Chest

The chest muscles include the pectoralis major and pectoralis minor.

Other muscles

147 Exercises

Alternating Floor Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: kettlebells
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor with two kettlebells next to your shoulders.
  • Position one in place on your chest and then the other, gripping the kettlebells on the handle with the palms facing forward.
  • Extend both arms, so that the kettlebells are being held above your chest. Lower one kettlebell, bringing it to your chest and turn the wrist in the direction of the locked out kettlebell.
  • Raise the kettlebell and repeat on the opposite side.

Alternating Renegade Row

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: expert
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: kettlebells
Primary Muscles:
  • middle back
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • biceps
  • chest
  • lats
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place two kettlebells on the floor about shoulder width apart. Position yourself on your toes and your hands as though you were doing a pushup, with the body straight and extended. Use the handles of the kettlebells to support your upper body. You may need to position your feet wide for support.
  • Push one kettlebell into the floor and row the other kettlebell, retracting the shoulder blade of the working side as you flex the elbow, pulling it to your side.
  • Then lower the kettlebell to the floor and begin the kettlebell in the opposite hand. Repeat for several reps.

Around The Worlds

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lay down on a flat bench holding a dumbbell in each hand with the palms of the hands facing towards the ceiling. Tip: Your arms should be parallel to the floor and next to your thighs. To avoid injury, make sure that you keep your elbows slightly bent. This will be your starting position.
  • Now move the dumbbells by creating a semi-circle as you displace them from the initial position to over the head. All of the movement should happen with the arms parallel to the floor at all times. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement.
  • Reverse the movement to return the weight to the starting position as you exhale.

Barbell Bench Press - Medium Grip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on a flat bench. Using a medium width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • From the starting position, breathe in and begin coming down slowly until the bar touches your middle chest.
  • After a brief pause, push the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out. Focus on pushing the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position at the top of the motion, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Barbell Guillotine Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Using a medium width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over your neck with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, bring the bar down slowly until it is about 1 inch from your neck.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Barbell Incline Bench Press - Medium Grip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on an incline bench. Using a medium-width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on you upper chest.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: it should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Barbell Incline Shoulder Raise

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Lie back on an Incline Bench. Using a medium width grip (a grip that is slightly wider than shoulder width), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms straight. This will be your starting position.
  • While keeping the arms straight, lift the bar by protracting your shoulder blades, raising the shoulders from the bench as you breathe out.
  • Bring back the bar to the starting position as you breathe in.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Barbell Shoulder Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Sit on a bench with back support in a squat rack. Position a barbell at a height that is just above your head. Grab the barbell with a pronated grip (palms facing forward).
  • Once you pick up the barbell with the correct grip width, lift the bar up over your head by locking your arms. Hold at about shoulder level and slightly in front of your head. This is your starting position.
  • Lower the bar down to the shoulders slowly as you inhale.
  • Lift the bar back up to the starting position as you exhale.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Battling Ropes

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • forearms
Instructions:
  • For this exercise you will need a heavy rope anchored at its center 15-20 feet away. Standing in front of the rope, take an end in each hand with your arms extended at your side. This will be your starting position.
  • Initiate the movement by rapidly raising one arm to shoulder level as quickly as you can.
  • As you let that arm drop to the starting position, raise the opposite side.
  • Continue alternating your left and right arms, whipping the ropes up and down as fast as you can.

Behind Head Chest Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: expert
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Sit upright on the floor with your partner behind you.
  • Place your hands behind your hand, and push your elbows back as far as you can. Your partner should hold your elbows. This will be your starting position.
  • Gently attempt to pull your elbows forward with your hands still behind your head for 10 or more seconds. Your partner should prevent your elbows from moving.
  • Now, relax your muscles and have your partner gently pull the elbows back as far as it comfortable for you. Be sure to let your partner know when the stretch is adequate to prevent overstretching or injury.

Bench Dips

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • For this exercise you will need to place a bench behind your back. With the bench perpendicular to your body, and while looking away from it, hold on to the bench on its edge with the hands fully extended, separated at shoulder width. The legs will be extended forward, bent at the waist and perpendicular to your torso. This will be your starting position.
  • Slowly lower your body as you inhale by bending at the elbows until you lower yourself far enough to where there is an angle slightly smaller than 90 degrees between the upper arm and the forearm. Tip: Keep the elbows as close as possible throughout the movement. Forearms should always be pointing down.
  • Using your triceps to bring your torso up again, lift yourself back to the starting position.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Bench Press - Powerlifting

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • forearms
  • lats
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Begin by lying on the bench, getting your head beyond the bar if possible. Tuck your feet underneath you and arch your back. Using the bar to help support your weight, lift your shoulder off the bench and retract them, squeezing the shoulder blades together. Use your feet to drive your traps into the bench. Maintain this tight body position throughout the movement.
  • However wide your grip, it should cover the ring on the bar. Pull the bar out of the rack without protracting your shoulders. Focus on squeezing the bar and trying to pull it apart.
  • Lower the bar to your lower chest or upper stomach. The bar, wrist, and elbow should stay in line at all times.
  • Pause when the barbell touches your torso, and then drive the bar up with as much force as possible. The elbows should be tucked in until lockout.

Bench Press - With Bands

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: bands
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Using a flat bench secure a band under the leg of the bench that is nearest to your head.
  • Once the band is secure, grab it by both handles and lie down on the bench.
  • Extend your arms so that you are holding the band handles in front of you at shoulder width.
  • Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  • Bring down the handles slowly until your elbow forms a 90 degree angle. Keep full control at all times.
  • As you breathe out, bring the handles up using your pectoral muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.

Bench Press with Chains

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: expert
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lats
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Adjust the leader chain, shortening it to the desired length.Place the chains on the sleeves of the bar.
  • Lying on the bench, get your head beyond the bar if possible. Tuck your feet underneath you and arch your back. Using the bar to help support your weight, lift your shoulder off the bench and retract them, squeezing the shoulder blades together. Use your feet to drive your traps into the bench. Maintain this tight body position throughout the movement. However wide your grip, it should cover the ring on the bar.
  • Pull the bar out of the rack without protracting your shoulders. Focus on squeezing the bar and trying to pull it apart. Lower the bar to your lower chest or upper stomach. The bar, wrist, and elbow should stay in line at all times.
  • Pause when the barbell touches your torso, and then drive the bar up with as much force as possible. The elbows should be tucked in until lockout.

Bent-Arm Barbell Pullover

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • lats
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lats
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on a flat bench with a barbell using a shoulder grip width.
  • Hold the bar straight over your chest with a bend in your arms. This will be your starting position.
  • While keeping your arms in the bent arm position, lower the weight slowly in an arc behind your head while breathing in until you feel a stretch on the chest.
  • At that point, bring the barbell back to the starting position using the arc through which the weight was lowered and exhale as you perform this movement.
  • Hold the weight on the initial position for a second and repeat the motion for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Bent-Arm Dumbbell Pullover

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • lats
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place a dumbbell standing up on a flat bench.
  • Ensuring that the dumbbell stays securely placed at the top of the bench, lie perpendicular to the bench (torso across it as in forming a cross) with only your shoulders lying on the surface. Hips should be below the bench and legs bent with feet firmly on the floor. The head will be off the bench as well.
  • Grasp the dumbbell with both hands and hold it straight over your chest with a bend in your arms. Both palms should be pressing against the underside one of the sides of the dumbbell. This will be your starting position. Caution: Always ensure that the dumbbell used for this exercise is secure. Using a dumbbell with loose plates can result in the dumbbell falling apart and falling on your face.
  • While keeping your arms locked in the bent arm position, lower the weight slowly in an arc behind your head while breathing in until you feel a stretch on the chest.
  • At that point, bring the dumbbell back to the starting position using the arc through which the weight was lowered and exhale as you perform this movement.
  • Hold the weight on the initial position for a second and repeat the motion for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Board Press

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • forearms
  • lats
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Begin by lying on the bench, getting your head beyond the bar if possible. One to five boards, made out of 2x6's, can be screwed together and held in place by a training partner, bands, or just tucked under your shirt.
  • Tuck your feet underneath you and arch your back. Using the bar to help support your weight, lift your shoulder off the bench and retract them, squeezing the shoulder blades together. Use your feet to drive your traps into the bench. Maintain this tight body position throughout the movement.
  • You can take a standard bench grip, or shoulder width to focus on the triceps. Pull the bar out of the rack without protracting your shoulders. The bar, wrist, and elbow should stay in line at all times. Focus on squeezing the bar and trying to pull it apart.
  • Lower the bar to the boards, and then drive the bar up with as much force as possible. The elbows should be tucked in until lockout.

