4 Reasons Your Chest Won’t Grow (FIX THIS!)


What’s up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com. Today we’re going over four reasons why your
chest may not be growing. Now, I get it. Some people say “Chest? Chest is the easiest thing in the world to
grow.” There are a lot of people that cannot grow
their chest, and I’m going to cover four of the reasons why, and what you can start bringing
into your training right away. First up we have to attack the setup. I don’t care what chest exercise you’re
doing, it’s always going to matter. There are two things you can do to make sure
that you’re setting the stage properly, before you even do the exercise. One good reminder that you can do during every,
single rep that will reinforce the fact that you’re doing it right. I say “chest out, and traps down”. What I mean by that is, you’ve got to at least
put the chest in a position to initiate the push. That happens by making sure that it is out
in front of the shoulder. No matter what exercise you’re doing, if the
shoulders are in front of the chest you’re going to cost yourself an opportunity to allow
the chest to initiate the contraction. At this point, the shoulder wants to try to
do the work for you. We know that’s a tendency of chest exercises
because the shoulders, the triceps, and the chest all like to work together. You’re going to initiate that contraction
now, right here, from the chest, as opposed to letting the shoulders dominate. Now I said “traps down”, too. Traps down is just a postural thing that we
do, just because of how much sitting we do, and all the time we spend this way that allow
our traps to overcompensate and lift as we elevate our arms. You can notice this yourself. If you just raise your arm up, look in the
mirror. You likely have some sort of a shrug going
on here when it should really look like that. It should be depressed. So if you can actively depress that, what
you’ve done is allowed yourself to get more adduction of the arm here, down at your side,
which allows for a stronger chest contraction. We’re going to talk about adduction in a moment,
but you want that chest out, you want the traps down, and then during every, single
rep you can reinforce this by actively pulling down on the weights that you’re using. Even if you’re doing a pushup you can actively
attack the ground. Not just passively fall down toward it, or
don’t allow the dumbbells to passively fall down toward you on the bench. You can see me pulling the dumbbells down,
which forces the chest out again, puts it in that position on every, single rep to initiate
the next contraction. The combination of these preset rituals, and
these interest rituals will do wonders for you when it comes to getting more results
from every chest exercise you do. Next, as the saying goes “It doesn’t matter
how good you start. If you finish like crap, you did a crap set.” Well, we’re going to finish right. The way you do it on a chest exercise is changing
your mindset on what you’re doing. Forget the word ‘push’, or ‘press’ and replace
it with the word ‘squeeze’. So instead of doing pushups here, think about
doing squeeze ups. And instead of doing bench-presses, think
about doing bench-squeezes, if that helps you to visualize what’s actually going on
here. That is, you’re not just pushing the weights
away from you. You should be squeezing the weights together. If you have to visualize your biceps moving
toward each other, then that’s what you should do. Again, the fixed exercises don’t make an
excuse for not doing this. I could do this on a dip as well. I don’t just push out of a dip. I’m actually squeezing out of a dip. As I push down, I’m trying to get my biceps,
again, to approximate and come closer together at the top to ensure that I’m getting a strong
contraction. That one change in mindset will get you much
more out of every, single rep of every exercise you’re doing for your chest. The third thing you must do is take it beyond
what I just told you to do, and learn to adduct, adduct, adduct. We talk about it. Yes, you want to approximate, and come closer
together, but at some point this adduction that the chest will assist in is going to
be limited by the fact that you can’t cross over midline. Horizontal adduction is where our chest is
best worked. If we can get ourselves to go across our body,
take that arm, bring it across midline, now we’re really doing something, and now we’re
really activating those muscles. We can do it only with very specific exercises. Here’s the problem: if you don’t have the
biggest chest in the world, and people see you doing these things in the gym they might
