Today we will see one of the best isolation exercises: the crosses on inclined bench! This exercise is often used to isolate the muscle fibers of the chest and is excellent in combination with other multi-joint exercises, but without getting lost in chatter and stealing precious time from training, let's find out all about this fantastic exercise for pectorals!
Il large pectoral it is part of the extrinsic muscles of the thorax and in particular, of the thoraco-appendicular group.
It is made up of three items:
- Clavicular head: originates from the medial half of the anterior border of the clavicle.
- Sternum-costal head: it originates from the anterior aspect of the sternum and from the cartilages of the first 6 or 7 ribs.
- Abdominal head: it arises from the anterior leaflet of the rectus abdominis sheath and from the aponeurosis of the external oblique abdominal muscle.
The crosses on the inclined bench, mainly stimulate the upper part of the chest and are often used to better train the most central part of the pectorals, a very difficult point to develop, but thanks to the nature of this movement, we will have the possibility to contract the pectorals more.
Thanks to the correct execution of this exercise and in the variant with the inclined bench, we will be able to place more emphasis on these points, which are difficult to isolate with the more classic exercises such as the flat bench press. Furthermore, this exercise can be included in our training program, before or after the multi-joint exercises, which are essential for the development of the pectorals.
This will allow us to obtain several benefits: in the first case, by inserting the crosses before (for example) the flat bench press, the pre-exhaustion method, thanks to which we will be able to tire the pectoral muscles before moving on to perform a multi-joint exercise such as bench presses. Alternatively, crosses can be performed after a multi-joint exercise, in this way we will be able to concentrate better on the development of strength, as we will be fresh and energized during the previous multi-articular exercise.
Crosses on an inclined bench deserve special attention in the execution: being an exercise potentially harmful to the shoulder joints (if performed incorrectly), it is important to learn its correct execution and use light loads.
1. Grab the dumbbells and position yourself on an incline bench.
2. With the shoulder blades adduced, extend your arms upward, avoiding fully straightening them, thus avoiding locking the elbow joints.
3. As you inhale, start the movement by opening your arms outward and bringing the dumbbells in line with your head. It is important not to bend the arms avoiding to bring the dumbbells close to our body.
4. Reverse the movement by bringing the arms up again, exhaling and contracting the pectoral muscles. It is important to keep that in mind the movement takes place exclusively thanks to the shoulders, therefore avoid bending the elbows to facilitate lifting the dumbbells.
5. Complete the necessary repetitions.
Among the different variations of this exercise, we cannot fail to mention those on the flat and declined bench, which will work different portions of the pectoral muscle. Furthermore, for those who do not have dumbbells available, we illustrate below how to perform this exercise using two towels.
Execution: start the movement by placing yourself lying on the ground as for the classic push-ups but this time with two towels under your palms (one in each hand), with your hands close together and your arms outstretched. Slowly and paying attention to the execution, open your arms by sliding the towels on the floor, until they form a straight line with your hands spaced apart. Go down until your face touches the floor, then reverse the movement to return to the starting position, exhaling as you lift your torso off the ground and inhaling during the descent phase.
Each training program is different and dumbbell crosses can be incorporated into our program using different training methods and for different purposes. However, we can affirm that normally this exercise is never done aloneor rather combined with multi-joint exercises. Consequentially, to maximize hypertrophy through the crosses, we will go to perform 2 or 3 sets of 8-12 repetitions, before or after the main multi-joint movement.
If what we want is to see results, we cannot neglect a balanced diet and targeted and quality supplementation, take a look at the our site, to learn more and to read other articles on training and nutrition. Keep in mind what is written in this article while carrying out the dumbbell crosses and you will see the fruit of hard work, improving hypertrophy and definition of the pectoral muscles.