far forward. You want the bar to touch your middle chest and nowhere else. Don’t bounce the weight off your chest. You should be in full control of the barbell at all times.

Dips – Chest Version Guide

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  1. For this exercise you will need access to parallel bars. To get yourself into the starting position, hold your body at arms length (arms locked) above the bars.
  2. While breathing in, lower yourself slowly with your torso leaning forward around 30 degrees or so and your elbows flared out slightly until you feel a slight stretch in the chest.
  3. Once you feel the stretch, use your chest to bring your body back to the starting position as you breathe out. Tip: Remember to squeeze the chest at the top of the movement for a second.
  4. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Variations:

If you are new at this exercise and do not have the strength to perform it, use a dip assist machine if available. These machines use weight to help you push your bodyweight. Otherwise, a spotter holding your legs can help. More advanced lifters can add weight to the exercise by using a weight belt that allows the addition of weighted plates.

Incline Dumbbell Flyes – With A Twist Guide

chest

  1. Hold a dumbbell in each hand and lie on an incline bench that is set to an incline angle of no more than 30 degrees.
  2. Extend your arms above you with a slight bend at the elbows.
  3. Now rotate the wrists so that the palms of your hands are facing you. Tip: The pinky fingers should be next to each other. This will be your starting position.
  4. As you breathe in, start to slowly lower the arms to the side while keeping the arms extended and while rotating the wrists until the palms of the hand are facing each other. Tip: At the end of the movement the arms will be by your side with the palms facing the ceiling.
  5. As you exhale start to bring the dumbbells back up to the starting position by reversing the motion and rotating the hands so that the pinky fingers are next to each other again. Tip: Keep in mind that the movement will only happen at the shoulder joint and at the wrist. There is no motion that happens at the elbow joint.
  6. Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Variations:

You can perform regular flyes and also twisting flyes where your initial position starts with the thumbs facing each other instead of the pinky.

Cable Chest Press Guide

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  1. Adjust the weight to an appropriate amount and be seated, grasping the handles. Your upper arms should be about 45 degrees to the body, with your head and chest up. The elbows should be bent to about 90 degrees. This will be your starting position.
  2. Begin by extending through the elbow, pressing the handles together straight in front of you. Keep your shoulder blades retracted as you execute the movement.
  3. After pausing at full extension, return to th starting position, keeping tension on the cables.
  4. You can also execute this movement with your back off the pad, at an incline or decline, or alternate hands.

Decline Barbell Bench Press Guide

chest

  1. Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and slowly lay down on the bench.
  2. Using a medium width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. The arms should be perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position. Tip: In order to protect your rotator cuff, it is best if you have a spotter help you lift the barbell off the rack.
  3. As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your lower chest.
  4. After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up).
  5. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  6. When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Caution:

  • If you are new at this exercise, it is advised that you use a spotter. If no spotter is available, then be conservative with the amount of weight used.
  • Also, beware of letting the bar drift too far forward. You want the bar to touch your lower chest and nowhere else.
  • Don’t bounce the weight off your chest. You should be in full control of the barbell at all times.
  • Variations: You can also use dumbbells or exercise bands to perform this exercise.

Hammer Grip Incline DB Bench Press Guide

chest

  1. Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell on each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  2. By using your thighs to help you get the dumbbells up, clean the dumbbells one arm at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
  3. Once at shoulder width, keep the palms of your hands with a neutral grip (palms facing each other). Keep your elbows flared out with the upper arms in line with the shoulders (perpendicular to the torso) and the elbows bent creating a 90-degree angle between the upper arm and the forearm. This will be your starting position.
  4. Now bring down the weights slowly to your side as you breathe in. Keep full control of the dumbbells at all times.
  5. As you breathe out, push the dumbbells up using your pectoral muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  6. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  7. When you are done, place the dumbbells back in your thighs and then on the floor. This is the safest manner to dispose of the dumbbells.

Variations:

You can use several angles on the incline bench if the bench you are using is adjustable. Another variation of this exercise is to perform it with the palms of the hands facing forward (which is the traditional manner). Also, you can perform the exercise with the palms facing each other and then twisting the wrist as you lift the dumbbells so that at the top of the movement the palms are facing away from the body. I personally do not use this variation very often as it seems to be hard on my shoulders.

