How to Decline Bench Press

About the Decline Bench Press

Like a traditional flat bench press, the decline bench press targets the chest, shoulders and triceps, although due to the athlete being in a decline position - through a different plane of resistance. The decline bench press allows the sternal head of the pectorals, the muscle head which makes up the bulk of the middle and lower region of the chest, to be in a mechanically strong position.

Gym-goers with shoulder injuries and posture issues may find the decline bench press a more comfortable alternative to the flat and incline variations.

Whilst this profile discusses the use of a barbell to perform the decline press, dumbbells are also a great option if the athlete is not impeded by the uprights of the barbell rack.

How to perform


  1. Load the barbell with the correct weight and place on safety collars
  2. Lay on the decline bench, legs placed under the pads
  3. Grip the barbell with a slightly wider than shoulder width grip
  4. Dismount from rack


  1. Control the barbell down to your chest, ensuring the barbell is traveling perpendicular to the ground
  2. Press the weight back up so your arms are extended
  3. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions

Other Chest Exercises