5 Best Exercises for Chest



I believe that proper exercise selection is very important to help one achieve their goals.  If you are going to be busting your butt in the gym you want to spend your time on something that will actually give you the results you are after.  To that end I have compiled the 5 best exercises for the muscle group you want to work.  But, it is important to know what specific goal you have.  Are you trying to get stronger, get bigger, or build muscular endurance?  To help you out I am going to list my top 5 exercises for chest in each one of those categories.


Chest Strength Chest Size Chest Endurance
Bench Press Bench Press Bench Press
Incline Press Smith Mx Bench Push-up
Decline Press Hammer Strength Press Dip
Dumbbell Press Dumbbell Press Ring Push-up
Dips Power DB Fly 1-Arm Push-up

Note: If you’d rather carve your pecks using body-weight exercises, check out this course.

Remember, there are important training guidelines to follow for each goal:


  • Strength: For most sets use a heavier weight, use lower reps (1-6), and take long rests in between each work set (2+ minutes). Be sure to incorporate progressive overload in your workouts.


  • Size: For most sets use a moderate weight, use medium reps (6-12), take shorter rests in between each work set (1-2 minutes), and use a high volume of training (8-20 tough sets for the target area). Be sure to eat enough to facilitate growth.


  • Endurance: For most sets use a lower weight, use higher reps (12+, often in the 20 range), and take shorter breaks particularly if training for multiple set endurance. Be sure to keep your cardio high enough and your bodyweight low enough to handle the demands of this style of training.
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4 thoughts on “5 Best Exercises for Chest

  1. Pingback: Tim’s Training Tips #1-5 – The PT University

  2. Pingback: 7 Steps to Writing Great Workout Programs – The PT University

  3. Newton

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  4. Owens

    The upper chest is best stimulated from exercises done on a 30-45% incline bench. For example incline barbell and dumbbell bench press or incline dumbbell flyes are great upper chest exercises.

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