Forget push-ups – build a bigger chest with this fast dumbbell floor workout

Four moves and 20 minutes is all you need

Man doing dumbbell chest press on the floor
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Push-ups are a great strength exercise for developing bigger pecs and arms. But despite using just your bodyweight, they’re not the easiest to master as they require a great amount of strength in your arms and core. If you’re struggling to perfect them, don’t worry, this four-move workout offers some alternative, and arguably easier, exercises. Just go grab a pair of dumbbells and an exercise mat. 

You may not realise it, but your chest muscles are one of the largest in your upper body and you actually use them for a lot of everyday movements, including lifting, pushing and squeezing. According to Northside Hospital, strong chest muscles can enhance your posture, improve breathing, as well as lift and support the breast, therefore it’s important women do these, as well as men.

This workout is completed entirely on the floor, so make sure you have something comfortable beneath you, at the very least a towel. You'll pick four out of the five exercises and you’re going to complete each one for 10 to 12 reps (on each side if it’s an alternating exercise). You'll be doing four rounds of the workout in total. Opt for a medium-weight set of dumbbells and nothing that’s too heavy, as you’ve got quite a few reps to get through! Here’s your workout: 

  • Palms-in dumbbell chest press
  • Dead stop chest press
  • Dumbbell chest flys
  • Close grip dumbbell chest press
  • Alternating dumbbell chest press

We hope you enjoyed that and preferred it to doing loads of push-ups. If you're looking for another chest workout, we've got two bodyweight workouts that will grow your pecs and will take just 10 minutes. However, don't forget to also work your back (try this dumbbell back workout) to assist with your balance and posture.

Also, if you don't own a pair of dumbbells, why not invest in one of these best adjustable dumbbell instead? You'll have to do the exercises separately on each side, but they take up less room than lots of sets of dumbbells and many offer a great weight range, from 2kg to 25kg, which can save you money in the long run.

Bryony Firth-Bernard
Staff Writer, Active

Bryony’s T3’s official ‘gym-bunny’ and Active Staff Writer, covering all things fitness. In her spare time, you will find her in her natural habitat - the gym - where her style of training is a hybrid of bodybuilding and powerlifting. Bryony loves writing about accessible workouts, nutrition and testing innovative fitness products that help you reach your fitness goals and take your training to the next level.