T Nation

A Few Finer Points of My Physique


Hi guys,

Working out has become an obsession for me.

My progress has been going great and I couldn't be happier with how i'm going.

Diet is perfect and training is always hard.

A few quick questions.

I realise that the finer points of my physique (the details) will come out nicely the more body fat I lose, but seeing as i'm trying to build a specific look, the fittness model look (shriek, horror!), there's areas i'm trying to make sure get attention.

Straight to the point,

What brings out the detail in your upper torso, just under your pecs and next to your abs (besides losing body fat to reveal it!).
I've heard these referred to as "fingers" before,
What i've been doing so far is just common sense stuff, EG - those reveal themselves when I raise my arms, so i've been doing woodchoppers with a plate and bent arm pullovers.

Is this correct/good?

Again I realise they key to this is low, low bodyfat, but anything to help define this area would be great!


i think you are talking about serratus anterior muscles. they seem to pop for me when i do incline dumbbell press or dips. I also have low bodyfat but nothing ridiculous (about 11 or 12%).


I think you mean the serratus anterior?
they look like 'fingers' or 'blades' if well defined.
Well,I used to do this move I saw in Mens Health magazine,you basically lie down and do a crunch do a crunch and push a LIGHT barbell or even a body bar vertically up at the same time.
You really need to almost lock out/fully extend the elbow and really push and squeeze the shoulder blades forward,as if you are reaching for something you can't quite get.hold for a second and return.

repeat for 3 sets of 12.
add a little weight over time as it gets too easy,but not too much.


the muscle group you're referring to is called serratus anterior, it works to protract the scapulae (pulls your two shoulder blades forward). search the name, there are a few articles on this website specifically on the muscle group. good luck mate.


If you do bench press and military press, after your last rep don't lower the bar or rack it. Shoot for 8-10 reps only doing the top 2-3" of the ROM. Pushups are also great for the serratus.

What left me the sorest in that area was holding a slosh bar in the crook of my arms and walking with it. Just stabilizing it made me feel like my serratus were about to tear off my ribs.


Best thing I've ever seen for working the serratus anterior is punching stuff. A friend of mine calls it the punching muscle. Work a bag for a while and see how sore they are.


Thank you all so much for taking the time out of your days to post.

Now that I know the proper name for them, i'll do some searches!

Also looking forward to trying some of the exercises suggested,

Was looking for an excuse to hit the heavy bag :smiley:

Thanks so much guys, you are all LEGENDS!


Heres a few options

feet elevated pushups
pushups with weight
pushups with chains
cable press
clapping pushups

Basically anything that allows you to protract and downward rotate your scapulas.


Thanks heaps Dan,

I already do all of those bar the chains :slightly_smiling:

I am probably hitting them plenty already but just never felt sore in that area and my bodyfat is only low enough to see them peeking through with my abs, still more to lose!!

Really appreciate all the responses :slightly_smiling:


I have to be careful that my sides do not get to bulky, but what I like to do that I feel pretty deeply in my serratus/oblique areas, is to do medicine ball twists while sitting halfway reclined on a decline bench.

I don't use any insane weight, just a 15 lb medicine ball so I keep my arm outstretched, but I definitely feel it, and even though my bf is certainly not in contest-ready digits, I can still see the 'fingers' you were referring to.



Throw a V-handle over a wide chinning bar. Grab the V-handle and do Hanging Leg Raises.... but do them where you bring your knees up to the bar. Try to explode to that top position and then lower your legs slowly from there. There's a point in the ROM where your hips tilt back and the emphasis switches to the areas you're trying to hit. In effect, this exercise is like a compound move whereby you're hitting quite a few core areas at once. These are a killer, and you'll feel it next day in your abs, hips, serratus.


Thanks heaps Stu,

You're a champ man, what a wicked physique!

Will try this out.


Awesome, cheers man.

I'll give this a go today...

haha, I'm going to have the most macked out serratus there ever was with all these options!


Sorry to dissapoint you bro.

D*ck free zone.


Another wonderful 09 contribution.


Man I love it, This crap is entertaining as hell. But I do like the more serious training posts. I would like to see the physiques of the macho bullshit talkers though, I would think the beginners or wannabes would be quieter though and try to learn something. But it is a free country. Oh, and I don't see myself as an expert or HUGE, I am just trying to learn just like everybody else.


My favorite exercise for targeting this is very close grip pulldowns. I use the V-grip that you would normally use for T bar rows and then do heavy pulldowns. Works like a charm for me.