As a female in the fitness industry I get asked this question frequently. Many women assume that training chest is for men only and often shy away from it thinking that they will drastically alter the shape of their breasts. However, for such a change to happen an increase in male hormones would have to be present in the female body.
For me, it is important that all of my clients have a chest routine written into their training program. There are many reasons for this, however, I have put together a list of my Top 5.
1. Improves Posture
The chest muscles play a huge role in functionality. The two major parts are the Pectoralis Major and Minor.
The Pectoralis Major is responsible for adduction, flexion and rotation of the shoulders. Whereas the Pectoralis minor is responsible for stabilization, depression, abduction, protraction, upward and downward rotation of the Scapula.
When the chest muscles are left untrained they are unable to function at maximum capacity. This often leads to poor posture namely Kyphosis (the rounding of the shoulders). This alone leads to a whole host of problems and more commonly lower back pain.
2. Improves Breathing
Struggling with shortness of breath even though you train cardio almost every day? Well the issue could be that your poor posture is causing restriction. By training your chest and improving your posture you are able to open up your chest and allow for deeper breaths and increased lung expansion.
3. Burn More Calories & Strengthen Entire Upper Body
Training chest requires the assistance of multiple muscles including your deltoids, traps, triceps, biceps, forearms. It forces you to improve your overall upper body strength as well as promotes a larger calorie burn due to the multi muscle movements.
4. Perkier Breasts
I want to point out that no matter how hard you try…You CANNOT grow bigger breasts doing chest exercises. Even though some of us wish we could. The Breasts are largely made up of fat tissue. However, your pec muscles lie underneath and through training you can cause them to lift and push forward, giving you a perkier fuller look.
5. Improves Exercise Form
I am a big believer in form first, weight later. However, perfect form requires muscular balance from head to toe. Now, it is extremely rare to see anyone in today’s modern world with amazing posture and perfect form, but a great place to start is by training every single muscle.
Still not convinced that you need to train your chest?
Try this beginner chest workout for twice a week for the next 2 weeks and see how different you feel!
Beginner Gym Chest Workout
3 x 10 Push-ups
3 x 15 Half Push-ups
3 x 12 Seated Chest Press
3 x 12 Flat Bench Dumbbell Flyes
3 x 15 Bodyweight Dips using a bench. (For beginners opt for Bent Knees)