We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
Walking past a mirror to catch a glance of your pectorals heading south can make you cringe. Sagging pectorals can be the result of rapid weight loss, pregnancy or aging, but you can tighten your pecs with the right exercises. Developing the muscles in your chest, the pectoralis major and pectoralis minor, can help give your upper body a tighter appearance. Incorporate a variety of chest exercises into your workout routine to develop tauter pecs that you'll be proud to show off.
The bench press mainly targets the pectoralis major while engaging the triceps and deltoids to stabilize the bar. The basic bench press is performed while lying down on the bench with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart on the bar. Lift the bar off of the rack and bend your elbows to lower the bar to your chest. Pause for one count and press the bar up, returning to the starting position. Keep your resistance moderately heavy for optimal muscular development. Completing a set of eight to 12 repetitions should be difficult. By modifying your grip on the bar, you can increase the intensity of the move and engage different muscle groups. Try reversing your grip to target the chest and triceps. Perform the bench press for four sets of eight to 12 repetitions.
Dumbbell Chest Press
The dumbbell chest press is similar to the bench press, but it engages multiple stabilization muscles in the deltoids due to the increased range of motion. You can target each angle of the pectorals by performing the dumbbell chest press on an incline bench or a decline bench. The basic dumbbell chest press is performed with your palms facing forward, but you can add variety by reversing your grip. Perform the dumbbell chest press for eight to 12 repetitions.
The chest fly exercise primarily works the center of the pectoralis major, which rests on the sternum. Chest flies use the pectorals, biceps and deltoids to squeeze your arms together in an arching motion in front of your chest. You can perform chest flies with a variety of angles while either standing and using a cable machine or lying with dumbbells in hand. Execute dumbbell chest flies by lying on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand. Extend your arms above your chest with your palms facing inward and elbows slightly bent. Open your arms out to the sides until the dumbbells are aligned with your shoulders. Pause for one count and squeeze your chest to bring your arms together, returning to the starting position. Perform chest flies for four sets of eight to 12 repetitions.
Basic body weight exercises such as push-ups offer variety while targeting the chest. Push-ups target the pectoralis major and minor while engaging your entire upper body. Perform military style push-ups by starting on all fours with your hands spaced shoulder-width apart. Lift your knees and press up onto the balls of your feet with your spine in alignment from head to toe -- this is your starting position. Bend your elbows and lower your chest toward the floor; try to get as low as your upper body strength will allow. Pause for one count and press yourself up until your arms are straight, returning to the starting position. You can modify military style push-ups by performing the motion while on your knees. Give your push-ups an intensity boost by trying a plyometric version, for example, clap push-ups. Do four sets of push-ups until failure in each set.
- Bodybuilding.com: Chest Workouts
- "Personal Fitness Trainer Manual: Fundamentals"; National Federation of Professional Trainers; 2008