Showing posts with label chest. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chest. Show all posts

3 of the Best Pectoral Exercises That Will Help You Build a Massive Chest


Building a huge chest is one of the biggest goals for many weight lifters and aspiring bodybuilders. Unfortunately, the best, most basic pectoral exercises, such as barbell bench presses, incline presses, and decline presses do not work for some trainees. Some lifters find that these exercises don't do a good enough job of specifically working their chests, while others have problems with their shoulders and rotator cuffs that prevent them from using a barbell for pressing movements. If you are one of these trainees, you don't need to worry; here are 3 unconventional pectoral exercises that can effectively work your chest while keeping your joints safe.

Pectoral Exercises


Chest Dips

Though people most often use dips as a triceps-building exercise, I have found them to be one of the best pectoral exercises out there. Many dip stations have angled bars that allow you to grip narrow, wide, or anywhere in between. If you are looking to work mainly chest with this movement, take a moderately wide grip that doesn't hurt your shoulders. You should also try to dip down to a point at least a little bit lower than where your upper arms are parallel to the floor. You will have to experiment to find the best range of motion for yourself.

You can perform dips with just your bodyweight, but you should focus on gradually adding external resistance. Most gyms have dip / pull-up belts that you can use at no extra cost. Aim to increase your strength on a heavy set to failure of 4-8 reps each time you do this movement. You can also follow this heavy set with one of bodyweight reps to failure.

Dumbbell Floor Press

You may have heard the merits of using different types of dumbbell presses as your mainstay pectoral exercises. While they certainly can work wonders for people struggling with chest development from barbell movements, they do not allow you to use nearly as much weight. One way to solve this problem is to do floor presses with dumbbells instead of the normal flat press. Unless your arms are very short, pressing from the floor will shorten the range of motion of the press by several inches, while still providing great stimulation for your chest.

The difficult thing about this exercise is getting the dumbbells into position. The best way is to stand them upright on the floor next to where your thighs will be. Sit on the floor, and hoist the one on your non-dominant side up onto your thigh. Either get a spotter to hand you the other dumbbell, or find the best way for your body type to get it up onto your thigh. Once both dumbbells are resting on your legs, simply lay back and press. You may need to situate your upper back properly once you get the first rep up. Work your way up to two top sets of 8-10 reps.

Suspended Push-Ups

There are many devices you can use for this movement, but the basic idea is to do push-ups from an unstable set of handles. Many people use two loops of chains suspended a few inches from the ground. There are also special handles made for this exercise that you can hang from a power rack or smith machine. Suspended Push-Ups are not only one of the best "hidden" pectoral exercises, but they will improve your coordination and stability by challenging you to remain in the correct path while pressing from an unstable "surface."

You can have someone add external resistance by placing weights on your back, but I have always preferred to do this movement with just my bodyweight at the end of a training session. If you do the same, perform 2-3 sets of as many reps as you can get. When this becomes too easy, start having a spotter add a 25 or 45 pound plate to your back.



At Home Workouts

At Home Workouts - How to Build a Muscular Chest and Big Shoulders and Triceps at Home


Home Workouts

Most guys think that in order to build a massive chest... you have to bench press. Nothing could be further from the truth. Some guys think that to build round, bulging shoulders... you need access to a shoulder press machine. Wrong again. And some guys still believe that the best way to build thick, horse-shoe shaped triceps is with dumbbell kick-backs.

Chest Building Routines

Chest Building Routines and the Best Chest Exercises To Increase Bulk


Chest Building Routines

A large thick chest is generally one of the primary goals of any weight trainer or bodybuilder.

To understand how to build a massive chest you must first understand what muscles comprise the chest and how to target them specifically.

In building a strong, powerful chest we target a number of muscles: the Pectoralis Major and Minor, and to a lesser degree the Serratus Anterior, the Intercostals and the Front Deltoids.

The primary and most visible muscle of the chest is the Pectoralis Major. It is a thick muscle in a triangular fan shape across the entire chest area. It is connected to the skeleton at three different points, the sternum, the clavicle (collar bone) and the shoulder (armpit).

The Pectoralis Major is divided into two sections, the Clavicular section which is the upper portion of the muscle connected to the Clavicle, and the Sternal which is the lower section of the muscle connected to the Sternum. Whilst they are connected in two different areas, they are still the SAME muscle.

