Muscle & Fitness – Chest and shoulders – Part 2


Muscle & Fitness - Chest and shoulders - Part 2



to build mass in the chest we've designed a five exercise program we'll start with the incline barbell press permitting up during five sets of 12 then ten then eight then six and six reps again second we'll pair a mid down the flat bench barbell press three sets of six then six then ten reps each third we'll start heavy again for the decline dumbbell press then go lighter for the second and third of the three sets of reps we'll open the first and second sets with six to eight reps each then finish up with twelve reps the fourth exercise is a seated machine press where we'll do two sets of 10 reps each same way each time and we'll finish out the chest building program with one challenging wait two sets of 12 or intellagen the second time through no one's leaving this program hollow chested believe me the incline barbell press is a great mass builder to bless the upper pecs but again impeccable form is everything lie on the incline bench at roughly 30 to 45 degrees angle the steeper the angle the higher on your chest you'll be working but any more than about 45 degrees and you'll be working more shoulders than pecs spread your legs slightly with your feet flat on the floor to maintain balance keep your hips shoulders and head resting on the bench if you ever feel your hips rising that means you've got too much iron on the bar and you're not doing yourself any favors so lighten up on the plates grasp a racked barbell with a natural just wider than shoulder-width grip unwrap the bar yourself or with the help of spotter and lower it to your upper chest inhale and hold your breath as you press the weight upward keeping your elbows pointed out from your side's exhale as you pass the sticking point which is the most difficult part of the up phase and when you reach full extension meaning your arms are perfectly straight pause take advantage of that full extension just don't overextend now inhale again and hold your breath as you lower the weight under perfect control down to your upper chest if you can avoid pausing at the bottom that's a more efficient use of this exercise what you don't want to do is bounce off your chest always remember slow controlled focus movements this classic PEC builder depends on perfect form and continuous motion the rule here keep the bar moving at all times everyone thinks they generally know what they're doing with the bench press but let's see how we can maximize every single moment of it start by lying on your bench knees bent 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor your feet need to be flat for maximum stability your head shoulders and glutes are resting on the bench and you want to keep your natural slight arch in your lumbar spine now position yourself so that the barbell is on the rack directly above your head grasp the bar palms facing away with a slightly wider than shoulder-width grip lift the barbell off the rack or have a spotter standing behind you assist in handing it off hold the barbell up with extended arms without locking your elbows over your chest now you're in start position inhale and hold that breath as you lower the barbell until it barely touches your lower chest while keeping your elbows out from your body quickly but smoothly change direction pushing the brow ball up and away from your body moving it slightly toward the rack after your first few reps you're going to feel your sticking point partway up the lift as you push through it reach peak position with your arms fully extended then exhale lower the barbell in a slow to moderate rate and continue your reps focusing on a constant fluid controlled motion the decline dumbbell press is a compound lift that shifts the focus down to your lower pecs but you don't need to take my word for it do a few of these and you'll feel it all right set the angle of your decline bench between 30 and 45 degrees down lie face up on the bench securing your feet under the rollers your head shoulders and glutes should touch the bench with no arching or rounding of your back grasp the dumbbells with both hands and raise them beginning the exercise with your arms fully extended inhale and hold your breath as you lower the dumbbells to your lower chest and a slow to moderate speed bring the dumbbells down deep right here along the sides of your chest with your elbows pointing out to your sides away from your bottom position as always in benching you don't want to pause at the bottom so as you reach the end of the motion and just before the dumbbells touch your chest push up in an adjoining arc bringing your arms together at the top when you hit the sticking point on the way up exhale through it forcefully your ascent and descent should be continuous with no pausing resting or holding except for a slight pause at the very top as you extend your arms fully to maximally contract both your pectoralis major and your triceps do your set and sit up and let the blood flow out of your head before beginning your next set okay let's go over to the gym for the seated machine press machines let you focus on the contraction of muscles without having to worry about balancing free weights you can also concentrate on shifting your grip for variety trying out neutral grips for instance if the machines have them allowing you to mix things up a bit the seated machine press is fairly straightforward start by adjusting the height of the seat so that the hand grips are roughly at shoulder level or slightly below sit up straight with your back against the support pad place your feet flat on the floor directly under your knees about shoulder width apart grasp the handles with your palms facing away and keep your elbows out to the sides keep your hands alongside or slightly in front of your chest when you start otherwise you'll be stressing your shoulders okay inhale and hold your breath as you push the handles away from you remember holding your breath during exertion gives you internal stability safety and greater power once you pass the most difficult part of the movement and when your arms are extended pause for a moment then reverse the motion as your hands approach the sides of your chest smoothly change direction and repeat the movement as with all presses you don't want to pause at the bottom keep the bar moving steady smooth and concentrated the cable crossover is a great way to isolate your pecs but you have to be very careful not to bring your arms into it if something is that maybe to keep the stress on your pecs keep your elbows locked and slightly bent throughout the movement to prevent excessive stress on the elbow joint when you bring the cables across pretend that you are hugging a giant barrel or tree here we go grasp the stirrup handles attached to a pair of high cable pulleys with a palms-down grip stand in the middle of the two pulleys and take one short step forward with one foot staggered slightly for balance bend forward at the waist about fifteen to thirty degrees maintaining your normal spinal curvature in the starting position your arms should be out to the sides like this and nearly perpendicular to your body your elbows should be bent slightly and stiff to begin inhale and hold your breath for that extra power and stability as you begin the slightly downward forward pull holding your body stationary to assure the movement is focused and under control at all times keeping your elbows bent slightly put your arms forward until your hands come together or better yet even slightly across in front of your body hug that barrel and squeeze hold the contracted position for a second as you exhale then return to the starting position now don't let your arms extend fully keeping that bend in the elbows at the endpoint of the movement if you don't you'll be recruiting your triceps and you'll be stressing your shoulder joints unnecessarily a couple of comments in general the more you bend over the more you will be shifting emphases to the middle and upper pectoral region the more you stand upright the more intensely you'll recruit the lower pectoral region

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20 comments on “Muscle & Fitness – Chest and shoulders – Part 2

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