This exercise provided courtesy of Billy Bean, former professional athlete and author of "Going the Other Way: Lessons from a Life In and Out of Major League Baseball." Do you have a question for Billy's "Ask Billy Bean" column for RealJock.com? Send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Twisting dumbbell incline chest presses work the muscles of your chest and upper back.
Chest, Back (upper)
Choose two dumbbells that you can press 12 to 14 times while maintaining the proper form described below. Set an inline bench at less than 45 degrees above horizontal and sit on it with your back against the bench and a dumbbell in each hand. Start at the bottom of a chest press motion, with your elbows at a 90-degree angle and level with your back, your hands beside your chest with your palms, and your thumbs pointed in toward your chest. Retract your shoulder blades and keep your chest high and back flat throughout the entire set (see Photo 1).
- From the starting position, begin pressing the dumbbells up in a chest press. As you press up, turn your hands inward so that your palms touch or almost touch at the top of the lift. Keep your chest engaged at the top of the lift. It is important on all chest presses to keep the flexion in your chest throughout the movement instead of allowing your chest to turn off or rest at top of motion (see Photos 2 and 3).
- Reverse direction and lower the dumbbells back down to the starting position. Keep your chest engaged as you lower the weights (see Photo 4).