The best way to Bench Press with Dumbbells: Train Information + Exercise

September 21, 2022 0 Comments

Dumbbell Bench Press – Introduction

The best way to Bench Press with Dumbbells: Chest Train Information + Exercise

The barbell bench press is a basic transfer and one of many world’s favourite free-weight workouts.

Virtually everybody who lifts weights has achieved the bench press, and plenty of have an emotional reference to this standard chest builder.

Get any two fitness center goers collectively, and invariably certainly one of them will ask, “So, how a lot do you bench?”

A giant bench press can earn you critical bragging rights!

Whereas there isn’t a denying the common enchantment of the normal bench press, it’s not with out disadvantages.

For instance, to do it safely, particularly should you practice to failure, you’ll want an influence rack or a element spotter.

Getting caught with a heavy weight in your chest is not any laughing matter and might trigger extreme damage.

Additionally, the barbell bench press will be onerous on the shoulders, particularly for lifters with lengthy arms and/or shallow chests.

Lastly, like every elevate, should you do it too usually, the bench press can lose a few of its efficiency.

Finally, your physique will adapt to the barbell bench press, and your progress will stall, limiting will increase in power and hypertrophy.

The excellent news is that switching to the bench press with dumbbells can save your shoulders and make your exercises extra productive.

On this article, we let you know all you want to find out about this efficient higher physique pushing train.

Bench Press with Dumbbells – Muscle mass Labored 

The bench press with dumbbells, or dumbbell bench press because it’s extra generally identified, is a improbable compound train for constructing higher physique power.

Meaning it includes two or extra joints and several other muscle mass working collectively.

The first muscle mass educated throughout the dumbbell bench press are:

Pectoralis main

Generally known as the pecs for brief, these are your most distinguished chest muscle mass.

The pectoral muscle mass are liable for horizontal shoulder flexion, adduction, and medial rotation.

Pectoralis main chest muscle

what muscles do dumbbell bench presses work - pectoralis major image credit yoganatomy
Muscle mass labored by dumbbell bench presses – pec main Picture Credit score Yoganatomy


The deltoids are your shoulder muscle mass.

There are three units of muscle fibers, that are known as heads: anterior (entrance), medial (center), and posterior (rear).

All three heads are engaged throughout dumbbell bench presses, however the anterior head is most energetic.

Triceps brachii

Normally simply known as the triceps for brief, this muscle is positioned on the again of your higher arm.

Its features are elbow extension and shoulder extension.

Triceps brachii muscle mass labored

Three heads of the triceps brachii - muscles worked by dumbbell bench presses - Image Credit Myprotein
Three heads of the Triceps brachii – Picture Credit score Myprotein

The best way to do Bench Presses with Dumbbells 

There are two methods to do any train – the precise means and the unsuitable means.

The correct means locations rigidity on the goal muscle mass whereas being sort to your joints.

The unsuitable means is often much less efficient and extra more likely to trigger damage.

That is the right way to do bench presses for greatest outcomes and most security.

  1. Sit on a flat bench with a dumbbell in every hand and your ft flat on the ground.
  2. Relaxation the ends of your dumbbells in your thighs.
  3. Brace your abs, pull your shoulders down and again, and tense your biceps.
  4. Subsequent, lean again and use your legs and arms to place the weights over your chest.
  5. Your arms needs to be straight and vertical along with your palms going through down your physique, i.e., a pronated grip.
  6. From this place, inhale, bend your arms, and decrease the dumbbells down and out to calmly contact the surface of your shoulders.
  7. Descend so far as your flexibility permits with out hyperextending your shoulders.
  8. Drive the weights again up and in, returning to the beginning place.
  9. Exhale as you press the dumbbells up.
  10. That’s one rep – preserve going!

Dumbbell Bench Press – Execs 

Not satisfied that the dumbbell bench press is the perfect train for you?

Take into account these advantages of the dumbbell bench press and downsides, after which resolve!


Coaching to failure is safer with dumbbells than with a barbell.

For those who can’t full a rep, all you want to do is decrease the dumbbells out to the facet and decrease or drop them to the ground.

The dumbbell bench press is a protected train for dwelling lifters.

Joint well being 

Dumbbell bench presses help you rotate your fingers, elbows, and shoulders as you practice, which takes stress off your joints.

In distinction, utilizing a barbell locks your fingers into one place, which is why they’re usually related to shoulder ache.

If barbell bench presses hassle your shoulders, switching to dumbbells might assist.

Full vary of movement 

If you do barbell bench presses, your vary of movement is proscribed by the bar touching your chest.

If you do bench presses with dumbbells, there isn’t a such restriction, so you’ll be able to decrease the weights additional and get a deeper stretch in your pecs.

That is good on your flexibility and mobility and should even improve muscle hypertrophy and power by making every rep extra demanding.

Even improvement from left to proper 

Doing bench presses with dumbbells will help you establish and repair left-to-right power imbalances.

It’s fairly regular to have one arm stronger than the opposite.

Nonetheless, vital power variations might result in persistent shoulder accidents and have an effect on the way you look.

