Back to Program
The Lifting Library
Section 7, Lesson 2
For dumbbell bench presses, begin by using a weight that you can control for 2–3 sets of 8–12 repetitions. Choose a weight that allows you to maintain good technique throughout all sets and repetitions.
- Grab a pair of dumbbells and sit on the bench with the dumbbells placed on your legs close to your knees. As you’re lying back on the bench, use your legs as a “Spotter” and kick your knees back with you to get the weights into your pressing position, the top portion of the lift.
- Once in position, engage your core and press the dumbbells toward the ceiling. Your palms should be facing forward. Rotate your shoulders outward to engage your lats. Your upper back should remain tight and stable. All repetitions should begin from this starting position.
- While maintaining a neutral wrist, slowly lower the dumbbells until your upper arms are level with your back. Your elbows should be 45 degrees away from your body and your upper and lower arms should form a 90-degree angle. Pause at the bottom of the movement.
- To begin the upward movement, squeeze your chest and begin to push the dumbbells back to the starting position. Continue to press until your arms are long with a slight bend in your elbows.
- Finish the movement at the top by squeezing your chest. Maintain distance between the dumbbells at the end of the repetition.