The bench press is the king of chest exercises because it develops massive strength and pectorals (Chest muscles). But the incline variation goes one step further and really puts an emphasis on the upper chest near the clavicles. This gives a more full look to the chest and makes it look more aesthetically complete; which is the goal when developing the chest muscles.
But due to the position of the bench, you have to use less weight than you would on the flat bench since the shoulders are a little more involved. Utilizing different angles for chest is very beneficial and the incline bench is necessary for building better chest muscles.
In this Exercise
- Target Muscle Group: Clavicular (Upper) Pectoralis Major
- Type: Strength
- Mechanics: Compound
- Equipment: Incline Bench Press
- Difficulty: Intermediate
- Lie on an incline bench at a 45-degree angle.
- Grip the barbell wider than shoulder width and make sure wrists are straight to support the weight.
- Tuck elbows in slightly to prevent shoulder strain.
- Position your feet firmly on the floor and arch your back.
- Unrack the barbell and slowly lower to a few inches above mid-chest while retracting your shoulder blades.
- Drive through your heels while you push the barbell back to the top and contract your chest through the movement.
Variations & Tips
- You can also perform incline chest movements with cables, dumbbells, and machines.
- Make sure your elbows are slightly tucked to support your shoulders and prevent injury.
- Try to have a spotter when performing heavy incline lifts.
- A 45-degree angled bench is ideal because too low and your targeting mid-chest and too high puts more pressure on the shoulders.
- The incline bench press targets the upper chest muscles.