July 20, 2020 4 min read

Upper Chest Workout Tips

To target your chest, you need to incorporate a mixture of dumbbells, body weight, and machine workout techniques to isolate different sections of your chest for a full upper chest workout. Make sure you take things slowly until you know you are doing the exercises right.

The Human Chest 101

Each section of the pectoral muscles attaches around your chest upper, middle, and lower, respectively. Because of the muscle design, different types of exercises workout different portions of your chest. For a good healthy workout and chest development, you should alternate the following exercises into your normal workout routine.


What Are The Best Exercises to Build Chest Muscles?

The type of upper chest workout you do depends on where you are starting and what you have access to. If you have access to a gym, then the divided exercises will be no problem, but if you are still building your home gym, work with what you have and plan your expansion.

Bench and Dumbell Exercises

Bench and dumbbell exercises are traditional ways to build up your chest. You will move smaller and later larger amounts of weight throughout the exercises to gradually increase the muscle mass of your chest.

Inclined Dumbbell Press

The inclined dumbbell press will work the clavicle of your pectoral muscle. The muscle helps to control multiple portions of your upper body. To exercise it using the inclined dumbbell press, you will need to be lying on a bench that has a forty-five-degree incline.

Start with a dumbbell in both hands straight out from your body. In a controlled manner, lower the dumbbells down, so they are on either side of your chest at a horizontal angle. Proceed to slowly press them back up to your starting position.

Chest Fly

The chest fly is similar to the inclined dumbbell press, but this one changes how you move your arms and the kind of control you want over the dumbbells.

The chest fly also starts with you lying flat on your back on a bench with a dumbbell in each hand. With your hands turned inwards, start with your arms fully extended away from your body. You will need to keep your body tense as you slowly lower your arms open to either side of your body.

Keeping a slight bend to your elbows, go down as far as your shoulders will allow while keeping your back flat on the bend. Use the muscles in your chest and back to slowly bring the dumbbells back to the original starting positions. 

Cable Exercises

Cable exercises use resistance to build your chest muscles. Resistance forces you to continuously work the muscle through the exercise without fully stopping the motions.

Cable Flies

The cable fly is a standing exercise that uses the resistance of two cable-driven elastic belts that can help develop your deltoid muscles. Resistance training is great for you because your muscle never stops being active throughout the activity.

Start at the cable cross-over station with the handles in each hand held loosely with your arms relaxed. Keeping your back straight, pull your arms downward toward your pelvis and let them slightly cross over each other. Release slowly back your starting position and repeat.

Band Chest Fly

The band's chest fly is similar to the Cable fly except the bands attach to a wall or other stable surface. Standing in front of the bands hold a band in each hand with your back to them. Wrap the band tightly around each fist as you do not want to lose your grip. 

Standing with one leg slightly in front of the other towards the middle of the bands like you are about to take off at a run. Pull forward on the bands bringing them fully together in front of your body slowly. Release the bands back behind you in the same controlled fashion. 


upper chest workout


Body Weight Exercises

Using your body as the main tool for working out can be hard at first. Bodyweight exercises force you to focus not only on how one part of your body is moving, but how the rest of your body is working with it to get it there. Take each exercise slowly and consider how each part of your body needs to move to achieve the greatest results.

Plyometric Pushups 

This is a good way to exercise your chest muscles, and these make your chest to work harder and faster. The plyometric pushup starts the same as a regular pushup with your body resting on your hands about shoulder-width apart.

Begin like you would any pushup by lowering yourself down. Once you reach the bottom, explode upward and work to clap your hands together before returning your hands to their original position on the floor. 


Dips will work your chest as well as your arms. They are a good way to add an intense chest workout to your body. You will want to take this exercise slowly and work your way through every step, as it can hurt your shoulders if you do it wrong. Slowly lower yourself downward until you can go no further and you have reached at least ninety degrees. For some athletes, you will be able to go further but do so gradually. Throughout the entire exercise, make sure your legs stay off the ground as your entire body is what your chest and arms are moving. 

Machine Exercises

Machine exercises are another way to challenge your chest as well as isolate certain muscle groups. 

Machine Decline Press

Similar to other workouts, what makes doing a seated machine chest press different from using a barbell is the amount of control you can exercise over the activity. The machine forces you to slow down to prevent the crashing of the weights, whereas the dumbbell is easily manipulated by gravity, making it harder to control.

As you secure your hands on the machine, you slowly work to press away from yourself. Make sure you control your breathing and exhale every time you press the bar away. 

Final Thoughts

Working out is something to aspire to in your everyday life. Physical fitness can take time, and building your body will take work. Take each new day at the gym to notice how you are working and continue improving your strength development.


Doug Darroch
Doug Darroch

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