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How To Build Chest Muscle, Mass and Strength With the Flat Dumbbell Bench Press

One of the best chest exercises you can do.

Discover how to build chest muscle, mass and strength with the flat dumbbell bench press.

The exercise you are about to see is explained by Adam Schafer, one of the hosts of Mind Pump Podcast. The Mind Pump Podcast is an online radio show that talks all fitness related and, usually, is provocative. Its hosts are Sal Di StefanoAdam SchaferJustin Andrews, and Doug Egge. They also have a YouTube channel with more than 700k subscribers.

The flat dumbbell bench press is one of the best exercises for the chest, but only if you know how to do it properly. Check it out.

dumbbell bench pressSource: RODNAE Productions / Pexels
Don’t flare out your elbows.

How to Build Chest Muscle, Masa and Strength with the Flat Dumbbell Bench Press

Although it might sound easy to do flat dumbbell bench presses – after all, you simply lay on the bench and push a pair of dumbbells up and down – there are a lot of little things you need to keep in mind to get the most out of this exercise.

If not done correctly, you can transform this amazing chest exercise into a crappy triceps exercise. So pay attention to what Schafer had to say about how to perform this exercise correctly.

Here is a rundown of what he had to say:

  1. 4 points of contact – feet on the ground, butt, upper back and neck on the bench
  2. Natural arch on the lower back
  3. Pull shoulder blades back
  4. Don’t lock out the arms, keep a slight bent to keep tension from going to the elbows
  5. Don’t flare your elbows way open, or dipping them too close to the body

Schafer also talks about tempo of the exercise and positioning of the hands. Click on the video below for more information.

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How Heavy Should you Lift When Training for Muscle Growth?

When training for muscle growth (hypertrophy), the weight you lift, often referred to as the training load or intensity, is an important factor to consider. Here are some guidelines to help determine how heavy you should lift:

Use a weight that challenges you: To promote muscle growth, it’s important to use a weight that challenges your muscles. This means selecting a weight that allows you to complete the desired number of repetitions within the hypertrophy rep range (generally 8 to 12 reps) with proper form, while also feeling challenging towards the end of each set.

Choose a weight that elicits fatigue: The weight you select should cause fatigue in the target muscles by the end of each set. You should feel a sense of muscular burn or fatigue during the final few reps, indicating that the weight is appropriately challenging.

Progressive overload: To continue building muscle, it’s crucial to gradually increase the demands on your muscles over time. This can be achieved through progressive overload, which involves gradually increasing the weight you lift as your muscles adapt and grow stronger. Aim to progressively increase the weight as you become more comfortable with a certain weight range to continue stimulating muscle growth.

Form and technique: While it’s important to challenge yourself with heavier weights, it’s equally important to prioritize proper form and technique. Lifting weights that are too heavy and compromise your form can increase the risk of injury and reduce the effectiveness of the exercise. Focus on maintaining good form throughout each repetition, even when using challenging weights.

Source: Scott Webb

Individual capabilities: The appropriate weight will vary depending on your individual capabilities, strength level, and experience. What may be heavy for one person might be light for another. It’s important to listen to your body and select weights that are appropriate for your current fitness level.

Variation in training: Incorporating a variety of rep ranges and training modalities can be beneficial for overall muscle development. While the hypertrophy rep range (8-12 reps) is commonly associated with muscle growth, including both higher rep ranges (12-15+) and lower rep ranges (6-8) in your training can provide different stimuli and promote well-rounded muscle development.

Remember, finding the right weight is a process of trial and error. Start with a weight that challenges you within the recommended rep range, and adjust as needed based on your individual capabilities and progression. Consulting with a fitness professional or personal trainer can also provide guidance and help you determine the appropriate weight selection for your specific goals and needs.

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Benefits of Dumbbell Bench Press

The dumbbell bench press is a unilateral movement, which helps improve your form and correct muscle imbalances. In comparison, a barbell could make your work one side of your chest more than the other, but the DB press corrects that possible mistake.

Utilizing the dumbbell will also allow for a greater set of motion, compared to a barbell press. This, in turn, allows for a bigger muscle stretch and better contraction at the top of the movement.

The exercise also engage stabilizing muscles and as a result you will recruit and activate more muscle fibers.

Working with dumbbells allow for wrist rotation, and a free movement of elbows and arms, making the exercise less stressful on your joints.

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