Say Hello to The Incline Dumbbell Press
Say Hello to The Incline Dumbbell Press
By: Brian Wargula

Benefits of the Incline Dumbbell Press

If you’re not including this move in your workout routine, then you’re missing out. The incline dumbell press is the go-to move of many fitness trainers because it is designed to increase chest strength and size, and is typically included in a well-rounded workout routine. It also has the benefits of engaging hard-to-reach bands of muscles that help stretch the bands connecting the Pectorals and the Latissimus dorsi. 

Any dumbbell press workout is easy to do and great for all levels of fitness. While the chest press and incline dumbbell press both work your pecs, the incline dumbbell press isolates and specifically targets your pecs. As you change your incline, you can specifically target different areas in the upper chest, which is rarely challenged by most other exercises. Using a barbell on each side helps your stronger side compensate for your weaker side. The incline dumbbell press overcomes this imbalance and forces both sides of your body to work equally hard.

Luckily dumbbell presses are also great to do solo. Unlike the regular bench press, where there is a risk of getting pinned under the bar if your strength gives out––having a dumbbell in each hand causes both sides of your body to work equally hard. There are different ways and techniques to do this exercise effectively and safely. It is one of the best chest exercises for men.

How It’s Done

In order to effectively do the incline bench press, it will require some equipment, which means it may not be the most ideal at-home workout move. You’ll need an incline bench and dumbbells––ideally a few different weight sizes so that you can up the weight as you get stronger. Here’s how you can make this move work for you:

  • Alternate between light weights and heavy weights depending on the day, this technique helps you burn fat without losing muscle mass
  • Follow the proper technique: 
  • Lay back on bench with your hands at your shoulders
    • Your head should rest on the bench and your feet should be flat on the floor
    • Your elbows should drop slightly below bench level
  • Engage your core and press straight upwards towards the ceiling
    • The dumbbells should essentially touch at the top of your press
      • Keep your wrists straight
  • Begin to lower your arms back into your beginning position
    • Don’t let your elbows turn out. They should stay pointing towards the ground and perpendicular to the bench
  • Complete 5 - 12 reps per set

Ready for More Tips, Tricks, & Variations of the Incline Dumbbell Press? 

Make this part of your regular workout routine to ensure you reap the maximum amount of benefits. Bust out your old workout bench and get ready to pump iron in the garage or have the best technique at the gym. Here are the top tips and tricks to get the most out of this workout.

  • Don’t go too heavy on the weight––Just because you bench heavy weights, doesn’t mean you can do the same weight with the individual barbells. 
  • Don’t cock your wrists––They should remain locked and perpendicular to your body, following the lines of your arms
  • Find a good angle for your bench––Stick with a range between 30° and 45°
  • 30° to targets pectorals 
  • 45° to targets shoulders

Here are the key variations that you’ll need to increase or decrease the difficulty of your workout:

  • Change the angle of your bench
        • 45° makes for a good bench angle for maximum pec targeting. You can decrease the difficulty by lowering the angle of your bench.
        • Lowering the angle will also change which muscles you’re hitting––allowing you to target the pectoralis major & minor as well as letting you switch to your anterior deltoids. 
  • Change your weight
  • Change your range of motion
        • Try doing “1.5” reps where you don’t lower your arms all the way before pressing back up
  • Change your speed/tempo
        • Increase your rep speed to get more cardio burn
        • Decrease your tempo with heavier weights and slowly return your arms to your chest to increase resistance
  • Change Your Reps
      • Add more sets and more reps to continuously improve 

    Naturally, while working up to more upper body strength, you will need more protein to power your workouts, and replenish your workouts. Transformation Protein’s formula was developed with your fitness goals in mind, so you can get results from a balanced multi-protein formula. Three types of protein support your need for strong, sustained energy throughout your workouts and throughout the day. 30g of total protein per serving with plant, collagen, and egg white proteins to help build muscle the way you want to. Get your incline bench press going and crush it with real results!