Bodyweight Flyes

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: e-z curl bar
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Position two equally loaded EZ bars on the ground next to each other. Ensure they are able to roll.
  • Assume a push-up position over the bars, supporting your weight on your toes and hands with your arms extended and body straight.
  • Place your hands on the bars. This will be your starting position.
  • Using a slow and controlled motion, move your hands away from the midline of your body, rolling the bars apart. Inhale during this portion of the motion.
  • After moving the bars as far apart as you can, return to the starting position by pulling them back together. Exhale as you perform this movement.

Butterfly

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Sit on the machine with your back flat on the pad.
  • Take hold of the handles. Tip: Your upper arms should be positioned parallel to the floor; adjust the machine accordingly. This will be your starting position.
  • Push the handles together slowly as you squeeze your chest in the middle. Breathe out during this part of the motion and hold the contraction for a second.
  • Return back to the starting position slowly as you inhale until your chest muscles are fully stretched.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Cable Chest Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Adjust the weight to an appropriate amount and be seated, grasping the handles. Your upper arms should be about 45 degrees to the body, with your head and chest up. The elbows should be bent to about 90 degrees. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin by extending through the elbow, pressing the handles together straight in front of you. Keep your shoulder blades retracted as you execute the movement.
  • After pausing at full extension, return to th starting position, keeping tension on the cables.
  • You can also execute this movement with your back off the pad, at an incline or decline, or alternate hands.

Cable Crossover

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • To get yourself into the starting position, place the pulleys on a high position (above your head), select the resistance to be used and hold the pulleys in each hand.
  • Step forward in front of an imaginary straight line between both pulleys while pulling your arms together in front of you. Your torso should have a small forward bend from the waist. This will be your starting position.
  • With a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, extend your arms to the side (straight out at both sides) in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, the arms and torso should remain stationary; the movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position as you breathe out. Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  • Hold for a second at the starting position and repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Cable Iron Cross

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Begin by moving the pulleys to the high position, select the resistance to be used, and take a handle in each hand.
  • Stand directly between both pulleys with your arms extended out to your sides. Your head and chest should be up while your arms form a “T”. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping the elbows extended, pull your arms straight to your sides.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position after a pause at the peak contraction.
  • Continue the movement for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Catch and Overhead Throw

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • lats
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Begin standing while facing a wall or a partner.
  • Using both hands, position the ball behind your head, stretching as much as possible, and forcefully throw the ball forward.
  • Ensure that you follow your throw through, being prepared to receive your rebound from your throw. If you are throwing against the wall, make sure that you stand close enough to the wall to receive the rebound, and aim a little higher than you would with a partner.

Chain Press

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin by connecting the chains to the cable handle attachments. Position yourself on the flat bench in the same position as for a dumbbell press. Your wrists should be pronated and arms perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position.
  • Lower the chains by flexing the elbows, unloading some of the chain onto the floor.
  • Continue until your elbow forms a 90 degree angle, and then reverse the motion by extending through the elbow to lockout.

Chair Upper Body Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • biceps
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Sit on the edge of a chair, gripping the back of it.
  • Straighten your arms, keeping your back straight, and pull your upper body forward so you feel a stretch. Hold for 20-30 seconds.

Chest And Front Of Shoulder Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Start off by standing with your legs together, holding a bodybar or a broomstick.
  • Take a slightly wider than shoulder width grip on the pole and hold it in front of you with your palms facing down.
  • Carefully lift the pole up and behind your head.

Chest Push (multiple response)

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin in a kneeling position facing a wall or utilize a partner. Hold the ball with both hands tight into the chest.
  • Execute the pass by exploding forward and outward with the hips while pushing the ball as hard as possible.
  • Follow through by falling forward, catching yourself with your hands.
  • Immediately return to an upright position. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Chest Push (single response)

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin in a kneeling position holding the medicine ball with both hands tightly into the chest.
  • Execute the pass by exploding forward and outward with the hips while pushing the ball as far as possible.
  • Follow through by falling forward, catching yourself with your hands.

Chest Push from 3 point stance

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin in a three point stance, squatted down with your back flat and one hand on the ground. Place the medicine ball directly in front of you.
  • To begin, take your first step as you pull the ball to your chest, positioning both hands to prepare for the throw.
  • As you execute the second step, explosively release the ball forward as hard as possible.

Chest Push with Run Release

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin in an athletic stance with the knees bent, hips back, and back flat. Hold the medicine ball near your legs. This will be your starting position.
  • While taking your first step draw the medicine ball into your chest.
  • As you take the second step, explosively push the ball forward, immediately sprinting for 10 yards after the release. If you are really fast, you can catch your own pass!

Chest Stretch on Stability Ball

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: exercise ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Get on your hands and knees next to an exercise ball.
  • Place your elbows on top of the ball, keeping your arm out to your side. This will be your starting position.
  • Lower your torso towards the floor, keeping your elbow on top of the ball. Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds, and repeat with the other arm.

Clock Push-Up

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Move into a prone position on the floor, supporting your weight on your hands and toes.
  • Your arms should be fully extended with the hands around shoulder width. Keep your body straight throughout the movement. This will be your starting position.
  • Descend by flexing at the elbow, lowering your chest toward the ground.
  • At the bottom, reverse the motion by pushing yourself up through elbow extension as quickly as possible until you are air borne. Aim to “jump” 12-18 inches to one side.
  • As you accelerate up, move your outside foot away from your direction of travel. Leaving the ground, shift your body about 30 degrees for the next repetition.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat the exercise, working all the way around until you are back where you started.

Close-Grip Barbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie back on a flat bench. Using a close grip (around shoulder width), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your middle chest. Tip: Make sure that - as opposed to a regular bench press - you keep the elbows close to the torso at all times in order to maximize triceps involvement.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your triceps muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Close-Grip Dumbbell Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Place a dumbbell standing up on a flat bench.
  • Ensuring that the dumbbell stays securely placed at the top of the bench, lie perpendicular to the bench with only your shoulders lying on the surface. Hips should be below the bench and your legs bent with your feet firmly on the floor.
  • Grasp the dumbbell with both hands and hold it straight over your chest at arm’s length. Both palms should be pressing against the underside of the sides of the dumbbell. This will be your starting position.
  • Initiate the movement by lowering the dumbbell to your chest.
  • Return to the starting position by extending the elbows.

Close-Grip EZ-Bar Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: e-z curl bar
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie on a flat bench with an EZ bar loaded to an appropriate weight.
  • Using a narrow grip lift the bar and hold it straight over your torso with your elbows in. The arms should be perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position.
  • Now lower the bar down to your lower chest as you breathe in. Keep the elbows in as you perform this movement.
  • Using the triceps to push the bar back up, press it back to the starting position by extending the elbows as you exhale.
  • Repeat.

Close-Grip Push-Up off of a Dumbbell

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor and place your hands on an upright dumbbell. Supporting your weight on your toes and hands, keep your torso rigid and your elbows in with your arms straight. This will be your starting position.
  • Lower your body, allowing the elbows to flex while you inhale. Keep your body straight, not allowing your hips to rise or sag.
  • Press yourself back up to the starting position by extending the elbows. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • After a pause at the contracted position, repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Cross Over - With Bands

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: bands
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • biceps
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Secure an exercise band around a stationary post.
  • While facing away from the post, grab the handles on both ends of the band and step forward enough to create tension on the band.
  • Raise your arms to the sides, parallel to the floor, perpendicular to your torso (your torso and the arms should resemble the letter "T") and with the palms facing forward. Have them extended with a slight bend at the elbows. This will be your starting position.
  • While keeping your arms straight, bring them across your chest in a semicircular motion to the front as you exhale and flex your pecs. Hold the contraction for a second.
  • Slowly return to the starting position as you inhale.
  • Perform for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Decline Barbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and slowly lay down on the bench.
  • Using a medium width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. The arms should be perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position. Tip: In order to protect your rotator cuff, it is best if you have a spotter help you lift the barbell off the rack.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your lower chest.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up).
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Decline Close-Grip Bench To Skull Crusher

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and slowly lay down on the bench.
  • Using a close grip (a grip that is slightly less than shoulder width), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked and elbows in. The arms should be perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position. Tip: In order to protect your rotator cuff, it is best if you have a spotter help you lift the barbell off the rack.
  • Now lower the bar down to your lower chest as you breathe in. Keep the elbows in as you perform this movement.
  • Using the triceps to push the bar back up, press it back to the starting position as you exhale.
  • As you breathe in and you keep the upper arms stationary, bring the bar down slowly by moving your forearms in a semicircular motion towards you until you feel the bar slightly touch your forehead. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement.
  • Lift the bar back to the starting position by contracting the triceps and exhaling.
  • Repeat steps 3-6 until the recommended amount of repetitions is performed.

