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Dips cannot be underestimated or overlooked for bodybuilding and/or generating chest gains: they are the king of chest growth and if you are not doing them, then you are wasting your gym membership! If you ever see anybody who makes frequent use of chest focussed bodyweight exercises, you will see a decent amount of chest definition, and dips factor heavily in this.
They build up your pectorals, whilst also putting a great deal of stimulation into your triceps and a good amount into your anterior deltoids.
However, it’s quite common to see dips being performed incorrectly in a lot of chest workouts when bodybuilding. Common errors include foregoing a full range of motion in favor of higher reps; flip-flopping the upper body up and down, without actually moving your torso through the plane of motion it needs; and going too fast, without allowing adequate time under tension.
If you make sure you’re not falling victim of these errors, and follow the steps below, you should be able to build your chest quickly and efficiently with good dip form:
- Grab the parallel bars and extend your elbows to get to the start position.
- On the descent, you will keep your elbows close to your body (not a pure full tuck like a close grip bench press).
- Lean slightly forward during the dip to put more stress on the pecs.
- When you reach the bottom, you are looking for the bicep to connect with the forearm.
- If the bicep does not connect with the forearm the repetition did not count.
- Push back up to the start position before performing the next rep.
- Bench press variations
This entry should surprise nobody- if you want a strong chest, you need to be emphasizing the bench press. Though it often doesn’t elicit as much adaptation as dips, it is a staple of upper body training, a benchmark, and a great way to build pecs, anterior deltoids, and triceps.
Top variations include barbell or dumbbell presses, with a mixture of flat, incline and decline bench, and a mixture of grips. So get practicing, so you are ready to participate in the Dubai Fitness Challenge 2020!
To emphasize the pecs and anterior delts, go with a slightly wider grip (just outside shoulder width.) For triceps and anterior delts, bring your hands into a slimmer grip (at, or just within, shoulder width). To hit the upper chest, go with an incline bench; for the lower chest, go for the decline.
To really get deep into your pectorals, use dumbbells. Though you can press less weight overall than you can with a barbell, dumbbells allow for a greater range of motion in the lower portion of the lift. This allows you to recruit far more pectoral muscle mass.
To perform a standard, flat, barbell bench press:
- Lie on the bench with your eyes under the bar.
- Grab the bar with a medium grip-width, hands just outside of shoulder-width
- Wrap your thumbs and fingers tightly around the bar. Keep the bar’s weight in the heel of your palm.
- Breathe in deeply and brace your core.
- Unrack the bar by straightening your arms- it can be useful to have a spotter helping with this.
- Keeping your core braced, lower the bar to your mid-chest.
- Press the bar back up until your arms are straight.
A chest routine isn’t a chest routine without push-ups involved. They may look a little tame next to the giant weights, plates and pieces of diverse equipment you can find in any gym when you google "Gyms Near Me", but they are simple and challenging- as are all the best muscle building exercises.
Push-ups are often hard to perform for beginners. Try beginning with your knees on the ground, perform push-ups against a wall or bench, or perform negative reps until you progress to full push-ups.
Many advanced athletes believe push-ups to be too easy for them to benefit from. If you find them too easy, try advanced movements like hands-up push-ups, weighted push-ups, or plyometric push-ups within your HIIT Workout. Alternatively, go for volume- high volume push-ups are great for hypertrophy.
To perform push-ups:
- Begin in a plank position, hands under shoulders, either on your feet or knees.
- Brace your core and keep your elbows close to your torso through the exercise.
- Lower yourself down until your chest is an inch or so from the ground. Press up again. This is one rep.
Repeat for the desired rep range at the best gym in the UAE.