The PERFECT Chest Workout (Sets and Reps Included)

  • Published: 21 October 2018
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    The perfect chest workout should consist of exercises for your upper chest, middle chest and lower chest. That said, even that doesn’t make the chest workout complete. In order to round out your pecs with a well rounded workout you need to fill in the gaps of what is lacking on those popular chest exercises. That is what we do in this video.

    If you look at the four main exercises that people do in their chest workouts you will see incline bench press, barbell bench press, dips and pushups. Take a close look into each of these classic movements and you will see one thing in common. That is, each of these exercises is lacking a full adduction of the shoulder within the exercise.

    This is a problem when it comes to developing a complete chest. Just because you are going through a full range of motion on the exercises that you are doing it does not mean that you are taking a muscle through its full range of motion. For instance, all chest exercises are performed by changing the angle of the arm at the shoulder. Because the shoulder is a three dimensional ball and socket joint, you have a great deal of motion available to you on your chest exercises.

    That said, with the hands being fixed on a barbell, dip station or the floor through most of the common chest exercises you are not able to take your shoulder through the full horizontal adduction that it is capable of going through. Due to this, there is limited activation of the pecs since they are built to take the arm fully across the body, over midline into a more complete adduction.

    The solution to this problem is to not forego the popular mass building chest exercises but add to them, in drop set fashion. Here is how to construct the perfect chest workout with that in mind.

    Barbell Bench Press - 4 sets of 6,8,10,12 reps
    Immediately into a horizontal chest cable or band crossover for 15 reps

    Incline DB Bench Press - 4 sets of 6,8,10,12 reps
    Immediately into a low to high cable or band crossover for 15 reps

    Weighted Dips - 4 sets of 6,8,10,12 reps
    Immediately into a high to low cable or band crossover for 15 reps

    Weighted Pushups - 3 sets to Failure
    Immediately into a banded crossover pushup for 15 reps with band on each arm

    When you put this together in drop set format as I’m suggesting here, you not only now hit the chest through it’s full range of motion but you hit every area of the chest as well. The drop down allows for the lesser intense exercise to be more taxing since it was just preceded by a more difficult compound lift.

    This is just one example of how to apply science to your chest workouts. If you want to train like an athlete you want to put science back in every workout you do. You can do that with the ATHLEAN-X Training Programs available at and get started right away on building a ripped, muscular, athletic body.

    For more chest workout videos for the upper chest, lower chest and inner chest, be sure to subscribe to our channel here on RUclip at and don’t forget to turn on notifications so you never miss one.
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Comments • 3 941

    ATHLEAN-X™   11 months back

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

    • Rameez PM
      Rameez PM  7 days back


    • Rameez PM
      Rameez PM  7 days back


    • araybic884
      araybic884  2 weeks back

      @Devin Wolf It looks like you do both. Do A then immediately go into B

    • Dee Pinomi
      Dee Pinomi  2 weeks back

      Hey Athlean X, what's another exercise besides the dip for your lower pec? Espcially for someone who has a small tear by the rotary cuff.

    • zombie coder 1 1
      zombie coder 1 1  1 months back

      @Hamdi Kafsi lesh?

  • jack samonte
    jack samonte  14 hours back

    when i get to the dip im already exhausted

    • Costa G
      Costa G  18 hours back

      any ideas on a couple of tricep exercises after finishing these chest exercises

      • Trisha B
        Trisha B  20 hours back

        So informative! Can't wait to hit my chest tmrw!

        • BlueDevilDragon7
          BlueDevilDragon7  24 hours back

          Did these today and I feel the activation through my chest.

          • Chickerwicker Do dare
            Chickerwicker Do dare  1 days back

            Hi their I have always struggled with my chest I was over weight and I lost all my weight i lost 7 stone and i have got muscle in my chest but can you do a video on how to get shaping.

            • Himanshu Purohit
              Himanshu Purohit  2 days back

              Best video on chest.. fuck all else

              • V Jillz
                V Jillz  2 days back

                How mamy times per week do you want to f this workout. For instance if I train chest 2x per week would I do this whole work out 2x per week or cut it in half and do half one day and half another day?

                • Monty Singh
                  Monty Singh  3 days back


                  • STATUS KA BAAP
                    STATUS KA BAAP  5 days back

                    God bless you

                    • drdildamesh
                      drdildamesh  5 days back

                      What does it mean when he says 4 sets of 6, 8, 10, 12 reps? does that mean do one set at each of these or 4 sets at whatever I can handle for the weight I'm pushing?

