Posted on February 10, 2017 by Kate Halsall

Incline vs decline. Barbell or dumbbells. Mass or strength. How much rest? These are just some examples of the conversations we’ve been having in the gym this week. The truth is that there is no one way to train your chest! Plus everyone trains differently as everyone has different training goals. But to help out, here are some of our top chest training tips!


  • Know Your Muscles! We don’t mean go out and study anatomy – we just mean that you should at least understand which muscles you’re using during the exercise, to ensure you hit all of them! Which comes nicely to my next point:
  • Utilise Incline, Flat and Decline!
    • Bench Press – The primary muscles worked are the triceps brachii, pectoralis major and anterior (front) deltoids.
    • Chest Flys – The primary muscles worked are the pectoralis major and minor,  serratus anterior muscles, front deltoids and rotator cuffs.
    • Decline – targets the greatest amount of muscle fibers in the lower pectoral region
    • Incline – target the greatest amount of muscle fibers in the upper pectoral region
    • Flat – the whole pectoral muscle
  • Use Different exercises!
    • Press Ups – staggered hands, feet elevated, chest elevated, plyometric
    • Chest Press – barbell AND dumbbell, single arm, with resistance bands
    • Flys – Cable and dumbbell
    • Dips (using a dip bar)
  • Try different grips! Wide grip (wider than usual!), narrow grip, uneven
  • Change the tempo or the reps! Try slower on the downward phase, pause at the bottom, slower on the upward phase and so on.
  • Rest! Chris wrote in one of his old blogs that working the chest 2 or 3 times a week is okay providing the volume on each session is low. To quote him directly he said: “If you are doing 10 sets 3 times a week you are going to over train, and unfortunately over trained muscle gets smaller and weaker not bigger”.
  • Feed that muscle! Eat the right foods and get plenty of protein!