The Best Workout Routines for Your Chest

Are you looking to get in shape while developing your chest muscles? You’re in luck! This article will provide you with the best workout routines to help you get the physique you desire. Unlock the potential of your chest with these proven exercises and get ready to transform your body.

Quick facts: Best Workout For Your Chest

  • ✅ Push-ups are the most effective workout for chest muscles – ACE Fitness
  • ✅ The bench press is the most popular workout for chest muscles – Strength Training for Beginners
  • ✅ Decline dumbbell bench press works both your chest and shoulder muscles – BodyBuilding
  • ✅ Incorporate Incline barbell bench presses to target the upper chest muscles – Women’s Health
  • ✅ The crab walk exercise engages your chest, core, and arms – MensHealth

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Warm Up

Before you start any workout routine for your chest, it’s important to warm up. By doing so, you will loosen your muscles and prepare them for the workout ahead. This can help reduce the chances of injury and maximize your performance.

Let’s take a look at the best warm up exercises to prepare your body for a chest workout:

Dynamic warm-up exercises

Dynamic warm-up exercises are an important part of any chest-focused workout routine. A dynamic warm-up helps to prepare your body for the physical activity to come, aiding in injury prevention and improving performance. Dynamic warm-up exercises can help to mobilize the muscles, increase heart rate and core temperature, increase blood flow to the chest muscles, as well as stretch and strengthen them.

Examples of dynamic warm-up exercises for your chest include:

  • Bodyweight squats
  • Walking lunges
  • Burpees
  • Jumping jacks
  • Mountain climbers
  • Plank jacks
  • Arm circles

When done correctly a dynamic warm up will ensure that your chest is prepared for the upcoming workout routine and improve performance.

Foam rolling

Foam rolling is a great way to warm up before any chest workout. Foam rolling for the chest area helps to increase flexibility, range of motion, decrease the risk of injury, and improve overall performance.

When foam rolling the chest area, be sure to target the pectoralis major muscle, which is located in the front of the chest. To properly foam roll this area, begin by lying face down on a foam roller. Lay with your back flat against the roller and your arms out to each side at a 90-degree angle. Roll up and down starting at the bottom of your chest and work your way up towards your collarbone making sure to hit all areas in between. Once you reach the top move back down towards bottom repeating the same process until you have rolled out all parts of your pectoralis major muscle. This process should take around 5-10 minutes depending on how much tension has built up in that muscle group.


Push-ups are one of the most popular and effective exercises for building chest muscles. It also helps strengthen the core and improves body posture. They can be modified to be easy or challenging, allowing you to tailor the exercise to your individual needs. Additionally, they require no equipment and can be done anywhere.

Let’s take a closer look at push-ups and how they can help you achieve your fitness goals.

Standard push-ups

Standard push-ups are the most basic type of bodyweight exercise you can do. This classic exercise targets your chest muscles, as well as your triceps, core and lower back muscles.

To do these properly, start in a plank position with your arms straight. Bend your elbows out to the side and lower your body until your chest is just above the ground. Push yourself back up to the starting position and repeat. If needed, you can adjust the intensity by either decreasing or increasing the hand placement or adding resistance bands or weights to your routine.

Standard push-ups are an effective way to build strength in your chest muscles and other areas.

Wide-grip push-ups

Wide-grip push-ups are an exercise that focuses on the chest muscles. This variation of the classic push-up is done by keeping your hands wider than shoulder width apart when performing the exercise. This pulls your chest further away from the ground and targets different muscle fibers.

Wide-grip Push-Ups are best done as part of a specific routine that also includes close grip and decline variations. This will ensure you target all aspects of your chest rather than just one area that may be dominant or require more attention to development.

Wide-grip Push-Ups are a great way to:

  • Increase chest size and strength
  • Improve overall upper body strength and flexibility
  • Prepare for more advanced exercises such as pull ups, dips, and chin ups

When performed correctly with a full range of motion and proper form, they offer one of the best ways to tone and strengthen your chest muscles with minimal risk for physical injury.

Decline push-ups

Decline push-ups are effective for working multiple muscle groups in the chest, arms and abs. This move places an emphasis on the lower chest muscles and develops power from the clavicular area.

