Help! I Have Small Pecs

small and weak chest

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Hi Blake.

I'm 15, 6 feet tall, 152-155 lbs.

I was just wondering if my chest is underdeveloped because it seems that my triceps and deltoids are stronger than my chest.

I close grip bench (hands 2-3 inches apart)140 lbs x 7 max and I did a triceps dip with 90 lbs extra weight. However, I recently maxed with 185 lbs on flat bench.




Hi Francis, thanks for the question.

It's a little hard to assess since I don't know what your training routine is like or how long you've been weight training. This information would help zero in on your problem. However, I'll do the best I can with the information given.

What you are experiencing happens a lot with beginners and intermediates. Your genetics are trying to talk to you. It happens to everyone and it's basically a sign of your strength points.

For me, my chest, shoulders, and triceps were very strong. However, my pulling movements were very weak. For you, your shoulders and triceps are starting to dominate. I had a buddy with this same exact problem. This guy had super strong triceps and shoulders and they were very well developed. However, he had a weak and underdeveloped chest. Mind you, he didn't like it but he didn't do anything to try and remedy the situation.

After about 6 months of this, he gave in and changed his style of training. Our gym owner advised him on a new routine which was as follows:

  • Bench press using a wide grip;
  • Dumbbell bench press emphasizing bottom portion of the movement;
  • Dumbbell incline press;
  • Dumbbell fly's emphasising squeeze at the top

After about a month of this type of training, his chest started to respond.

The point I'm trying to make is that if you want to overcome a weak body part, you need to approach it differently. Why keep on doing the same thing if you want to change something.

Here's what I suggest doing.

• Train chest by itself and first in your training cycle;
• Cut out the bench press and use only dumbbells; Do this for about 2 months and get very strong using dumbbells;
• Lower the dumbbells nice and slow keeping everything under control;
• Emphasize the bottom portion of the movement and come up hard;
• Squeeze hard at the top portion of all your dumbbell movements;
• Hit your chest hard and give it plenty of time to recover.

If you can't live without the bench press, stop doing close grips. Widen your grip and slow down the movement down.

This should help you with your problem.

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As the owner of Building Muscle 101, I am committed to providing you the best practical weight training advice. I've been training for over 24 years (and still train to this day!) and the advice and guidance I provide comes directly from my experience and knowledge.

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