Of all the muscle groups I've spent time learning how to manipulate over the years chest has to be right up there. Not because I obsess with big pecs more than any other muscle group, instead because my chest is by far the least responsive muscle in my body. Honestly, there was a time when I believed implants would be the only viable option (I'm joking by the way!). After 10+ years in the trenches I've learned some pretty cool exercise variations to increase muscle recruitment and get the results I want.
Check them out!
Low Seat Pec-Dec
When on the pec-dec lower the seat right down so that the handles are in line with your eyes. As you bring the weight in to the middle hold for 2 seconds and squeeze for all your worth! On the way back through the negative use a 3 second count. This positioning will help force the upper region of your pecs to work more, over time amounting to more mass.
Low Seat Machine Chest Press
Using the same principle as above lower the seat on the machine chest press so that the handles are shoulder height. This makes this exercise more like a guillotine press rather than a conventional chest press. By keeping your elbows high the idea is to make as much tension fall on to your upper pecs. Slow rep tempo, mental focus and lots of squeezing is needed to get the most out of this.
Incline Cable Fly & Press Variation
Set your incline bench up between the cable stack so you can press or fly from this position. Do one rep using a fly motion and then go into a press for the next rep. Alternate like this until you've done 12-15 reps per exercise. The impact this can have on your pecs is quite profound and the use of cables over dumbbells only adds to the tension.
When a muscle doesn't seem to respond there's often a reason for it. Yes we have to take genetics into account but if its particularly stubborn it's probably due to the fact that you're not recruiting the muscles as well as you should be. These 3 exercises are a fantastic way to introduce completely new levels of stimulus.