13 BEST Home Chest Exercises! (FOR A KILLER WORKOUT)


These are the 13 BEST Chest Exercises that you can do from home. Not currently doing these in your home chest workout? Start now! Exercises included will both be with absolutely no equipment, as well as some that are dumbbell only!

#1 Push-Up Holds

We’re going to be getting a variation of the classic and they are push-up holds. As opposed to the way that everyone does a push up, this is going to be a much stricter form of that by activating your chest more. 

  • When you’re coming down, focus on keeping those shoulder blades retracted.
  • When you come down about an inch away from the ground, do a pause hold. This will prevent a stretch reflex, increase time under tension and make the exercise much more effective.

#2 Plyometric Push-Ups

This one’s dedicated to the guys who are having a hard time doing regular push-ups or for those of you who actually really want to push yourselves with a variation of a push up that’s more so mixed with a high intensity interval training exercise (HIIT).

  • If you’re a beginner, 10-15 repetitions would be a good start.
  • If you need an advanced version, try sets of 30 seconds. 
  • Try to get those hands off the ground and get the chest to the floor. Keep the shoulder plates back when you’re pushing your body weight up so you can hit the chest and not so much your shoulders.

#3 Elevated Push-Ups

 These are excellent for you to hit that upper chest area.

  • Lift your feet off of the ground up to like six to twelve inches. Use a bench or cushions in your living room to get the needed height.
  • Try to focus on keeping those elbows nice and tight into the body so that you don’t get more forward internal rotation and cause damage to those shoulders when you’re coming down. 
  • Be sure to come down very nice and controlled.

#4 Wide Push-Ups

Up next we have the wide push-ups. 

  • While you’re performing this exercise do not try to get your arms way too far out.This will build unnecessary tensions in your muscle and especially cause much more shoulder pain.
  •  Keep it to a much more reachable distance. Just bring those hands two to three inches wider than your traditional push-up stands.
  • To make the exercise much more effective, try pushing and squeezing with those pecs. 

#5 Resistance Band Push-Ups

If you have a resistant band, try actually doing push -ups with them. Definitely not so conventional but it really is powerful. It would be more challenging especially as you get into that lock up position, which is traditionally very easy for this exercise because the band is getting pulled out.

  • I usually twist the band into a figure -8 on the back. This spreads an even amount of tension on the right arm and the left arm.
  •  If you can’t get the band completely underneath the palm of your hands, you can hook them on your thumbs. 
  • I definitely recommend you start out with a thinner band for this exercise just to start because it is a lot more challenging.

#6 Pike Push-Ups

This one is also another great variation of the classic push-up to hit that upper chest the same way with the elevated push-ups.

  •  To prevent the stretch reflex, lower your body easily by also giving a pause when your nose is about to touch the ground.
  • Most important things to be aware of is your control and of course your form. 

#7 Traditional Push-Ups

This comes with no surprise but the actual thing you need to focus on is the execution.

  • Perform this exercise with the proper form. Keep those arms nice and tight towards your torso.
  • Place your hands below the shoulders and you would have the right form.

#8 DB Floor Press

Now, if you’re fortunate enough to have dumbbells or if you are planning on ordering some, this and the next few exercises would be perfect for you. Getting back to the floor press, you will have limited range of motion here. So it’s important to properly perform the exercise so that you can maximize the benefits. 

  • As you’re lowering down your arms, be gentle with the motion and prevent the elbow from slamming on the ground. We don’t need injuries while you’re at home. 
  • Try to bring your hands and the dumbbells together when you are in that lockout position which gives you much more control.
  • Activate your chest by trying to squeeze your pectorals together as hard as you possibly can this will maximize the benefit of the exercise and get those pecs to work a little bit harder.

#9 DB Floor Fly

A classic that we can do will be the floor flies. This one is no exception to the others as the execution is very important. 

  •  As you’re coming down ease the motion with elongated elbows to prevent those from slamming on the ground.
  • When you bring those dumbbells up towards each other, focus on squeezing and contracting your chest on every repetition so you can get maximum benefit. 