Decline Dumbbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and lie down with a dumbbell on each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  • Once you are laying down, move the dumbbells in front of you at shoulder width.
  • Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  • Bring down the weights slowly to your side as you breathe out. Keep full control of the dumbbells at all times. Tip: Throughout the motion, the forearms should always be perpendicular to the floor.
  • As you breathe out, push the dumbbells up using your pectoral muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up..
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.

Decline Dumbbell Flyes

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Secure your legs at the end of the decline bench and lie down with a dumbbell on each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  • Once you are laying down, move the dumbbells in front of you at shoulder width. The palms of the hands should be facing each other and the arms should be perpendicular to the floor and fully extended. This will be your starting position.
  • With a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, lower your arms out at both sides in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, the arms should remain stationary; the movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position as you squeeze your chest muscles and breathe out. Tip: Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  • Hold for a second at the contracted position and repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Decline Push-Up

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor face down and place your hands about 36 inches apart while holding your torso up at arms length. Move your feet up to a box or bench. This will be your starting position.
  • Next, lower yourself downward until your chest almost touches the floor as you inhale.
  • Now breathe out and press your upper body back up to the starting position while squeezing your chest.
  • After a brief pause at the top contracted position, you can begin to lower yourself downward again for as many repetitions as needed.

Decline Smith Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place a decline bench underneath the Smith machine. Now place the barbell at a height that you can reach when lying down and your arms are almost fully extended. Using a pronated grip that is wider than shoulder width, unlock the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms extended. This will be your starting position.
  • As you inhale, lower the bar under control by allowing the elbows to flex, lightly contacting the torso.
  • After a brief pause, bring the bar back to the starting position by extending the elbows, exhaling as you do so.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When the set is complete, lock the bar back in the rack.

Dip Machine

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Sit securely in a dip machine, select the weight and firmly grasp the handles.
  • Now keep your elbows in at your sides in order to place emphasis on the triceps. The elbows should be bent at a 90 degree angle.
  • As you contract the triceps, extend your arms downwards as you exhale. Tip: At the bottom of the movement, focus on keeping a little bend in your arms to keep tension on the triceps muscle.
  • Now slowly let your arms come back up to the starting position as you inhale.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Dips - Chest Version

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • For this exercise you will need access to parallel bars. To get yourself into the starting position, hold your body at arms length (arms locked) above the bars.
  • While breathing in, lower yourself slowly with your torso leaning forward around 30 degrees or so and your elbows flared out slightly until you feel a slight stretch in the chest.
  • Once you feel the stretch, use your chest to bring your body back to the starting position as you breathe out. Tip: Remember to squeeze the chest at the top of the movement for a second.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Dips - Triceps Version

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • To get into the starting position, hold your body at arm's length with your arms nearly locked above the bars.
  • Now, inhale and slowly lower yourself downward. Your torso should remain upright and your elbows should stay close to your body. This helps to better focus on tricep involvement. Lower yourself until there is a 90 degree angle formed between the upper arm and forearm.
  • Then, exhale and push your torso back up using your triceps to bring your body back to the starting position.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Drop Push

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Position low boxes or other platforms 2-3 feet apart.
  • Move to a pushup position between them, supporting yourself by placing your hands on the boxes.
  • With good posture, drop from the platforms by pressing up and moving your hands to shoulder width, cushioning your landing by absorbing the impact through the arm.

Dumbbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand resting on top of your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
  • Then, using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width.
  • Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. The dumbbells should be just to the sides of your chest, with your upper arm and forearm creating a 90 degree angle. Be sure to maintain full control of the dumbbells at all times. This will be your starting position.
  • Then, as you breathe out, use your chest to push the dumbbells up. Lock your arms at the top of the lift and squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then begin coming down slowly. Tip: Ideally, lowering the weight should take about twice as long as raising it.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.

Dumbbell Bench Press with Neutral Grip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Take a dumbbell in each hand and lay back onto a flat bench. Your feet should be flat on the floor and your shoulder blades retracted.
  • Maintaining a neutral grip, palms facing each other, begin with your arms extended directly above you, perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin the movement by flexing the elbow, lowering the upper arms to the side. Descend until the dumbbells are to your torso.
  • Pause, then extend the elbow and return to the starting position.

Dumbbell Floor Press

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lay on the floor holding dumbbells in your hands. Your knees can be bent. Begin with the weights fully extended above you.
  • Lower the weights until your upper arm comes in contact with the floor. You can tuck your elbows to emphasize triceps size and strength, or to focus on your chest angle your arms to the side.
  • Pause at the bottom, and then bring the weight together at the top by extending through the elbows.

Dumbbell Flyes

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell on each hand resting on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  • Then using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells, lift the dumbbells one at a time so you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width with the palms of your hands facing each other. Raise the dumbbells up like you're pressing them, but stop and hold just before you lock out. This will be your starting position.
  • With a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, lower your arms out at both sides in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, the arms should remain stationary; the movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position as you squeeze your chest muscles and breathe out. Tip: Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  • Hold for a second at the contracted position and repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Dynamic Chest Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • middle back
Instructions:
  • Stand with your hands together, arms extended directly in front of you. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your arms straight, quickly move your arms back as far as possible and back in again, similar to an exaggerated clapping motion. Repeat 5-10 times, increasing speed as you do so.

Elbows Back

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Stand up straight.
  • Place both hands on your lower back, fingers pointing downward and elbows out.
  • Then gently pull your elbows back aiming to touch them together.

Extended Range One-Arm Kettlebell Floor Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: kettlebells
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor and position a kettlebell for one arm to press. The kettlebell should be held by the handle. The leg on the same side that you are pressing should be bent, with the knee crossing over the midline of the body.
  • Press the kettlebell by extending the elbow and adducting the arm, pressing it above your body. Return to the starting position.

Flat Bench Cable Flyes

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Position a flat bench between two low pulleys so that when you are laying on it, your chest will be lined up with the cable pulleys.
  • Lay flat on the bench and keep your feet on the ground.
  • Have someone hand you the handles on each hand. You will grab each single handle attachment with a palms up grip.
  • Extend your arms by your side with a slight bend on your elbows. Tip: You will keep this bend constant through the whole movement. Your arms should be parallel to the floor. This is your starting position.
  • Now start lifting the arms in a semi-circle motion directly in front of you by pulling the cables together until both hands meet at the top of the movement. Squeeze your chest as you perform this motion and breathe out during this movement. Also, hold the contraction for a second at the top. Tip: When performed correctly, at the top position of this movement, your arms should be perpendicular to your torso and the floor touching above your chest.
  • Slowly come back to the starting position.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Floor Press

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Adjust the j-hooks so they are at the appropriate height to rack the bar. Begin lying on the floor with your head near the end of a power rack. Keeping your shoulder blades pulled together; pull the bar off of the hooks.
  • Lower the bar towards the bottom of your chest or upper stomach, squeezing the bar and attempting to pull it apart as you do so. Ensure that you tuck your elbows throughout the movement. Lower the bar until your upper arm contacts the ground and pause, preventing any slamming or bouncing of the weight.
  • Press the bar back up as fast as you can, keeping the bar, your wrists, and elbows in line as you do so.

Floor Press with Chains

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Adjust the j-hooks so they are at the appropriate height to rack the bar. For this exercise, drape the chains directly over the end of the bar, trying to keep the ends away from the plates.
  • Begin lying on the floor with your head near the end of a power rack. Keeping your shoulder blades pulled together, pull the bar off of the hooks.
  • Lower the bar towards the bottom of your chest or upper stomach, squeezing the bar and attempting to pull it apart as you do so. Ensure that you tuck your elbows throughout the movement. Lower the bar until your upper arm contacts the ground and pause, preventing any slamming or bouncing of the weight.
  • Press the bar back up as fast as you can, keeping the bar, your wrists, and elbows in line as you do so.

Forward Drag with Press

Category: strongman
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • calves
  • glutes
  • hamstrings
  • quadriceps
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Attach a dual handled chain or rope attachment to the sled. You should be facing away from the sled, holding a handle in each hand.
  • Begin the movement by moving forward for one step. Leaning forward, extend through the legs and hips to move, pausing with each step to extend through the elbows, pressing your hands forward. Step forward until you return to the start position prepared to press.

