Chest Muscle - Training Tips

Chest Muscle - Training Tips

Barbell exercises normally allow you to use more weight, so you develop maximum mass and strength. Dumbbell exercises give you a longer range of motion, so you get more extension and contraction. Cables allow you to work at a variety of angles, so you get more shaping for a better finished look. A disadvantage of machine training for the chest is that the apparatus only lets you work at very specific angles, but you can turn that to an advantage if you want to work the muscle at that angle to develop a weak area.

Dumbbell Flys are ideal for developing the outer pecs, but you need to employ a particular technique to get the most out of this movement. Lie on a bench and let the dumbbells down just as far as you can. Then when you come up, stop about three-quarters of the way. This technique puts all the effort on the outer pecs and never lets them disengage from the exercise.

But you can use dumbbell flys to work the inner pectorals as well, by bringing the weights all the way up squeezing the muscles together at the top, and even crossing the dumbbells over slightly to get a full contraction of the inner pectorals.

Inner pectoral development in general comes about by working the top range of pectoral movements - a Bench Press with a narrower grip, for example, with the bar pushed all the way up; or Cable Crossovers, letting the arms cross over each other, which really contracts the inner pecs.

Decline exercises work the lower pec region more intensely. These include Decline Presses, Decline Flys, Decline Cable movements, and Dips. We like Dips because, by bending farther forward or holding yourself straighter, you can change the way the stress hits the muscle even right in the middle of a set.

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