If you’re suffering with a pigeon chest and find that you can’t seem to build up your chest, no matter how hard you train, it may be time to go back to the drawing board to figure out where you’re going wrong. A big and powerful-looking chest can really help to create an aesthetic and muscular physique, so if your pecs aren’t responding to what you’re doing, it’s time to mix things up. Here are some proven tips to help you build a big chest.
Use different bench angles – When it comes to popular chest exercises, you’ll often find that it is the flat bench barbell press that many consider to be the king of chest exercises. This exercise is indeed wonderful for adding muscle mass and size to your pectoral muscles, but it isn’t the only bench press variant that you should perform. Benches in the gym are adjustable, and they are adjustable for a reason. Incline presses for example, will work the upper portion of the chest, while decline presses work the lower pecs. You also do not have to stick with decline, flat, and incline. Try different angles to work slightly different portions of the chest.
Use barbells and dumbbells – When you train your chest, you don’t need to just use dumbbells or a barbell, in fact, you shouldn’t. Experts recommend that you combine both pieces of equipment together to form the basis of your chest training routine. On incline presses for example, people recommend dumbbells because you can bring your elbows lower and can therefore get a better squeeze on the muscle. For adding mass to the chest, many people prefer barbells on flat bench, as it works the left and right pec evenly.
Slow down on the negative – Another great tip for really recruiting a large percentage of muscle fibres in the chest, and subsequently breaking them down in the process, is to focus on slowing things down on the negative portion of the lift. This increases the amount of time under tension that the muscle fibres are placed under, so the more damage you cause to them, the more muscle you will build. On a bench press for example, after pressing the bar into the air, slowly lower it down onto your chest as slowly as you can, as if you are trying to prevent it from touching your chest at all. Your chest will be incredibly sore once you’ve finished, but you’ll certainly be glad that you did it.
Don’t fear push ups – With popular chest exercises like cable flies, dumbbell presses, barbell presses, machine chest presses, and so on, people often think that weights and machines are the only way to go when it comes to chest development. In reality, the push up is one of the most effective chest exercises in existence, and it utilizes nothing but your own body weight for resistance. To really build a beefy chest, make sure you include push ups as part of your chest routine.