Build Upper Body Strength: 6 Essential Exercises


Upper body strength helps with posture, functional movements, injury prevention and athletic performance. Sculpt your upper body and build your strength by including these 6 exercises in your strength or personal training program:

  1. Push-Ups

Push-ups are one of the most versatile and effective upper-body strength exercises. They engage multiple muscle groups simultaneously, including the chest, shoulders, triceps, and core. Performing push-ups regularly builds upper body strength and endurance, while also improving core stability. Try variations, such as incline or decline push-ups, to target different muscle groups and add variety to your workout!

  1. Bench Press

The bench press is a classic strength training exercise that primarily targets the chest, shoulders, and triceps. It involves pressing a weighted barbell or dumbbells away from the chest while lying on a flat bench. Bench pressing not only builds muscle mass and strength in the upper body but also improves pushing strength and power. Target specific areas of your chest or shoulders through variations such as incline or decline bench presses!

  1. Pull-Up

Pull-ups are an excellent compound exercise that targets the back, shoulders, and arms muscles. They involve pulling your body weight up towards an overhead bar with an overhand grip. Pull-ups not only strengthen the back muscles but also improve grip strength and overall upper-body endurance. Start with assisted pull-ups or negative pull-ups today with our free week gym trial and gradually progress to full pull-ups.

  1. Shoulder Press

The shoulder press, also known as the overhead press, is a compound exercise that primarily targets the deltoid muscles of the shoulders, along with the triceps and upper chest. It involves pressing a weighted barbell or dumbbell overhead from shoulder height until the arms are fully extended. Shoulder presses help develop strong and stable shoulders, which is essential for various upper body movements and activities. Variations such as seated shoulder press or Arnold press can be incorporated to target different parts of the shoulder muscles.

  1. Bent-Over Rows

Bent-over rows are an effective exercise for strengthening the upper back muscles, including the latissimus dorsi, rhomboids, and trapezius. They also engage the biceps and forearms as secondary muscles. Bent-over rows involve pulling a weighted barbell or dumbbell toward the lower chest while keeping the back straight and the core engaged. Enhance your body shape in the gym with this exercise, as it helps improve posture, upper body stability, and overall pulling strength.

  1. Dips

Dips are a compound upper body exercise that targets the triceps, chest, and shoulders. They involve lowering your body by bending your arms until your elbows are at a 90-degree angle and then pushing back up to the starting position. Dips can be performed using parallel bars, dip stations, or even a sturdy chair or bench. Try this exercise at our 24-hour gym in Melbourne, which helps build strength and muscle mass in the triceps while also engaging the chest and shoulders as stabilising muscles.

Claim your free week trial today at MBS Gym in Prahran to give these a go! Learn with other fitness enthusiasts in our gym classes or book a 1-1 personal training session with one of our dedicated fitness coaches to get started.

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