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How To Do Incline Bench Press Exercise?

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Chest-day is considered to be the most important day in the gym. Chest muscle is one of the biggest muscle of the body. Since it is one of the large muscle of the body, its exercises are also difficult. Bench press exercises are considered to be the most reasonable and effective for chest muscles. However, chest exercises cannot be complete unless its different forms are put into practice. Among several exercises, bench press is one of the effective exercises which engage majority parts of the chest. So, today we will discuss about incline bench press.

What is Incline Bench Press?

Incline bench press is one of the effective and latest form of exercise that generates relatively more stress with targeting the entire chest muscles.

You can engage different parts of the chest by using different forms of bench press exercises. At present, you may be able to easily see the use of different forms of bench presses in the gyms and fitness centres, but it did not have been so popular a few years ago.

In the early days the bench press was done on the floor, later its forms were novelty and now the bench press is being carried out in many ways. Dips can also be seen as an alternative to the development of chest muscles.

In the world of fitness, bench press started with all the variations. It is also considered as a superb compound exercise because it engage shoulders and triceps along with chest muscles.

This exercise can be done on the incline bench with a pair of dumbbells or barbell. It is quite easy and can be done like a flat bench press.

Incline Bench Press Form.

This exercise can also be done in many ways. The muscles of the upper part of the chest are in active condition in this exercise. Those are;

Incline Bench Press Benefits.

The texture of the incline bench causes tension in the muscles of the upper part of the body during exercise. This exercise is also very helpful in the growth and strength of the muscles of the shoulders, triceps and cores, with increasing the size of the chest muscles.

This exercise helps to target the upper body muscles as well as bring stability to the lower parts of the body.

The upward inclination of the bench also helps to increase the physical strength, which can help you to lift more weight during exercises such as squats, deadlifts and leg presses.

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Incline Bench Press Angle.

It is very important to have a good warm-up before any exercise. Also ensure that the muscles are completely exposed, which prevent any kind of risk of injury during exercise. The exercise you are going to practice can be done without any weight as a warm-up.

The more direct the tilt of the bench, the more it affects the shoulder rather than your chest. That is why the angle of the bench should be right and comfortable at all times.

Incline Bench Press Muscles Worked.

This exercise worked on the following muscles groups;

Primary: Upper part of the chest.

Secondary: Shoulders and Triceps.


  • A pair of dumbbells or a Barbell.
  • An incline bench or bench that can be tilted at different angles.

Who Can Exercise It?

Intermediate (Trainee Level People).

Sets and Repetitions.

3 sets of 12-15 repetitions.

Dumbbell Incline Bench Press.

incline bench press with barbell
Dumbbell Incline Bench Press

Step 1.

Lie down on the back bench and take the dumbbell in both hands with a good grip.

Step 2.

Now lift the dumbbells parallel to your shoulders and touch both by taking it up. Wait for a few seconds.

Step 3.

Gradually bring the dumbbell down to your chest. It’s a repetition.

*Note:   If you can’t pick both dumbbells together, try lifting the two dumbbells one by one (like the Alternate Dumbbell press).

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Barbell Incline Bench Press.

The muscles on both sides of the chest can be targeted at the same time by pressing the incline bench with barbell.

Incline Bench Press with Barbell
Barbell Incline Bench Press

Step 1.

To do this exercise, first catch the barbell while making a good grip of the palms and repeat like a flat bench press.

Step 2.

Touch the barbell with the bottom part of the chest while bringing it downwards.

It can also be done from different angles to engage different parts of the chest. If you want to widen the chest, hold the barbell a little distance from the width of the shoulders.

However, if you want to create tension on the inner part of the chest and the middle muscles, hold the barbell shortly before the width of the shoulders.

Doing this exercise with different angles can provide good results to the chest muscles and provide better development.

Wide Grip Incline Bench Press.

Wide grip is a variation of incline bench press and is effective for upper body muscles (chest, shoulder and triceps).

Minor changes in hand placements used in wide grip incline bench presses allow lifters to place more emphasis on chest muscles during exercise.

wide grip incline bench press
Wide Grip Incline Bench


1. Lie flat on a incline bench and set your hands well outside the shoulder width.

2. Set your shoulder blade together by pinching them and placing them into the bench.

3. Take a deep breath and let your spotter help you lift off to maintain tightness in the upper back.

4. Let the weight settle and make sure your upper back is tight after lifting.

5. Breathe and open the elbows and let the bar come down slowly.

6. Lower the bar in a straight line based on the sternum (breastbone) and touch the chest.

7. Push the bar back up into a straight line by pressing yourself in the bench, placing your legs on the floor for leg drive and stretching the elbows.

8. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Close Grip Incline Bench Press.