To perform, begin in a plank position with your feet elevated on a bench, chair or other sturdy object and your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Ensure your hands remain flat on the ground as you lower your body toward the ground, then press back up to return to starting position.

If this variation is too challenging for you, try doing standard push-ups and later progress them to decline push-ups. Try to do 8–10 reps per set with 30 seconds of rest between sets for desired results.

Incline push-ups

Incline push-ups are a great way to strengthen your chest and arms muscles. The angles involved in the push-up vary depending on the depth at which you perform the exercise. The greater the incline, the more challenging your muscles have to work with each rep.

To do an inclined push-up, start in a plank position with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart and your hands slightly wider than your shoulders. Bend your elbows out to each side, dropping down until you almost touch the floor and then press back up until your arms are fully extended. Make sure to keep your core tight and maintain proper form while doing this exercise.

Inclined push-ups can help improve:

  • Chest strength
  • Proprioception
  • Joint stability
  • Balance
  • Body awareness

This exercise can also be done with variations such as adding weight for added resistance or adjusting the angle of incline by raising or lowering the surface on which you perform it.

Single-arm push-ups

Single-arm push-ups are an intense variation on the classic push-up. They require you to move one arm at a time, placing a lot of strain on your core muscles as well as your chest muscles.

To do this exercise, begin in the regular push-up position and complete one rep with only one arm before switching to the other arm and repeating the process. This exercise is best performed with caution. Start by doing five reps on each side and gradually work up as you become more comfortable with it.

Single-arm push ups provide an intense workout for your chest muscles while also challenging your core muscles, making them an ideal addition to any chest workout routine. For those looking to really challenge themselves and raise their level of fitness, single-arm push ups are an excellent exercise choice that can provide real results if done properly and consistently!

Chest Press

The chest press is one of the best exercises for developing your chest muscles. This exercise can be performed using either a dumbbell or a barbell. It is an effective way to increase strength and muscle size in your chest area. This exercise can also help to improve posture and make your chest look more toned.

Let’s take a closer look at the chest press and its benefits.

Flat bench press

The flat bench press is one of the most popular chest exercises. It is a compound exercise that works all of the major muscles in your chest, including the pectoralis major, triceps brachii, and anterior deltoid.

To perform a flat bench press, you will need access to a flat weight bench and a barbell or dumbbells. Lie on your back on the flat bench with your feet planted firmly on the ground and feet shoulder width apart. With an overhand grip slightly wider than shoulder width, lift the dumbbells off of the floor one at a time or unrack the barbell from the rack if using one. Slowly lower the weight down towards your chest in an arching motion keeping your elbows tucked in close to your body until it touches your chest just under where your collarbone meets. Push up through mid-chest region squeezing hard as you come up before lowering again for another repetition.

Incline bench press

The incline bench press is a compound exercise that specifically targets the upper chest muscles. It’s an excellent exercise for developing strength, power, and size with the focus being on the upper pec area.

It’s performed by lying flat on a bench set at an angle of about 30-45 degrees and pushing a barbell up from your chest. Make sure to press straight up with full extension at the elbow joint before returning to starting position.

The incline bench press can also be done with dumbbells or cables for added variety. Be sure to maintain proper form by squeezing your chest muscles at the top of each rep and really focusing on contracting them as you raise and lower the weight. This exercise is best done in combination with other exercises such as:

  • Flat bench
  • Decline press
  • Flyes

for maximum upper body development.

Decline bench press

The Decline Bench Press is an effective chest exercise for targeting the lower chest muscles. To perform this exercise, start by lying flat on a decline bench. Ensure that your feet are securely anchored to the bench at the bottom. You may also choose to place a pad on the barbell for comfort, if needed.

Grip the barbell with your hands just beyond shoulder width apart and slowly lower it towards your chest until it nearly touches your chest muscles. Make sure to keep your elbows pointing outward throughout the entire exercise range of motion. When you have lowered the barbell as far as possible without it touching your chest, slowly press up with enough control to avoid momentum and return to starting position.

This exercise can be varied by:

  • Adjusting the angle of decline
  • Using dumbbells instead of a barbell.

