BARBELL AND DUMBBELL PULLOVERS: KILLER CHEST EXERCISES
Have you been struggling to add up mass, width, and stunning resolution to your chest? Fret no more. No matter how you feel about your chest; whether it’s small and weak, you can actually build that superhero-like chest that you have long been dreaming about. Start cranking up the poundage and begin pushing weight now.
Gaining a superhero-like chest is believed to be a man’s greatest pride and could boost one’s ego. It can make a man good-looking, appealing and palpable. In other words, this can actually look a man, a real man. A bigger chest increases the masculinity of a man, thus, it makes them feel more manly and powerful.
To look like a real man, more manly and powerful, there are several ways to achieve your desired body figure, the pecs that you’ve been waiting for to grow and develop, and that is through Barbell and Dumbbell pullovers. These pullovers are the rulers of the chest empire. Little does it may seem like, but it can actually make some killer results you have wanted for too long.
Finding out the advantages of having a buffed chest to your health, physique and overall body functions is important. Before starting in any training to improve pecs in the chest, it is best to understand the framework of the muscle group you’re working.
Science of the Chest
The chest is the most eye-catching part of the body; it may seem that it is the largest muscle of all but actually, it encompasses a small portion of the total body muscles. That is why it is important to give some attention to your chest area to achieve a balanced physique.
A well-defined muscle, especially in the chest region, signifies strength and power. It also provides balance for the shoulders and the overall skeletal structure. It has been universally accepted that having strong pecs tells a lot about a man’s potentials. But having strong pecs does not only benefit males but women as well. In general, achieving a strong and healthy chest muscle is vital and essential when it comes to posture, functions, and strength.
The Two parts of Chest Muscle
There are two main parts to this muscle: Pectoralis Major and Pectoralis Minor. Find out its differences and main functions.
Pectoralis Major makes up the bulk of the chest for males and lies under the breast of the females. This muscle is situated at the anterior (what is in front of) part of the human body. It is a thick, fan-shaped muscle which is responsible primarily for the movement of the shoulder joint.
The Pectoralis Major is also responsible for keeping the arm attached to the trunk of the body. Pectoralis Minor, as opposed to the Pectoralis Major, is a thin, triangular-shaped muscle located beneath the Pectoralis Major. It has two main functions, the abduction, and depression of the scapula towards the ribs.
Because of its scientific name “Pectoralis”, it is now commonly called “pecs”, commonly known as “chest”.
Having the anatomy all covered, it is good to say that chests look great with mass and the better way to gain those mass than to hit some hard chest exercise with these two heavy pressing movements are Barbell and Dumbbell Pullovers.
The Barbell Pullover is an advance isolation movement that focuses on the barbell pullover stretching and development of the Latissimus Dorsi (lats). The lats are the part of the back that when developed flare out to give you that “V” taper that people strive for.
The Barbell Pullover is quite alike with the Dumbbell Pullover but what sets these two apart is the equipment used. The main target of this chest exercise is the back. It also has a great contribution to your chest development, specifically in your pectoralis minor.
One of the advantages of the Barbell Pullover is it improves your shoulder performance. It allows you to pull your body up against gravity. It also improves your posture and ability to perform daily tasks.
How to perform it:
This is similar to doing the dumbbell pullovers but substitutes the dumbbell with a barbell.
- Lie down perpendicular to a workout bench. Position your head and torso off the bench which will require you a great amount of balance. Contract your core muscles to further stabilize yourself.
- Hold and position the barbell above your chest using an overhand grip. Extend your arms but with a slight bend in your elbows. This is your starting position.
- Slowly lower the barbell behind your head in an arc motion. Ideally, your arms should be near or parallel to your ears.
- Bring the barbell back up to the starting position to complete one repetition.
- Repeat as you desired.
Variations of the Barbell Pullover
Variations are intended to work different subgroups of muscles or work the same muscles in slightly different ways. Bent-Arm Barbell Pullover on an exercise ball is the same movements as above plus with the advantage of core strengthening.
The Barbell Pullover is an advance movement that should be done with utmost care because it can potentially cause serious injury if done improperly. It is actually one of the most commonly incorrectly performed exercises. However, when done correctly the barbell pullover can be a great exercise to stimulate back growth (the lats) and also help expand the rib cage of the chest in the process.
The dumbbell pullover is one of the most ironic types of upper body exercises because it targets opposing muscles which are the chest and the back simultaneously. Your back is responsible for and reacts more during the pulling movement. Your chest takes over as it contracts and gives off power as you return back to the initial position.
Equipment to prepare:
- A dumbbell. The weight will depend on the level of your skill, measure the weight to where you are challenged but not to the point where you are no longer comfortable.
- A flat-surfaced bench.
How to perform it:
- Place the dumbbell in a place where you can easily reach.
- Lie your back straight on the bench at a 90-degree angle.
- Your shoulder area should be the only part lying on the bench.
- Your torso should be off the bench parallel to the floor, keep hips positioned slightly below the bench.
