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Adam’s Top Tips for Training Chest

Adam’s Top Tips for Training Chest

EC Athlete Adam Powell is no stranger to training chest, in fact, it’s one of his favorite groups to hit. 

Adam knows how important it is to not only train, but train correctly. That’s why when he hits his chest workouts for the week; he makes sure he follows these 3 tips:

  • Tip 1) “Control the weight. No bouncing the weight off your chest. Proper muscle contraction is key.”
  • Tip 2) “A mix of strength and volume training. Use a compound exercise like flat bench press for strength movements (6-8 reps) and an isolation exercise like a peck deck fly (12-15 reps) to give your chest ample opportunity to grow. Exercise variation is a must.”
  • Tip 3) “Stretch. In between sets, stretch your chest so you make more room for blood-flow during your working sets. More blood flow means more growth and faster recovery.”

 

Adam’s Top 3 Favorite Chest Exercises 

1) Chest Press 

  • Lie back on a flat bench. Using a grip that creates a 90-degree start position (between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • From the starting position, breathe in and begin coming down slowly until the bar touches your middle chest.
  • After a brief pause, push the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position at the top of the motion, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. 
  • Repeat for desired amount of repetitions.
2) Incline Dumbbell Press
  • Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand atop your thighs. 
  • Then, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
  • Once you have the dumbbells raised to shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  • Be sure to keep full control of the dumbbells at all times. Then breathe out and push the dumbbells up with your chest.
  • Lock your arms at the top, hold for a second, and then start slowly lowering the weight. 
  • Repeat for desired of amount of repetitions.

3) Cable Chest Fly’s

  • To get yourself into the starting position, place the pulleys on a high position (above your head), select the resistance to be used and hold the pulleys in each hand.
  • Step forward; your torso should have a small forward bend from the waist. This will be your starting position.
  • With a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, extend your arms to the side (straight out at both sides) in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. 
    • Tip: Movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position as you breathe out. 
  • Hold for a second at the starting position and repeat for desired amount of repetitions.
    • Tip: Variations: You can vary the point in front of you where your arms meet.

 

Why train your chest?

Your chest includes some of the largest muscles in the upper body; and they’re muscles that we use all day long. From daily mundane tasks like opening a door or washing our hair, to fun tasks like playing sports our chest muscles are in constant use. The stronger your chest muscles are, the stronger the rest of your body will be.

How often should you train chest?

You can work your chest as much as three consecutive days a week. However, if you’re lifting heavy weights (6-8 repetitions) you’ll need at least two to three days of rest before you work your chest again. Adam recommends training chest twice a week, (72 hours after your first chest workout of the week) for optimum gains. Both days do not need to be “as heavy as possible” either. The first workout of the week can be concentrated on heavy weight/low reps, and the second can concentrate on lower weight/more reps & TUT (time under tension). TUT is a sure-fire way to promote muscle growth. 

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