Home » 10 Best Chest Exercises For Building Strong Pectoral Muscles

10 Best Chest Exercises For Building Strong Pectoral Muscles

Chest exercises
Working out for building strength in your chest muscle is not easy especially when you don’t know about the exercises which are regarded as the best for this job. To help you in building a strong muscle foundation, i have listed some of the 10 best chest exercises performed by all the great athletes and fitness icons.
But before going towards that road, lets understand the anatomy of the muscles which are present in your chest.

Chest Muscles

Your chest contains two major muscles the pectoralis major and the pectoralis minor.

Pectoralis Major

Pectoralis major also known as pectoral muscle is the largest muscle present in your chest and is found in the upper layer, below it is the pectoralis minor muscle. The primary functions of this muscle are flexion, adduction and internal rotation of the humerus.

Pectoralis Minor

Pectoralis minor is a thin, triangular shaped muscle present in your chest just beneath the pectoralis major muscle. The role of this muscle is to stabilize the scapula by drawing it anteriorly and inferiorly against the thoracic wall.

10 Best Chest Exercises

Cable Crossover

Performed by many bodybuilders and athletes, the cable crossover is an excellent choice for building strength and endurance in your chest muscle. This exercise works out for both of your pectoralis major and minor muscles.

1) In comparison to dumbbells, cables provide constant tention to the muscles at peak concentration.

2) Cable crossover is great for training specific areas of chest due to the height adjustment ability of the cable machine.

3) While performing cable crossover exercise, you can quickly change the weight for drop sets.

4) This exercise stretches your chest muscle at great tention this leads to maximum muscle gain.

How To Perform

1) Start this exercise by setting both the handles of the pulleys to the highest level.

2) Stand in the middle of the cable machine with your feet shoulder-width apart.

3) Bend your torso in slightly forward direction, with your back straight.

4) Bend your elbows and activate your core, pull both the handles down towards your body. Inhale while pulling the handles down.

5) Fully contract your chest muscles by bringing the handles together (don’t touch the handles).

6) Slowly return back to the starting position. Exhale while performing this movement. This is one repetition of cable crossover exercise.

Pec Fly

One of the best weight training exercise includes pec fly. This exercise requires no balance when performing and is weight adjustable. Pec fly primarily target’s your pectoralis major muscles, which is the biggest muscle present in your chest.

1) Pec fly is an ideal exercise for building strength by stretching the chest muscles.

2) You are seated while performing this exercise as a result pec fly is more safe and simple for beginners.

3) The posture acquired when performing this exercise helps in training the muscles more effectively.

4) This exercise also works on your posture and relieves back pain problems.

How To Perform

1) Start this exercise by first adjusting the pec fly machine according to your comfort.

2) Sit on the machine with your back straight, activating your chest muscles. Your feet should be flat on the ground with shoulder width apart.

3) With a little bend in your elbow, hold both the handles and with a controlled movement bring them together in front of your chest.

4) Without touching both the handles together, hold the position and return back to the starting position. This is one repetition of pec fly exercise.

Chest Dips

Chest dip is a great bodyweight training exercise which target’s your chest, triceps and shoulder muscles. It is performed by hanging your body with help of two parallel bars.

1) You can add additional weight to this exercise by dip belt, dumbbell or chains.

2) This exercise boost serious strength in your upper body including triceps and shoulders.

3) Great for building muscle mass and increasing width of your chest.

4) Chest dip exercise boost your metabolism and requires minimum equipment.

How To Perform

1) Start this exercise by holding both the parallel bars with your hands.

2) Lift your body till your arms are straight.

3) Lean your body in forward direction and dip down till your shoulders and elbows align together.

4) Hold your position, lift your body back to the starting position. This is one repetition of chest dip exercise.

Pushups

Pushup is one of the most famous bodyweight training exercise, performed especially for building a hardcore chest. The movement works out for your overall upper body.

1) This exercise does not require any equipment and can be performed anywhere.

2) Pushup is great for improving posture and straightening of back bone.

3) This exercise also activates your core muscles and is found to be amazing for building abs.

4) Performing pushup exercise on regular basis will help you in building a strong physique and burning large amount of calories.

How To Perform

1) Begin this exercise by kneeling down to a mat or to the floor with your feet together behind you.

2) Bend forward to form a high plank position with your hands flat on the floor with shoulder width apart.

3) Your back should be straight with your feet with gap equivalent to width of your hips.

4)  Now you’re in pushup position, lower your body activating your core and pectoral muscles, your head looking in forward direction. Stop when your chest touch the ground.

5) Hold and slowly return back to the starting position. This is one repetition of pushup exercise.

Dumbbell Fly

Dumbbell fly is a weight training exercise performed by moving your hands in order to form an arc. This exercise generates tention in your chest muscle resulting into great build up.

1) This exercise opens up your chest muscle and reduces upper back pain.

2) Performing with light weights helps in range of motion and more repetitions.

3) Scapular retraction is one of the key benefits of this exercise which helps in strengthening the shoulder joint and improving posture.

4) Performing multiple repetitions help in shredding of the chest muscles which will enhance its shape.

How To Perform

1) Start this exercise by lying down on a flat bench. Place your feet on the ground on either side of the bench.

