What are the best chest exercises for women?
As the weather starts to warm up, a lot of us are looking for a way to burn off some extra energy without having to drive to a gym or waste a lot of time outdoors. If you're looking for a way to tone your chest and arms from the comfort of your own home, there are lots of at-home workout options open to you.
Some of the best chest exercises for women are easy to complete at home. Set aside a few minutes each day to see how much you can improve your overall health in a relatively short time span!
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Top 10 chest exercises for women
Pushups are some of the most basic exercises we all learn as kids, but they can still be majorly beneficial for toning the arm muscles and strengthening the muscles of the chest.
Lie flat on your stomach with your palms flat beside your shoulders, keeping your body flat and resting on your toes or knees. Press up until your arms are straight, lower your body back down so that your elbows are bent at a ninety-degree angle, and then repeat.
2. Chest Flies
A chest fly can be done standing or lying flat on your back, but the important thing to remember is that your back should be as straight as possible in order to isolate the chest muscles.
Lying on your back, raise a set of weights or dumbbells straight up over your chest, keeping your elbows slightly bent. Lower the weights out to the side, keeping your arms straight, and repeat the process until you feel your chest burning.
3. Chest Presses
Chest presses are some of the most iconic "weightlifting" exercises. You don't need a whole lot of weight to make this work, as the motion is more important than the resistance.
Lying flat on your back, push your weights up over your chest so that your arms are mostly straight and your palms are facing towards your feet. Lower the weights until your elbows are touching the ground at about a 45-degree angle to your chest, palms still facing downwards, and repeat.
4. Plank Taps
Like many of the best chest exercises for women or men alike, plank taps don't require any expensive equipment in order to hone muscles.
Start in a basic plank, with your body straight and your elbows slightly bent, and alternate touching each shoulder with the opposite hand. Focus on keeping your hips from rocking from side to side in order to put most of the strain on your chest, arms, and the muscles of your core.
5. Overhead Triceps Extensions
Another chest workout for women who really want to strengthen their arm muscles as well, overhead triceps extensions will isolate the muscles of your chest and arms for a controlled burn.
Raise your arms over your head, holding a lightweight, and then bend your weight slowly down towards your back so that your elbows are pointing at the ceiling. Try to keep your arms close to the sides of your head and keep your head looking straight.
6. Back Extensions
With mid-back extensions, feel free to take your time. This is a high-intensity exercise that will tighten your core and strengthen your chest at the same time.
Lying flat on your stomach with your arms at your side, lift your head and shoulders as far off the ground as you can. Hold the position for four counts, and then lower yourself back down for another four counts, keeping your shoulders squared and your chest straight as you do so.
7. Arm Circles
Arm circles are another great chest workout for women who don't have the time or energy to use a lot of heavyweights.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold your arms out at shoulder level. Move your arms in steady, controlled circles, keeping your arms fully extended and the elbows only slightly bent. You should quickly feel the burn in your arms and chest! For greater variation, move your arms in opposite directions at the same time.
8. Walking Planks
Similar to the earlier shoulder taps, walking planks are a variation on a traditional plank that will still force the muscles in your chest to work overtime for control.
Stand straight and roll your back down until your hands reach the floor. Walk your hands out until you're in a traditional plank stance, hold that stance for a few seconds, and then walk your hands back towards your feet. Unroll your back until you're standing straight and start again.
9. Straight Arm Press Backs
Straight arm press backs typically require the use of some weights, but you can still perform the motions without any weights at all.
Bend your knees slightly and lean forward so that you're sitting into a slight squat. Hold your dumbbells on either side of your knees and bring them back and up behind your body, squeezing your elbows in tightly and keeping your arms straight as you do so. Lower the weights back to your knees and repeat.
10. Sit-Up Presses
Sit-ups are typically used to strengthen the core, but if you add some lightweight repetition, they can also be a great way to work your chest.
Lying on your back, hold your weights close to your chest with your palms facing in. Do a regular sit-up, but hold the highest point of your sit-up long enough to press your weights out and away from your chest, arms straight and elbows slightly bent, before returning to your chest and finishing.
Whether you're looking to build chest muscles, tone the muscle tissue you already have, or just establish a regular workout routine, chest exercises are a crucial part of female fitness that often go overlooked. With the above list of exercises, you can establish a chest workout routine in no time at all!