There is a common misconception that the upper pec (Clavicular section) is the Pectoralis Major and the lower pec (Sternal section) is the Pectoralis Minor. This is not the case.

The Pectoralis Minor is a smaller triangular shaped muscle actually situated underneath the Pectoralis Major and is not generally visible. However this muscle is trained in conjunction with the Pectoralis Major and when it grows it can help to push the Pectoralis Major out to give the appearance of a bigger chest.

The Serratus Anterior (Small muscles covering the side of the chest wall and around the ribs), Intercostals (Smaller muscles positioned between the ribs) and the Front Deltoids (Shoulder muscles) are all muscles that whilst not part of the chest itself, each perform a stabilising function during chest exercises and when developed properly help give definition to the chest.

By hitting the muscles from different angles using different exercises you will achieve maximum growth of all muscle fibres in the shortest time possible.

The best chest exercises to increase bulk, strength and mass are Compound exercises. Those used primarily for shaping and toning are Isolation exercises.

Compound exercises involve the use of more than one muscle group through different joints in order to perform the exercise movement. Isolation exercises effectively isolate the working muscle and only involve movement though one joint.

Compound chest exercises to increase bulk include the bench press (and variations of), pushups, and dips. While Isolation exercises include flyes, pec dec, cable crossover and dumbbell pullover.

There are other exercises out there but these are just some of the most common.

Here is one of my original chest building routines designed to attack the Pec muscle from 3 different angles. It also provides toning and effectively works the other supporting muscles mentioned above. All exercises should be performed using medium-heavy weights and the target number of reps for each set are listed in brackets:

Incline Bench Press 3 Sets (12, 10, 8)

Dumbbell Bench Press 3 Sets (12, 10, 8)

Lateral Flye 2 Sets (12, 10)

Decline Bench Press 2 Sets (12, 10)

As a note, the best chest exercises to increase bulk are compound exercises performed with Dumbbells. This is because they allow each side of the body to work independently through the full range of movement. However limits on the dumbbell weight range at your gym or home or old injury may mean you are unable to use dumbbells all the time. That is when a barbell should be used.

This chest routine will provide you with a solid base on which to develop a thick powerful chest. I would recommend you use a workout log to record your progress so you know what you have to beat each time you set foot in the gym. Then when you exceed the target reps by one, i.e. you perform 13, 11, 9 it is time to increase the weights.

And always remember that REST is the most important factor in muscle growth!



Pushups

The Benefits of Doing Pushups


Pushups
In my opinion, pushups are the single most effective exercise for improving total body fitness. They offer the benefits of weight lifting, stretching and cardio vascular training all in one exercise. For a beginner, pushups can be very difficult because of how many muscles are involved. Many of which are under trained in the body of a beginner. In fact, even many seasoned bench press veterans have trouble doing high-rep pushup workouts because their secondary and stabilizer muscles are untrained.

Holding the proper form is a great exercise alone, without even performing any repetitions. The pushup form benefits the abdominal muscles in the same way that Arnold Presses benefit the biceps, by simultaneously flexing and stretching. When the lower back muscles contract to stabilize your form, your abdominal muscles are inadvertently stretched. The quadriceps is also relied on heavily to maintain proper form, giving your legs a decent secondary workout.

The actual motion of a pushup trains the chest, triceps and the anterior deltoids, while stretching the biceps and back. Pushups are considered by many people to be the best all-around chest workout. I have found that they are great at increasing muscle size and tone. I have also found that they are easier on the joints than the bench press. Additionally, large pushup workouts are great for circulation and overall cardiovascular health.

When performed in high-repetition workouts, pushups can increase human growth hormone, boosting overall muscle growth. This is the hidden benefit of pushups that many people never discover because they only perform pushups as a supplemental exercise, rather than as a primary chest workout. My article entitled, "Do Pushups to Build Muscle Mass and Boost Metabolism," details how to build up your strength and endurance to completing a 1000-pushup routine. If you plan to use pushups as a primary chest exercise, then I encourage you to perform a lot of sets and reps, and set a goal of completing between 500 and 1000 pushups. Pushups are much more challenging and painful than a standard bench press, but if you commit yourself to them, you can have amazing results.

Pushups were the first bodyweight exercise that I developed any skill at. When I first started doing them, I lost a considerable amount of body fat in a relatively short period of time. This allowed me to start performing other bodyweight exercises that I had previously been unable to perform, such as pullups.