- Pick up the dumbbells off the floor using a neutral grip (palms facing in). Position the ends of the dumbbells in your hip crease, and sit down on the bench.
- To get into position, lay back and keep the weights close to your chest. Once you are in position, take a deep breath, then press the dumbbells to lockout at the top.
- Slightly retract your shoulder blades, unlock your elbows, and slowly lower the dumbbells laterally while maintaining the angle at your elbow.
- Once the dumbbells reach chest level, reverse the movement by squeezing your pecs together and bringing the dumbbells back to their starting position.
- Without allowing the dumbbells to touch, start the next repetition, and continue until the set is completed.
- Imagine you’re trying to hug a tree while completing the exercise.
- Don’t squeeze the dumbbell handles excessively tight as this can over recruit the forearms and biceps thereby reducing activation of the pecs.
- Avoid touching or banging the dumbbells together at the top of each repetition in order to keep constant tension on the intended muscle groups.
- Always keep a slight bend in the elbows and never lower the weight to the point where you get any sort of pain and pressure at the front of the shoulder joint.
- If you’re feeling pain within the shoulder joint itself (specifically at the front), ensure your shoulder blades are slightly retracted and try to keep the shoulder girdle “packed”.
- Keep your feet flat on the floor, focus solely on keeping your elbows bent and activating your pecs.
- Ensure you maintain some tension in your abs and don’t allow your lower back to excessive arch.