Chest Workouts for Men

Chest Workouts for Men

If you want to look your best at the gym or the beach, then you need to opt for exercises that sculpt and define your chest. These exercises can also

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If you want to look your best at the gym or the beach, then you need to opt for exercises that sculpt and define your chest. These exercises can also be helpful in doing a range of daily tasks, like pushing or lifting objects. In addition to all of these, as you enhance your strength and looks, you will also lift your mood. When you work out your chest, you also work out your pectoral muscles, which are popularly known as “pecs.” The pecs are the biggest muscles in your chest. However, there are still certain smaller muscles that provide support to the pectoral muscles, which include the trapezius muscle around your shoulders and the latissimus dorsi muscles on the sides of your chest.

If you want to get started and ensure that all your chest muscles are worked, you need to add variety to your movements in your chest workout routine. These are some of the tips to follow;

  •         You need to press with the use of the incline or flat bench, bars, seated machine chest press, or dumbbells.
  •         If you want to lift, make use of the floors, bench, or parallel bars.
  •         If you want to pull, make use of the cable fly bench, cable crossovers, or dumbbells.

If you are new to these workouts, you should hire a trainer so that you will be sure to follow a great program with excellent form while you are performing the exercises. It is better you start with a lighter weight to avoid getting injured. As time goes on, you would be able to go for a heavier weight without experiencing much strain. While performing the exercises and you don’t feel like it is challenging at all, you can also increase the weight you are lifting.

Based on your goal, you can vary the number of sets and reps you do;

If you are looking to buff your size, you can do about 8 to 12 reps and do about 1 to 3 sets if you are a beginner with a weight at the higher end of your one-rep max. But, if you are a seasoned lifter, you can do about 1 to 8 reps and do about 2 to 6 sets. Take rests of 2 minutes between each rep if you are using lower weights and doing more reps, while you should take rests of 3 minutes between each rep if you are using higher weights and doing fewer reps.

If you are looking to improve your strength, you should do about 8 to 12 reps and do about 1 to 3 sets if you are a beginner with a weight that is about 60-80% of your max.

The following are the top exercises that would help build your size and strength as well as provide support for your day to day movement:

Pec deck

While doing this exercise, you may be tempted to add more weight, but you have to resist that temptation as it could raise your risk of sustaining an injury. Also, if you have had a shoulder injury previously, then you should not perform this exercise.

How to perform:

  •         Start by placing your feet apart from each other a little and on the floor.
  •         Firmly place your back against the seat, then start raising your hands until they get to your shoulder level (your elbows should be at a 75 to 90-degree angle). Ensure that your elbows are placed in the middle of the pad on the wings of the machine.
  •         With a slow and smooth movement, push the wings together, but stop right before they touch each other.
  •         Next, you slowly revert to the initial position.

Chest press

This exercise will get your chest muscles fired up.

How to perform:

  •         First, modify the chest press bench in a way that when you sit, your feet will be on the floor, and your knees would be slightly bent.
  •         Then you grab the handle and ensure you are exhaling while you are pushing them away until your arms are fully stretched out. Make sure that you slightly bend your elbow while performing this movement.
  •         While you are inhaling, you start pulling the bars toward you with a slow and controlled movement but make sure that the weights do not touch down.

Dips

How to perform:

  •         Firmly grab the parallel dip bars and raise your body
  •         Ensure your elbows are straight and your head aligns with your trunk, and make sure your forearms align with your wrists.
  •         Stabilize the lower part of your body by bringing one leg across the other before you pull in your abs.
  •         Keep your elbows by your sides and bend them to lower your body while exhaling. Also, to avoid swinging and tilting, ensure your legs are directly beneath your body.
  •         Keep lowering yourself until your arms are parallel with the floor and your elbows form a 90-degree angle. Ensure your wrists are straight throughout this movement.
  •         Stop for a while and make your elbows straight, then use your hands to push into the bars, and revert to the initial position. Ensure your wrists are straight, and your body is vertical.

If you find this exercise challenging without assistance, opt for a gym that has a machine that does assist dips.

Barbell bench pressbarbell bench press

How to perform:

  •         Start by lying with your back flat on a bench and have your feet firmly placed on the floor (you should have the bar directly over your eye while your shoulders, buttocks, and head should be placed on the bench).
  •         Grab the bar with your thumbs wrapped around it and your palms forward. Place the bar in the starting position; you can ask for assistance from a spotter if you need it.
  •         Place the bar over your upper chest or chin while ensuring that your wrists and elbows are kept straight.
  •         Slowly lower the bar while inhaling until it goes below your armpits and reaches your chest. While you are performing the lowering movement, slightly flare out your elbow.
  •         Finally, press the bar up and exhale while keeping your back flat and your wrists straight.

Bent forward cable crossover

How to perform:

  •         You start this exercise by either putting one foot in front of the other like in a walking position or by planting your feet on the ground hip-width apart.
  •         Then you grab the pulley handles with your arms facing inward and straight out, ensuring that your elbows are slightly bent and your hands are below your shoulders.
  •         Next, use a controlled and slow movement to extend your arms and bring your hands together. If you want more resistance and a wider arc, move your arms down before bringing them in and crossing them over one another.
  •         Finally, revert your arms slowly to the initial position with a controlled movement while ensuring that they don’t go back past your shoulders.

Pushupspush ups

If you don’t have time for gym visits or equipment in your home but still want to work on your chest, you can do pushups. This exercise has been found to prove you with about 61% of chest muscle activation. But, while it is noticeable less than the bench press, it still provides you with conveniences along with three times muscle-building benefits as they strengthen your arms, shoulders, and chest. If you pay the utmost attention to your form, you would be able to get the most from pushups.

How to perform:

  •         First, you squeeze your abs while keeping your neck in line with your spine, your elbows near your sides, and keep your back flat.
  •         Place your hands exactly beneath your shoulders and use a slow and controlled movement to lower yourself.
  •         Finally, press up.

This is a prevalent exercise for working on your chest as you don’t need equipment to perform it.

Inclined dumbbell flies

How to perform:

  •         Start by lying on a bench and firmly placing your feet on the floor, then grab two dumbbells and how them in each hand.
  •         Then you press your back, buttocks, head, and shoulders to the bench. Move the dumbbells close to your armpits and chest while keeping your palm facing inward and your wrists straight.
  •         Breathe out, pull your abs in, and press the dumbbells above your chest with a slow movement. Ensure your arms are shoulder-width apart, and your elbows are not locked but straight.
  •         Breathe in and use a slow movement to lower the dumbbells in a wide arc to bring them in light with your chest. Ensure the dumbbells are parallel.
  •         Using the same gentle arc, fly the dumbbells toward the ceiling.

Conclusion

Asides from the good looks, working on your chest also provides you with some other benefits. For instance, it can improve your posture. This is because the pecs are vital in keeping good posture and stabilize the shoulder joint being one of the largest muscles in the upper body. It can also help improve your breathing, and this is because the pecs are connected to your ribs, and they expand with each breath. The pecs are very helpful when it comes to daily activities that involve pushing, squeezing, holding, or lifting.

 

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