Check out these 9 great tips that will help your chest grow bigger and faster.
These tricks were first shared by Max Posternak, the founder of Gravity Transformation with over 5.5 million YouTube subscribers. Although he usually focuses on weight loss tips, this time he shared how to grow the pecs to an admirable size.
Enhancing the size and strength of your chest can significantly improve your physical appearance and contribute to everyday activities like opening doors, rising from the floor, and lifting heavy objects with greater ease.
The chest not only commands attention as a prominent feature of your physique but also holds significant sway over upper body strength due to its substantial muscle mass. However, many individuals, particularly men, encounter challenges in developing chest muscles, especially the upper chest.
Below you will find Posternak’s 9 great tips that will help your chest grow.
9 Great Tips That Will Help Your Chest Grow
Let’s start with adopting a bodybuilding-style bench press technique rather than a powerlifting approach. While bench pressing like a powerlifter may be in vogue, it’s crucial to differentiate between the two methodologies. The primary distinction between these styles lies in the range of motion.
Powerlifting bench press focuses on minimizing range of motion to facilitate lifting maximal weights. This can be achieved through a wider grip or a pronounced lower back arch to bring the body closer to the bar. In contrast, the bodybuilding bench press encourages maintaining a less pronounced arch, thereby allowing for a broader range of motion.
This is advantageous for muscle growth due to three key factors. Firstly, a full range of motion triggers higher muscle activation. Secondly, various segments of a movement engage different aspects of a muscle, and a complete range of motion ensures comprehensive muscle engagement. Lastly, muscle stretching under load, achievable through a full range of motion, effectively promotes muscle overload. In pursuit of optimal muscle growth, the bodybuilding bench pressing style prevails over powerlifting.
Another effective technique involves directing your hands inward during barbell bench presses and dumbbell hex pressing movements. This simple adjustment can amplify chest development. Visualize an attempt to bring your hands together while bench pressing, even though the barbell remains fixed and unyielding. This technique enhances chest activation by stimulating the shoulder’s horizontal adduction function. Although the hands remain stationary, the deliberate hand-squeezing action intensifies tension on the chest muscles.
If you have a consistent training background, consider elevating the frequency of your chest workouts to optimize gains. This recommendation applies beyond the beginner stage, as research suggests that beginners can effectively stimulate muscle growth by training each muscle group once a week.
As you progress, achieving weight increments in nearly every workout becomes more challenging. To maximize muscle development, research supports increasing training frequency. According to Posternak, a 2016 systematic review and meta-analysis concluded that training a muscle group twice a week leads to superior muscle growth compared to training it once a week. Additional studies have corroborated this finding, highlighting enhanced muscle and strength gains with higher workout frequency.
Full range of motion boosts muscle growth. That is why you should consider going lower during barbell bench presses.
- Engages more muscle fibres.
- Increases time under tension for hypertrophy.
- Enhances eccentric loading and damage.
- Activates more motor units.
- Encourages stretching under load for protein synthesis.
- Elevates functional strength and joint stability. Prioritize proper form to prevent injury. Seek professional guidance for optimal results.
Alternating between different weights and rep ranges is a smart approach to enhance chest muscle growth. This strategy, known as periodization, provides multiple advantages. Firstly, it engages a wider range of muscle fibres by targeting both fast-twitch and slow-twitch fibres through different rep ranges. This comprehensive stimulation promotes more well-rounded muscle development. Secondly, the variation prevents muscle adaptation, ensuring continuous progress and preventing plateaus.
By switching between heavier weights and lower reps and lighter weights and higher reps, you tap into diverse pathways for muscle hypertrophy. Higher rep ranges induce metabolic stress and swelling, fostering cell growth, while lower rep ranges with heavier weights create greater mechanical tension. This combination boosts muscle growth potential. Additionally, alternating between different weights and rep schemes can minimize the risk of injury, keep workouts engaging, and contribute to long-term adherence.
Incorporating periodization into your training plan, structured with phases of varying intensities, enables you to effectively leverage weight and rep alternation. This approach optimizes chest muscle growth while promoting strength, endurance, and injury prevention. Adapting this strategy to your individual fitness level and goals is essential, and seeking guidance from a fitness professional can help tailor a balanced and progressive program.
In a nutshell, the 9 great tips that will help your chest grow are:
- Bench like a bodybuilder
- Press hands together when you bench
- Increase chest workout frequency
- Go lower on presses
- Alternate weights and reps
- Don’t go overboard with inclines
- Use Cable Presses
- Upgrade your flyes
- Increase weight
To fully understand the rest of these tips, watch Posternak’s video below.
Training the chest is important for several reasons, and it plays a significant role in overall strength, aesthetics, and functional fitness. Here are some key reasons why chest training is crucial:
- Upper Body Strength: The chest muscles, specifically the pectoralis major and minor, are essential for various upper body movements, such as pushing, lifting, and carrying. A strong chest provides a solid foundation for upper body strength and improves performance in exercises like bench press, push-ups, and overhead presses.
- Symmetry and Aesthetics: A well-developed chest enhances the overall appearance of the upper body. It contributes to a balanced and proportionate physique, especially when combined with well-trained shoulders and back muscles. Aesthetically pleasing chest muscles can boost confidence and self-esteem.
- Functional Movements: Chest strength is crucial for performing daily activities like pushing doors open, carrying groceries, and lifting objects. Having a strong chest helps in maintaining proper posture and preventing injuries during these movements.
- Core Stability: Many chest exercises engage the core muscles to stabilize the body during pressing movements. This indirect activation of the core helps improve core strength and stability, which is essential for overall body support and balance.
- Bone Health: Resistance training, including chest exercises, can contribute to better bone health. Weight-bearing exercises like bench press can stimulate bone remodeling and help prevent osteoporosis.
Now, as for the frequency of chest training, it depends on several factors, including your fitness level, training experience, and overall workout routine. Generally, there are a few options to consider:
- Beginners: If you are new to strength training, it’s recommended to start with two to three chest workouts per week. This allows your muscles and joints to adapt to the new stress gradually.
- Intermediate and Advanced: For individuals with more experience and higher training intensity, training the chest two times per week can be beneficial. This frequency allows for sufficient recovery while still providing enough stimulus for muscle growth.
- Split Routines: Many weightlifters follow a split routine, where they focus on different muscle groups on different days. In such cases, you might train the chest once or twice a week, depending on how your workout routine is structured.
- Listen to Your Body: It’s essential to pay attention to your body’s feedback. If you experience excessive soreness, fatigue, or reduced performance, you might be overtraining. In that case, consider reducing the frequency or volume of chest workouts.
- Recovery: Remember that muscle growth happens during rest and recovery. Give your chest muscles enough time to recover between workouts for optimal progress and injury prevention.
Incorporating variety in your chest workouts, including different exercises and rep ranges, can also be beneficial for overall muscle development. Always prioritize proper form and technique to minimize the risk of injury. If you’re uncertain about your training frequency or program, consulting a qualified fitness professional can help design a personalized plan that suits your goals and fitness level.