How to make your pecs bigger and better than ever.
A bigger chest reaps serious dividends, inside and outside of the gym. Ever wondered how exactly to increase your chest’s size and strength? Well, you don’t have to wonder any more! Because in the next few paragraphs, you’re about to get the lowdown on some of the best exercises to boost the size and strength of your chest.
Ready to beef up your pecs? Here we go!
Dumb It Down
Using barbells for bench presses is one of the most discussed and praised ways to improve your chest. Helpful as barbell-based bench presses may be, you can grow your chest even more if you add a little variety to your benching ways. So instead of using the barbell with each rep, do a set with the barbell and then switch to a set with dumbbells in each hand. This forces more of your pectoral muscles to get in on the action, giving them ample opportunity to grow.
Raise the Standard
Need something extra to add into your bench-pressing routine? It may be time to move to an inclined bench. By performing the same bench press routine on an incline, you work your chest muscles in new ways – no matter if you’re pushing up a barbell or dumbbells. As always, practice good technique to reduce the likelihood of injury when trying out new exercises.
Lying on your back on a weight bench with your feet on the ground, hold a dumbbell in both your hands, with your arms extended directly overhead and the weights touching. Lower your hands slowly to either side of your body, keeping both arms bent slightly throughout the motion. Open your hands as you lower the weights, careful to maintain balance of the weights in each hand. Once your hands are approximately parallel to the ground, hold for a moment and then return to the starting position, gradually regaining your grip on the weights.
Do everything you did for the open flies, but do it on an inclined bench. This time, your hands will not become parallel to the ground, as your body will be angled away from the floor. Instead, stop the motion when your arms are approximately level with your body. And though it may feel more natural to hold the weights over your face when at the top of your motion, keep them over your chest to ensure your workout is developing your pectoral muscles and not your shoulders.
Standing tall in the middle of a cable-crossover station, reach out and grab a high cable handle in your left and right hand. Pull the cables until your arms are straight out to your sides, your arms and body forming a “T.” from this position, pull the handles slightly down and toward the middle of your body, keeping your arms bent slightly and your back straight. When your hands come together at your waist, hold for a moment and flex your chest. Slowly return to the starting position and repeat.
Seated Twisting Cable Flies
Have a seat in the middle of a cable-crossover station, grab a low cable with an underhand grip in each hand, and position yourself so far forward on the bench that your hands are a little behind your body and form a 45-degree angle with your body. Slowly move your arms forward and up until they meet together directly in front of your chest, arms still extended and elbows still slightly bent.
While moving toward this position, rotate your hands so they wind up facing down at the end position. Once in this position, hold for a moment, return to the starting position, and repeat.
The reasons to beef up your chest are numerous. If you think a bigger chest is only desirable for those wanting to show off, think again. A bigger, stronger chest also offers the following benefits:
- you’ll be better able to burn more calories during your exercise routine
- you’ll have more overall strength
- your athletic prowess will improve
- your bottom half will look thinner and fitter
Now that you know why a bigger, stronger chest is worth having, what are you waiting for? The gym awaits!