Double Tension Training to Take Your Chest Exercises Further | STACK
X

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

Double Tension Training: Taking Your Dumbbell Chest Exercises to the Next Level

September 28, 2012 | Joe Stolzer

Must See Strength Training Videos

Workouts should not only supply physical challenges but keep athletes motivated for improvement, mentally knowing they're outworking the competition. If you're looking to take your training to the next level, try double-tension dumbbell chest exercises. In general, dumbbells are great tools for chest training, because you must stabilize each weight independently while staying equally balanced. Due to the versatility of dumbbells, you have more freedom, not only in exercise choices but in manipulating tension. The key to muscle strength and size: when tension is increased, it further stimulates muscle fibers.

The following sample exercises exhibit double-tension movements so you can outpower your opponents.

Cable Dumbbell Press

Although cable exercises always offer a great deal of tension, adding the dumbbell takes it to a whole new level.

  • Adjust the cable handles to the bottom of the stack
  • Lie on your back on an exercise ball
  • Take two light to moderate weight dumbbells in each hand, while also holding onto the cable handles
  • Begin to press up; you will immediately meet tension you have never experienced before
  • Maintain constant resistance going up and down

One Arm Up Press

Keeping the arm up adds another level of tension to the exercise. This can also be done with regard to the incline and decline dumbbell chest workouts.

  • Lie on a flat bench with two light to moderate dumbbells
  • Begin by keeping your left arm up throughout the repetition
  • Before the next rep, change to keep your right arm up throughout

Dumbbells Together Press

This pressing together motion adds more to the exercise. It can also be done on the incline and decline chest exercises.

  • Lie on a flat bench with two light to moderate dumbbells
  • Bring both dumbbells together
  • Keep your place for the entire number of repetitions

Concentric, Eccentric and Isometric Contraction

Isometric and eccentric exercises increase size and strength more than concentric. They can be done on incline and decline chest exercises.

  • Lie on a bench holding two light to moderate dumbbells
  • Perform 10 repetitions
  • Keep your arms in a straight isometric hold for 15 seconds
  • Do nine reps complete with a 15-second hold straight above your body
  • Continue down to one rep

Two Dumbbell Push on Exercise Ball

This exercise provides great cross tension for the chest, and it's also a tremendous core workout.

  • Assume position on exercise ball
  • Take two light to moderate dumbbells
  • Position arms straight above your body while pressing both dumbbells together
  • Continue to keep dumbbells pressed together throughout the repetitions
  • Push both dumbbells to the right and then to the left, all while fighting to stay in the middle of the ball

Push-Pull Dumbbell Exercise on Exercise Ball

This is a great multi-purpose exercise for the chest and upper back. You get more strength if you work chest and back in sequence instead of separating them. The dual movements also provide cross tension for the core.

  • Assume position on exercise ball next to a cable machine
  • Hold a single light to moderate dumbbell in one hand and a cable handle, set with light to moderate weight, in the other
  • Begin to press and pull at the same time
  • After the desired reps, switch hands and continue to press and pull

More Cool Stuff You'll Like

How Often Should You Vary Your Exercise?

Exercise variation is a great tool, especially for advanced athletes. Changing the exercises that you use in training can be a powerful way for you to...

4 Exercises to Build True Lacrosse Power

Dominate Your Bench Test With This Strategy

The Simplest Bodyweight Workout Ever

Develop Core Strength for Throwing

5 Softball Catcher Drills for Throwing Power

These 3 Single-Leg Movements Will Improve Your Squat Technique

A Better Way to Train Your Core

3 Sandbag Training Mistakes Athletes Make

Make Lifts More Challenging With Resistance Bands

How to Design a Greco-Roman Wrestling Training Program

4 Sure-Fire Ways to Build a Strong Core

Kyle Lowry's 12-Week All-Star Training Program

10 Ways to Get Stronger With a Sandbag

Notice On-Court Results With This Basketball Core Workout

Reach New Training Heights With Resistance Band Exercises

5 Isolation Exercises Your Workout Is Missing

How Functional Training Has Overly Complicated Strength Training

4 Lifts to Build Wrestling Strength

Mike Boyle's 5 Tips for More Effective Workouts

7 Ways to Work Out Competitively Without CrossFit

4 Weaknesses That Can Ruin Your Exercise Technique (With Fixes)

3 Explosive Exercises Designed to Increase Pitching Power

Perfect Your Squat Technique With the Unloaded Squat

How NOT to Perform a Pull-Up (With Fixes)

Get Faster by Improving Your Core Mobility

Build Full-Body Strength With 5 Suspension Trainer Exercises

Don't Train Your Arms Until You Can Do These 4 Things

7 Exercises That Safely Build Shoulder Strength

Bench Press Grip Guide: How Hand Placement Changes the Exercise

3 Nordic Hamstring Curl Exercises to Boost Your Performance

The Science of Building Muscle: 2 Ways to Maximize Hypertrophy

Never Bench Press With Your Feet in This Position

Top 5 Baseball Strength Training Myths

The Best Single-Leg Exercises for Youth Athletes

Blast Through Plateaus with Tempo Sets

7 Best Lower-Body Strengthening Exercises

Master the Lateral Lunge to Improve Your Hockey Stride

7-Exercise Core-Blasting Workout

Break Through Plateaus With the 1-10 Drop Set Method

7 Strategies for Faster Workout Recovery

4 Deadlift Variations to Increase Your Pull

Improve Soccer Agility with Lateral Strength Exercises

3 Post-Activation Potentiation Combos for Explosive Strength