Generally, when it comes to bench press, you and most lifters will think about the barbell bench press, right? Don’t get me wrong, it’s one of the greatest for not only chest muscles but also power development ever. However, dumbbell bench press is also an essential chest exercise. That’s why today, I’ll share with you dumbbell bench press benefits that will definitely make you add it to your workout routine.
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Dumbbell Bench Press Benefits
As you all know, barbell bench press and dumbbell bench press are both common and helpful for growing chest muscles. And since barbell bench press is much more popular, I’ll show you all the benefits of dumbbell bench press. All of the things below are some advantages of dumbbell bench press over this opponent exercise.
1. Muscular Symmetry
With barbell bench press, if you’re lifting heavy weights, it’s likely that your stronger side will take over, especially during the last few reps. If you’re used to training with barbells, then there is a possibility that you have muscle imbalance in both strength and size.
On the contrary, with one dumbbell in each hand, both of your sides have to lift the same amount of weight the entire time. If you use dumbbells often enough, you can totally reduce and prevent muscle imbalances, thus, improving your performance as well as physique. Additionally, training with dumbbells helps you train your stabilizers better than training with a barbell.
In my experiences, on your chest day, it is best to bench press with a barbell first and then with dumbbells later. This way, you can both maximize your strength gains and improve muscle imbalances.
2. Safer And More Comfortable Exercise
For your own safety, it is a must to have a spotter on the barbell bench. If you intend to slide the weights off in a panic while the weights still remain unlocks, you’ll need a spotter. That’s the exact reason why sometimes you are afraid to add more weights when there is no spotter or it’s not your favorite one. For me, I go heavy on the barbell bench press only if there is my workout partner.
However, with the dumbbell bench press, you won’t have to worry about this anymore. This is because you just need to drop the weights once you approach failure. Therefore, you can go heavy with this exercise without a spotter or if you are a beginner, this is perfect.
If you can’t do any more rep, just drop them to your sides. Just remember to make sure that there is no one else around you, or else, you can hurt them. However, although this exercise is safe, I still recommend you have a spotter and wear elbow compression sleeves when you’re lifting heavy weights.
The reason why this exercise is comfortable is you can target upper and middle, mid, and lower chest with only an adjustable bench. You don’t need any barbell rack as you do with the barbell bench press, do you? Honestly, anytime I feel lazy to move between benches, everything I need is an adjustable bench and a couple of dumbbells.
3. Better Range Of Motion
The range of motion is critical in weight training, but most lifters don’t care much about it. And one of the downsides of the traditional barbell bench press is a restricted range of motion. However, with dumbbells, your chest can’t stand in your way. Therefore, at the bottom of the movement, you can go a little deeper than you usually do with a barbell.
Also, with this exercise, your body is not forced into a fixed position as you’re on the barbell bench press. Furthermore, depending on your shoulder mobility and flexibility, your arms can move freely. That’s why you can make whatever little adjustments to make sure your movement is as comfortable and natural as possible. This does not only help you prevent injury, especially in shoulders, but also target all parts of the muscles involved, maximizing your performance.
4. Greater Muscle Tension
When you do the barbell bench press, you have a tendency to push your hands outward a little bit. Actually, most lifters don’t realize this but the slight outward push of your hands results in other muscles getting involved. In fact, this shifts a bit muscular tension from your chest to your triceps and shoulders.
If you want to maximize chest development, you will need as much tension as possible across the chest the entire time. In this case, dumbbells can help you as your chest will be under tension longer than it is with a barbell.
When you bench press with dumbbells, you won’t get that slight outward push of hands. Instead, there is more of an inward press while your hands come across your chest. This way, your chest muscles have to work more, causing muscle fiber recruitment of your pectorals.
In conclusion, don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to say that the dumbbell bench press is totally better than the other. In fact, I do both. However, the 4 dumbbell bench press benefits above showed you that this exercise is helpful more than you thought. In some certain cases, it can be better than the barbell bench press, especially for beginners.
Hopefully, you guys found my articles helpful and add the dumbbell bench press to your workout routine as a primary chest exercise.