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Dumbell Chest Activation


Hi guys, I can't seem to find a video of this upper chest activation exercise....

Would someone be so kind as to provide a link please?


I don't have a link, but you can take two dumbbells and squeeze them together hard (hammer grip, hexagon dbs seem to work the best) with the focus on squeezing the muscle while performing a normal bench press rom. That's one technique.


Thanks Sput. I'll give that a whirl...

The exercise video/photos I was after is called the Dumbell D-Roy raise. Does that ring a bell with anyone?


Yes.... think about bending over at about a 45 degree angle (just a rough estimate, but about the angle you would do reverse db flies with), then with a weight plate, kettlebell, or db, while keeping your arm straight, think about raising your palm toward the ceiling across your body and really squeezing your chest. I believe that is what you are looking for PKS.


Yep, pretty much like sput described. You can see a few reps in action around the :47 mark here:

The key with these is that they're all about feel. Don't stress out if you're "only" using 5 pounds on it. The obvious key is to squeeze the peak and actually feel the individual pec contracting.

Chest Development for Arm-Dominant Lifter?

Good point. I always say to try to fatigue the muscle with the least amount of weight possible on this exercise, that really forces you to contract the chest as hard as possible.

You can also do DB squeeze press: do a lying, decline or incline DB press squeezing the DB together as hard as you can and go up slowly.


I have some serious gym jealousy issues.


@ Sput, Chris C & Thibs...

Thanks for your help guys, very much appreciated! :slight_smile:


Thibs can I do the DB squeeze press with round dumbells, or do they have to be done -or preferably be done- with the hex DB?

Could you do the movement effectively using cables?


PKS,If using round dumbells you can use a piece of foam or a folded up towel between the bells.Just something that has a little give to it so when your pushing them together they don't slip around on ya.


Thanks man, great tip right there! :smiley:


  1. Yes, cylindrical DB will work. Just have to push straight in to avoid sliding

  2. No, it's a DB move. I've done a combo of DB press with added cable resistance (it's in one of my articles somewhere) that worked great for chest activation.


Cheers Thibs, def gonna give #2 a try for my hypertrophy/pump work!


The combo DB/cable press is in here: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance/hss100_chest_specialization