#10 DB Squeeze Press

This is also another essential dumbbell exercise you definitely need to consider. As a side note, this is the last ‘on the floor’ exercise we will talking about today. 

  • Focus on pressing the dumbbells together as you’re lowering it down. 
  • Keep some tension on the chest, but mainly focus on trying to crush those dumbbells together. This will get a good squeeze and activation out of the chest.
  •  I do recommend doing this exercise before the other ones just simply because it’s so good at isolating the chest.

#11 DB Fly by Standing

So with those hands in a supinated position (simply means Palms facing up), you’re going to be bringing those dumbbells up and towards each other.

  • It’s important that you try and keep those dumbbells about an inch or two inches away from your torso.
  • So that when you’re bringing those dumbbells up, you’re actually activating the chest by shortening the muscle fibers thus maximizing the effect of the exercise.

#12 DB Inclined Bench Press

If you’re fortunate enough to not only have a pair of dumbbells, but also have a bench then you can always perform the dumbbell incline bench press. You can also always perform the traditional dumbbell bench press.

  • Be sure to control that form.
  • Squeeze your chest trying to shorten that Peck fiber muscle.

#13 DB Inclined Bench Flys

As I said before, if you have a bench you can also perform the dumbbell incline bench flies. But it’s definitely possible to perform this on a standard flat bench as well.

  • Be sure not to bring those arms or those elbows too far back as this will cause strain on the chest.
  • Be sure to come back nice and slow so you can take advantage of all those micro muscle tears by the eccentric contraction.

So that’s a wrap for the best exercises that can help you build really good chest muscles without leaving your home. If you are looking more of contents like these be sure to checkout the official Barbarian Body app (available in both Android and iOS).

They include Best workout programs all of my best exclusive videos all in one place that can actually can download the video. Here we have workout templates, printables, recipe books, diet plans and much more.

If you want to try it free for the next seven days, go ahead and do take advantage while you’re on quarantine. So, see your right there.

5 KILLER Chest Exercises With NO BENCH

Hey Everyone, welcome to another blog post! Today’s post is going to show you 5 chest exercises without a bench.

Chest Exercises Without A Bench #1: Zevaend Press

The what?! The Ze-va-end press, weird word, right? Well, this exercise is phenomenal for helping you to isolate the pecs. What you have to do for this exercise is: grab two plates and put them together, press away from your body, then bring the plates back in towards your torso and ensure that you’re keeping your arms parallel to the ground at the horizontal. While doing this exercise make sure you are squeezing the plates. See photos below for an example of what this exercise looks like.

Exercise #2: Standing Chest Flys

Moving onto exercise number 2, standing chest flys. This exercise is absolutely terrific if you’re trying to target the upper pec area. Because of the range of motion that your arm is following here, you’re going to be able to target the upper pec area, coming from low, then coming wide, bringing those dumbbells together at the top and squeezing them there. What I do to level up this exercise, is do a half a second isometric hold at the peak of the contraction, squeezing my pectoral muscles as hard as I possibly can. Make sure when you are doing this exercise that you’re not doing too much swinging when you’re trying to get the weight up and focus on strictly using the pecs to lift the dumbbells.

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Exercise #3: Resistance Band Flys

The third exercise is an item of my own creation, resistance band flys. This is a substitute of what you might be able to do with the cables. The reason that you may want to try this, as opposed to just doing the cable flys, is because as you bring the hands closer towards the peak of the contraction, when they’re close to each other, that’s actually the most difficult portion of this exercise. When you’re pulling the arms in closer, this exercise gets much more difficult and requires a whole new level of pectoral muscle fiber recruitment that you now get to experience. Make sure when you’re doing this exercise that you have a nice, slow tempo to ensure you’re doing the best you can to stabilize yourself.

Exercise #4: Dumbbell Floor Flys

Adding to the chest exercises without a bench, is the dumbbell floor flys. What you want to be doing with this exercise is really milking the eccentrics, don’t just drop the dumbbells. This is going to be the point of motion where you’re going to tear open and break down the most amount of muscle fiber as you possibly can. Lightly touch your elbows on the floor and when you’re bringing those dumbbells up, focus on squeezing. The key is to actually focus on moving the dumbbell with your pecs and squeeze them at the top, making sure that you are not just slamming them at the top and bringing them right back down.

