Dumbbell bench press definitely is one of the best chest exercises to develop your upper body strength. You will find no gym without a weight bench and sets of dumbbells; and You will always find serious bodybuilders using dumbbell bench press regularly as a testament to stabilization strength training workout. And if you are looking for a bench press alternative, this can be a great addition to your chest exercise routine.
- pectoralis major muscle (sternal)
- Pectoralis major muscle (clavicular)
- Triceps brachii muscle
- Deltoid anterior muscle
Dynamic stabilizers (DS):
- Biceps brachii muscle (short head)
How to maintain the right dumbbell bench press form?
Step 1: Pick the dumbbells up off the floor with a neutral grip where your palms are facing inwards. Sit down on the weight bench positioning the dumbbells in your hip crease
Step 2: Now lay down on the bench keeping the weights closure to your chest. When you are ready, push the dumbbells upwards while breathing out. Extend your elbows till your arms are straight and focus on your pectoral muscles that are getting worked out.
Step 3: Hold into that position for a moment, feel the stretch on your chest muscles, and then bring back down the weights slowly. Repeat the motion in all reps and sets.
One of the dumbbell bench press benefits is that it gives you more ranges of movements than the barbell bench press. Make good use of this opportunity through the following tips:
- Take the weights down below your shoulder levels and bring them closer together when you are at the top of the movement.
- But be careful that the dumbbells do not touch each other because that could take some of strains off your shoulder muscles.
- Keep the dumbbells a bit tilted at 45 degrees so that your elbows are positioned naturally
- Squeeze the weights as tightly as possible for irradiation so as to promote shoulder stability
- Don’t bounce the dumbbells together because you could lose stability in your shoulders, injuring yourself as a result
- Don’t forget to make sure that you keep tension in your ab muscles and never let your lower back arch too much
- Keep your legs flat on the floor. Never move your lower body during the set
Different Variations of Dumbbell Bench Press
1. Incline dumbbell chest press form
Step 1: Set the weight bench up at a 30% decline and remember that any more declination would be too extreme for you. It’s better if the decline bench has a leg brace so you can position yourself securely.
Step 2: Lie on your back on the bench and get a spotter to hand you the dumbbells if you are going heavy. Position the weights very close to your upper chest area
Step 3: Press the weights up till they almost touch each other above your chest. Then slowly lower the weights to the previous position
Women can also be benefited from this variation though workouts for women are slightly different than men.
2. Dumbbell decline bench press
Step 1: Set up the weight bench at a 45-degree angle. Sit on top of the bench’s slope and position your feet at the end of the bench
Step 2: Now lie down with your dumbbells keeping your grip in a natural position
Step 3: Slowly press the dumbbells upwards and bring them down. Be careful that the dumbbells don’t drift back over your head when you are lifting and keep your forearms perpendicular to the floor.
3. Alternating dumbbell bench press
This is almost similar to the flat bench dumbbell press except for the fact that instead of pressing your two hands upwards at the same time, you press one dumbbell upwards while keeping the other hand in the start position and then slowly bring it down. Then you do the same with the other hand. In terms of positioning the bench, you can try all the dumbbell chest press variations i.e. incline, decline and flat positionings of the weight bench.
4. Hammer grip dumbbell bench press
Similar to the previously mentioned alternating dumbbell bench press form, you can position your weight bench in two ways (either flat or incline) for the Hammer grip dumbbell bench press. But this time you have to hold the weights in a hammer grip. This is when your palms will be facing towards each other, the way you hold the dumbbells when you are doing the butterfly chest workout.
Keep the weights at your chest height when you are lying back on the bench and press upwards till your arms are extended fully. When you have reached on top, hold onto that position for a second and then slowly come back to the original position.
Now that you have a clear idea about what makes the proper dumbbell bench press form, incorporate all these different variations into your chest exercise routine to have a massive upper body.