While the arms – particularly the biceps – may grab the glory in the upper body, the pecs are undoubtedly the centrepiece. Why? Because they are at the front and in the centre of your body – and a weak, meek chest equates to a greatly reduced physique and lack of upper body strength.
There are many exercises to help you in getting muscular pecs, but I’ll only list the ones I have found to be the most effective, and why I believe they should be done by everyone looking to build great pectorals.
Barbell Bench Press
If you’ve read my articles before, you probably aren’t surprised to hear me include this. But how could I not? The bench press is the absolute must-do compound exercise for upper body mass and strength – and that includes the pectorals.
Dumbbell Bench Press
Similar to the bench press, the dumbbell variation is a chest-exercise more-so for both the greater range of motion you are granted with the use of dumbbells which also gives you a great stretch in the chest, but also the fact you have to balance two separate weights rather than a bar which balances itself, puts extra pressure on your pectorals.
Vince Gironda advocated the usage of dips for building the ultimate chest using a V-Bar station, but also parallel bars can be used. Dips are a great pec exercise for the excellent range of motion they give and the angle at which they stress the pectorals.
Most chest exercises involve pushing, but a completely different way to hit the pecs is by exploiting their other function – which is to draw the arms across the body. (Although with dumbbell flys, the arms are only drawn parallel to one another above the chest, and don’t cross over.)