2) Pick up two dumbbells from the ground or ask a spotter to help you.

3) lift your arms above your chest till they are fully extended. Your elbows should have a little bend in them and your dumbbells should be facing towards each other.

4) Lower your arms in an arc motion till level of your chest. Your head and back should not be lifted while performing.

5) Hold the position and bring your arms back above your chest. This is one repetition of dumbbell fly exercise.

Incline Chest Press

Incline chest press is a upper body weight training exercise performed for building strength in pectoralis major muscle. This exercise is performed with help of incline chest press machine which puts tention in upper chest area.

1) Performed as a great muscle stabilizing exercise for the beginner’s.

2) The exercise is done on a machine which reduces chances of injury. You can adjust the machine according to your comfort.

3) Unlike bench press you can alternatively (performing with one hand at a time) target’s your chest muscles.

4) Developed pec muscles helps you in performing different sport’s activities like cricket, tennis and boxing etc.

How To Perform

1) Start this exercise by first adjusting the machine in order to sit in a proper form.

2) Place your feet on the ground with gap equivalent to the width of your hips.

3) Your back should be straight and head looking in forward direction, hold the handles with your hands. Your thumb curled up around the handle.

4) With your body stiff, push the bars till your arms are extended without locking your elbows. Inhale while you are pushing the bars away.

5) Hold the position, slowly bring the bars back to the starting position. Exhale when bringing the bars towards your chest. This is one repetition of incline chest press exercise.

Wide-grip Pushups

Wide pushup is a bodyweight strength training exercise which is more effective than traditional pushup exercise. The wide arms helps in targeting your chest and shoulders better than regular pushup.

1) Wide pushup increase muscle strength and endurance in chest (pectoralis major and minor), shoulders (anterior deltoids), and triceps

2) This exercise require no equipment therefore can be performed anywhere.

3) According to national academy of sports medicine, changing hand position provides variety and different range of motion.

4) Wide grip pushup is also a great core stabilizing exercise and also increases rate of metabolism in your body.

How To Perform

1) Begin by getting into a plank position with your hands wider than your shoulders width.

2) Place your head and fingers in forward direction with your back straight and legs hips width apart.

3) Lower your body with your elbows bending out to the side direction till your chest is fully extended.

4) Hold the position, slowly return back to the starting position. This is one repetition of wide grip pushup.

Bench Press

Bench press is the most common chest exercise performed by every gym person. Lifting the barbell boost your strength and endurance. Performing with heavy weights help in burning some serious calories.

1) Adding bench press exercise to your workout plan will increase your upper body push strength.

2) This exercise focus on the pectoralis major muscle and builds the round shape in your chest.

3) bench press strengthens your serratus anterior muscles which are present around the rib cage. This muscle helps in performing great repetition of many pushing movements.

4) Performing bench press helps in improving your performance in sports activities like hockey, basketball and swimming.

How To Perform

1) Start performing this exercise by lying on a flat bench with the barbell above your head.

2) Hold the barbell with your hands more than shoulder width apart, your thumb placed around the bar. Look towards the ceiling with your back straight.

3) Activate your chest muscles and bring the barbell down slowly towards the center of your chest. Breathe in while doing this movement.

4) Hold the position for a bit. With great force push up while breathing out. This is one repetition of bench press exercise.

Dumbbell Press

Dumbbell press is a weight training exercise performed for building muscle mass in your chest muscle. This exercise is great for developing stronger and bigger pectoral muscles.

1) You can focus on each side of chest muscle individually in comparison to other pushing movements.

2) Performing dumbbell press builds more defined and mascular physique.

3) It increases endurance in athletes for competition’s.

4) Doing high amount of repetitions and sets results into muscle hypertrophy.

How To Perform

1) Start performing this exercise by lying on a flat bench with your back straight.

2) Hold the dumbbells with both the hands shoulder width apart.

3) Extend your arms with dumbbells in each hand without locking your elbows.

4) Look towards the ceiling, engage your pectoral muscles. Slowly bring the dumbbells towards your chest. Inhale while bringing the weights down.

5) Hold the position, push the dumbbells back to the starting position. Exhale while pushing the weights back. This is one repetition of dumbbell press exercise.

Incline Bench Press

Incline bench press is a upper body weight training compound exercise performed for developing muscle strength in upper chest. It is similar to bench press, the difference is of the bench inclined at 30 degree angle.

1) Incline bench press works out your shoulders more than bench press. Since the inclination is comparable to shoulder press.

2) The inclination makes the lift harder for your muscles which results in developing muscles more effectively.

3) This movement is loved by bodybuilders as lifting heavy weights in this exercise builds great muscle mass.

4) This exercise also stabilizes your spine and core muscles.

How To Perform

1) Lie down on a incline bench under the barbell with bench 30 degree inclined.

2) Your back should be straight and head looking in upward direction.

3) Hold the barbell with both hands having distance equal to your shoulder width. Your legs should be placed on the ground with small gap.

4) Activate your chest, lift the barbell and bring it slowly towards your upper chest. Breadth in while bringing the barbell down.

5) Hold the position for a bit, lift the barbell with full force returning it to the starting position. Breadth out while lifting the barbell. This is one repetition of incline bench press exercise.

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