- The head should be off the bench as well.
- Feet should remain flat on the floor at all times.
- Grab the dumbbell gripping it with both hands towards your chest at arms-length. This is your starting position.
- Your palms should be facing the underside of the plate which is positioned closer to the ceiling.
- Make sure to use a very secured and safe dumbbell to prevent the plate from falling apart or on your face.
- Maintaining a straight arm, pull the dumbbell backward in an arc motion bringing all the weight behind your head until you feel a stretch in your chest area. Inhale as you do this movement.
- Upon hitting the maximum point, pull the dumbbell forward bringing it back to the starting position. You can just retrace the motion you did when you lowered the dumbbell behind. Exhale as you do this.
- Repeat as you desired.
There is another way to do your dumbbell pullovers. In this manner this will double the effect in your chest area and arms, intensifying and speeding up the results.
Bent-arm Dumbbell Pullover
This is almost identical to the regular dumbbell pullover, but instead of doing the movement with your arms extended straight, you slightly bend your elbows as you bring the weight back in an arc motion and as you pull it back up to the starting position.
This variation requires twice the power and strength when performing this. Then again, if you are uncertain that you can pull this off, do not hesitate to ask for a spotter to assist you in your workout.
Work those Chest!
Despite the difficulty level of the Barbell and Dumbbell pullovers, you have to gather all your motivation and persevere if you want to achieve some grand pecs. The intensifying, sweat-dripping and muscle-grinding exercise are what it takes to crank up those pecs and having a perfect chest exercise.
With the Barbell and Dumbbell pullovers, you can be rest-assured that in just a span of a week, you will feel a huge change in your chest. Nevertheless, it still comes with discipline and regularity from your workout habit. Below a list of other chest exercises that you can incorporate into your workout routine to spice up while working out your pecs.
Other Types of Chest Exercises
This is the most basic chest exercise and relatively easiest because there is no equipment needed for this type of exercise. Here’s how to perform it:
- Lie on the floor with your chest facing down. Place both of your hands on your chest and extend it at arms-length pushing your torso upwards. Keep your back straight and do not sag your hips down. This is your starting position.
- Next, inhale and bend your elbows as you lower yourself down until your chest almost touches the floor. Leave about an inch or two between the floor and your chest.
- As you exhale, push your body back up to the starting position while contracting your chest.
- Repeat as you desired.
Decline Dumbbell Bench Press
- Clip your legs at one end of a declined bench to secure yourself from not falling down and lie down.
- Hold one dumbbell at each of your hand with your palms facing each other.
- Position the dumbbells above your chest as you extend your arms with your hands shoulder-width apart.
- Rotate your hands to let your elbows face outward and your palms facing your feet. This is your starting position.
- Inhale as you lower down the weights on your sides until your elbows are paralleled to your underarms making a 90-degree angle.
- Exhale as you bring the dumbbells back up to the starting position. Contract your chest and arms while doing the movement.
- This chest exercise is similar to a regular dumbbell bench press.
- Lie down on a bench holding one dumbbell in each hand.
- Position the dumbbells above your chest and extend your arms with slightly bending elbows. Your palms are facing each other and your elbows are pointing outwards. This is your starting position.
- Inhale as you lower down the dumbbells at your sides in a wide arc motion without breaking off the bent position of your elbows. Contract your chest and your arms as you hold the position for a second or two.
- Exhale as you bring back up the dumbbells to the starting position.
- Hold a pulley in each hand and stand in the middle of both pulleys. You can set the pulley to the resistant that you want.
- Hold both pulleys and stand with one foot forward as if standing in a straight line. Bend slightly your upper body forward for support and balance. Exhale as you pull the pulleys in front of you until your hands are an inch apart from each other. This is your starting position.
- With slightly bending your elbows, this to prevent unwanted stress to your biceps, spread your arms far off way to the sides in a wide arc until your hands are in line with your shoulders. Inhale as you do this movement.
- Pull the pulleys back in front of you going back to the starting position.
- Repeat to the number of desired repetitions.
There is a significant difference between having a big chest and a big, defined chest. There is one person in the history who had everything, from a big, defined chest and strong arms to a big back and defined abs, and that is no other than the chest master, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
He is the world-famous athlete and actor. At age 20, he was already dominating the sport of bodybuilding. Then he becomes the youngest man ever to win the Mr. Universe title. He won five Mr. Universe titles and seven Mr. Olympia titles before retiring to dedicate himself to acting.
By his physique, he is a man of great mass, definition, and balance. Any bodybuilder would love to have the same skills and record as him. But keep in mind that not everyone has the same physiological components and conditions to particular workout exercises.
The Barbell and Dumbbell pullover perhaps may not work out for you, but you can study and condition your body to understand and deal what it needs. From there, you can apply particular styles or modify your own variations that would work out for you. One thing is for sure, Schwarzenegger was able to achieve those perfect pecs, only because of utilizing the Barbell and Dumbbell pullovers in his everyday workout.