Front Raise And Pullover

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • lats
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on a flat bench while holding a barbell using a palms down grip that is about 15 inches apart.
  • Place the bar on your upper thighs, extend your arms and lock them while keeping a slight bend on the elbows. This will be your starting position.
  • Now raise the weight using a semicircular motion and keeping your arms straight as you inhale. Continue the same movement until the bar is on the other side above your head . (Tip: the bar will travel approximately 180-degrees). At this point your arms should be parallel to the floor with the palms of your hands facing the ceiling.
  • Now return the barbell to the starting position by reversing the motion as you exhale.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Hammer Grip Incline DB Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell on each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  • By using your thighs to help you get the dumbbells up, clean the dumbbells one arm at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
  • Once at shoulder width, keep the palms of your hands with a neutral grip (palms facing each other). Keep your elbows flared out with the upper arms in line with the shoulders (perpendicular to the torso) and the elbows bent creating a 90-degree angle between the upper arm and the forearm. This will be your starting position.
  • Now bring down the weights slowly to your side as you breathe in. Keep full control of the dumbbells at all times.
  • As you breathe out, push the dumbbells up using your pectoral muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the dumbbells back in your thighs and then on the floor. This is the safest manner to dispose of the dumbbells.

Heavy Bag Thrust

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Utilize a heavy bag for this exercise. Assume an upright stance next to the bag, with your feet staggered, fairly wide apart. Place your hand on the bag at about chest height. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin by twisting at the waist, pushing the bag forward as hard as possible. Perform this move quickly, pushing the bag away from your body.
  • Receive the bag as it swings back by reversing these steps.

Incline Cable Chest Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Adjust the weight to an appropriate amount and be seated, grasping the handles. Your upper arms should be about 45 degrees to the body, with your head and chest up. The elbows should be bent to about 90 degrees. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin by extending through the elbow, pressing the handles together straight in front of you. Keep your shoulder blades retracted as you execute the movement.
  • After pausing at full extension, return to the starting position, keeping tension on the cables.

Incline Cable Flye

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • To get yourself into the starting position, set the pulleys at the floor level (lowest level possible on the machine that is below your torso).
  • Place an incline bench (set at 45 degrees) in between the pulleys, select a weight on each one and grab a pulley on each hand.
  • With a handle on each hand, lie on the incline bench and bring your hands together at arms length in front of your face. This will be your starting position.
  • With a slight bend of your elbows (in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon), lower your arms out at both sides in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, the arms should remain stationary. The movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position as you squeeze your chest muscles and exhale. Hold the contracted position for a second. Tip: Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Incline Dumbbell Bench With Palms Facing In

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell on each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  • By using your thighs to help you get the dumbbells up, clean the dumbbells one arm at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
  • Once at shoulder width, keep the palms of your hands with a neutral grip (palms facing each other). Keep your elbows flared out with the upper arms in line with the shoulders (perpendicular to the torso) and the elbows bent creating a 90-degree angle between the upper arm and the forearm. This will be your starting position.
  • Now bring down the weights slowly to your side as you breathe in. Keep full control of the dumbbells at all times.
  • As you breathe out, push the dumbbells up using your pectoral muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the dumbbells back in your thighs and then on the floor. This is the safest manner to dispose of the dumbbells.

Incline Dumbbell Flyes

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Hold a dumbbell on each hand and lie on an incline bench that is set to an incline angle of no more than 30 degrees.
  • Extend your arms above you with a slight bend at the elbows.
  • Now rotate the wrists so that the palms of your hands are facing you. Tip: The pinky fingers should be next to each other. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, start to slowly lower the arms to the side while keeping the arms extended and while rotating the wrists until the palms of the hand are facing each other. Tip: At the end of the movement the arms will be by your side with the palms facing the ceiling.
  • As you exhale start to bring the dumbbells back up to the starting position by reversing the motion and rotating the hands so that the pinky fingers are next to each other again. Tip: Keep in mind that the movement will only happen at the shoulder joint and at the wrist. There is no motion that happens at the elbow joint.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Incline Dumbbell Flyes - With A Twist

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand and lie on an incline bench that is set to an incline angle of no more than 30 degrees.
  • Extend your arms above you with a slight bend at the elbows.
  • Now rotate the wrists so that the palms of your hands are facing you. Tip: The pinky fingers should be next to each other. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, start to slowly lower the arms to the side while keeping the arms extended and while rotating the wrists until the palms of the hand are facing each other. Tip: At the end of the movement the arms will be by your side with the palms facing the ceiling.
  • As you exhale start to bring the dumbbells back up to the starting position by reversing the motion and rotating the hands so that the pinky fingers are next to each other again. Tip: Keep in mind that the movement will only happen at the shoulder joint and at the wrist. There is no motion that happens at the elbow joint.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Incline Dumbbell Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on an incline bench with a dumbbell in each hand atop your thighs. The palms of your hands will be facing each other.
  • Then, using your thighs to help push the dumbbells up, lift the dumbbells one at a time so that you can hold them at shoulder width.
  • Once you have the dumbbells raised to shoulder width, rotate your wrists forward so that the palms of your hands are facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  • Be sure to keep full control of the dumbbells at all times. Then breathe out and push the dumbbells up with your chest.
  • Lock your arms at the top, hold for a second, and then start slowly lowering the weight. Tip Ideally, lowering the weights should take about twice as long as raising them.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the dumbbells back on your thighs and then on the floor. This is the safest manner to release the dumbbells.

Incline Push-Up

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Stand facing bench or sturdy elevated platform. Place hands on edge of bench or platform, slightly wider than shoulder width.
  • Position forefoot back from bench or platform with arms and body straight. Arms should be perpendicular to body. Keeping body straight, lower chest to edge of box or platform by bending arms.
  • Push body up until arms are extended. Repeat.

Incline Push-Up Close-Grip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Stand facing a Smith machine bar or sturdy elevated platform at an appropriate height.
  • Place your hands next to one another on the bar.
  • Position your feet back from the bar with arms and body straight. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your body straight, lower your chest to the bar by bending the arms.
  • Return to the starting position by extending the elbows, pressing yourself back up.

Incline Push-Up Depth Jump

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • For this drill you will need a box about 12 inches high, and two thick mats or aerobics steps.
  • Place the steps just outside of your shoulders, and place your feet on top of the box so that you are in an incline pushup position, your hands just inside the steps. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin by bending at the elbows to lower your body, quickly reversing position to push your body off of the ground. As you leave the ground, move your hands onto the steps, bending your elbows to absorb the impact.
  • Repeat the motion to return to the starting position.

Incline Push-Up Medium

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Stand facing a Smith machine bar or sturdy elevated platform at an appropriate height.
  • Place your hands on the bar, with your hands about shoulder width apart.
  • Position your feet back from the bar with arms and body straight. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your body straight, lower your chest to the bar by bending the arms.
  • Return to the starting position by extending the elbows, pressing yourself back up.

Incline Push-Up Reverse Grip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Stand facing a Smith machine bar or sturdy elevated platform at an appropriate height.
  • Place your hands on the bar palms up, with your hands about shoulder width apart.
  • Position your feet back from the bar with arms and body straight. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your body straight, lower your chest to the bar by bending the arms.
  • Return to the starting position by extending the elbows, pressing yourself back up.

Incline Push-Up Wide

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Stand facing a Smith machine bar or sturdy elevated platform at an appropriate height.
  • Place your hands on the bar, with your hands wider than shoulder width.
  • Position your feet back from the bar with arms and body straight. Your arms should be perpendicular to the body. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your body straight, lower your chest to the bar by bending the arms.
  • Return to the starting position by extending the elbows, pressing yourself back up.

Iron Cross

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • glutes
  • hamstrings
  • lower back
  • quadriceps
  • traps

Isometric Chest Squeezes

Category: plyometrics
Force: static
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • While either seating or standing, bend your arms at a 90-degree angle and place the palms of your hands together in front of your chest. Tip: Your hands should be open with the palms together and fingers facing forward (perpendicular to your torso).
  • Push both hands against each other as you contract your chest. Start with slow tension and increase slowly. Keep breathing normally as you execute this contraction.
  • Hold for the recommended number of seconds.
  • Now release the tension slowly.
  • Rest for the recommended amount of time and repeat.

Isometric Wipers

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Assume a push-up position, supporting your weight on your hands and toes while keeping your body straight. Your hands should be just outside of shoulder width. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin by shifting your body weight as far to one side as possible, allowing the elbow on that side to flex as you lower your body.
  • Reverse the motion by extending the flexed arm, pushing yourself up and then dropping to the other side.
  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

JM Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Start the exercise the same way you would a close grip bench press. You will lie on a flat bench while holding a barbell at arms length (fully extended) with the elbows in. However, instead of having the arms perpendicular to the torso, make sure the bar is set in a direct line above the upper chest. This will be your starting position.
  • Now beginning from a fully extended position lower the bar down as if performing a lying triceps extension. Inhale as you perform this movement. When you reach the half way point, let the bar roll back about one inch by moving the upper arms towards your legs until they are perpendicular to the torso. Tip: Keep the bend at the elbows constant as you bring the upper arms forward.
  • As you exhale, press the bar back up by using the triceps to perform a close grip bench press.
  • Now go back to the starting position and start over.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Landmine Linear Jammer

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • calves
  • chest
  • hamstrings
  • quadriceps
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Position a bar into landmine or, lacking one, securely anchor it in a corner. Load the bar to an appropriate weight and position the handle attachment on the bar.
  • Raise the bar from the floor, taking the handles to your shoulders. This will be your starting position.
  • In an athletic stance, squat by flexing your hips and setting your hips back, keeping your arms flexed.
  • Reverse the motion by powerfully extending through the hips, knees, and ankles, while also extending the elbows to straighten the arms. This movement should be done explosively, coming out of the squat to full extension as powerfully as possible.
  • Return to the starting position.

