How to do the Decline Barbell Chest Press Best

What Is a Decline Bench Press?

The decline bench press, also known as the decline chest press and the decline barbell bench press, is a powerlifting exercise that targets your lower pectoral muscles. Perform the decline bench press exercise by lying faceup on an adjustable bench set to a decline position. Unrack a weighted barbell with a grip slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Lower the barbell until your elbows bend to a 45-degree angle. Squeeze your pecs and straighten your elbows, lifting the barbell. Repeat this movement for the desired amount of repetitions appropriate for your weight training chest routine.

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How to Do a Decline Bench Press With Proper Form

For the decline bench press, begin by using a barbell with a weight you can control for 2–3 sets of 6–12 repetitions. Choose a weight that allows you to maintain good technique throughout all sets and repetitions.

  1. Lie faceup on a decline bench with your feet anchored securely under the foot roller pads and your back in contact with the bench. Your eyes should be directly underneath the barbell. Maintain a neutral head and neck position. Your chin should remain tucked throughout the movement as if you were holding an egg under your chin.
  2. Engage your core and maintain a neutral spine. Your shoulder blades should be slightly down and back, and your upper back should remain tight and stable throughout the entire set.
  3. Grab the barbell with a wide grip that is slightly wider than your shoulders.
  4. Rotate your shoulders outward to engage your lats.
  5. Without losing your alignment, lift the barbell off of the uprights. Your wrist should be neutral and in line with your elbows.
  6. Slowly lower the barbell towards your lower chest by bending your elbows.
  7. Lower the barbell until your upper arms are in line with your back. Your elbows should be at a 45-degree angle.
  8. Pause for 1–2 seconds at the bottom position
  9. For the upward movement, squeeze your chest and begin to straighten your elbows.
  10. Squeeze your chest and triceps at the top of the movement while maintaining a slight bend in your elbows.
  11. Repeat this movement for the desired amount of repetitions.

Muscles Worked by Decline Bench Presses

The decline bench press activates many of the major muscle groups in your upper body:

  • Chest muscles : Decline bench presses activate both the clavicular head and the sternal head of your pectoralis major. If you want more muscle activation in your upper chest, consider practicing incline bench presses .
  • Shoulder muscles : With proper weightlifting form, you activate your delts as stabilizers during the exercise, specifically your anterior deltoids.
  • Arm muscles : As you move your arms through a full range of motion, you activate your triceps, biceps, and forearms.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Decline Bench Presses

Including this chest exercise in your bodybuilding program can have several benefits, but be sure to bring a spotter with you when benching.

  • Decline bench presses target your lower pecs . The decline bench press promotes muscle growth in your lower pecs more than a standard flat bench press or other bench press variations, like the incline bench press, which targets your upper pecs instead.
  • Decline bench presses alleviate stress on your body . The decline bench press engages your elbows through a full range of motion without straining your shoulder joints and lower back muscles.
  • Decline bench presses put you in an unnatural position . A limitation of the decline bench press is that it puts your body in an awkward position with your head below the rest of your body. If you’re new to benching, start with lighter-weight plates, and always remember to bring a spotter with you.

How to Work out Safely and Avoid Injury

If you have a previous or pre-existing health condition, consult your physician before beginning an exercise program. Proper exercise technique is essential to ensure the safety and effectiveness of an exercise program, but you may need to modify each exercise to attain optimal results based on your individual needs. Always select a weight that allows you to have full control of your body throughout the movement. When performing any exercise, pay close attention to your body, and stop immediately if you note pain or discomfort.

In order to see continual progress and build body strength, incorporate proper warm-ups, rest, and nutrition into your exercise program. Your results will ultimately be based on your ability to adequately recover from your workouts. Rest for 24 to 48 hours before training the same muscle groups to allow sufficient recovery.

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