Chest dips: An effective exercise for building upper body strength and size

(ScottHermanFitness/ Youtube)
Chest dips are incredibly effective for building chest. (Pic via YouTube/ScottHermanFitness)

When it comes to building an impressive upper body, chest dips are a great option.It's an exercise that often gets overlooked but is incredibly effective for building chest, triceps and shoulder strength.

In this article, we will explore the benefits of dips for building lower chest muscles, how to do dips at home, correct dips form and how to incorporate them in your workout routine.


Benefits of doing chest dips

They're an excellent exercise for building upper body strength and size. Here are some of the key benefits of incorporating dips in your workout routine:

  1. Builds chest and triceps strength: Dips target the chest and triceps, making them a great exercise for building upper body strength. By consistently performing dips, you will be able to increase the amount of weight you can lift and improve your overall strength.
  2. Builds upper body size: Apart from building strength, dips can also help you build size in the chest, shoulders and triceps. By stimulating these muscles with heavy weights, you will be able to promote muscle growth and add size to your upper body.
  3. Improves overall fitness: Dips are a compound exercise that work multiple muscle groups at once. By performing dips regularly, you will improve your overall fitness and athleticism.

Tips for performing chest dips

Here are some tips to help you perform dips effectively:

  1. Warm up: Start by performing some light cardio exercises to warm up the body, like jogging or jumping jacks. Perform some dynamic stretches for the chest, shoulders and triceps.
  2. Proper grip: When performing dips, it's important to use a proper grip. Place your hands on the parallel bars with the palms facing each other and fingers gripping the bars tightly.
  3. Body position: Keep your body upright and chest out. Avoid leaning forward, as that can put undue stress on the shoulders and chest.
  4. Dip depth: Lower yourself down till the upper arms are parallel to the ground or lower. That will ensure that you're fully engaging your chest and triceps.
  5. Slow and controlled movements: Focus on slow, controlled movements when performing chest dips. Avoid using momentum to lift yourself back up.
  6. Breathing: Exhale as you lower yourself down, and inhale as you lift yourself back up.
  7. Don't overdo it: Start with a few repetitions, and gradually increase the number of dips you do over time. Remember that it's better to perform a few reps with proper form than many reps with poor form.
  8. Additional weight: As you get stronger, you can add additional weight to the dips using a weight belt or by holding a weight between your feet.

How to do dips for lower chest

Dips can be done at home with minimal equipment. (Pic via YouTube/MyTraining App)
Dips can be done at home with minimal equipment. (Pic via YouTube/MyTraining App)

Chest dips are compound exercises that target several upper body muscles, including the chest, triceps and shoulders.

However, when done correctly, dips can also target the lower chest muscles. To emphasize the lower chest muscles during dips, it's important to lean forward slightly while performing the exercise. This shift in body position puts more stress on the lower portion of the chest, helping develop a more complete chest.


Benefits of doing chest dips at home

One of the best things about chest dips is that they can be done at home with minimal equipment. All you need is a sturdy horizontal surface, like parallel bars, dip bars or even the back of a sturdy chair.

To perform chest dips at home, start by placing your hands on the surface, slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Lift your body up off the ground, and lean forward slightly. Slowly lower your body till the arms form a 90-degree angle, and push yourself back up to the starting position.


Chest dips form

Remember to keep your core engaged throughout the movement. (Pic via YouTube/Ryan Humiston)
Remember to keep your core engaged throughout the movement. (Pic via YouTube/Ryan Humiston)

Proper form is essential when performing chest dips to avoid injury and maximize results.

To begin, grip the bars with the palms facing down and fingers wrapped around the bar. Keep the elbows tucked in and shoulders down and back. Lean slightly forward, and lower your body till the elbows form a 90-degree angle.

Pause briefly at the bottom of the movement, and push yourself back up to the starting position, squeezing the chest, triceps and shoulders as you rise. Remember to keep your core engaged throughout the movement, and avoid swinging or using momentum to complete the exercise.


Chest dips are a great exercise for building upper body strength, increasing muscle mass, improving functional strength and promoting joint health.

By following the correct form and avoiding common mistakes, you can perform chest dips safely and effectively. Incorporate this exercise into your workout routine to achieve a stronger, more muscular upper body.

Edited by Bhargav