One handed chest dumbbell press

One handed chest dumbbell press

This is my current favorite exercise! Its a one arm press. Its obviously a chest exercise but what is not so obvious is that its the most incredible core workout you will ever get.  Your first question is probably WHY? Why on earth would you bother to do a chest exercise with just one hand?  It takes twice as long, right?  Why not just do the basic dumbbell press. Great question! The answer is, if you have the luxury of endless amounts of gym time the basic shoulder press is fine. As I mentioned last month, at the end of the year I will be giving you a workout plan that gives you maximum results with minimum amount of gym time and what that means is that every exercise has to be triple duty. A lot of the exercises I am showing you this year do several things at once to save time. In this case we are obviously working the pecs but not so obvious is that we are working core – dont think so? Try it! The asymmetric load forces your core into action to keep you from crumpling an flipping over like a wet spaghetti noodle.

one-handed-chest-dumbbell-press-hold You can do this on the flat or incline, on a bench or a bosu ball, the basics are the same. Let me show you the basic exercise. First, you need to spread your feet out wide to keep from falling over. Getting a heavy weight into position safely is best done like this. Grab the bar with the hand that will be doing the lifting and then wrap your other hand around it.
one-handed-chest-dumbbell-press-let-go Now you can do a two handed lift into position and slowly remove the assist hand as you figure out your balance. Now about the free hand, I like holding it out horizontal to make sure that your shoulders keep parallel to the floor.  This isnt a big deal on a bench but on a bosu ball it can be a big issue so I like keeping my hand out horizontal during the entire set.
one-handed-chest-dumbbell-press-Start-Position So this is the starting position.  Not that my lifting arm is parallel to the ground, no need to lower the weight any further than this, in my opinion, that increases the risk of shoulder injury with very little added benefits.
one-hand-dumbbell-press-up-position This is the end position with the arm straight but not locked.


 Some Cautions!

The last thing you want to do is cause a muscle tear in the rib area – not much as painful as that so you want to build up to your max lift over a few months to give your core time to strengthen. When you get to your max 8 rep weight you will find that because of the core tension it will be very difficult to breathe deeply, thats ok. Just rest and catch your breath before doing the other side.  A good place to start is 50%.  If you can do the incline press with 100 pound dumbbells in each hand then start the one handed ones with 50 pounds and slowly work up over the next few months.

You have noticed lately that I have been showing you a lot of rather weird exercises – they are not weird just for the sake of being weird. As I mentioned before, later this year I am going to be showing you a workout plan that can get you the same results in 1/3 the gym time and to do that, every exercise has to do double or triple duty. My life now is too busy to do traditional workouts. As much as I LOVE doing one exercise at a time and lifting really heavy weights with 1-2 minutes rest between sets – its simply a time luxury I just cant afford.