The band chest press is one of the most effective ways to build muscle in your upper body.
Resistance bands are a perfect option if you are working out from home. They also put less strain on your joints than weights such as barbells or kettlebells.
The band chest press is also an alternative to a push-up.
Resistance bands are unique because they provide resistance during the contracting and lengthening phases of an exercise.
You will feel resistance when you stretch the band and as you return to the starting position with control.
If you don’t use control, the band will snap back to position.
To do this exercise:
- Grab a resistance band by the handles and loop it under your pits. Make sure you are using an overhand grip (palms facing down).
- Stand with your feet in a split stance with your left foot forward and your right foot back.
- You can also lie on a flat bench with your feet firmly planted on the floor.
- Lengthen your arms directly ahead of your chest and keep your arms shoulder-width apart.
- Inhale then bend your elbows out to bring the ends of the band towards you until they are in line with your chest.
- Exhale then extend your elbows and push the ends of the band away from your chest back to the starting position.
WHAT MUSCLES DO BAND CHEST PRESS WORK?
The band chest press is an effective way to build upper body strength.
It targets your pectorals, deltoids, and triceps, building muscle tissue and strength. It also works your serratus anterior and biceps.
We use these muscles to push and pull things. Upper body strength is also useful for sports such as swimming and boxing.
These are the chest muscles. They are the pectoralis major and the pectoralis minor.
Also, they are the main muscles trained during band chest press, and also adduct the shoulder when pressing the resistance band up.
They also help control the band on the way down.
The pectoralis major is the largest muscle in the chest. It has a fan shape across the breast. It covers half of the upper chest and is attached to the clavicle, sternum, ribs and humerus.
The pectoralis major has two major heads, the clavicular head which is on the upper region of the chest and the sternal region which is from the middle to the lower part of the chest.
It also helps lift your arm forward and is responsible for the rotation of the humerus.
The pectoralis minor is found behind the pectoralis major.
It helps spread your shoulder blades.
2. ANTERIOR DELTOID
Band chest press also works on the anterior deltoid.
This muscle sits on the front of the shoulder. It is involved in the abduction, flexion and internal rotation of the arm.
It helps you raise your arm in front of you and turn your shoulder inwards.
Triceps are the muscles located in the back of your arm. It is made up of three heads, the long head, lateral head and medial head.
The long head originates from the rear of the shoulder blade. The medial and lateral head originate from the side and the rear of the humerus.
The triceps help with the extension of the forearm, stabilizing your shoulder and extending your shoulder.
When doing band chest press, your triceps are engaged during extension.
These are the muscles that help control wrist, hand and finger movements.
During band chest press, your wrist extensors and flexors contract to keep your wrists neutral.
5. UPPER BACK
This includes the rhomboid and the traps.
The rhomboid helps keep the shoulder blade attached to the ribcage. It helps rotate the shoulder blade and move it towards the spinal column.
The trapezius is another large triangular muscle that sits on the upper back. Traps support head movement, stabilize arm motions and help with pulling and pushing motions.
Doing band chest press engages these muscles in a minor way.
The lats can also be activated during band chest press. The latissimus dorsi muscles are large v-shaped muscles that connect your arms to your vertebral column.
If you are a beginner, you may feel sore in your lats after doing band chest press.
BAND CHEST PRESS BENEFITS
1. BUILD UPPER-BODY STRENGTH
Band chest press is an effective exercise to build upper body muscles. Using a resistance band helps build muscle with minimal strain compared to using weights.
2. IMPROVED BREATHING
Strengthening your chest muscles using band chest press improves your breathing. Tight, short pecs will affect your ability to breathe deeply.
3. IMPROVED POSTURE
Your chest and upper back play an important role in maintaining good posture. When your upper back and chest muscles are healthy, you can stand straight.
Strong chest and shoulder muscles also ensure you remain stable through daily activities.
4. IMPROVED ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE
Improved upper body strength can help you perform better as an athlete in certain sports events such as swimming or cricket.
ALTERNATIVES TO BAND CHEST PRESS
1. OVERHEAD BENCH PRESS
This is the most common upper body strength exercise. It is a perfect alternative to band chest press.
To do this exercise:
Lie on a bench and grip a bar with your hands at shoulder-width.
Plant your feet on the ground and keep your hips down through the entire movement.
Slowly lift the bar off the rack and lower the bar to your chest with your elbows to the side.
Stop when your elbows are just below the bench. Push your feet to the floor as you lift the bar back to starting position.
2. BAND PULLUP
To do this exercise:
Anchor the band to a pullup bar. Loop it around.
Step on the lowest part of the loop to unload your weight.
Grab the bar with your palms facing out. Keep your arms shoulder-distance apart.
Bend your elbows and lift your arms towards the bar.
BAND CHEST PRESS MISTAKES TO AVOID
Don’t use a frayed resistance band to do band chest press exercise. Make sure to inspect your band before every routine to avoid injury.
Make sure you do the exercise with control to engage your muscles. Otherwise, you will use momentum.
Doing controlled movements ensures the band doesn’t snap.