Utilizing dumbbells means every arm should work independently and, as such, ought to assist repair any power and muscular improvement imbalances.

Coordination and steadiness 

It’s extra neurologically demanding to regulate two weights than one.

In addition to pushing the dumbbells upward, you additionally have to cease them each from falling inward, outward, ahead, or backward.

It will enhance your coordination, steadiness, and joint stability.

All this further work implies that dumbbell bench presses are more durable than the barbell variation.

On the subject of productive coaching, more durable is sort of all the time higher!

Bench Press with Dumbbells – Cons 

There are a few drawbacks to doing bench presses with dumbbells too…

Problem getting the weights into the proper beginning place 

Whereas doing dumbbell bench presses with mild to medium weights is often no drawback, heavy weights will be awkward.

Not least since you’ll have to wrestle them up into the correct place to begin your set.

You’ll principally should grasp a type of “seated energy clear” should you don’t have a coaching associate out there that can assist you.

This will likely restrict how a lot weight you should use in your exercises.

Much less weight 

Most individuals can elevate 20-30% extra within the barbell bench press than the bench press with dumbbells.

Whereas this isn’t a problem for muscle development, it might imply that this train is just not so good for constructing brute power.

For most individuals, the barbell bench press can be extra appropriate for heavy power coaching and powerlifting.

Bench Press with Dumbbells – Variations 

The flat dumbbell bench press is a superb train.

Nonetheless, if that’s all you ever do, your coaching progress will ultimately sluggish and should even stall.

Fortunately, there’s multiple dumbbell bench press variation you should use to maintain your coaching novel and productive.

Incline bench press with dumbbells

Set your bench to 20-30 levels to focus on your higher chest slightly extra.

This variation additionally will increase the recruitment of your anterior deltoids.

Decline bench press

Set your bench to a 10-20 diploma decline to emphasise your decrease pecs.

Most exercisers discover they’ll elevate slightly extra weight with this variation.

Paused bench press

Decrease the dumbbells as normal however then pause for 2-3 seconds on the backside of every rep.

This reduces the stretch-shortening reflex and makes every rep more difficult.

It is a good choice in case you are restricted to mild dumbbells however nonetheless need an intense exercise.

Shut grip bench press with dumbbells

Undertake a impartial grip and press the dumbbells collectively to extend inside chest engagement and make even light-weight dumbbells really feel heavier.

The more durable you push the weights collectively, the simpler this train turns into.

You are able to do this train on a flat, incline, or decline bench.

Alternating dumbbell bench press

For this variation, decrease one arm at a time whereas holding the opposite arm prolonged and stationary.

This retains your muscle mass underneath rigidity for longer, making reasonable and even lighter weights really feel heavier.

Single-arm dumbbell bench press

Utilizing a single dumbbell means you’ll be able to focus 100% on one arm at a time and deal with any left-to-right power imbalances you will have.

Additionally, this variation works your core extra, as you’ll want to make use of your abs to stabilize your physique and forestall twisting.

Dumbbell flooring press

No bench?

No drawback!

Work the identical muscle teams by doing all of your dumbbell presses whereas mendacity on the ground.

Decrease the weights down till your higher arms contact the bottom.

This train may be very shoulder joint pleasant!

Single arm alternating dumbbell flooring press

Bench Press with Dumbbells – Chest Exercise 

When you might simply do a couple of units of dumbbell bench presses and hope for the perfect, you’ll get higher outcomes should you observe a extra structured coaching plan.

This exercise routine is constructed across the bench press with dumbbells and a few further dumbbell and body weight workouts.

Do the next Match Apprentice® dumbbell chest exercise 1-2 occasions every week, taking every set to inside a few reps of failure.

Spend a couple of minutes warming up earlier than you’re employed out to attenuate your threat of damage and make sure that all of your muscle mass are firing appropriately.

Bench Press With Dumbbells Chest Workout - Copyright The Fit Apprentice® at

* Reps are listed for illustration functions solely. For those who solely have a light-weight pair of dumbbells, proceed till your muscle mass are fatigued, and you can not do any extra reps with correct type.

** These are push-ups along with your fingers resting on dumbbells so you’ll be able to work your muscle mass via a better vary of movement.

Do your push-ups in your toes or knees as most popular.

Alternatively, put your ft on a bench to make this train more difficult.

Bench Press with Dumbbells – Wrapping Up 

The barbell bench press is a much-loved train, however it’s not all the time sensible, particularly should you practice at dwelling and don’t have an influence rack.

The bench press with dumbbells is safer for solo trainers and likewise affords a number of further advantages, which might imply it’s a greater choice for some individuals.

That mentioned, for constructing brute power and for powerlifting-style coaching, the barbell bench press might be your best option.

However, if you wish to construct and tone your pecs and aren’t apprehensive about lifting ultra-heavy weights, the bench press with dumbbells could possibly be the perfect pushing train on your exercises.

All you want is a weight bench and a set of dumbbells to realize your health objectives, and gas your physique transformation.

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