Looking to lose weight? Try our FREE Calorie Counter »  |  Log In
Articles Fitness Nutrition

Effective Exercises: Chest Presses with Dumbbells

The chest press with dumbbells, also called the dumbbell bench press, is a simple exercise that works your upper body. This exercise is easy to master, but there are many variations such as an incline or decline bench to maintain the challenge.

How to Perform a Chest Press with Dumbbells

To begin, sit down on a bench with a pair of dumbbells in each hand. Lay down so your knees form a 90-degree angle off the end of the bench and your head is resting at the top. Bend your elbows so that the dumbbells are situated at the sides of your chest with palms facing your feet.

To press the dumbbells up, you want to extend you arms until they are straight above your head. Slowly lower the dumbbells back to the sides of your upper chest until you feel a slight stretch in your chest.


When performing this exercise, you want the dumbbells to follow a slight arch motion. They will travel inward over your shoulder as you raise your arms up. Avoid locking or fully straightening your elbows. After you complete this exercise, do not throw or drop the dumbbells out to the sides.

What Muscle Groups Are Used

This is a basic exercise that uses compound mechanics. This is done through push force. It targets the pectoralis major or the lower chest muscles.  Muscles that work as stabilizers are the anterior deltoids and the triceps.

Why This Is Good

The main benefit of the chest press with dumbbells is that you get a better stretch or workout at the bottom of the exercise than you would if you were using a traditional barbell. Dumbbells also require additional core or stabilizer muscles for balance than a barbell, which gives you a more complete workout.

Article Comments