Chest Exercise: Decline Bench Press

decline-barbell-bench-press decline-barbell-bench-press-2

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Chest (pectoralis major) Target (secondary) Anterior deltoidTriceps
Equipment Dumbbells, Barbell
Mechanics Compound
Force Push
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • Lie down on a decline bench with your feet securely placed under the leg brace
  • Grasp the bar using a medium overhand grip and unrack the barbell.
  • Inhale as you slowly lower the bar to your upper chest and exhale as you push the bar up while squeezing your chest muscle until arms are extended.

→ See the full chest and biceps workout here

[end]What’s your favorite chest exercise? [/end]

Chest Exercise: Cable Crossover

cable crossover

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Chest (pectoralis major)
Target (secondary) Anterior deltoid
Equipment Cable
Mechanics Isolation Force Push
Plane of motion Sagittal plane, Coronal plane
Other Bilateral, Unilateral

Aka Standing fly.

How is it performed?

  • Place the pulleys above your head, and stand between them holding a pulley attachments in each hand. Bend at the hips and knees, so your torso is leaning slightly forward.
  • Bend slightly at the elbow and rotate them upwards. By moving at the shoulder joints, not in the torso or at the elbows, bring the cables together in front of you.
  • Return slowly to starting position.

Variations


single arm cable crossover

Single arm cable crossover


→ See the full chest workout here

[end]Are cable crossovers a part of your routine? [/end]

Back Exercise: Deadlift

Barbell deadlift

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Lower back Target (secondary) GlutesHamstringsQuadricepsMiddle backLatissimus Dorsi,
Equipment DumbbellsBarbell Mechanics Compound
Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • Place your feet flat beneath the loaded barbell.
  • Keep your back straight as squat down to above parallel and grasp the bar with a should width or slightly wider with an overhand grip (if this is too difficult, use a mixed grip)
  • Lift the bar from the ground by hinging your hips forward, extending your knees and raising your torso – pull the shoulder blades back and your chest out by squeezing your back muscles at the top.
  • Bring the barbell back to the ground by leaning your torso forwarded, pushing your hips back and bending at the knees – keep your back straight at all times.

Never round the back and always use perfect form to prevent back injury – never use more weight than you can lift properly.

Be careful with this exercise if you already  have (lower) back problems.

→ See the full back and legs workout here

[end]What’s your deadlift PR? [/end]

Back Exercise: Machine Lat Pulldown

Machine Lat Pulldown Machine Lat Pulldown

Type Resistance Target (primary) Latissimus Dorsi Target (secondary) Middle backBicepsRear deltoid
Equipment Machine Mechanics Compound
Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • Grap the handles with your palms facing away from your body, and sit down with your thighs under the supports.
  • Pull down the lever to your upper chest by drawing your shoulders and upper arms up and back. Focus on fully contracting your back muscles.
  • Slowly raise the bar until your arms and shoulders are fully extended.

→ See the full back workout here

[end]What’s your favorite exercise for the lats? [/end]

Shoulder Exercise: Pulley Row

Pulley row Pulley row

Type Resistance Target (primary) Rear deltoid Target (secondary) Middle backBiceps
Equipment Cable (with rope attachment) Mechanics Compound
Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • Adjust the pulley so it is at the same height as your shoulders.
  • Hold the rope attachment with an overhand grip, shoulders stretched forward, arms straight and parallel to the floor – keep your arms parallel to the floor throughout the movement.
  • As you exhale, pull the rope towards your upper chest by moving your elbows out and back until they are behind you.
  • As you inhale, slowly move back to the starting position.

→ See the full back & leg workout here

[end]Have you ever tried this type of row? [/end]

Back Exercise: Hyperextension

hyperextension

Type Resistance Target (primary) Lower back Target (secondary) Glutes, Hamstrings
Equipment Hyperextension bench Mechanics Compound
Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed?

  • Adjust the upper pad of the hyperextension bench so your upper thighs rest upon it while you still have room to bend at your waist unrestricted.
  • Place your feet securely under the lower pad. You can either place your arms behind your head or crossed over your chest.
  • Exhale and lower yourself by bending at the hips and waist. Go as far down as you can without rounding your back, then return to starting position by flexing without using momentum and stop when your body is in a straigh line (don’t arch back).
  • To make the exercise more challenging, hold a weight plate at the front of your chest.

→ See the full back workout here

[end]What’s your favorite back exercise? [/end]

Biceps Exercise: Close-Grip EZ-Bar Curl

ez-bar-close-grip-curl

Type Resistance
Target (primary) Biceps Target (secondary) Forearm
Equipment Barbell: EZ bar Mechanics Isolation Force Pull
Plane of motion Sagittal plane
Other Bilateral

How is it performed? Stand upright holding an EZ-bar with a close suppinated grip while keeping your elbows close to your torso. Curl the bar upward by contracting your biceps and keeping yoour upper arms still while you exhale. When the bar is at shoulder level and your biceps are fully contracted, slowly return to starting position as you inhale.

See the full biceps workout here.

[end]What’s your favorite biceps exercise? [/end]