Single-arm cable chest press

The single-arm cable chest press, is a great way to work the chest and shoulders at the same time. To do this exercise correctly, you will need a cable machine with an adjustable weight stack. Before you start your workout, make sure the height of the pulley is slightly below your shoulder level.

Then stand in front of the machine with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart and grab one handle with your palm facing down. Press your arm straight out in front of you, in line with your chest, as far away from your body as possible while keeping it close to perpendicular throughout the press. Make sure to keep your core engaged and only move the cable handle during this exercise. As you press forward, squeeze through your chest and pause for a split second before slowly returning back to start position.

Repeat on each arm for desired number of repetitions, alternating sides if desired.

Chest Flys

Chest flys is an effective exercise for your chest muscles. It helps to build strength and definition in the chest muscles and can be done with varying levels of difficulty. This exercise can be done using dumbbells or cables and is a great way to target the chest muscles.

Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of chest flys:

Cable chest flys

Cable chest flys are a popular and effective exercise for training the chest or pectoral muscles. This workout is done by using a cable machine, with two handles attached to the pulleys. You stand about shoulder-width apart as you hold the handles, then slowly open your arms out until they are level with your shoulders. Throughout this movement, your arms should remain in front of you and your elbows should not be locked out at any time.

When you reach the end range of motion, hold for a brief second and then return to the starting position.

Cable chest flys are great for targeting all areas of the chest, including both inner and outer muscles. It is considered an isolation exercise as it forces you to use only one joint – the shoulder joint – to lift the weight. For best results, choose a weight that’s challenging but comfortable – it shouldn’t be too heavy as this could lead to injury if done incorrectly. You should aim for:

  • 3 sets of 8-12 reps
  • 1 minute rest between sets

Dumbbell chest flys

Dumbbell chest flys are an excellent exercise for targeting the muscles of the chest. They involve isolating the chest with light weights, while also challenging your core strength.

To perform dumbbell chest flys, begin in a seated position with your feet flat on the floor and your back straight. Hold a pair of dumbbells with both hands; palms facing each other and keeping a slight bend in your elbows. Raise both dumbbells up to shoulder height then extend them directly out to the side in a “fly” motion until they are in front of you at torso level. Slowly lower them back down, extending at the elbows as they go until they reach shoulder height again. Repeat this motion 12–15 times for 3 sets before resting.

Dumbbell chest flys can be done with either heavy or light weights depending on ability and desired muscle build – so make sure to adjust accordingly!

Incline chest flys

Incline chest flys are a great exercises to target the upper portion of the pectoral muscles. This type of exercise involves lying on an inclined bench with a dumbbell in each hand. You then begin by raising both arms out at shoulder level and making sure that your palms are facing each other. The exercises is usually done in three sets of twelve reps.

The incline bench helps to engage the front deltoid and upper chest muscles while isolating these muscle groups from the lower chest and triceps, making this an overall effective exercise for targeting all areas of your chest muscles.

When performing incline chest flys, it’s important to keep the following tips in mind:

  • Keep your torso still and not rotate your arms during the movement; otherwise, you will shift away from working the targeted muscle group.
  • Make sure that you keep constant tension on the muscles throughout each rep for maximum benefit.


Pull-ups are a great exercise for building a strong, defined chest. They are also a fantastic way of developing strength and endurance in the muscles of the upper body. Pull-ups target the pectorals, deltoids, biceps and latissimus dorsi, making them an effective exercise for targeting multiple muscle groups.

Let’s take a closer look at how to do pull-ups and what the benefits are.

Standard pull-ups

Standard pull-ups are a great way to work the muscles of your chest and build upper body strength. This exercise involves pulling yourself up from a hangingposition towards the bar using only your arms and torso muscles. It’s important to maintain proper form throughout the entire movement to maximize the effectiveness of this exercise.

When beginning standard pull-ups, start with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and try to keep your elbows hugged in towards your sides as you pull yourself up. Be sure to only go up as far as you can comfortably, never reaching full extension at the top of the movement.

If you need some assistance while performing this exercise, try using an elastic band wrapped around the bar and over your feet for added support.

