The Ultimate Chest Workout: The Best Upper Chest Exercises

Chest is one of the most stubborn muscles of our body which takes effort to develop. Anyone can get a strong chest in proper shape if they hit the chest muscle with the right volume and technique. Flat bench press will increase your strength but it will not grant you a fully developed chest muscle. You need to hit all the three parts of your chest i.e. upper, middle and lower with adequate volume to get a fully developed chest muscle. Here we will reveal best upper chest exercises that will help you get bigger pecs.

Why Upper Chest Exercise is Important?

A well-developed chest is the dream of every fitness enthusiast. But a lot of gym bros are just focused on bench presses for their overall chest development. In bodybuilding you need to shock your muscles and hit them harder through a variety of exercises to get the maximum stimulus.

Exercises like incline pushups, incline bench press, and so on are meant to increase the muscle volume of your upper chest along with the strength. An underdeveloped upper chest not only decreases the overall look of your chest but also lessens your lifting capacity (strength). If you aim to do heavy bench press then you need to do proper upper chest workout daily. Upper chest exercises not only increase your chest’s strength but it also increases your forearm’s, arm’s and shoulder’s strength.

More than 90% of bodybuilders follow “flat bench first” rule on their chest day and most of them are concerned about flat bench press only. These people find it extremely difficult to get all-round good chest shape and strength. Their upper chest is mostly underdeveloped.

So now we are clear about why we should do it, now let’s focus on how should we do it –

Best Upper Chest Exercises –

If you try to google ‘upper chest exercises’ then the search results will leave your perplexed if you are a novice. There are tons and tons of variation that people suggest. We are not going to give you a list of 100 exercises which you can’t perform correctly rather we will provide you with the exercises that are basic and easy to understand. So let’s get started –

What is the best exercise for upper chest?

Here are the top 03 best gym/home exercises for building your upper chest.  

  • Incline Bench Press
  • Incline Dumbbell Press
  • Incline Chest Fly

Incline Bench Press

In the bodybuilding domain some exercises should be there in the priority list of every bodybuilder, the incline bench press is one such exercise. If done with the right technique your upper chest will explode with adequate weight and reps. Make sure you focus on quality over quantity as you may not be able to lift as much weight as you do on ‘flat bench press’.

This exercise increases the muscle volume at your shoulder region and tests your forearm’s strength as well.

Incline Dumbbell Press

Another basic yet effective ‘upper chest exercise’ that is meant to tone your upper chest and provide it with the necessary pump. Since this is a dumbbell exercise so you need to cautious with weights as lifting capacity of both your hands may not be equal. Set the right inclination angle on your bench to get the maximum output.

Also Read: How to Incline Dumbbell Bench Press 

This is an exercise where people lift heavy so it will increase your lifting capacity. If your upper chest is underdeveloped then include this exercise on your regular chest day and you will see the result.

Incline Chest Fly

There are huge misconceptions about chest fly that it can hurt your shoulder blades. Chest Fly being one of the most effective exercises for your chest muscle should be in your list provided that you are doing it correctly. Do not forget to bend your elbows and don’t extend your arms below your body level. Don’t focus on weights in this exercise rather focus on the form and get the maximum contraction and elongation.

This exercise will increase the width of your upper chest and will help in toning it. This is one of the professional exercises hence you should do it in the presence of an expert if you are doing it for the first time.

  • Low to High Cable Fly – This is a variation of standard cable fly that targets your upper chest and stimulates the upper chest muscles. You get flexion and horizontal adduction through this exercise which bench press can’t provide.
  • Incline Pushups – One of the most basic exercises yet effective. This is especially for those who are new to the game. Those who are on the intermediate of pro-level can do weighted incline pushups to get the maximum pump. This is one of the exercises that require no machinery and you can perform it at your home as well.

Important Tips –

You can build bigger chest muscles through the exercises mentioned above but you need to make sure that you stick to certain tips –

  • Basic yet important, form is the key. You should never compromise your form for lifting heavy. Focus on maximum contraction and maximum elongation. Focus on slow repetition as it will give you the maximum pump.
  • If you are not able to balance weight on a normal bench during incline bench press then you can shift to smith machine. Managing dumbbell varies individually hence if you are not able to manage dumbbell well then focus on barbell exercises.
  • Do not allow your body to get used to an exercise. Keep changing your exercises with your workout schedules. Do not perform all the upper chest exercises on one day rather keep changing in alternate weeks.
  • Your muscles will develop if you hit them harder. Introduce drop sets and pause sets in your exercises. This gist is to increase the intensity of your workout.
  • Include military press, flat dumbbell bench press and other similar muscle exercises in your workouts. The upper chest is a secondary muscle that is targeted in these exercises.
  • Chest exercises are heavy volume exercises hence you should have a partner with yourself. If you lift heavy then having a partner is compulsory as it will reduce the risk of any injury.


If you are aiming for best chest workouts then you must include upper chest exercises in your workout schedule. The upper chest is one of the most important upper body muscles in your body and should never be ignored. To develop a large muscle group like chest then hitting the upper chest is highly important.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: Content is protected !!
Scroll to Top