Iron Man July 2009 Excerpt: Dumbbell Pec Pounding!

My back was coming around nicely, my arms looked great, and my legs were lagging behind, but what struck me the most was the problem with my chest. Here's an excerpt from the July issue of Iron Man magazine. Read on.


An All-'Bell Blowout
That'll Have Your Chest Ringing With New Size

About this time last year I was taking a good look at my body and analyzing what I needed to work on. My back was coming around nicely, my arms looked great, and my legs were lagging behind, but what struck me the most was the problem with my chest. Not that it wasn't big—it was—but it was lacking shape.

It seemed somewhat two-dimensional instead of the 3-D chest that everyone dreams of. Up until that point I'd been centering my chest workouts around bench presses, incline presses and several flye movements, and they had built me a good base. Now, however, I realized that I needed more, something to take my pecs to the next level. Then it hit me—dumbbells!


Do It With Dumbbells

People often concentrate on barbells and neglect dumbbells for several reasons:


-> Ego Satisfaction:

    Ego satisfaction—the bench press is the biggest ego lift in the gym, and they cannot lift as much weight with dumbbells as they can with barbells.


-> Stablization:

    They don't feel comfortable using dumbbells at first because they're harder to stabilize than a barbell.


-> Dumbbells Just For Girls?

    They think dumbbells are for girls in pink spandex workout suits.


-> Advantages Over Barbells:

    Well, I'm here to tell you that dumbbells work and work well. They have several advantages over barbells:

    • Dumbbells have to be stabilized—using muscles that are not brought into play as much with a barbell.

    • Dumbbells enable you to move through a greater range of motion than a barbell. A barbell can only be brought to chest level, whereas dumbbells can go below that. They also enable you to get a greater contraction at the top of the movement.

    • The chest is stretched to its maximum when the elbows are close together behind the body, and it's contracted the most when the arms are fully outstretched and the hands are together or even crossed. Since a greater stretch and better contraction cause more fiber stimulation, it's obvious that dumbbell presses stimulate more muscle fibers than barbell presses.

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Layne Norton
Layne Norton
IFPA & NGA Professional.

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Editor's note: The new DVD "Layne Norton Unleashed" is available at Home-Gym.com, or call (800) 447-0008. IM