Exercise #5: Resistance Band Push-Ups

The fifth and final exercise is a variation of the classic, resistance band push-ups. Normally when you do a push-up, the easiest portion is when you’re about to lock out. But by adding in the resistance band, it’s actually going to be the most difficult portion of the exercise. This is going to get increasingly difficult as you begin to push yourself up from the floor. This is a great variation of a push-up and a great method to add some intensity which will have your chest, or pectoral muscles, screaming.

This wraps up today’s blog post about 5 chest exercises without a bench. I hope you guys enjoyed this one and add some of these variations to your exercises. Don’t forget to check out my programs if you are interested in these type of workouts, I have so many different programs that are GUARANTEED to get you in the shape you want. You can check those out here.

As always, thank you for tuning in.

Tanner Wideman

BarbarianBody

Chest Training MISTAKES That You Must AVOID!!!

Introduction

Hello everyone! It’s time to talk about some chest training mistakes that I see so many people (myself included) making when they’re working out. Today I want to share with you some of the tips that will help accelerate your chest growth quicker than you have ever imagined. Let’s begin the QUEST for a bigger CHEST.

Chest Training Mistake #1: Protracted Scapula

Chest Training Mistake #1 Protracted Scapula
Mistake #1: Protracted Scapula

Let’s start with chest training mistake number one, protracted scapula. I get SO many comments from people saying: “Tanner, I’m doing the bench press, but I’m really not feeling it in my chest, I’m feeling it more in my arms”. Now I’m sure that sounds familiar to some of you…

The problem is, that many people perform the bench press with a protracted scapula. What this looks like is: the shoulders are rolled forwards, making the shoulder blades protracted, which causes the shoulder to be elevated a lot more than it should be while performing a bench press.

Not only is this bad for you trying to hit your chest, but it’s also bad for impingement. When your shoulders are in this position you’re actually going to be taking a lot of the load off of the chest and putting a lot of it onto your shoulders. Thus causing the problem of, “I feel it more so in my arms and my shoulders”.

Example Of Tanner Wideman at BarbarianBody Doing A Bench Press
Bench Press Example

In order to maximize the role that your chest plays while performing a bench press you have to follow this setup. You have to retract the scapula, set the shoulders down, keep them depressed, then perform your bench press. From this position, your shoulders will be put back into the proper position and your chest is going to be put in the position to do the majority of the lift. This will allow you to feel the exercise more so in your chest, rather than your shoulders.

Chest Training Mistake #2: Not Performing Dumbbell Bench Press

ChesT Training Mistake #2 Not Performing Dumbbell Bench Press
Mistake #2: Not Performing Dumbbell Bench Press

Chest training mistake #2. Ignoring the dumbbell bench press. Instead, most people prioritize doing a regular bench press. I would recommend that you give the dumbbell bench press priority for the next few weeks, just to test it out. The reason for this is very simple. Most guys perform a barbell bench press and that’s it.

But with the dumbbell bench press, there’s more stability required, which is good, but the main part is as you’re pressing those dumbbells up and you start to actually bring those dumbbells to a nice wide position, bring them closer together at the top. This will get you more shortening on the chest while you’re performing a dumbbell bench press; which will recruit and activate a lot more of the pec muscle fibers.

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Chest Mistake #3: Lifting Too Heavy

Lifting Too Heavy Chest Training Mistake #3
Mistake #3: Lifting Too Heavy

The final point I want to make for mistake #3, is that too many people are trying to lift as much weight as possible. Often times, people will lift the most weight that they possibly can. This means they’ll likely be in a rep range of one, three, or five. This is a great technique to follow for training strength, not so much for training hypertrophy. I would strongly recommend that you increase your rep numbers to ten, twelve, or even fifteen repetitions, so that you can get a higher time under tension.

