Powerlifting Chest Workout

Powerlifting Chest Workout

If you are a powerlifter, you know how important having a strong and muscular chest is. Not only does it look impressive, but it also helps you lift more weight on the bench press, one of the three main lifts in powerlifting.

But how do you design a powerlifting chest workout to help you achieve your goals? What are the best powerlifting chest workout benefits, exercises, sets, and reps? In this article, we will answer these questions and provide you with a sample powerlifting chest workout that you can try.

Increasing your bench press strength and performance

The bench press is one of the most popular and challenging lifts in powerlifting. Lifting heavy weights on a horizontal plane requires a lot of strength and technique. You can improve your force production, stability, and range of motion on the bench press by training your chest muscles.

Building muscle mass and aesthetics

The chest is one of the body's most visible and attractive muscle groups. It gives you a powerful and confident appearance. Training your chest muscles can stimulate muscle growth and hypertrophy, making your chest bigger and more defined.

Improving your overall upper body strength and balance

The chest muscles involve many other upper body movements, such as push-ups, dips, overhead presses, rows, and pull-ups. Training your chest muscles can also enhance your performance and efficiency in these exercises. Developing a strong and symmetrical chest can also prevent muscle imbalances and injuries. The best exercises for powerlifting chest training mimic the bench press movement pattern and target the same muscle groups. These include:

Barbell bench press

This is the king of all chest exercises and a main lift in powerlifting. It works the entire chest and the shoulders, triceps, and lats. A barbell lets you lift the most weight possible and develop maximal strength. You can vary the grip width, angle, and tempo to target different parts of the chest and challenge yourself.

Dumbbell bench press

This is a great alternative or accessory exercise to the barbell bench press. Dumbbells work the same muscles but with more freedom of movement and less joint stress. It also requires more stability and coordination, which can improve your bench press technique. You can use different angles, such as flat, incline, or decline, to emphasize different parts of the chest.

Chest fly

This isolation exercise focuses on the pectoralis major muscle, especially the inner part. It stretches and contracts the chest fibers, increasing blood flow and muscle pump. It also improves your chest mobility and flexibility, which can help you avoid injuries. You can use dumbbells, resistance bands, or a cable machine to perform this exercise.


This classic bodyweight exercise works the entire upper body, especially the chest. It strengthens your core, stabilizes your shoulders, and improves your endurance. It also allows you to train anywhere without any equipment. You can modify the difficulty by changing the hand position, elevation, or adding weight.The number of sets and reps you should do for powerlifting chest training depends on your goals, experience level, and recovery ability. However, as a general guideline, you can follow these recommendations:

  • For strength development: 3 to 5 sets of 1 to 5 reps with 85% to 95% of your one-rep max (1RM) on the barbell bench press or other heavy compound exercises. Rest for 3 to 5 minutes between sets.
  • For muscle growth: 3 to 4 sets of 6 to 12 reps with 70% to 80% of your 1RM on the dumbbell bench press or other moderate compound exercises. Rest for 2 to 3 minutes between sets.
  • For muscle endurance: 2 to 3 sets of 15 to 20 reps with 50% to 60% of your 1RM on the chest fly or other light isolation exercises. Rest for 1 to 2 minutes between sets.

Here is a sample powerlifting chest workout that you can try:

  • Barbell bench press: 4 sets of 5 reps
  • Dumbbell incline bench press: 3 sets of 8 reps
  • Chest fly: 3 sets of 12 reps
  • Push-up: 2 sets of max reps

Powerlifting chest training is a great way to improve your bench press strength and performance, build muscle mass and aesthetics, and enhance your overall upper body strength and balance. By following the best exercises, sets, reps, and tips for powerlifting chest training, you can design an effective and efficient workout to help you achieve your goals.