Machine Incline Chest Press

The machine incline chest press is a strength training exercise that primarily targets the pectoralis major (upper chest), anterior deltoids, and triceps.

The machine’s incline angle allows you to target the upper chest muscles differently than a flat or decline machine chest press.

It offers many unique advantages, like lowers the chance of injury compared to those using free weights. Additionally, the machine provides a controlled range of motion and allows for better isolation of the chest muscles.

It also offers flexibility through adjustments to the seat position, grip width, and weight selection.

Incline Machine Chest Press Muscles Worked

  • The incline machine chest press primarily targets the chest muscles (pectoralis major and minor), mainly the upper chest.
  • The secondary muscles that work during this are the tricep brachii and anterior deltoid.
  • Several stabilizing muscles, such as the serratus anterior, rotator cuff, core, and trapezius, also work during it.
Incline Machine Chest Press Muscles Worked

How To Do Incline Machine Chest Press

  • Adjust the machine so your back rests comfortably against the pad and your feet are flat on the floor.
  • The handles should be aligned right at or below shoulder level when sitting down.
  • Press the handles away from you while flexing your pectorals. Avoid locking out your elbows at the top.
  • Don’t forget to squeeze your chest hard at the peak of the contraction.
  • Slowly reverse the motion — for full development, contracting the working muscles on the ascent and controlling the descent is an absolute necessity — and go right into the next rep.

So, when you do the machine incline chest press, these three things happen together during the pushing motion (concentric phase) to effectively train the pec muscles:

  1. Your shoulder bends forward (horizontal flexion) to bring your arm closer.
  2. Your shoulder blade slides upward and forward (scapular protraction) for stability.
  3. Your elbow straightens (extension) to push the weight.
Machine Incline Chest Press

Form and Tips

  • Keep your back against the backrest and avoid arching your lower back.
  • Maintain a slight bend in your elbows; don’t lock them out at full extension. Don’t flare them out to the sides, as this can strain your shoulders.
  • Keep your shoulders pinched together to ensure they remain in a safe position.
  • Exhale during the pushing (concentric) phase and inhale during the return (eccentric) phase. Avoid holding your breath.
  • Do 8–12 repetitions per set to build muscle mass and 4–6 reps per set to build strength.
  • Complete 2–4 sets with a 60-90 seconds rest between sets.
  • Try different grip widths to determine the most comfortable and effective position for your body structure.


Leave a Comment