A strong, wide and thick chest adds aesthetics and power to your physique. Sadly, some lifters have a hard time recruiting the chest muscles and rely mostly on deltoid and triceps power during pushing exercises (e,g., bench press, push-ups…etc.). With a few adjustments, this can change.
1. Do Dips
The bottom of the dip is highly dependent on pectoral strength. Consequently, even ultra-lazy pec muscles wake up during dips.
By the way, there is no need to do the so-called chest dips. Just stick to the classic variation. It works.
Don’t go too low to avoid damaging your shoulders. Not everybody can handle dips. People with poor shoulder flexibility may have to stay away from the exercise.
Note: The guys in the picture were/are on steroids. Nattyornot.com does not claim that you will reach a similar chest size by doing dips. A more realistic example would be someone like Al Kavaldo.
Related article: How To Make The Dip Your Primary Chest Exercise
2. Push-ups on Olympic rings
The ring push-up mimics the dumbbell bench press since both arms have to work independently, and the stabilization requirements are high.
This movement is harder than it looks. Don’t act surprised if the next day your chest is shut down. Before attempting advanced variations master the basics to avoid injuries.
3. Dumbbell Bench Press
The dumbbell bench press often results in a higher chest activation. The exercise offers the following benefits:
a. less stress on the shoulders in comparison to the bar when done properly
b. it is easier to feel the chest working
c. ego control (nobody asks – ”How much do you dumbbell press?”)
4. Imagine that you’re squeezing a spring between your hands
When performing the bench press or push-ups, you can activate the chest to a higher degree by imagining that you are bringing your hands together without actually doing so. Imagine that you are squeezing a spring between your hands. This will force the chest to exert even more force.
Simply imagine that you are squeezing a spring between your hands. This will force the chest to exert even more force.
For more tips on how to activate your chest when benching, visit this link.
5. Lower the weight
Remember that you’re not saving the world with your lifting efforts. You’re doing it for yourself, and there is no need to damage your body in the process. It’s better to lower the weight and do the exercises properly. Even if you have to lift really light weights such as 95lbs, do it! Quality over quantity.
6. Train the chest more frequently
If you’re trying to get good at something, upping the frequency can help. You can consider adding a second chest day later during the week. However, going up to three days a week may be too much unless you lower weight (intensity) and reduce the reps (volume).
Your biggest limitation as a natural bodybuilder are your hormones. You can build decent pectoral muscles naturally, but if you think that you can have a 48-inch chest with striations on it, think again. The natural potential of most people is not that high.