tell you “What are you doing?! Why don’t you concentrate on bench-presses,
and some of the bigger lifts?” I’m telling you guys, you don’t want to
listen to that advice because you’re missing out on the opportunity to create the adduction
that only comes from these exercises. So don’t worry about what they’re saying. Instead, focus more time doing the exercises
like this – the UCV raise – that allows me to work on that upper chest, along the
fibers in the same direction that they flow, and I’m bringing it up, and across my body
using a single dumbbell, or even better, with a cable. Or I could do the Cavaliere crossover here,
as some would call it. We take the dumbbell, we bring it up, and
across our chest. We’re trying to drive that dumbbell up, and
across, and over midline, and squeeze as hard as we possibly can. You’ll feel the heightened contraction because
the chest is literally contracting harder by exploring all ranges of motion here, and
operating in all of its functions. We can also do a cable crossover. Again, this is not just a definition exercise. I can’t stand when people say that. It does much more than that. It’s taking the chest through its full function. So why not utilize it? Bring your arm all the way across the chest,
go for that heightened contraction, and use it. Of course, even if you’re doing pushups here,
you can do the same thing. You don’t have to just push straight up
and down. You can actually cause little bit of a rotation
in there with our twisting pushup, which gives you more of that relative adduction of the
arm across the chest. Last, but not least, the one thing I think
you might not be doing enough of is drop sets. Drop sets, when it comes to chest training,
is one of the most valuable tools in your arsenal to get more out of it. Why? Because, as I said in the very, very beginning,
your shoulders, your triceps; they all want to help, and assist, and dominate chest movements. Well, it’s okay only if they come after the
chest has already been fatigued. So if you’ve been doing everything I just
showed you – you initiated the contraction, you finished the contraction, you were adding
adduction exercises – well, when you’re done with those pushing exercises, don’t
stop there. Immediately drop to the floor. Let’s say, on the bench-press. Start cranking out pushups. Why? Because at this point, even though your chest
is fatigued, it’s got the help of the shoulders and triceps that will allow you to push even
further. This is where the fact that these muscles
like to work together start to work in your favor. If you’re not allowing yourself to do these
you’re costing yourself a great opportunity to get more out of your chest exercises. Here’s one word of caution, though. A lot of people will approach a drop set,
start to fatigue on that secondary portion of it in the pushup, and then hold back because
they’ll say “Well, there’s no way. If I push myself any further here I’m not
going to be able to go back and use the same dumbbells I just did on the last set, and
complete it with any effort because I’m going to be too fatigued.” Screw that mentality, guys. That ‘save it’ mentality is probably what’s
holding you back even more than anything else. Go for everything. Do as much as you can on the drop set. Go to failure and if you have it adjust your
weights, do so because your muscles will only ever recognize the amount of tension that
they’re being subjected to at the end of the day. They’re not necessarily worried about the
number on that side of the dumbbell. Aim for more tension every step of the way
and you’re going to get more out of every, single chest workout you do. So there you have it, guys. There are four things you can start doing
right now to start getting more out of your chest workouts. Don’t tell me the chest is so easy to grow
because if it was there wouldn’t be so many damn people looking for chest workouts. It’s one of the most requested things we get
here, on this channel. I feel your pain. I get it. It’s not my best thing either, but I’ve worked
hard to try to bring mine up, and you can do the same thing, employing these same techniques. As a matter of fact guys, we go the extra
mile with every one of our programs. We put all the extra tips in because these
are the things that make the difference. When all else has failed, it’s these next
level tips that make the difference in helping you to finally bust through. All of our programs are available over at
ATHLEANX.com. In the meantime, if you’ve found the video
helpful leave your comments and thumbs up below. Let me know what you want me to cover in a
future video and I’ll do my best to do that for you. All right, guys. See you soon.

