The dumbbell incline bench press is a strength developing compound exercise which targets the upper part of the pectoral or chest muscles. This exercise is fairly simple to perform as it requires only a dumbbell and an inclined bench. It is similar in form to the inclined bench press, but here you have to maintain balance in both arms individually and hence, more muscles are worked upon to stabilize your arms. However, this means you will be able to lift less weight than you do in the bench press.
Correct Form Of Dumbbell Incline Bench Press
Here are step-by-step instructions which you must follow to perform the dumbbell incline bench press.
- Pick an inclined bench or a bench whose angle can be adjusted. The best angle to keep the bench at for this exercise is 30°-35°.
- Pick a pair of dumbbells, sit on the bench and keep the dumbbells on your thighs. If you have a spotter, you dont need to do this.
- Kick the dumbbells up and using the momentum, place your back flat on the bench and your feet firmly on the ground. If you have a spotter, you can ask to be handed the dumbbells now.
- The dumbbells will be above your chest, and your arms perpendicular to the floor. This is the starting position. Keep your arms straight.
- Taking a deep breath, bring the dumbbells down slowly till they are almost level with your chest. Feel the stretch in your pectorals.
- Push the dumbbells back upto the starting position, exhaling as you do so. Squeeze your pectorals at the top. This completes 1 repetition.
Alternate Exercise: Barbell Incline Bench Press
Variations In Dumbbell Incline Bench Press
There are a few variations which you can add to the incline bench press using dumbbells.
- You can vary the angle of the bench, if it can be adjusted. However, do not make it very steep as your Deltoids will become more involved.
- You can also alter the position of palms, by making them face each other on the way down and facing away from the body on the way up. However, it puts unnecessary stress on the shoulders.
Precautions To Keep During Incline Bench Press Exercise
Keeping these precautions while performing the incline bench press exercise will keep you away from any potential injury.
- Always work out with a spotter. Not only do they help you sneak in that extra rep or two, they can also prevent any mishap, like your arms giving out and the dumbbell falling bang on your face.
- Never keep the bench at a very high incline, as this will involve more of the Deltoid/shoulder muscles and less of the pectoral muscles.
- Never start with a heavy weight. Always add up weight slowly in every set.
- Do not lock your elbows at the top of the movement. It is an invitation to elbow injuries.
- Always bring the dumbbells down on your own strength, and not the strength of gravity. It should normally take twice the time to come down than to go up.
- Always keep your elbows at a 45° angle with your body, to concentrate the stress on the pectoral muscles.
- Never bang the dumbbells together at the top, as dust and debris might fall in your eyes.
Video: Dumbbell Incline Bench Press
Muscles used In Incline Bench Press
The following muscles are used in a dumbbell incline bench press exercise:
1. Upper pectoral muscles.
2. Anterior Deltoids.