Leg-Over Floor Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: kettlebells
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor with one kettlebell in place on your chest, holding it by the handle. Extend leg on working side over leg on non-working side.Your free arm can be extended out to your side for support.
  • Press the kettlebll into a locked out position.
  • Lower the weight until the elbow touches the ground, keeping the kettlebell above the elbow. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Leverage Chest Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Load an appropriate weight onto the pins and adjust the seat for your height. The handles should be near the bottom or middle of the pectorals at the beginning of the motion.
  • Your chest and head should be up and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  • Press the handles forward by extending through the elbow.
  • After a brief pause at the top, return the weight just above the start position, keeping tension on the muscles by not returning the weight to the stops until the set is complete.

Leverage Decline Chest Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Load an appropriate weight onto the pins and adjust the seat for your height. The handles should be near the bottom of the pectorals at the beginning of the motion. Your chest and head should be up and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  • Press the handles forward by extending through the elbow.
  • After a brief pause at the top, return the weight just above the start position, keeping tension on the muscles by not returning the weight to the stops until the set is complete.

Leverage Incline Chest Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Load an appropriate weight onto the pins and adjust the seat for your height. The handles should be near the top of the pectorals at the beginning of the motion. Your chest and head should be up and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  • Press the handles forward by extending through the elbow.
  • After a brief pause at the top, return the weight just above the start position, keeping tension on the muscles by not returning the weight to the stops until the set is complete.

Log Lift

Category: strongman
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • chest
  • glutes
  • hamstrings
  • lower back
  • middle back
  • quadriceps
  • traps
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin standing with the log in front of you. Grasp the handles, and begin to clean the log. As you are bent over to start the clean, attempt to get the log as high as possible, pulling it into your chest. Extend through the hips and knees to bring it up to complete the clean.
  • Push your head back and look up, creating a shelf on your chest to rest the log. Begin the press by dipping, flexing slightly through the knees and reversing the motion. This push press will generate momentum to start the log moving vertically. Continue by extending through the elbows to press the log above your head. There are no strict rules on form, so use whatever techniques you are most efficient with. As the log is pressed, ensure that you push your head through on each repetition, looking forward.
  • Repeat as many times as possible. Attempt to control the descent of the log as it is returned to the ground.

Low Cable Crossover

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • To move into the starting position, place the pulleys at the low position, select the resistance to be used and grasp a handle in each hand.
  • Step forward, gaining tension in the pulleys. Your palms should be facing forward, hands below the waist, and your arms straight. This will be your starting position.
  • With a slight bend in your arms, draw your hands upward and toward the midline of your body. Your hands should come together in front of your chest, palms facing up.
  • Return your arms back to the starting position after a brief pause.

Lying Dumbbell Tricep Extension

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie on a flat bench while holding two dumbbells directly in front of you. Your arms should be fully extended at a 90-degree angle from your torso and the floor. The palms should be facing in and the elbows should be tucked in. This is the starting position.
  • As you breathe in and you keep the upper arms stationary with the elbows in, slowly lower the weight until the dumbbells are near your ears.
  • At that point, while keeping the elbows in and the upper arms stationary, use the triceps to bring the weight back up to the starting position as you breathe out.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Machine Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Sit down on the Chest Press Machine and select the weight.
  • Step on the lever provided by the machine since it will help you to bring the handles forward so that you can grab the handles and fully extend the arms.
  • Grab the handles with a palms-down grip and lift your elbows so that your upper arms are parallel to the floor to the sides of your torso. Tip: Your forearms will be pointing forward since you are grabbing the handles. Once you bring the handles forward and extend the arms you will be at the starting position.
  • Now bring the handles back towards you as you breathe in.
  • Push the handles away from you as you flex your pecs and you breathe out. Hold the contraction for a second before going back to the starting position.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of reps.
  • When finished step on the lever again and slowly get the handles back to their original place.

Medicine Ball Chest Pass

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • You will need a partner for this exercise. Lacking one, this movement can be performed against a wall.
  • Begin facing your partner holding the medicine ball at your torso with both hands.
  • Pull the ball to your chest, and reverse the motion by extending through the elbows. For sports applications, you can take a step as you throw.
  • Your partner should catch the ball, and throw it back to you.
  • Receive the throw with both hands at chest height.

Mountain Climbers

Category: plyometrics
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Primary Muscles:
  • quadriceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • hamstrings
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Begin in a pushup position, with your weight supported by your hands and toes. Flexing the knee and hip, bring one leg until the knee is approximately under the hip. This will be your starting position.
  • Explosively reverse the positions of your legs, extending the bent leg until the leg is straight and supported by the toe, and bringing the other foot up with the hip and knee flexed. Repeat in an alternating fashion for 20-30 seconds.

Neck Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on a flat bench. Using a medium-width grip (a grip that creates a 90-degree angle in the middle of the movement between the forearms and the upper arms), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over your neck with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your neck.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up).
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

One Arm Dumbbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in one hand on top of your thigh.
  • By using your thigh to help you get the dumbbell up, clean the dumbbell up so that you can hold it in front of you at shoulder width. Use the hand you are not lifting with to help position the dumbbell over you properly.
  • Once at shoulder width, rotate your wrist forward so that the palm of your hand is facing away from you. This will be your starting position.
  • Bring down the weights slowly to your side as you breathe in. Keep full control of the dumbbell at all times. Tip: Use the hand that you are not lifting with to help keep the dumbbell balance as you may struggle a bit at first. Only use your non-lifting hand if it is needed. Otherwise, keep it resting to the side.
  • As you breathe out, push the dumbbells up using your pectoral muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, squeeze your chest, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.
  • Switch arms and repeat the movement.

One Arm Floor Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a flat surface with your back pressing against the floor or an exercise mat. Make sure your knees are bent.
  • Have a partner hand you the bar on one hand. When starting, your arm should be just about fully extended, similar to the starting position of a barbell bench press. However, this time your grip will be neutral (palms facing your torso).
  • Make sure the hand you are not using to lift the weight is placed by your side.
  • Begin the exercise by lowering the barbell until your elbow touches the ground. Make sure to breathe in as this is the eccentric (lowering part of the exercise).
  • Then start lifting the barbell back up to the original starting position. Remember to breathe out during the concentric (lifting part of the exercise).
  • Repeat until you have performed your recommended repetitions.
  • Switch arms and repeat the movement.

One Half Locust

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Primary Muscles:
  • quadriceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • biceps
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Lie facedown on the floor.
  • Put your left hand under your left hipbone to pad your hip and pubic bone.
  • Bend your right knee so you can hold the foot in your right hand.
  • Lift the foot in the air and simultaneously lift your shoulders off the floor. This also stretches the right hip flexor and the chest and shoulders. Switch sides. If it doesn't bother your back, you can try it with both arms and legs at the same time.

One-Arm Flat Bench Dumbbell Flye

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in one hand resting on top of your thigh. The palm of your hand with the dumbbell in it should be at a neutral grip.
  • By using your thighs to help you get the dumbbell up, clean the dumbbell so that you can hold it in front of you with your lifting arm being fully extended. Remember to maintain a neutral grip with this exercise. Your non lifting hand should be to the side holding the flat bench for better support. This will be your starting position.
  • Your arm with the weight should have a slight bend on your elbow in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon. Begin by lowering your arm with the weight in it out in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest. Breathe in as you perform this portion of the movement. Tip: Keep in mind that throughout the movement, your lifting arm should remain stationary; the movement should only occur at the shoulder joint.
  • Return your lifting arm back to the starting position as you squeeze your chest muscles and breathe out. Tip: Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.
  • Hold for a second at the contracted position and repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • Switch arms and repeat the exercise.

One-Arm Kettlebell Floor Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: kettlebells
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor holding a kettlebell with one hand, with your upper arm supported by the floor. The palm should be facing in.
  • Press the kettlebell straight up toward the ceiling, rotating your wrist.
  • Lower the kettlebell back to the starting position and repeat.