Wide-grip pull-ups

Wide-grip pull-ups are a full body exercise that target the upper body, specifically the chest and back muscles. At lower rep ranges, they can help to build strength while at higher rep ranges they help sculpt the muscles.

To perform a wide-grip pull-up, start by gripping the bar with your hands wider than shoulder width and hang down so your arms are fully extended. Pull the bar up until your chin reaches above bar level. Hold for a second, then slowly lower yourself down to starting position. This exercise requires an impressive amount of strength and should be performed with proper form and technique in order to avoid injury. As such, it may be beneficial to start with assisted pull-ups if you have difficulty performing them unassisted or scale down by using lighter weight (such as a resistance band).

Close-grip pull-ups

Close-grip pull-ups are a great way to target your chest muscles. In this exercise, you use a narrower grip than in regular pull-ups, where your palms are facing one another with your hands roughly 8 to 10 inches apart. As you pull yourself up and down with the close grip, be sure to keep your elbows close together and directly under the chin and straighten them as you lift yourself up. This will help engage those chest muscles more effectively.

Additionally, use a slow, controlled tempo when lowering yourself back down and hold the top position for two seconds before releasing it to increase time under tension for maximum gains. When performing close-grip pull ups be sure not to arch or round your back as it can lead to injury in the lower back area.

Single-arm pull-ups

Single-arm pull ups are a variation of a regular pull up. They require more strength and stability than the traditional two-armed version, as athletes need to use one arm to both lift and stabilize the weight of their body simultaneously. In addition to building upper body strength, doing single-arm pull ups also increases core and grip strength, as well as overall body balance.

To perform single-arm pull ups, start by positioning your feet close to the edge of the bar while gripping it tightly with one hand. To perform a single arm pull up, simply draw your elbow down towards your knee while pulling yourself up until your chin is above the bar. When you’ve completed one repetition, lower yourself down again and repeat with your other arm. When done correctly, this exercise will build muscle mass in both arms while providing you with an effective upper body workout.

Cool Down

Cooling down after a chest workout routine is just as important as the actual workout itself. When you cool down, you allow your body’s natural recovery process to begin and can help to reduce potential injury or soreness. Proper cool-down exercises can also help reduce the amount of stress your body is under, resulting in better performance and improved overall health.

Let’s take a look at some cool down strategies for chest workouts:

Light stretching

Light stretching, or dynamic stretching, is a great way to cool down after an intense chest workout. Dynamic stretching involves using gentle bouncing motions to slowly stretch the muscle and increase its range of motion. This type of stretching helps your muscles transition from working hard to resting and helps keep your body from going into shock from the intense activity.

Dynamic stretching can be done with a variety of moves such as arm swings, leg swings, torso rotations, and shoulder circles. When performing these stretches make sure to do them slowly instead of quickly in order to target the correct muscles correctly. Light stretching also helps reduce soreness so it is important for any chest workout routine.

Foam rolling

Foam rolling is a popular exercise used by athletes and bodybuilders to improve shoulder mobility and prevent injury. This technique involves placing a foam roller on the floor and then rolling back and forth to loosen tight muscles, stimulate circulation, and break down scar tissue.

For chest workouts, foam rolling can help warm-up the muscles prior to performing exercises. It’s important to target all areas of your chest, including the upper chest, lower chest, sides of the chest, as well as your shoulders and back. To use a foam roller for this purpose, begin by laying it on the ground and position yourself on top so that you can target individual muscle groups. Roll up-and-down slowly to ensure maximum pressure is applied effectively before repeating with other body parts.

Foam rolling is an excellent way to cool down after a rigorous workout because it helps you relax those overworked muscles while improving your range of motion.

FAQs about: Best Workout For Your Chest

Q: What are the best exercises for chest?

A: The best exercises for chest include the bench press, push-ups, dips, and chest flys.

Q: How many sets and reps should I do for chest?

A: Generally, you should aim for 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps. However, this may vary depending on your goals and fitness level.

Q: What should I do if I don’t have access to weights?

A: If you don’t have access to weights, there are plenty of bodyweight exercises you can do such as push-ups, dips, and chest flys.

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