Close grip incline bench is an upper body exercise that targets the muscles of triceps. The secondary muscles involved are your shoulders and chest.

Close Grip Incline Bench Press
Close Grip Incline Bench Image Source: Incline Barbell Close Grip Bench Press


1. Hold a barbell and lie down on a bench tilt of 45 degrees.

2. Place your hand above your chest, palms forward.

3. Keep your core firm and elbows close to the body.

4. Lower the barbell to the edges of your chest.

5. Stop, and then push the weight back to the starting position.

6. Complete 3-4 sets of 8-15 repetitions.

Incline Bench Smith Machine.

incline bench press with machine
Incline Bench Smith Machine

It is good for the beginners to exercise with the help of smith machine. This makes it easier to balance, as well as you can practice with heavyweight. Set the bench under the machine at 45 degrees. This is the best angle for incline bench press. Also set the barbell according to your ability and put weight on it. Now do this exercise like the Barbell Incline bench press.

How To Do Incline Bench Press with Weight Plates?

press with weight plates
Incline Bench with Weight Plates

Step 1.

Hold the coated plates while making a good grip in both hands while lying on the bench. Place both palms in front of each other.

Step 2.

Now lift these plates upwards of the shoulders. Wait a few seconds in this situation.

Step 3.

Gradually bring the plates to the initial position. It’s a repetition.

*Note:   It is usually seen that when bringing the barbell downwards, touch it near the abdomen or neck. Keep in mind that while bringing the barbell downwards, bring it slightly below the collar bone. While lifting the weight, barbell should be parallel towards the shoulders.

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Low Incline Bench Press.

For chest formation, incline the adjustable bench to only about 30 degrees. This is usually the least possible setting in commercial gyms.

Low Incline Bench Image Source: LOW-INCLINE BARBELL BENCH 

A low incline is even better. If your bench doesn’t come down too low, just place a weight plate under one end of a flat bench. It is good for shoulders as it allows “upper” pecs to do most of the work.

Reverse Grip Incline Bench Press.

This is an advanced form of reverse-grip bench press practice. Incline angle and reverse grip engage most of the upper chest and triceps muscles.

Reverse Grip
Reverse Grip Incline Bench Image Source: Reverse Grip Incline Bench

Step 1.

Place your body on a incline bench at an angle of 30°-45°. Hold a barbell with an underhand grip, palms in front of you, shoulders and widths, and place it above your chest. Stretch the sides upwards while closing the elbows.

Step 2.

Lower the bar straight down in slow, controlled motion up to your upper chest. Stop, then press the bar back to the starting position in a straight line.


This bench press is the latest form of flat bench press. Keep in mind, if you have any kind of injury in shoulder or collar bone then you must consult with your doctor before doing this exercise. You must keep an instructor nearby to help you while lifting heavy weights.

Doing bench presses or all exercises requires greater muscle strength and stability. If you are feeling some kind of difficulty while lifting weights, first exercise the core muscles and strengthen them.

Practice this exercise with machine if no one is present to help you while lifting weights. Make sure you have warm up well before exercising. Flexibility in the body is very essential for such exercise.

Incline Bench Press Substitute.

The bench press exercise has been upgraded from time to time, which has many advantages. However, there are also many exercises those are best alternative and also help to develop chest muscles. Such as;

  • Flat Bench Press.
  • Cable Cross-Over.
  • Incline push-Ups.
  • Machine chest Press.

Frequently Asked Questions.

1. How to do incline bench press without bench?

To do this workout without bench follow the steps below:

1. Warm up before trying any press by doing light aerobic exercise of five to 10 minutes. Loosen your muscles further with dynamic stretch, such as horizontal and vertical arm swing.

2. Lie with your upper back on the ball, and your torso leaned at about 45 degrees. Then bend your knees and keep feet flat touching the ground.

3. Place a dumbbell in each hand in front of your shoulders and slightly sideways, with your palms away from your body. This is your starting position.

4. Exhaling you press the dumbbell directly towards the roof until they are above your upper middle chest. Don’t close your elbows.

5. Breath in as soon as you lower the weight.

6. Practice three sets of 10 to 12 repetitions.

Bottom Line.

It is an excellent exercise for the growth and strength of the chest muscles. Since, it is also a compound exercise, the other muscle group of the body also gets the benefit from this exercise.

In most of the gyms and fitness centres, people prefer to do this exercise. However, it also increases physical strength, so once it is habitual, it will become easier to practice other difficult exercises.

+1 Source

Freaktofit has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, educational research institutes, and medical organizations. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and up-to-date by reading our editorial policy.

  1. Smith Machine Incline Bench Press: Muscles Worked & Technique;




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