The chest is one of the three major muscle groups in your body. Consisting of three main parts commonly referred to as upper, middle and lower chest. In order to build a well-rounded chest fast, You don’t have to do them all in a single session for chest. Alternating between them every other day when you train your chest, allowing you to shock the muscles while adding variety to your chest workouts. You need to shock the muscles for them to grow, because your muscles can get used to an exercise which leads to the need to add more weight even if you can’t lift more than what you currently are. So without further ado, Here are the Best chest exercises that you can do today for a bigger chest.
1.Incline bench press (Upper chest)
One of the most efficient ways to target your upper chest is by doing the incline bench press. Although going heavy on it would just make you use your shoulders more, so it’s always better to choose a weight that’s not light or more than you can handle while doing 3 to 5 sets, all to failure. The incline bench press is harder than your normal bench press. It’s always best to slow your reps down and take your time and put the bar back up when you fatigue.
To effectively target your upper chest. As you are about to push the bar back up from your chest, do it slowly and at the peak of the lift squeeze your chest and contract. Hold it for 1-3 seconds and then keep going. This will help you achieve mind muscle connection with your chest as well as more muscle hypotrophy as holding the weight in that specific part of the lift will put maximum stress on your upper chest.
incline dumbbell press (Alternative)
If you can’t bench press for any reason. Try substituting with incline dumbbell press. It’s another effective way to target your upper chest without the added stress from a bar. The range of motion is also better with dumbbells, which allows you to target your chest better.
To effectively train your upper chest with an incline dumbbell press. As you go up from the starting position, squeeze your chest while holding the dumbbells and clench your fists as that activates your chest as well and hold for 3-5 seconds. Choose a weight that is moderate to heavy as you can go all-out with dumbbells with lesser risk of an injury.
2.cable crossover low to high (upper and middle chest)
Another exercise you can add to your upper chest workout is Low to High cable crossover. Set both pulleys at the lowest setting. Now as you are performing your set, when you reach the peak (top) of the pull, squeeze your chest together and hold that for 3-5 seconds and repeat that for every set. A set of 5 or a minimum of 3 is optimal for your muscle building needs. The reps, however, should have no number. You should do as many reps as you can each set until you can’t. That is the approach you should be taking for your chest workouts.
3.Butterfly machine/Pec deck (upper and lower)
The butterfly machine is one of the most excellent ways you can target your chest. The pec deck can be used as an exercise on its own for both your upper and lower chest or as a finisher on your chest day, just like push-ups. Alternating between the pec deck and cable crossover (mid-level) on different chest days allows variety while targeting the same parts of your chest while shocking your muscles.
4.Bench press (upper, middle, and lower chest)
The bench press is the staple exercise for building a bigger chest. However, it is not the only one and more weight on the bench does not mean a better chest. Yes, lifting heavy allows more muscle to be built, but it can also lead to pec tears, which is a dangerously common occurrence with people who go for higher benches. It can take you out of the gym for up to 6 months and have a permanent effect on your chest’s appearance as well.
If you don’t have bad shoulders or for any reasons, that doesn’t allow you to bench press normally. You should include the bench press on your chest day as well. It’s extremely effective when it comes to targeting your entire chest. The approach to it is the same as that of the incline bench press. At the peak of the lift, squeeze your chest and hold for 1-3 seconds then repeat, for each set for as many reps as you can before fatiguing.
Dumbbells press (Alternative)
If you cannot do bench press, you can substitute it with a pair of dumbbells and do the same lift. The dumbbells do allow you a better range of motion here as well. As you lift the dumbbells up and reach the peak of the lift. Bring your thumbs to a vertical position parallel to each other by rotating your right wrist clockwise and left wrist anti-clockwise and squeezing your chest. This will allow you to contract and activate your chest better as rotating your wrist flexes your chest.
5. machine press
The machine press is another variation that can be done in place of a bench press for the same effects and with lower risk of injury and almost the same activation. The only thing you need to do is squeeze at the peak of the press and just hold it for 3-5 seconds. As there are less risks of injury, holding the squeeze for more seconds isn’t an issue as compared to a regular bench press where fatigue can lead to the bar falling on you.
6.cable cross over set to mid- level
One more alternative to targeting your middle chest is cable crossover, but this time set the pulleys to medium. Up to your chest level as this will allow you to target your middle chest. Squeeze at the peak of the pull and hold for 5 seconds and repeat for every single rep of every set. Building your middle chest will allow you to have that aesthetically pleasing pec gap.
Believe it or not, push-ups are still one of the very best ways to target your chest at home or at the gym. Doing push-ups as a finisher for your workout ensures that you have trained your chest to failure, leaving you satisfied with your chest day. If using it as a primary exercise for building muscle. Try doing as many reps as you can per set, but all of them need to be slowed down while coming down and, when at the lowest point above the ground, hold it for 3-5 seconds. This ensures maximum chest activation and allows your chest to be overloaded by your own bodyweight for more muscle hypotrophy.
8.Chest dips (lower chest and triceps)
Chest dips, done with proper form, are one of the few ways you can actually train your lower chest. The lower chest is the hardest muscle to build and it is what gives your chest the crescent shape. An underdeveloped chest can take away from an impressive chest as the lower chest is a visually prominent muscle whether it is developed or not. It shows. It’s easy to replicate at home or in a park with just two bars parallel to each other. The effective way to train your chest with chest dips is to hold your position at the top of the lift for 1-3 seconds as well as the bottom for the same amount of time for maximum muscle hypotrophy.
- You need to target all three parts of the chest.
- Training your chest to failure is one of the best ways to build a bigger chest.
- Alternating between different chest exercises for every other chest day helps you shock the muscle
- Switching to dumbbells is the better choice for bad shoulders and isolating your chest
- To know in details about training to failure. Read how-to-build-more-muscle-why-should-you-train-to-failure/
- to know more about muscle hypotrophy. Read what-is-time-under-tension-how-does-it-affect-hypotrophy/
- to know about how mind muscle connection helps in building more muscle. Read mind-muscle-connection-how-does-it-increase-muscle-gain/