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Chest Exercises - Decline Bench Press

Exercise Name:
Decline Bench Press.

Purpose: To develop and strengthen the lower chest muscles.

Target Muscle Group(s): The primary muscle groups being developed in this exercise is middle and lower chest (pectoralis major, sternocostal head; and pectoralis major, abdominal head).

The secondary muscle groups being hit are the triceps (triceps brachii, long head; and triceps brachii, short head), and the front of the shoulder (anterior deltoid).

decline bench press

Instructions: Proper Decline Bench Press Technique

1. Lock your feet under the pads of the decline bench. Adjust the decline bench if necessary anywhere between 20 and 40 degrees.
2. Grip the barbell 2 to 3 inches wider than shoulder width on each side.
3. Lower the barbell to your lower chest.
4. Push the weight up back up and contract your lower pecs.

Additional Comments And Tips:

1. Inhale as you lower the barbell, and exhale as you bring the barbell back up.
2. The more wider the grip the more you'll be working the outer pecs. The more closer the grip the more you'll be working the inner pecs.
3. This is a great exercise you developing the perceived separation between the pectorals and abdominals.

Also Known As: Decline Barbell Bench Press
Exercise Type: Strength Training, Toning, Sports Training
Force: Push
Exercise Level: Beginner
Mechanics Type: Compound Exercise

Decline Bench Press Variations: Use wider grip; use a narrow grip, lower the weight to the middle chest

Safety Precautions:

1. If you using heavy weights be sure to use a spotter. This is a tricky exercise to "escape" from.
2. Warm-up with a few very light sets before performing the work sets.

Alternatives/Substitutions: List of Lower Chest Exercises
  • Cable Crossover Flys
  • Decline Dumbbell Flys
  • Decline Dumbbell Press
  • Hammer Strength Decline Bench
  • Incline Pushup (incline pushups work the lower chest and decline pushups work the upper chest)
  • Parallel Bar Dips while keeping the upper body as horizontal as possible (places more emphasis on chest instead of the triceps)

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