Chest Exercises for a Firmer Upper Body

by David Johnson

The chest consists of the pectoralis major and the pectoralis minor muscles. The pectoralis major, which is the large muscle, has two sections — the clavicular head or the upper part and the sternal head or the lower part. Any chest exercise is acceptable to work the whole area, but these chest exercises for a firmer upper body will stimulate it even more.


Your chest muscles help in performing daily activities, such as moving your arms diagonally, moving them up and down, and even for actions like rotation, flexion, and adduction. Working out will help these muscles to function better.


Workouts for a Sturdier Solid Chest


Chest Press Exercises


Chest fly


You’ll need two medium or heavy pairs of dumbbells.

  1. Lie flat on a bench.
  2. Clasp the dumbbells face to face. With palms facing in, move the hands above your chest.
  3. Bend the elbows slightly and with palms faced in, lower the weights toward the sides.
  4. Inhale for a second, then exhale and return to the starting position.


Perform three sets of 16 reps.


Close-grip Dumbbell Chest Press


You’ll need two heavy dumbbells.

  1. Lie flat on a bench.
  2. With a dumbbell in each hand, hold them above your chest with your palms facing each other.
  3. Move the weighs down towards the middle of the chest as you inhale.
  4. Move the weights up as you exhale.


Perform three sets of 10 reps.


Dumbbell press


You’ll need a couple of heavy dumbbells.

  1. Lie flat on a bench.
  2. Raise the dumbbells over your chest with your palms facing your thighs.
  3. Inhale and lower the dumbbells slowly to your shoulders.
  4. Revert to the starting position as you breathe out.

Perform three sets of 10 reps.


Svend Press


You’ll need two 5-pound plates.

  1. Stand with legs at a shoulder-width distance with a 5-pound plate on each hand.
  2. Push the plates against each other at chest height.
  3. Breathe in and press the plates out in front.
  4. Fully stretch your elbows out and press through your chest. Raise them slightly and pause for a second.
  5. Push the press and go back to the first position.


Perform three sets of 15 reps.


Arnold chest press


You’ll need a set of heavy dumbbells.

  • With a dumbbell in each hand, lie flat on a bench.
  • Push them up over your chest with palms facing towards your feet.
  • Rotate wrists clockwise, then lower the dumbbells to your chest with palms facing your face.
  • Go back to the first position slowly.


Perform three sets of six reps.

Chest dip


You’ll need parallel bars.

  1. Stand with your feet firm on the floor.
  2. Hold the bars. Find a comfortable position, then lock out your arms.
  3. Raise your legs off the floor and lean forward slightly.
  4. Push your body against the floor, letting your elbows to seethe a bit until you feel your chest expand.
  5. Then, lift your body and squeeze using the chest.


Perform three sets of 10 reps.


Chest Push-up Exercises


Conventional push-up


The conventional push-up, also known as the military or straight push up, is a convenient and efficient way to build chest muscles, particularly the pectoralis major.

  • Begin with the plank position, making sure your hands are slightly wider than shoulder-width. Keep the elbows straight.
  • Balance the feet on your toes and tighten the hips to keep tension all over your body. Align your head, neck, back, and legs.
  • Bend your elbows and push the chest down to form a 90-degree angle. Keep this position for a second, then go back to the starting position.


Perform three sets of eight to 10 reps.


Diamond push-up


Also known as the triangle push-up, it strengthens the chest and core, focusing more on the triceps.

  • Put your hands together while in a plank position. Form a diamond angle directly beneath your chest using your index fingers and thumbs.
  • Press your chest towards the diamond shape, ensuring the elbows are close to your body at a 90-degree angle.
  • With the elbows close to your body, press your chest towards the diamond shape while maintaining a 90-degree angle arm position.
  • Stay in this position for one second before going back to the starting position.


Perform three sets of 8-10 reps


Tempo push-up


This type of chest push-up holds your muscles longer under pressure by moving up and down slowly continuously. Time under tension is the best element in building muscle.

  • Starting from a plank position, lower your chest for 3 seconds. Hold for a second at the bottom before going back to the starting position.


Perform three sets of 5 reps, progress as you go along.


Wearing a weight vest and doing a 2-3-1-0 tempo push up will help develop more power through your chest.



Chest exercises strengthen your upper body. It works your chest (pectorals), shoulders (deltoids), and arms (triceps).


Chest exercises strengthen and expand these muscles and reinforce deep breathing.


  • It improves posture. The chest muscles help in keeping your back, shoulder, and shoulder joint firm and steady, which are essential to having good posture. Chest exercises strengthen the back muscles. Weak chest muscles result in hunched shoulders and poor posture.


  • It improves physique. In 2012, the Plos One published a study that showed the perfect male body for both sexes is a muscled, wide chest circumference with a V-shaped trunk.


Strengthen and stretch your chest muscles by following a regular workout routine. To ensure safety and to achieve the best results, use the correct chest exercise for a firmer upper body.


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