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The Best Dumbbell Chest Workout to Build Muscle and Look Great

Upgrade your pecs using only dumbbells.

If you are looking for symmetrical pecs, check out the best dumbbell chest workout to build muscle and look great designed by Jeff Cavaliere.

Jeff Cavaliere was the head physical therapist of the New York Mets for 3 years and is now a YouTube sensation. He delivers clear information without noise on his ATHLEAN-X YouTube channel.

Dumbbells are one of the best minimal fitness equipment you can have for your home gym. With a pair of dumbbells, you can train any part of your body you deem necessary. Dumbbells also turn an exercise into a unilateral movement.

Unilateral exercises, which involve working one side of the body at a time, offer numerous benefits. They help to address muscle imbalances by allowing each side to work independently, promoting symmetrical development and reducing strength discrepancies. Unilateral exercises also engage the core and stabilizer muscles more effectively, enhancing overall balance and stability. Additionally, they can help improve coordination, proprioception, and functional strength, as they mimic real-life movements that often involve one side of the body at a time. Incorporating unilateral exercises into your training routine can contribute to better overall strength, balance, and injury prevention.

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But enough of talking about how great dumbbells are, let’s get down to the point. You want to know what is the best dumbbell chest workout to build muscle and look great. Check out below.

The Best Dumbbell Chest Workout to Build Muscle and Look Great

Although this is a dumbbell-only chest workout, that doesn’t mean you will be using the same pair of dumbbells throughout the movement. We want to create tension and hypertrophy on your pecs, so you need to choose weights that will get you to failure in the rep ranges mentioned below.

Here is Cavaliere’s best dumbbell chest workout to build muscle and look great:

  1. Flat Dumbbell Bench Press x 5-6 reps to failure into Dumbbell Push-Ups x failure (3 Sets)
  2. Weighted Pause Dips x 6-8 reps to failure into BW Dips x failure (3 Sets)
  3. Incline Crush Grip Dumbbell Press x 8-10 reps to failure into Decline Push-Ups x failure (3 Sets)
  4. Dumbbell Floor Flyes x 8-10 reps to failure into Phelps Press (Eccentric Floor Fly) x failure (3 Sets)
  5. Dumbbell Upper Chest Pullovers x 10-12 Reps (2-3 Sets)

Since there are no weight measurements in the workout, you should choose a pair of dumbbells that will get you to failure in the rep range mentioned for each exercise. For example, for the flat dumbbell bench press, choose a pair of heavyweight dumbbells that will get you to failure, or close to it, in the 5-6 reps. Choose another pair of dumbbells for the dips, incline dumbbell press, and floor flyes.

dumbbell bench pressSource: RODNAE Productions / Pexels

Why is this the best dumbbell chest workout for symmetrical pecs? Cavaliere notes that it is not only crucial to train to failure, but also through failure. That means doing an exercise, in this case chest movements, and perform reps to failure and superseting with another less demanding chest exercise (in this case bodyweight chest exercises).

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That way, when your body thinks it has reached failure in a determined exercise, you throw him another exercise that will push your hypertrophy to new levels.

Check out the video below for more information on the best dumbbell chest workout by Jeff Cavaliere.

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Why Should You Do Dumbbell Workouts?

Dumbbells are excellent for exercising due to several reasons. Firstly, they provide a versatile and efficient way to target multiple muscle groups. With dumbbells, you can perform a wide range of exercises that engage various muscles, such as bicep curls, shoulder presses, lunges, and chest presses. This versatility allows you to create a well-rounded workout routine that targets different areas of your body, promoting overall strength and muscle development.

Secondly, dumbbells offer a functional approach to training. Unlike machines that restrict your movement patterns, dumbbells require you to stabilize and balance the weights, engaging your stabilizer muscles and promoting better coordination. This functional aspect translates to real-life movements and can enhance your performance in activities such as sports or daily tasks.

Lastly, dumbbells are highly accessible and adaptable. They come in different sizes and weights, making them suitable for individuals of various fitness levels and abilities. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced lifter, dumbbells can be adjusted to match your strength and goals. Additionally, they are relatively compact and portable, allowing you to exercise at home or take them with you to the gym or while travelling.

In summary, dumbbells are a great choice for exercising due to their versatility, functional benefits, and accessibility. Incorporating dumbbell exercises into your fitness routine can help you target multiple muscle groups, improve stability and coordination, and accommodate different fitness levels. Whether you aim to build strength, tone muscles, or enhance overall fitness, dumbbells provide a practical and effective tool for achieving your goals.

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Dumbbell bench press

How Often Should You Train Your Chest?

The frequency of training your chest depends on various factors such as your fitness goals, overall training program, and individual recovery ability. However, a general guideline for chest training frequency is to aim for 1-2 sessions per week.

If your goal is to build strength and muscle mass in your chest, you may benefit from training your chest twice a week. This frequency allows for sufficient stimulus and recovery time between sessions, promoting muscle growth and strength development. You can incorporate different exercises such as bench presses, dumbbell flyes, and push-ups to target your chest from various angles.

On the other hand, if your goal is to maintain chest strength or improve overall fitness, one session per week may be sufficient. This frequency ensures that you adequately work your chest muscles while leaving ample recovery time for other muscle groups in your training program.

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It’s essential to listen to your body and monitor how your chest muscles respond to training. If you experience prolonged muscle soreness or decreased performance, it may be a sign that you need more recovery time between chest workouts. Adjusting your training frequency based on your individual needs and recovery capacity is crucial for optimizing results and avoiding overtraining.

Remember that chest training is just one component of a well-rounded fitness routine. Balancing chest exercises with exercises for other muscle groups, along with proper nutrition and rest, is essential for overall fitness and health. Consulting with a qualified fitness professional can help you design a training program that suits your specific goals and needs.

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