The Lab’s Critique of Muscle and Fitness’s Best Exercise Advances of All Time #2: Best Exercise for Overall Chest Mass: Dumbbell Bench Press
“Recent research from Las Vegas based Strength Pro Inc., headed by David Sandler, MS, CSCS, showed that the dumbbell bench press involves the front delts far less than the barbell bench press, since the arms come out to the sides more with dumbbells. Less delt involvement means more pre stimulation, which is exactly what you want for maximal chest development.”
The Lab’s Final Word: Since we are talking ‘chest mass,’ Agreed. If we were looking for strength/power, perhaps not. Likewise, If you read advance number 1 on the barbell curl then simply apply the same rules of thumb to this and you have a winner. One caveat with this movement is to be sure that you get a range of motion that allows for complete stretch of the chest muscles (as if an imaginary line was connecting at the handles it would break through your chest), otherwise it is then not much better than the barbell counterpart. If you experience rotator cuff pain or have had previous injury it can help to cut the movement off at 90% of elbow flexion or use a neutral palms facing grip. Finally, for a change a pace try pre-exhausting the chest with dumbbell chest flies first and then finishing with presses until exhaustion…even better add bands around the dumbbells and then wrap around your back for accommodating resistance to REALLY fry those man boobs!