We all know basic free weight exercises form the foundation of any great chest training routine. It’s also important, however, to work the types of functional movements that hit your stabilizers and deep muscle fibers. Changing things up once in a while will also challenge you mentally and keep things from getting boring.

The workout below does all of the above, stimulating dormant fibers and growing your muscle in several new ways. In the process, you’ll also improve your joint stabilization, keeping your shoulders healthy and allowing you to lift heavier weight.

The Workout


Sets Reps
Incline Barbell Press 3 8-12
One-Arm Dumbbell Bench Press 3 10 per arm
Neutral-Grip Dumbbell Floor Press 3 8
TRX Push-Up Plus* 2 To Failure

*If you can perform 15 reps, add weight with a plate or weighted vest.

Check your ego. With this workout, the idea is to make every rep better than the last and to feel your muscles working as hard as possible. Using sufficient weight is important, but don’t compromise when it comes to form and technique.

Incline Barbell Press

Lower the weight under control, then explode back up, keeping your chest raised and your elbows tucked to prevent injury. Don’t pause at the top. Instead, maintain continuous tension—which will lead to more muscle growth.

One-Arm Dumbbell Bench Press

Using one dumbbell at a time forces your deep stabilizers to recruit more motor units and tap into new muscle fibers. Tighten the opposite side of your core to help you remain stable.

Neutral-Grip Dumbbell Floor Press

Lying on the floor, hold a pair of dumbbells in a neutral grip above your chest with your arms extended. Lower until your elbows hit the floor, then return to the top position.

TRX Push-Up Plus

Lower your body in a controlled fashion. When you push back up, pause at the top and separate your shoulder blades to engage your serratus muscles. This will improve shoulder stabilization.