Monday – ‘International Chest Day’….Apparently…. But who am I to argue? So I bring you three top tips for tip-top pecs:
1) Pressing isn’t always the answer. Flyes and dips are far better for thickening the pecs. The pectoral fibers run horizontally so flyes are a superior way of lengthening and shortening the fibers. Pressing is an important part as the loads are invariably larger, but flyes (and dips depending on your ability level) train the muscle through a far different anatomical function and greater range of motion
2) Manipulation of tempo is an incredibly under utilized tool. Pausing in the bottom position of dips, flyes and presses allows for a very specific and strong contraction. Slow concentric (the way up) reps really allow for a good blow flow, squeeze and burn – Take 2 full seconds to press your dumbbells! Vary your training to stop your body adapting!
3) Sacrifice load for squeeze. Pressing 40’s is all well and good, but if your goal is to grow you MUST ensure you’re not just moving a weight from A to B – Consider the anatomical function of the muscle you are training and ‘squeeze it like it owes you money!’ You must be goal-specific; growth and strength are not necessarily the best goals to pair!
Here are some of my favorite ‘pec activators’ – exercises that stimulate the proper use of the pecs for growth:
-Paused Incline DB Press
-45 Degree Incline Flyes with an external rotation in the bottom position
-Supine cable Flyes (Lying on a bench)
-Low to High Cable Flyes
-Dumbbell presses – rotating the dumbbells inwards at the top so the pinky fingers face in
Try these to mix it up!
Matt Kelly – Personal trainer
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