They may often be referred to as “show muscles” or “mirror muscles,” but a bigger chest and jacked arms never hurt anybody.
Well, they may have hurt somebody—but most likely not the person who had them.
The reality is that these muscles are not just for show.
Every athlete needs to have a good level of upper-body strength to perform their best, and the 23 exercises I’m about to outline will get you the “go” to go along with the “show.”
This list is by no means exhaustive, but it does provide a variety of traditional exercises along with some more geared toward both power development and stabilization.
You’ll notice that some of these variations are achieved with just a simple adjustment of the bench height.
The point is you don’t need to overcomplicate your training by adding “crazy” variations.
A simple adjustment in bench height, tempo, rest etc., can go a long way to provide continuous progress.
You also won’t find any direct biceps exercises on this list. The triceps make up roughly two-thirds of the upper arm, so if you want the biggest bang for your buck in terms of beefing up your arms, I recommend putting your efforts there first.