Otis-Up

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Secure your feet and lay back on the floor. Your knees should be bent. Hold a weight with both hands to your chest. This will be your starting position.
  • Initiate the movement by flexing the hips and spine to raise your torso up from the ground.
  • As you move up, press the weight up so that it is above your head at the top of the movement.
  • Return the weight to your chest as you reverse the sit-up motion, ensuring not to go all the way down to the floor.

Overhead Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • forearms
  • lats
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Standing straight up, lace your fingers together and open your palms to the ceiling. Keep your shoulders down as you extend your arms up.
  • To create a full torso stretch, pull your tailbone down and stabilize your torso as you do this. Stretch the muscles on both the front and the back of the torso.

Pallof Press

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Connect a standard handle to a tower, and—if possible—position the cable to shoulder height. If not, a low pulley will suffice.
  • With your side to the cable, grab the handle with both hands and step away from the tower. You should be approximately arm’s length away from the pulley, with the tension of the weight on the cable.
  • With your feet positioned hip-width apart and knees slightly bent, hold the cable to the middle of your chest. This will be your starting position.
  • Press the cable away from your chest, fully extending both arms. You core should be tight and engaged.
  • Hold the repetition for several seconds before returning to the starting position.
  • At the conclusion of the set, repeat facing the other direction.

Pallof Press With Rotation

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Connect a standard handle to a tower, and position the cable to shoulder height.
  • With your side to the cable, grab the handle with one hand and step away from the tower. You should be approximately arm’s length away from the pulley, with the tension of the weight on the cable. Align outstretched arm with cable.
  • With your feet positioned hip-width apart, pull the cable into your chest and grab the handle with your other hand. Both hands should be on the handle at this time.
  • Facing forward, press the cable away from your chest. You core should be tight and engaged.
  • Keeping your hips straight, twist your torso away from the pulley until you get a full quarter rotation.
  • Maintain your rigid stance and straight arms. Return to the neutral position in a slow and controlled manner. Your arms should be extended in front of you.
  • With the side tension still engaging your core, bring your hands to your chest and immediately press outward to a fully extended position. This constitutes one rep.
  • Repeat to failure.
  • Then, reposition and repeat the same series of movements on the opposite side.

Parallel Bar Dip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Stand between a set of parallel bars. Place a hand on each bar, and then take a small jump to help you get into the starting position with your arms locked out.
  • Begin by flexing the elbow, lowering your body until your arms break 90 degrees. Avoid swinging, and maintain good posture throughout the descent.
  • Reverse the motion by extending the elbow, pushing yourself back up into the starting position.
  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Pin Presses

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • forearms
  • lats
  • middle back
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Pin presses remove the eccentric phase of the bench press, developing starting strength. They also allow you to train a desired range of motion.
  • The bench should be set up in a power rack. Set the pins to the desired point in your range of motion, whether it just be lockout or an inch off of your chest. The bar should be moved to the pins and prepared for lifting.
  • Begin by lying on the bench, with the bar directly above the contact point during your regular bench. Tuck your feet underneath you and arch your back. Using the bar to help support your weight, lift your shoulder off the bench and retract them, squeezing the shoulder blades together. Use your feet to drive your traps into the bench. Maintain this tight body position throughout the movement.
  • You can take a standard bench grip, or shoulder width to focus on the triceps. The bar, wrist, and elbow should stay in line at all times. Focus on squeezing the bar and trying to pull it apart.
  • Drive the bar up with as much force as possible. The elbows should be tucked in until lockout.
  • Return the bar to the pins, pausing before beginning the next repetition.

Plyo Kettlebell Pushups

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: expert
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: kettlebells
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place a kettlebell on the floor. Place yourself in a pushup position, on your toes with one hand on the ground and one hand holding the kettlebell, with your elbows extended. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin by lowering yourself as low as you can, keeping your back straight.
  • Quickly and forcefully reverse direction, pushing yourself up to the other side of the kettlebell, switching hands as you do so. Continue the movement by descending and repeating the movement back and forth.

Plyo Push-up

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Move into a prone position on the floor, supporting your weight on your hands and toes.
  • Your arms should be fully extended with the hands around shoulder width. Keep your body straight throughout the movement. This will be your starting position.
  • Descend by flexing at the elbow, lowering your chest towards the ground.
  • At the bottom, reverse the motion by pushing yourself up through elbow extension as quickly as possible. Attempt to push your upper body up until your hands leave the ground.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat the exercise.
  • For added difficulty, add claps into the movement while you are air borne.

Press Sit-Up

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: expert
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • To begin, lie down on a bench with a barbell resting on your chest. Position your legs so they are secure on the extension of the abdominal bench. This is the starting position.
  • While inhaling, tighten your abdominals and glutes. Simultaneously curl your torso as you do when performing a sit-up and press the barbell to an overhead position while exhaling. Tip: Use your arms to push the barbell out as you perform this exercise while still focusing on the abdominal muscles.
  • Lower your upper body back down to the starting position while bringing the barbell back down to your torso. Remember to breathe in while lowering the body.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Prowler Sprint

Category: cardio
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • hamstrings
Secondary Muscles:
  • calves
  • chest
  • glutes
  • quadriceps
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Place your sled on an appropriate surface, loaded to a suitable weight. The sled should provide enough resistance to require effort, but not so heavy that you are significantly slowed down.
  • You may use the upright or the low handles for this exercise. Place your hands on the handles with your arms extended, leaning into the implement.
  • With good posture, drive through the ground with alternating, short steps. Move as fast as you can for a short distance.

Push Up to Side Plank

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Get into pushup position on the toes with your hands just outside of shoulder width.
  • Perform a pushup by allowing the elbows to flex. As you descend, keep your body straight.
  • Do one pushup and as you come up, shift your weight on the left side of the body, twist to the side while bringing the right arm up towards the ceiling in a side plank.
  • Lower the arm back to the floor for another pushup and then twist to the other side.
  • Repeat the series, alternating each side, for 10 or more reps.

Push-Up Wide

Category: strength
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • abdominals
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • With your hands wide apart, support your body on your toes and hands in a plank position. Your elbows should be extended and your body straight. Do not allow your hips to sag. This will be your starting position.
  • To begin, allow the elbows to flex, lowering your chest to the floor as you inhale.
  • Using your pectoral muscles, press your upper body back up to the starting position by extending the elbows. Exhale as you perform this step.
  • After pausing at the contracted position, repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Push-Ups - Close Triceps Position

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor face down and place your hands closer than shoulder width for a close hand position. Make sure that you are holding your torso up at arms' length.
  • Lower yourself until your chest almost touches the floor as you inhale.
  • Using your triceps and some of your pectoral muscles, press your upper body back up to the starting position and squeeze your chest. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • After a second pause at the contracted position, repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Push-Ups With Feet Elevated

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor face down and place your hands about 36 inches apart from each other holding your torso up at arms length.
  • Place your toes on top of a flat bench. This will allow your body to be elevated. Note: The higher the elevation of the flat bench, the higher the resistance of the exercise is.
  • Lower yourself until your chest almost touches the floor as you inhale.
  • Using your pectoral muscles, press your upper body back up to the starting position and squeeze your chest. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • After a second pause at the contracted position, repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Push-Ups With Feet On An Exercise Ball

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: exercise ball
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor face down and place your hands about 36 inches apart from each other holding your torso up at arms length.
  • Place your toes on top of an exercise ball. This will allow your body to be elevated.
  • Lower yourself until your chest almost touches the floor as you inhale.
  • Using your pectoral muscles, press your upper body back up to the starting position and squeeze your chest. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • After a second pause at the contracted position, repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Pushups

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor face down and place your hands about 36 inches apart while holding your torso up at arms length.
  • Next, lower yourself downward until your chest almost touches the floor as you inhale.
  • Now breathe out and press your upper body back up to the starting position while squeezing your chest.
  • After a brief pause at the top contracted position, you can begin to lower yourself downward again for as many repetitions as needed.

Pushups (Close and Wide Hand Positions)

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie on the floor face down and body straight with your toes on the floor and the hands wider than shoulder width for a wide hand position and closer than shoulder width for a close hand position. Make sure you are holding your torso up at arms length.
  • Lower yourself until your chest almost touches the floor as you inhale.
  • Using your pectoral muscles, press your upper body back up to the starting position and squeeze your chest. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • After a second pause at the contracted position, repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Return Push from Stance

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • You will need a partner for this drill.
  • Begin in an athletic 2 or 3 point stance.
  • At the signal, move into a position to receive the pass from your partner.
  • Catch the medicine ball with both hands and immediately throw it back to your partner.
  • You can modify this drill by running different routes.