100 Replies to “4 Reasons Your Chest Won’t Grow (FIX THIS!)”

  1. Want to win an ATHLEAN-X program for free, no strings attached? Click the link below to find out how!

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  2. I have problem with my chest but everything else is going great. I notice that I haven’t really done the squeezing of the chest but I am going to start doing that now.

  3. My chest refuses to grow while my legs and lower body tends to be easy so trust, I'm going to try all of this. It's so frustrating.

  4. Hey you are awesome man &study about every muscles in deeply can you make any video for woman chest how to grow and make biggger?

  5. My biggest fear in doing push-ups directly after benching/dumbbells (in drop-sets or super-sets) is busting my face on the floor after going to failure…

  6. this is a big problem for me as well, It's annoying when that disturbing middle part of your ribs isn't covered with muscle It's disgusting to have abs when you have too skinny chest. thanks Jeff!

  7. Can anyone help me out? I have bigger pecs but the rest of my body is skinny, do i have to like burn the fat or whatever is there or if i work out will it tone up… please let me know i need to fix this!

  8. When I started out to SQUEEZE to every rep I do, in every EXERCISE I do, I got serious gains. SQUEEZE is the master key. I'm 49 years old, and yes, with no very heavy weights, I am getting results by this.

  9. I wonder if the thumbs down type ever realize how ignorant they look in comparison to the thumbs up ratio.
    Maybe it's because they don't get to curl oreos in their mother's basement.

  10. Most brilliant explaination regarding chest workout👍💪thanks man..ur channel really helps alot. Keep it up!

  11. My chest it’s the weakest part in my workout, couse I don’t go heavy enough , I stuck, sometimes i think to just stop working out any muscles and focus on chest only for a month street

  12. Everytime I train chest my shoulders take over, even on bench press I ensure to have my shoulders down and back but I still feel the contraction in my shoulders more than my chest… do I need to add more chest exercises to my program? So for example start with the bench press, then move onto dips, then onto cable flyes and then a chest pullover?
    Would this help

  13. I have this problem where my elbow kicks backwards on the bench concentric and I think its complication to my Subscapularis repair and subsequent distal clavicle resection, but your cue to SQUEEZE as well as think of the biceps coming together is the closest thing I've found to help me control it. Unfortunately the problems not fully solved, but this is one of the single greatest bench press value videos Ive ever found.

  14. I feel like my chest is protruding less and less every day, I see the upper part of my chest pointing up. But I want my chest to protrude

  15. I had a spinal fusion in January so I have difficulty on days laying down on the bench. I have been working out again for about 2 months after a 3 year hiatus due to my back issues. I am very happy with my abs, shoulders, tri ceps, arms, but my chest is looking worse and worse as I have gone along. I can’t do dips due to being 235 pounds. I have been able to use barbells to work my chest, but haven’t been able to use the bar with weights. I have a routine of working my chest twice a week, but I don’t see the growth as the rest of my other body parts. It’s like a 1 to 3 size difference. I am getting about 200 grams of protein a day, but I am not eating 3 meals a day consistently. I don’t sleep well because of my PTSD from my military career and being injured in combat.
    All of this info I have provided so I can hopefully get your help on what I can do differently? I think I might be doing too many sets for my chest. I hope you can help me fix this issue.
    Thank you for always providing such great content in your videos.

  16. Thanks for the ideas. Could you talk about warm up stretching, cool down, static vs dynamic stretching, etc?

  17. I do twisted push ups of a short step instead of the floor. I place my left hand on the right edge of the step and the right hand on the floor then do a pushup which effectively becomes a one-arm pushup with an assistance by the other arm. As I do it, my shoulder tilt, making the pushup a twisted one. Then I cross the arms to place my right hand on the left edge of the step and the left hand on the floor. Repeat. I think it is a more effective way to do a twisted pushup to load the chest. I call it Nomad power twisted pushup.

  18. you're asking : WHY your chest may not be growing?
    the first answer is : CUZ i'm watching ATHLEAN-X™ everyday HA HA!

  19. I have soreness the next days but strength level stays where it's at. I am stuck on the same weight Since 4 months

  20. I tried all this and I don’t get a chest burn, I’m just starting to lift. Could having low chest muscle be part of the reason I have trouble using it over my arms

  21. I'm defernatly gonna be sharing your videos with my UK friends. Very well explained and a great personality. One of my new favourite inspirations in my gym life. Just wanted to say a thank you and keep up the great work.

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