Decline Bench Press: How to Work Your Lower Chest

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Decline Bench Press

The Decline Bench Press is an upper-body lift that focuses on the lower part of your chest. Some people tend to skip this exercise, when doing chest, because it’s not as big of a show-off exercise. Many women love this exercise because it is known to keep your pecs perky. Use a grip slightly wider than your shoulders. A narrow grip will focus too much on triceps, while a wide grip will focus too much on shoulders.

  • Main Muscle Group: Chest
  • Secondary Muscle: Shoulders, Triceps
  • Exercise Type: Push; Strength; Compound
  • Equipment: Barbell or Dumbbell
  • Synergistic Muscles: Pecs, Deltoids, Triceps

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Here is a video on how to work your lower chest muscles using the Decline Bench Press.

The Decline Bench Press (if you are using a barbell) or Decline Dumbbell Press (if you are using dumbbells) is key to developing a strong upper body. Use a spotter or smith machine to ensure safety.

To do Decline Bench Press:

  1. Rest on the decline bench with your feet on the ground, make sure you don’t move your feet during workout.
  2. Lower the dumbbell or barbell down to the bottom of your chest without actually hitting your chest.
  3. Press dumbbells or barbells back up with elbows to sides until your arms are extended. Squeeze your chest in, so that your entire upper body is contracted.
  4. Dumbbell or barbells should follow a straight line, between your chest and upward towards the sky.
  5. Exhale on the way up, and inhale on the way back down each lift.

Dumbbell Decline Bench Press

Here’s a Dumbbell Decline Bench Press Exercise Video. It shows that the key to the dumbbell decline bench press is to have a spotter to hand you the weights. Come down only to where you feel a slight stretch, then work back up. If using dumbbells, don’t drop them all the way to the ground. Rotate the dumbbells in, and let your triceps help you bring the dumbbells to the ground.

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Here’s a video from the Hodge Twins talking about how you don’t want to focus on just Decline Bench Press. Balance is important. Couple decline bench press with either incline bench press or flat bench press. Or, do all three chest exercises:

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