Reverse Band Bench Press

Category: powerlifting
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • forearms
  • lats
  • middle back
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Position a bench inside a power rack, with the bar set to the correct height. Begin by anchoring bands either to band pegs or to the top of the rack. Ensure that you will be position properly under the bands. Attach the other end to the barbell.
  • Lie on the bench, tuck your feet underneath you and arch your back. Using the bar to help support your weight, lift your shoulder off the bench and retract them, squeezing the shoulder blades together. Use your feet to drive your traps into the bench. Maintain this tight body position throughout the movement. However wide your grip, it should cover the ring on the bar.
  • Pull the bar out of the rack without protracting your shoulders. Focus on squeezing the bar and trying to pull it apart. Lower the bar to your lower chest or upper stomach. The bar, wrist, and elbow should stay in line at all times.
  • Pause when the barbell touches your torso, and then drive the bar up with as much force as possible. The elbows should be tucked in until lockout.

Reverse Triceps Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie back on a flat bench. Using a close, supinated grip (around shoulder width), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked extended in front of you and perpendicular to the floor. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your middle chest. Tip: Make sure that as opposed to a regular bench press, you keep the elbows close to the torso at all times in order to maximize triceps involvement.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your triceps muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Ring Dips

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Grip a ring in each hand, and then take a small jump to help you get into the starting position with your arms locked out.
  • Begin by flexing the elbow, lowering your body until your arms break 90 degrees. Avoid swinging, and maintain good posture throughout the descent.
  • Reverse the motion by extending the elbow, pushing yourself back up into the starting position.
  • Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Round The World Shoulder Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • biceps
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Stand up straight with your legs together, holding a bodybar or broomstick.
  • Hold the pole behind your hips with a wider than shoulder width grip. Your palms should be down and your thumbs facing out.
  • Slowly lift your arms up behind your head. Don't force it if it gets hard to lift further.

Seated Biceps

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: expert
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • biceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Sit on the floor with your knees bent and your partner standing behind you. Extend your arms straight behind you with your palms facing each other. Your partner will hold your wrists for you. This will be the starting position.
  • Attempt to flex your elbows, while your partner prevents any actual movement.
  • After 10-20 seconds, relax your arms while your partner gently pulls your wrists up to stretch your biceps. Be sure to let your partner know when the stretch is appropriate to prevent injury or overstretching.

Seated Front Deltoid

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: expert
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Sit upright on the floor with your legs bent, your partner standing behind you. Stick your arms straight out to your sides, with your palms facing the ground. Attempt to move them as far behind you as possible, as your assistant holds your wrists. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your elbows straight, attempt to move your arms to the front, with your partner gently restraining you to prevent any actual movement for 10-20 seconds.
  • Now, relax your muscles and allow your partner to gently increase the stretch on the shoulders and chest. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds.

Single-Arm Cable Crossover

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Begin by moving the pulleys to the high position, select the resistance to be used, and take a handle in each hand.
  • Step forward in front of both pulleys with your arms extended in front of you, bringing your hands together. Your head and chest should be up as you lean forward, while your feet should be staggered. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your left arm in place, allow your right arm to extend out to the side, maintaining a slight bend at the elbow. The right arm should be perpendicular to the body at approximately shoulder level.
  • Return your arm back to the starting position by pulling your hand back to the midline of the body.
  • Hold for a second at the starting position and repeat the movement on the opposite side. Continue alternating back and forth for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Single-Arm Linear Jammer

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Position a bar into a landmine or securely anchor it in a corner. Load the bar to an appropriate weight.
  • Raise the bar from the floor, taking it to your shoulders with one or both hands. Adopt a wide stance. This will be your starting position.
  • Perform the movement by extending the elbow, pressing the weight up. Move explosively, extending the hips and knees fully to produce maximal force.
  • Return to the starting position.

Single-Arm Push-Up

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin laying prone on the ground. Move yourself into a position supporting your weight on your toes and one arm. Your working arm should be placed directly under the shoulder, fully extended. Your legs should be extended, and for this movement you may need a wider base, placing your feet further apart than in a normal push-up.
  • Maintain good posture, and place your free hand behind your back. This will be your starting position.
  • Lower yourself by allowing the elbow to flex until you touch the ground.
  • Descend slowly, and reverse direction be extending the arm to return to the starting position.

Sled Push

Category: strongman
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • quadriceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • calves
  • chest
  • glutes
  • hamstrings
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Load your pushing sled with the desired weight.
  • Take an athletic posture, leaning into the sled with your arms fully extended, grasping the handles. Push the sled as fast as possible, focusing on extending your hips and knees to strengthen your posterior chain.

Smith Incline Shoulder Raise

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
Instructions:
  • Place an incline bench underneath the smith machine. Place the barbell at a height that you can reach when lying down and your arms are almost fully extended. Once the weight you need is selected, lie down on the incline bench and make sure your shoulders are aligned right under the barbell.
  • Using a shoulder width pronated (palms forward) grip, lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with a slight bend at the elbows. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe out, lift the bar up until your arms are fully extended. Note: The contraction should be felt around the shoulders.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back down to the starting position as you breathe in.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Smith Machine Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place a flat bench underneath the smith machine. Now place the barbell at a height that you can reach when lying down and your arms are almost fully extended. Once the weight you need is selected, lie down on the flat bench. Using a pronated grip that is wider than shoulder width, unlock the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your middle chest.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, lock the bar back in the rack.

Smith Machine Close-Grip Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Place a flat bench underneath the smith machine. Place the barbell at a height that you can reach when lying down and your arms are almost fully extended. Once the weight you need is selected, lie down on the flat bench. Using a close and pronated grip (palms facing forward) that is around shoulder width, unlock the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your middle chest. Tip: Make sure that as opposed to a regular bench press, you keep the elbows close to the torso at all times in order to maximize triceps involvement.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your triceps muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, lock the bar back in the rack.

Smith Machine Decline Press

Category: strength
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Position a decline bench in the rack so that the bar will be above your chest. Load an appropriate weight and take your place on the bench.
  • Rotate the bar to unhook it from the rack and fully extend your arms. Your back should be slightly arched and your shoulder blades retracted. This will be your starting position.
  • Begin the movement by flexing your arms, lowering the bar to your chest.
  • Pause briefly, and then extend your arms to push the weight back to the starting position.
  • After completing the desired number of repetitions, rotate the bar to rack the weight.

Smith Machine Incline Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: machine
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place an incline bench underneath the smith machine. Place the barbell at a height that you can reach when lying down and your arms are almost fully extended. Once the weight you need is selected, lie down on the incline bench and make sure your upper chest is aligned with the barbell. Using a pronated grip (palms facing forward) that is wider than shoulder width, unlock the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your upper chest.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.
  • When you are done, place the bar back in the rack.

Spider Crawl

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: body only
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin in a prone position on the floor. Support your weight on your hands and toes, with your feet together and your body straight. Your arms should be bent to 90 degrees. This will be your starting position.
  • Initiate the movement by raising one foot off of the ground. Externally rotate the leg and bring the knee toward your elbow, as far forward as possible.
  • Return this leg to the starting position and repeat on the opposite side.

Standing Biceps Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • biceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Clasp your hands behind your back with your palms together, straighten arms and then rotate them so your palms face downward.
  • Raise your arms up and hold until you feel a stretch in your biceps.

Standing Cable Chest Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Position dual pulleys to chest height and select an appropriate weight. Stand a foot or two in front of the cables, holding one in each hand. You can stagger your stance for better stability.
  • Position the upper arm at a 90 degree angle with the shoulder blades together. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping the rest of the body stationary, extend through the elbows to press the handles forward, drawing them together in front of you.
  • Pause at the top of the motion, and return to the starting position.

Standing Low-Pulley One-Arm Triceps Extension

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: cable
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Grab a single handle with your left arm next to the low pulley machine. Turn away from the machine keeping the handle to the side of your body with your arm fully extended. Now use both hands to elevate the single handle directly above the head with the palm facing forward. Keep your upper arm completely vertical (perpendicular to the floor) and put your right hand on your left elbow to help keep it steady. This is the starting position.
  • Keeping your upper arms close to your head (elbows in) and perpendicular to the floor, lower the resistance in a semicircular motion behind your head until your forearms touch your biceps. Tip: The upper arms should remain stationary and only the forearms should move. Breathe in as you perform this step.
  • Go back to the starting position by using the triceps to raise the single handle. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.
  • Switch arms and repeat the exercise.

Standing One-Arm Dumbbell Triceps Extension

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • To begin, stand up with a dumbbell held in one hand. Your feet should be about shoulder width apart from each other. Now fully extend the arm with the dumbbell over your head. Tip: The small finger of your hand should be facing the ceiling and the palm of your hand should be facing forward. The dumbbell should be above your head.
  • This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your upper arm close to your head (elbows in) and perpendicular to the floor, lower the resistance in a semicircular motion behind your head until your forearm touch your bicep. Tip: The upper arm should remain stationary and only the forearm should move. Breathe in as you perform this step.
  • Go back to the starting position by using the triceps to raise the dumbbell. Breathe out as you perform this step.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.
  • Switch arms and repeat the exercise.

