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Health and Fitness News

Chest Day

Build a bigger, stronger chest with these exercises.

Along with strong biceps and six-pack abs, men want their upper and lower chest muscles to stand out. If you’re willing to put in the work, that superhero, bodybuilder chest doesn’t have to be a dream. With a few exercises and a dedication to a consistent weight-lifting routine, you can have strong chest muscles and a physique to match it.
Variations of the bench press are the go-to exercise for building strong chest muscles, but other exercises make the list as well. Here are brief descriptions of a few of the most popular chest exercises you can do at the gym. The number of reps and sets you do will depend on your fitness level and fitness goals.

Flat Bench Barbell Press

Lie on a flat bench and place your feet flat on the floor. Hold the bar in an overhand grip with your hands a bit wider than shoulder-width apart. Lift the bar off the rack and gradually lower it toward your chest. When your elbows reach a 90-degree angle, use your chest and arm muscles to press the bar back up.
Incline Bench Dumbbell Press

Doing an incline bench press targets the upper chest. Using dumbbells rather than a barbell forces both sides of your chest to work independently, uses more muscles, and allows for a greater range of motion. Lie on your back on an incline bench and place your feet on the floor. Grasp a dumbbell in each hand and hold them outside each shoulder. Raise each dumbbell above your head but don’t let them touch. Lower and repeat.

Pec-Deck Machine

Chest flyes with cables or dumbbells are a great exercise but can be intimidating for beginners. For this reason, the pec-deck machine comes in handy to simplify the exercise for you. Sit on the platform, hold a lever handle in each hand or place your forearms against the levers (machine models vary), pull the levers together in front of your body, and release.

Dips

Another effective chest exercise is called the dip. Position your body between two parallel bars, place a hand on each bar, lock your arms straight, and hold your body up. Now, lean your upper body slightly forward, bend your elbows, and lower your body between the bars until you feel a stretch in your chest. Don’t allow your elbows to bend past 90 degrees. Using your chest muscles, raise your body back to the starting position.

Unilateral High Cable Fly

The cable crossover station provides several exercises that work your chest muscles. To do a high cable fly, attach a handle to the high pulley, hold the handle with one hand, and stand with your arm slightly bent out to your side toward the handle. Place your other hand on your hip and stabilize your hips and feet. Pull the cable handle down toward the middle of your torso, keeping your elbow in the same bent position. Pause and return to your starting position. Repeat with the other arm.

High Cable Crossover

Similar to the cable fly, the cable crossover uses both arms to work the chest muscles. Attach handles to pulleys on both sides of the station and stand in the middle. Hold a handle with each hand, keep your elbows slightly bent, and stabilize your feet and hips. Pull the handles together, making a wide arch in front of you. Your hands should meet about a foot in front of your abdomen. Pause, squeeze your chest muscles, and return to starting position in a controlled manner.