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Should Women Train Chest? What Are the Benefits and Negatives?

Should Women Train Chest? What Are the Benefits and Negatives?

Should Women Train Chest? What Are the Benefits and Negatives?

Resistance training is one of the most effective ways to build muscle and strength, develop mental toughness, and transform your physique.

 

However, thanks to the cardio craze of the late 80s and 90s, there’s a lot of confusion about resistance-training, especially when it comes to women and whether or not they should train their chest.

 

We’re here to give you an honest answer to this heavily debated issue.

 

Should Women Train Chest?

 

In a word, YES!

 

Women should train their chests.

 

The chest muscles are just like any other muscle group in the body in that they need to be trained effectively in order to become stronger and more toned.

 

Many women fear that training their chest will either transform them into some sort of pharmaceutical-fueled bodybuilder or, conversely, shrink their breasts.

 

However, working your chest will strengthen your pectoral muscles and possibly give your breasts a more lifted appearance. Furthermore, the mere act of lifting weights will not transform you into a muscle-bound she-hulk overnight.

 

Gaining the size of professional bodybuilders and physique athletes requires years of concerted effort. Building muscle is hard for the body to do. You essentially have to “force” it to grow from a combination of progressive overload in the gym and a high-calorie meal plan in the kitchen. This duo has to be carried out for years in order to gain the kind of size you see from female bodybuilders.

 

We say this to allay any concerns you may have that performing a few sets of bench press and push-ups will detract from your figure.

 

Now, let’s discuss the benefits of training chest for women.

 

What Are the Benefits of Training Chest for Women?

 

Greater Tone & Definition

 

Just like any other muscle, if you want your chest to look fuller and more toned, you need to challenge it with resistance. The most efficient way to do this is by performing resistance-training exercises.

 

Compound exercises such as the bench press, dumbbell press, push up, and dip are excellent options for challenging the pushing muscles of the upper body and developing a perkier chest.

 

Avoid Muscle Imbalances

 

Muscle imbalances are created when you train certain parts of your body (arms, legs, core, etc.) more frequently and with greater intensity than other parts.

 

Over time, these imbalances can lead to bad posture, movement dysfunction, and potential injury, never mind the fact that your physique will look unbalanced.

 

Improve Your Figure

 

Believe it or not, the best chest exercises are also some of the best exercises to strengthen and tone your shoulders and triceps since all three muscle groups are involved in upper body pushing exercises.

 

What this means is that not only does the look of your chest improve, but so too does the appearance of your entire upper body, making your physique pop whenever you wear tank tops, dresses, athletic wear or any other type of clothing in general.

 

Burn More Calories

 

The chest is one of the biggest muscle groups in the body. As such, when you perform compound exercises using a large amount of muscle, you burn more calories during your workout than you would if you just performed a bunch of isolation exercises, such as kickbacks and side laterals.

 

If for no other reason, consider training chest for the added calorie burning and metabolic boost it will give your workout!

 

Greater Functional Fitness

 

Pushing is a primal movement, meaning we were built to do it.

 

Your chest is involved in every type of pushing movement you do, from pushing a door open to throwing a punch at kickboxing class. Training your chest will make you stronger in these everyday circumstances, ultimately making your body more resilient.

 

Takeaway

 

Women have no need to fear training their chest.

 

Your chest is a major muscle group and should be trained as often as every other muscle group in your body if you want it to become stronger and more toned. Performing the bench press, or any other pushing exercise, will not transform you into a muscle-bound meathead, but it will improve your physique, posture, and self-confidence.

 

If you like to perform full-body workouts, simply add 3-4 sets of flat or incline press to each workout. If you like to train with more traditional splits, try one of the chest workouts above and be on your way to a stronger, more defined, and perkier chest!

 

3 Example Chest Workouts for Women

 

Workout #1

Exercise

Sets

Reps

Barbell Bench Press

3

6-8

Incline Dumbbell Press

3

8-10

Push Ups

2

AMRAP

Cable Crossover

2

12-15

Workout #2

Exercise

Sets

Reps

Incline Barbell Bench Press

3

6-8

Flat Dumbbell Press

3

8-10

Hammer Strength Chest Press

2

10-12

Pec Dec

2

12-15

Workout #3 (Bodyweight Special)

Exercise

Sets

Reps

Dips*

3

8-10

Feet Elevated Push Ups

3

AMRAP

Diamond Push Ups

2

AMRAP

Hands on Bench Push Ups

2

AMRAP

*Note: Add weight if needed to stay within the prescribed repetition range.

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