How To Do The Trx Chest Press Properly

Like other trx exercises, the trx chest press trains your muscles using resistance from suspension cables.

It is meant for training your chest but it also engages your shoulders and core.

Here’s how you should do it:

  • Attach the cables to an anchor point that is above your head. The handles should hang down to about waist level.
  • Grasp the handles with your palms facing away from the direction of the anchor point.
  • Step backward and lean forward so that your body is at a 40⁰ angle with the floor.
  • Extend your arms straight out, tighten your core and make sure your body is aligned from head to toe.
  • Slowly lower your body down, bending the elbows until your chest gets to the level of the handles.
  • Breathe out as you push yourself back up to the starting position. This marks a complete rep.

WHAT MUSCLES DOES THE TRX CHEST PRESS WORK?

CHEST

Your pectoral muscles are very instrumental during the trx chest press.

They facilitate your movement from the suspended position as you lower yourself towards the handles and back up to the starting position.

SHOULDERS

The deltoid muscles in your shoulders flex your arms when you lean forward and lower yourself to stretch out the cables.

CORE

Your core muscles play the role of stabilizing your body when it is suspended during the workout so you don’t fall over.

BENEFITS OF THE TRX CHEST PRESS

EASILY MODIFIABLE

One of the best things about the trx chest press is that it offers progressive training.

This means you can always increase or decrease its intensity to match your preference and fitness level.

One way to increase the intensity is by lengthening the cables and positioning your body away from the anchor point.

This will push your body closer to the ground and make your core work hard to keep you from falling to the ground.

To make it less intense, you can stagger your stance as though you were performing a lunge to gain extra stability.

ENHANCES BALANCE AND STABILITY

Performing the trx chest press from a suspended position challenges your body to maintain balance under unstable conditions.

ALTERNATIVES TO THE TRX CHEST PRESS

INCLINE PUSH-UP

If you can comfortably do the basic push-up, the incline push-up will be a fantastic alternative way to build your pecs.

In addition to your chest and shoulders, it also gives you a proper core workout because it sort of resembles a plank.

Follow these steps to do it correctly:

  • Find an exercise bench that is slightly lower than knee length and stand in front of it.
  • Place both of your palms on the bench and step your feet back until you’re standing on the balls of your feet.
  • Get into a high plank position and squeeze your glutes and core.
  • Bend your elbows to a 45⁰ angle and then lower your chest slowly towards the bench. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you lower.
  • Keep lowering, stopping just before your chest touches the bench.
  • Push yourself back up to the starting position.

INCLINE CHEST PRESS

Since you do this chest press variation at an incline angle, you work your upper pecs more than any other muscle on your upper body.

It is ideal for people with rotator cuff pain as it helps strengthen your shoulder girdle.

How to do it:

  • Get an incline bench or an adjustable bench that you can set to an incline of about 45⁰.
  • Lie down on the bench and plant your feet firmly on the floor.
  • Hold a dumbbell in each of your hands just above your chest. The weights should be slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Squeeze your glutes and press your feet into the ground as you press the dumbbells up and a bit back behind your head. Keep pressing until your elbows are extended as your forearms stay vertical.
  • Lower the dumbbells back to your chest slowly and with control.

If you don’t have a bench, you can do the incline chest press with your shoulders and upper back against a chair, couch or any other solid object.

With such a modification, you’d have to make sure your feet are flat on the floor and your upper back is pressed against the object.

SINGLE-ARM CHEST PRESS

This chest press variation uses dumbbells to work each side of your chest unilaterally, which helps reduce the likelihood of developing muscle imbalances.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand, lie down on a weight bench and press your back into it.
  • Straighten your arms to hold the dumbbells above your chest and plant your feet on the floor.
  • Holding your right arm in place, bend the left elbow and lower the dumbbell until it falls in line with your chest.
  • Press the weight up above your chest.
  • Alternate sides and repeat these steps.

TRX CHEST PRESS MISTAKES TO AVOID

LOOSE SUSPENSION CABLES

For any trx exercise to be effective, the trx cables must be very tight to provide as much resistance as possible.

Any looseness in these cables compromises the effectiveness of the exercise by making it less intense.

Pay attention to your cables throughout your reps and if you feel them get loose, stop the rep and adjust them.

LETTING THE CABLES RUB AGAINST YOUR SKIN

The cables should not be rubbing against your skin during this exercise.

If you grip the handles too low, the cables will likely come into contact with your shoulders and graze your skin as you work out.

TO WRAP UP

If you are a beginner who is considering the trx chest press as part of your trx training, you may want to try out more stable exercises first before you do it.

As much as it helps improve your balance and stability, it would be much better if you were a bit more stable before doing it to reduce the risk of injury.

You can also enlist the help of a personal trainer to help you master the correct form of the exercise.

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