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Chest Exercises to Help Tone and More

Whether a man or a woman, strong, developed chest muscles are a plus. Learn how to sculpt your pecs in part 4 of WebMD's Fitness Series.

Incline Push-Up (Beginner)

  • Lie face down with hands on a secure bench, chair, or desk. Place hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, with feet hip-width apart and toes on floor.
  • Lower your body so that your chest is 4-8 inches from the bench.
  • Return to the starting position by extending at the elbows and pushing the body up.

Chest Exercise example 1

Chest Exercises example 2

Challenge: As you get stronger, try the push-up on the floor, being careful to stabilize the back by tightening the abdominals. You should look like a straight, diagonal line from the toes to the head.

Note: Remember to keep the head and trunk stabilized in a neutral position by contracting the abdominal and back muscles. Never fully lock out the elbows and avoid hyperextending the low back.

Dumbbell Bench Press

Chest Exercises example 2

Chest Exercises example 4

  • Lie back onto a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand.
  • Starting position: Lie onto your back and bring the dumbbells to your shoulders. Press the dumbbells up directly above your chest with palms facing forward.
  • Lower the dumbbells slowly, keeping your elbows pointed out.
  • Let your upper arm go parallel to slightly past parallel to the ground before returning to the starting position.
  • To end the exercise, place the dumbbells on onto your thighs or at sides.

Incline Dumbbell Chest Fly

Chest Exercises example 5

Chest Exercises example 6

  • Lie back onto an incline bench (45 degrees or less) with a dumbbell in each hand (you may rest each dumbbell on the corresponding thigh).
  • Starting position: Lie onto your back and bring the dumbbells to your shoulders. Press the dumbbells up directly above the chest with the dumbbells almost touching and palms facing each other.
  • Keeping the elbows slightly bent, lower the dumbbells out and away from each other in an arcing motion with hands aligned with the upper chest region.
  • Let your upper arm go parallel to slightly past parallel to the ground before returning to the starting position.
  • To end the exercise, place the dumbbells on shoulders, then onto your thighs or at sides.

See the entire WebMD Fitness Series.

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Reviewed on December 01, 2005

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