Straight-Arm Dumbbell Pullover Guide

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  1. Place a dumbbell standing up on a flat bench.
  2. Ensuring that the dumbbell stays securely placed at the top of the bench, lie perpendicular to the bench (torso across it as in forming a cross) with only your shoulders lying on the surface. Hips should be below the bench and legs bent with feet firmly on the floor. The head will be off the bench as well.
  3. Grasp the dumbbell with both hands and hold it straight over your chest at arms length. Both palms should be pressing against the underside one of the sides of the dumbbell. This will be your starting position.
  4. Caution: Always ensure that the dumbbell used for this exercise is secure. Using a dumbbell with loose plates can result in the dumbbell falling apart and falling on your face.
  5. While keeping your arms straight, lower the weight slowly in an arc behind your head while breathing in until you feel a stretch on the chest.
  6. At that point, bring the dumbbell back to the starting position using the arc through which the weight was lowered and exhale as you perform this movement.
  7. Hold the weight on the initial position for a second and repeat the motion for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Caution:

If you are new to this movement, have a spotter hand you the weight instead. If not, please ensure that the dumbbell does not fall on you as you arrange your torso to perform the exercise on the bench. Also, as I already mentioned, ensure that the dumbbell used is in perfect working condition. Old dumbbells in need of welding should never be used to perform this exercise.

Variations:

  • You can perform this exercise using a barbell or an e-z bar instead of dumbbells.
  • Also, if using dumbbells like Powerblocksâ„¢, just use a dumbbell on each hand with the palms of your hands facing each other.

Smith Machine Bench Press Guide

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  1. Place a flat bench underneath the smith machine. Now place the barbell at a height that you can reach when lying down and your arms are almost fully extended. Once the weight you need is selected, lie down on the flat bench. Using a pronated grip that is wider than shoulder width, unlock the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  2. As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your middle chest.
  3. After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  4. Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  5. When you are done, lock the bar back in the rack.

Caution:

If you are new at this exercise, it is advised that you use a spotter. If no spotter is available, then be conservative with the amount of weight used.

Leverage Decline Chest Press Guide

chest

  1. Load an appropriate weight onto the pins and adjust the seat for your height. The handles should be near the bottom of the pectorals at the beginning of the motion. Your chest and head should be up and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  2. Press the handles forward by extending through the elbow.
  3. After a brief pause at the top, return the weight just above the start position, keeping tension on the muscles by not returning the weight to the stops until the set is complete.

Front Raise And Pullover Guide

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  1. Lie on a flat bench while holding a barbell using a palms down grip that is about 15 inches apart.
  2. Place the bar on your upper thighs, extend your arms and lock them while keeping a slight bend on the elbows. This will be your starting position.
  3. Now raise the weight using a semicircular motion and keeping your arms straight as you inhale. Continue the same movement until the bar is on the other side above your head . (Tip: the bar will travel approximately 180-degrees). At this point your arms should be parallel to the floor with the palms of your hands facing the ceiling.
  4. Now return the barbell to the starting position by reversing the motion as you exhale.

Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Standing Cable Chest Press Guide

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  1. Position dual pulleys to chest height and select an appropriate weight. Stand a foot or two in front of the cables, holding one in each hand. You can stagger your stance for better stability.
  2. Position the upper arm at a 90 degree angle with the shoulder blades together. This will be your starting position.
  3. Keeping the rest of the body stationary, extend through the elbows to press the handles forward, drawing them together in front of you.
  4. Pause at the top of the motion, and return to the starting position.

Variations:

You can use dumbbells also to perform this exercise.

Leverage Chest Press Guide

chest

  1. Load an appropriate weight onto the pins and adjust the seat for your height. The handles should be near the bottom or middle of the pectorals at the beginning of the motion.
  2. Your chest and head should be up and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  3. Press the handles forward by extending through the elbow.
  4. After a brief pause at the top, return the weight just above the start position, keeping tension on the muscles by not returning the weight to the stops until the set is complete.

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