Chest Training Mistake #4: Bad Form – Isolation Exercises

Bad Form Chest Mistake #4
Mistake #4: Bad Form

Speaking of time under tension… We’re going to get into the isolation exercises! This is one of those chest training mistakes that absolutely destroy your growth potential for your chest. Now, when the average gym-bro is going to go into the gym and begin doing some isolation exercises for the chest, they’ll hit up the pec deck. Very frequently, they’re going to lower that pin as low as they possibly can, stack on as much weight as possible, and bang out ten repetitions.

Now, the problem with these repetitions is, well… They’re god awful. This is putting them at risk for injury, for one. For two, they’re having to incorporate other muscle groups and momentum in order for them to actually get the weight. Thus, making this “isolation” exercise more of a compound movement which is not as effective at stimulating growth, specifically in the chest.

Finally, they’re also focused on just lifting a weight from point A to point B, as opposed to moving the insertion and the origin points of the muscle it’s trying to target. Which again, is standing in the way of your growth potential.

Chest Exercise Origin Points
Isolation Example

So as opposed to focusing on eagle lifting and trying to lift as much weight as possible, the intelligent method is to recruit the single muscle you are trying to target the most. It’s important to master your form and use your mind-muscle connection to ensure that you are constantly thinking about which muscle you are trying to workout. This will help you get the most out of each exercise and give you the most growth.

Chest Training Mistake #5: Not Increasing Intensity

Not Increasing Intensity Chest Training Mistake #5
Chest Training Mistake #5: Not Increasing Intensity

Typically, how you would perform a set is as such; one rep, two rep, all the way to ten reps, sets finished. Now, you may have pushed yourself with some intensity, but did you know that there’s another level that you could have taken that set to?

Intensity increasers are ways to make the set that much more grueling and that much more demanding, to stimulate much more muscular growth. What you should be doing is a drop set. An example of a drop-set is this: finish your ten repetitions or the point when you hit failure. Pull the pin out or lower the weight by 20-25%, go back to the exercise instantaneously (no resting). Then, perform as many repetitions as you possibly can. Rinse and repeat this for around 4-5 times and you’ve just pushed your body a lot farther than you would have before.

Rest Pauses

It doesn’t just stop at drop sets! We’ve also got rest pauses. once you hit that tenth repetition and hit complete failure, take around 10 seconds to catch your breath. Feel the muscle group that you’re trying to target and let it rest for a bit. Then, go ahead and try to perform as many repetitions as you possibly can, with the same weight.

The same can be said with partial repetitions. So you’ve hit your tenth repetition, now what you’re going to do is try and push out as many half repetitions or quarter repetitions or third repetitions that you possible can until you hit the point where whatever muscle you’re trying to target can no longer lift the weight.

Implementing these intensity increasers to not only your chest workout, but all other workouts, will definitely maximize your growth potential and push you to that next level.

Chest Training Mistake #6: Not Warming Up

Not Warming Up Chest Training Mistake #6
Mistake #6: Not Warming Up

The final item on this list is not properly warming up before every single chest workout. Let’s start this off with a personal story…

About seven years ago I went to the gym and I wanted to lift a heavy bench press. I loaded on a plate and performed my set, then I loaded on two more plates, jumping drastically. I didn’t warm up or anything. Eventually, I got to my third plate (which was within three sets), then I got my fourth repetition and as I was pressing that weight back up, I felt something pop.

Guess what happened? As a consequence of me not properly warming up and jumping up way too much in weight on the bench press, I ended up tearing my AC joint. For the next two years after that, I had my AC joint tear hinder me on almost all of my workouts which really stunted me from doing any type of press exercises.

By not properly warming up and getting the blood flowing in the areas you’re going to be utilizing, you’re putting yourself at risk for major injuries. These injuries could last for weeks, months, or years, which will substantially reduce your muscle growth and affect your workouts for a long time.

That concludes today’s blog on my top 6 chest training mistakes. These chest training mistakes aren’t only in relation to chest workouts, but your entire body workouts. Whether it’s your biceps, shoulders, deltoids, traps, back, legs, you should consider fixing up these extremely common mistakes in your workouts.