Standing Two-Arm Overhead Throw

Category: plyometrics
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lats
Instructions:
  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart holding a medicine ball in both hands. To begin, reach the medicine ball deep behind your head as you bend the knees slightly and lean back.
  • Violently throw the ball forward, flexing at the hip and using your whole body to complete the movement.
  • The medicine ball can be thrown to a partner or to a wall, receiving it as it bounces back.

Straight-Arm Dumbbell Pullover

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • lats
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Place a dumbbell standing up on a flat bench.
  • Ensuring that the dumbbell stays securely placed at the top of the bench, lie perpendicular to the bench (torso across it as in forming a cross) with only your shoulders lying on the surface. Hips should be below the bench and legs bent with feet firmly on the floor. The head will be off the bench as well.
  • Grasp the dumbbell with both hands and hold it straight over your chest at arms length. Both palms should be pressing against the underside one of the sides of the dumbbell. This will be your starting position. Caution: Always ensure that the dumbbell used for this exercise is secure. Using a dumbbell with loose plates can result in the dumbbell falling apart and falling on your face.
  • While keeping your arms straight, lower the weight slowly in an arc behind your head while breathing in until you feel a stretch on the chest.
  • At that point, bring the dumbbell back to the starting position using the arc through which the weight was lowered and exhale as you perform this movement.
  • Hold the weight on the initial position for a second and repeat the motion for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Supine Chest Throw

Category: plyometrics
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • This drill is great for chest passes when you lack a partner or a wall of sufficient strength. Lay on the ground on your back with your knees bent.
  • Begin with the ball on your chest, held with both hands on the bottom.
  • Explode up, extending through the elbow to throw the ball directly above you as high as possible.
  • Catch the ball with both hands as it comes down.

Supine One-Arm Overhead Throw

Category: plyometrics
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lats
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lay on the ground on your back with your knees bent. Hold the ball with one hand, extending the arm fully behind your head. This will be your starting position.
  • Initiate the movement at the shoulder, throwing the ball directly forward of you as you sit up, attempting to go for maximum distance.
  • The ball can be thrown to a partner or bounced off of a wall.

Supine Two-Arm Overhead Throw

Category: plyometrics
Force: pull
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: medicine ball
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lats
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lay on the ground on your back with your knees bent.
  • Hold the ball with both hands, extending the arms fully behind your head. This will be your starting position.
  • Initiate the movement at the shoulder, throwing the ball directly forward of you as you sit up, attempting to go for maximum distance.
  • The ball can be thrown to a partner or bounced off of a wall.

Suspended Fallout

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • abdominals
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lower back
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Adjust the straps so the handles are at an appropriate height, below waist level.
  • Begin standing and grasping the handles. Lean into the straps, moving to an incline push-up position. This will be your starting position.
  • Keeping your arms straight, lean further into the suspension straps, bringing your body closer to the ground, allowing your shoulders to extend, raising your arms up and over your head.
  • Maintain a neutral spine and keep the rest of your body straight, your shoulders being the only joints allowed to move.
  • Pause during the peak contraction, and then return to the starting position.

Suspended Push-Up

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Anchor your suspension straps securely to the top of a rack or other object.
  • Leaning into the straps, take a handle in each hand and move into a push-up plank position. You should be as close to parallel to the ground as you can manage with your arms fully extended, maintaining good posture.
  • Maintaining a straight, rigid torso, descend slowly by allowing the elbows to flex.
  • Continue until your elbows break 90 degrees, pausing before you extend to return to the starting position.

Svend Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: beginner
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • forearms
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin in a standing position.
  • Press two lightweight plates together with your hands. Hold the plates together close to your chest to create an isometric contraction in your chest muscles. Your fingers should be pointed forward. This is your starting position.
  • Squeeze the plates between your palms and extend your arms directly out in front of you in a controlled motion.
  • Pause at the top of the motion, and then slowly return to the starting position.

Tate Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: isolation
Equipment: dumbbell
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a flat bench with a dumbbell in each hand on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.
  • By using your thighs to help you get the dumbbells up, clean the dumbbells one arm at a time so that you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width. Note: when holding the dumbbells in front of you, make sure your arms are wider than shoulder width apart from each other using a pronated (palms forward) grip. Allow your elbows to point out. This is your starting position.
  • Keeping the upper arms stationary, slowly move the dumbbells in and down in a semi circular motion until they touch the upper chest while inhaling. Keep full control of the dumbbells at all times and do not move the upper arms nor rest the dumbbells on the chest.
  • As you breathe out, move the dumbbells up using your triceps and the same semi-circular motion but in reverse. Attempt to keep the dumbbells together as they move up. Lock your arms in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down again slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.

Tire Flip

Category: strongman
Force: pull
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • quadriceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • calves
  • chest
  • forearms
  • glutes
  • hamstrings
  • lower back
  • shoulders
  • traps
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Begin by gripping the bottom of the tire on the tread, and position your feet back a bit. Your chest should be driving into the tire.
  • To lift the tire, extend through the hips, knees, and ankles, driving into the tire and up.
  • As the tire reaches a 45 degree angle, step forward and drive a knee into the tire. As you do so adjust your grip to the upper portion of the tire and push it forward as hard as possible to complete the turn. Repeat as necessary.

Upward Stretch

Category: stretching
Force: static
Level: beginner
Primary Muscles:
  • shoulders
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • lats
Instructions:
  • Extend both hands straight above your head, palms touching.
  • Slowly push your hands up and back, keeping your back straight.

Weighted Bench Dip

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: other
Primary Muscles:
  • triceps
Secondary Muscles:
  • chest
  • shoulders
Instructions:
  • For this exercise you will need to place a bench behind your back and another one in front of you. With the benches perpendicular to your body, hold on to one bench on its edge with the hands close to your body, separated at shoulder width. Your arms should be fully extended.
  • The legs will be extended forward on top of the other bench. Your legs should be parallel to the floor while your torso is to be perpendicular to the floor. Have your partner place the dumbbell on your lap. Note: This exercise is best performed with a partner as placing the weight on your lap can be challenging and cause injury without assistance. This will be your starting position.
  • Slowly lower your body as you inhale by bending at the elbows until you lower yourself far enough to where there is an angle slightly smaller than 90 degrees between the upper arm and the forearm. Tip: Keep the elbows as close as possible throughout the movement. Forearms should always be pointing down.
  • Using your triceps to bring your torso up again, lift yourself back to the starting position while exhaling.
  • Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.

Wide-Grip Barbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on a flat bench with feet firm on the floor. Using a wide, pronated (palms forward) grip that is around 3 inches away from shoulder width (for each hand), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. The bar will be perpendicular to the torso and the floor. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your middle chest.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Wide-Grip Decline Barbell Bench Press

Category: strength
Force: push
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie back on a decline bench with the feet securely locked at the front of the bench. Using a wide, pronated (palms forward) grip that is around 3 inches away from shoulder width (for each hand), lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with your arms locked. The bar will be perpendicular to the torso and the floor. This will be your starting position.
  • As you breathe in, come down slowly until you feel the bar on your lower chest.
  • After a second pause, bring the bar back to the starting position as you breathe out and push the bar using your chest muscles. Lock your arms and squeeze your chest in the contracted position, hold for a second and then start coming down slowly again. Tip: It should take at least twice as long to go down than to come up.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions.

Wide-Grip Decline Barbell Pullover

Category: strength
Force: pull
Level: intermediate
Mechanic: compound
Equipment: barbell
Primary Muscles:
  • chest
Secondary Muscles:
  • shoulders
  • triceps
Instructions:
  • Lie down on a decline bench with both legs securely locked in position. Reach for the barbell behind the head using a pronated grip (palms facing out). Make sure to grab the barbell wider than shoulder width apart for this exercise. Slowly lift the barbell up from the floor by using your arms.
  • When positioned properly, your arms should be fully extended and perpendicular to the floor. This is the starting position.
  • Begin by moving the barbell back down in a semicircular motion as if you were going to place it on the floor, but instead, stop when the arms are parallel to the floor. Tip: Keep the arms fully extended at all times. The movement should only happen at the shoulder joint. Inhale as you perform this portion of the movement.
  • Now bring the barbell up while exhaling until you are back at the starting position. Remember to keep full control of the barbell at all times.
  • Repeat the movement for the prescribed amount of repetitions of your training program.
  • When finished with your set, slowly lower the barbell back down until it is level with your head and release it.