                      • Ash J. Bartlett
                        Ash J. Bartlett  2 days back

                        He’s describing drop sets, so you do 4 sets, and reduce the weight each set but increase the reps. They work like so;

                        Set 1: 85% of 1 rep max for 6 reps
                        Set 2: 75% of 1 rep max for 8 reps
                        Set 3: 65% of 1 rep max for 10 reps
                        Set 4: 55% of 1 rep max for 12 reps

                        This is just an example. You can drop the weight however much you want each time, however much you need to reduce to hit the rep count. Hope this helps. :)

                    • Darshan Parikh
                      Darshan Parikh  5 days back

                      Isn't it overtraining?
                      Total of 30 sets in one session.
                      I do push workout on monday and Thursday.

                      • RGT
                        RGT  6 days back

                        Can you do this 2 times a week

                        • Ryan Hughes
                          Ryan Hughes  1 weeks back

                          What bout decline

                          • Musa Siddique
                            Musa Siddique  1 weeks back

                            Dude make some series for beginners!

                            • freddy Grechy
                              freddy Grechy  1 weeks back

                              Very helpful, thank you🙏🏾💪🏾

                              • Matt Wolf
                                Matt Wolf  2 weeks back

                                Workout: 6:54
                                End of the video

                                • Sachinmaya krishnan
                                  Sachinmaya krishnan  2 weeks back

                                  Okay this is my workout today.

                                  • Average Dude
                                    Average Dude  2 weeks back

                                    15 sets and if I do this twice a week, it'll be 30 sets. I thought u only have to do 15-20 sets per week per body part. Can anyone enlighten me pls. Thanks in advance.

                                    • Average Dude
                                      Average Dude  14 hours back

                                      @Quirky Turtle aight man, thanks 💪

                                    • Quirky Turtle
                                      Quirky Turtle  1 days back

                                      Average Dude yeah that program would be overtraining imo as well, i just do one split twice not all of em, the muscles should rest around 3 days after being used so your old one didnt meet that requirement as well (thats the minimal amount assuming you have done that muscle group not like full body or something) best of luck figuring yourself out my guy

                                    • Average Dude
                                      Average Dude  2 days back

                                      @Quirky Turtle I do
                                      Day 1: chest & triceps
                                      Day 2: back & biceps
                                      Day 3: legs & shoulder
                                      Day 4-6: repeat
                                      Day 7: rest

                                      I'm just worried I might be doing too much sets. I used to do 40-55 sets per MUSCLE per week which is TOO MUCH. So I cut my volume down to about 15-20 sets per week which is the optimal amount of sets per muscle per week(Based on research). But yea, I think I should experiment.

                                    • Quirky Turtle
                                      Quirky Turtle  2 days back

                                      Average Dude Everyone is different, for myself i rotate each week with a split type of workout, legs shoulders, back biceps etc. so one week i'll do double legs shoulder the other week the other etc. has been working for me for the past year so i suggest not being afraid of experimenting, i do the first on monday and second on friday btw

                                    • Average Dude
                                      Average Dude  2 days back

                                      @Quirky Turtle based on my research, sets more than 20 sets per muscle group per week are called junk sets. I'm soo confuused. Ugghh. 😱

                                  • araybic884
                                    araybic884  2 weeks back

                                    Great stuff as usual but can we get more specific info?
                                    Should all the sets for each workout be a the same weight? (common sense says no, but the constant switching of weight feels like a time drain)
                                    How long do we rest between each set? Is it a 60-90 sec period or a 5 min period?

                                    • Nicklas Vernø
                                      Nicklas Vernø  2 weeks back

                                      How do you use This in your Workout routine. Do you need a specific day where you train chest or are you gonna involved it in your day where you train chest, shoulder and triceps.

                                      • Aurobindo Nayak
                                        Aurobindo Nayak  2 weeks back

                                        I was doing the exact same thing here without knowing the science behind it. Thanks to my old trainer!!

                                        • Todd Wilson
                                          Todd Wilson  2 weeks back

                                          So is the progression all four sets of A, then all four sets of B, or is it 1a/1b, 2a/2b, etc?

                                          • Pale Zeus
                                            Pale Zeus  2 weeks back


                                            • Trent Northrup
                                              Trent Northrup  2 weeks back

                                              I need help. I just started working out 2 months ago. I am lean. I just need to tone up. I just want to know what to start out with daily.

                                              • Vince Miller
                                                Vince Miller  2 weeks back

                                                I think it's an better argument to say that EMG studies better correlate with strength gains than with hypertrophy.

