Best Chest Exercises

SAY IT WITH YOUR CHEST! Thats what Kevin Hart and my dad would say whenever I had to address a large group of people. And physically, a strong chest tells other people in the room you're in charge, and you have the confidence to prove it. Usually when people want to grow muscle their main goal is to get a bigger chest and bigger arms. If you're brand new to the gym you might want to hold off from jumping straight onto the bench press. These are the best tips we give to our new clients who want a big chest. As always, remember to pick up your GYMCADDY™ today! Trust us, it really sucks when you're in the middle of a benching exercise and your phone falls out your pocket. 

First off, if you're new to the gym we recommend you have the basics covered before doing barbell or dumbbell exercises. Checkout out Beginner’s Workout Routine Here. Its important you have good motor skills, hand eye coordination, and balance. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. You have to crawl before you can run. 

Alright! You’ve got the basics covered? Don't lie to me Jimmy… Like we’ve mentioned before if your main goal is to grow muscle you'll want to focus on compound movements that activate multiple muscles at a time. Compound movements are the exercises that truly stimulate muscle growth. You don't want to over do it with isolation exercises. Dumbbell based exercises are a great starting point for people who are new to the gym or are novices. Dumbbell exercises allow for full natural range of motion, will work on stability and will also train balance all at the same time. Obviously, a great dumbbell exercise for chest development is the dumbbell chest press. No surprise there, but one of our best tips is to supplement the dumbbell chest press with a drop set of either push ups or a minute plank. The added time under tension will help stimulate muscle growth. For those who don't know, a drop set is a set where you do one exercise and then switch over to a different exercise that stimulates the same muscle group without taking a break in-between. For example, in this case you’ll do a set of ten reps of the dumbbell bench press and then immediately follow it with 10 more reps of push ups (assuming you can do proper push ups, if not do a minute plank) This small but useful tip as helped multiple GYMCADDY™ clients develop a strong and enduring chest. 

Another great chest exercise that requires no equipment at all and you can do it literally anywhere is the simple push up, but with a twist… we’re throwing in drop sets yet again and also add pauses. We love working out because you can do it any where, and this next exercise is a testament to that. If you completed our Beginner’s workout routine you should be able to properly do push ups by now. Doing Pushups with pauses while you're at the bottom for the movement will yet again increase time under tension in your chest. If you throw in a drop set of planks after your pushups it makes for a great full upper body workout without any equipment. 

Landmine Press Bottom
Landmine Press Top

Next up is the Landmine Press. The Landmine Press is a great chest exercise that most people don't know about. You’ll usually see more experienced people doing it at the gym. And its a real shame, we think more people should be doing it because it truly is a great chest exercise for both men and women. You also get a sick burn in your triceps. In order to properly preform the Landmine press you'll either need a standing T-Bar Row machine, or a barbell with a corner attachment. We also recommend you do them kneeling down instead of standing up. You’ll get more a contraction in your chest when you're kneeling down than if you were standing. After you've set up your bar and weights you'll want to hold the barbell with the palm of your hands. Make sure you're not feeling any discomfort in your wrist. You'll then start pushing up until your arms are above your head. You will feel the contraction in your inner chest and triceps. This exercise is categorized as a compound exercise, so we advise you do it at the beginning of your workout and do a few good sets. And here’s a pro-tip, in order to save your knees get yourself a Foam Pad (they’re usually Sky Blue and can be found at commercial gyms in the stretching areas) or some type of other padding and kneel on that. You’ll thank us in the morning. 

Lets move on to the ever so popular chest fly. Unless you have very good hand eye coordination, and know exactly how to them correctly we advise you DON’T do Dumbbell Chest Flies. We have seen many people who are new to the gym hurt their rotator cuff when they do them. Instead we would like you to try Machine Chest Flies with a 5 Second PAUSE on the contraction AKA when your hands are close together. In this case slow and steady truly does win the race. Remember, the chest fly is an isolation movement and should only be done to help you increase your time under tension in your chest. It shouldn't be the main focus of your workout.

Chest Dips

And finally theres the Dip. Dips are perhaps on of the best all around chest and arm exercise you can do. If you do them with a wide grip you'll activate your Peck Major. If you do them with a close grip you'll activate your Triceps and Shoulders. If you do them with a neutral grip you’ll activate your whole upper body. If they get too easy after some time you can add some weight. You can even make them more challenging by just adding pauses at either the top or the bottom of the movement. Heck, if you do them slowly you can also make them more challenging. If you have noticed we love dips! Close Grip Dips, Wide Grip Dips, Pineapple Salsa Dips… We love them all. And you better believe all new GYMCADDY™ clients do dips and get great results. 

The GYMCADDY™ Team truly believes people who are new to the gym should stay away from doing too many Barbell or Machine exercises and should focus more on mastering dumbbell and free weight exercises at the beginning of their lifting career. Doing Dumbbell and free weight exercises at first will help you first master the basics of exercise movements and develop your core stability. Having mastered basic exercise movements and strong stability will ultimately keep you safe when you start venturing into more complex Barbell Exercises.

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