                                                • David Avila-Medina
                                                  David Avila-Medina  2 weeks back

                                                  I’m doing all of these but my chest still sags after pump goes away

                                                  • Rob K
                                                    Rob K  2 weeks back

                                                    These exercises are only good if you have a full gym at home. Impossible at a regular gym during normal hours. Too complex.

                                                    • Dmitry Kodzhaspirov
                                                      Dmitry Kodzhaspirov  2 weeks back

                                                      Thanks jeff

                                                      • Scot-Free
                                                        Scot-Free  2 weeks back

                                                        Gold!! Thanks.

                                                        • julian biddulph
                                                          julian biddulph  2 weeks back

                                                          Amazing video
                                                          Just why I was looking for

                                                          • Peter Greco
                                                            Peter Greco  2 weeks back

                                                            Hey does anyone know if it is 15 reps on the cable crossover per arm or 15 altogether?

                                                            • Jared Teshager
                                                              Jared Teshager  2 weeks back

                                                              I just created this channel to write this comment and to say thank you. I live in Ethiopia and even though I don't want to make excuses it is kinda hard getting a real information or a good trainer. You've helped me with my posture, my back pain...... thank you very much. You really are a good person providing your knowledge for free like this. Love from Ethiopia.

                                                              • kaleb tangen
                                                                kaleb tangen  2 weeks back

                                                                what I love about Jeff's stuff is it always does what he says it will do...just did this work out..been working my chest for almost a year....feels like I just started over! this got everything

                                                                • Alina Popa
                                                                  Alina Popa  3 weeks back

                                                                  I love this chanel! It’s very informative. Please watch!

                                                                  • -Nath-
                                                                    -Nath-  3 weeks back

                                                                    Gotta question this. 30 sets for chest but you did a video where Craig had I think 16 set's for chest and you said that was too many. Kinda confused here

                                                                    • Ankur S
                                                                      Ankur S  3 weeks back

                                                                      Very well said ... probably one of the few videos that goes the distance and differentiates on how to workout and workout well !! Good Work...Keep it up !!

                                                                      • Kushagra Bansal
                                                                        Kushagra Bansal  3 weeks back

                                                                        Amazing Workout!! Tried it out and felt amazing!!! But when I reached to the push ups, it felt like my arks and Chest died, like wasn't able to perform even one pushup correctly!! Can you help me with any tip or suggest me something???

                                                                        • Froyo
                                                                          Froyo  3 weeks back

                                                                          I swear I never have the equipment he uses for his perfect workouts :-:

                                                                          • Carlos Zepeda
                                                                            Carlos Zepeda  3 weeks back

                                                                            Same, for the cable crossovers I'm just gonna use some light dumbells to do the motion lol

                                                                        • nandish waran
                                                                          nandish waran  3 weeks back

                                                                          This seems like too much volume to can I get this in my work out routine

                                                                          • justin anderson
                                                                            justin anderson  3 weeks back

                                                                            6:51 you'll thank me later

                                                                            • Capsulekill
                                                                              Capsulekill  3 weeks back

                                                                              Are you supposed to start heavy on the bench and go lighter? Usually its the other way around

                                                                              • 1234 5678
                                                                                1234 5678  3 weeks back

                                                                                Is it only me who doesn’t at all listen to what he’s saying and just looking at the workouts??

                                                                              • jasonkressin
                                                                                jasonkressin  3 weeks back

                                                                                Talking angles of fibers, I do what I call walking the ladder to end my chest day. It's the cable cross over starting at top hole for 10 reps then drop 2-3 hole and 10 more and so on until to the bottom holes for 10.

                                                                                • Smiles
                                                                                  Smiles  4 weeks back

                                                                                  Bro this fibre range of motion idea makes so much sense, thank you this is awesome!

                                                                                  • Jennifer Grove
                                                                                    Jennifer Grove  4 weeks back

                                                                                    Doin' this!!!!
                                                                                    Thank you!

                                                                                    • Keith Ferreira
                                                                                      Keith Ferreira  4 weeks back

                                                                                      Can someone explain the reps . . . It appears the suggestion is to go from low reps to high reps (6,8,10,12). That seems wrong? Wouldn't that indicate a higher weight (lower reps) to lower weight (higher reps) transition? just looking for some clarity. Thanks!

                                                                                      • Yohan Perera
                                                                                        Yohan Perera  4 weeks back

                                                                                        So a drop set is... do 1 set of bench press. cable crossover. 2nd set bench press cable crossover and so on right?