EstimatedEst. Read Time: 4 minutes
Big Chest Workout Mistakes (SKINNY GUYS!)

When it comes to building a big chest, there are a few mistakes and disadvantages that are common occurrence for skinny guys in their chest workouts. In this video, I am bringing in our resident hardgainer, Jesse, to show you what those disadvantages and mistakes are, as well as how to address them. These chest workout mistakes are not limited to skinny guys only and I think anyone will be able to take something away from this video.


To start, we need to take a look at the anatomy of a skinny guy and how that relates to the mistakes that skinny guys make when trying to build a big chest. Skinny guys are often cursed with long lanky arms, which is a disadvantage when it comes to bench pressing, in comparison to shorter, stockier guys as the weight has further to travel. Skinny guys also have a naturally shallow chest, which means that when they bench press, the range of motion is increased yet again. With these anatomical features, there are compensations that come along for the ride that prevent skinny guys from building big chests.


When it comes to skinny guys building a big chest, we have to realize that there is no changing the anatomy of their bodies. However, with a few tweaks, they can make a world of difference in their chest workout. This particular issue presents itself with the long, lanky arms. While they cannot be physically shortened, they can be relatively shortened so that the weight does not have to travel as far.


One mistake a skinny guy makes in their chest workout is that they do not create enough of an arch when they bench press. By creating an arch, which is safe in the performance of a bench press, the shoulders are placed down and back, opening the chest and making it broader. This arched position is actually safe for the shoulders as it begins to mirror the mechanics of a decline bench press (a very safe position of the shoulders when it comes to benching).  This arch also allows for a shorter travel of the weight through the range of motion in the bench press which means more weight can be used.


Another mistake that is common amongst skinny guys trying to build a big chest is allowing the compensations, due to their anatomy, to take hold of the bench press. Because of the long arms and shallow chest leading to further travel of the weight, to get the weight all the way to the top, they find themselves leading with their shoulders. I’ve said time and again, to build a big chest, you need to lead the exercise with your pecs, not your delts. It is also common to shortchange the reps as well. To address this problem, skinny guys should incorporate alternating dumbbell bench pressing with an isometric hold at the bottom of the rep (as opposed to the top) as it will increase the time under tension for the pecs. I also recommend using a heavier weight as accelerating the dumbbells to easily can again lead to the shoulder taking over the exercise instead of the pecs, which would diminish the opportunity to grow a bigger chest.


Next time you are doing a chest workout, keep these mistakes and tips in mind, even if you aren’t a skinny guy. To build a big chest, it’s important to not only know what exercises to do, but HOW and WHY they are performed. If you want to get a bigger chest and build ripped, athletic muscle, make sure you clock the link below and use the program selector to help you find the program that matches your current training goals. By putting the how and why back into your training, I’ll help you achieve your best results ever over the next 90 days.


For more videos on how to build a bigger chest as well as other tips for skinny guys, check out the ATHLEAN-X channel here on YouTube by clicking on the link below. Remember to click subscribe and turn on your notifications so that you never miss a new video when it’s released.


Build More Muscle in 90 Days —

Subscribe to This Channel Here —

Watch the YouTube version of this article
Jeff Cavaliere Headshot

Jeff Cavaliere M.S.P.T, CSCS

Jeff Cavaliere is a Physical Therapist, Strength Coach and creator of the ATHLEAN-X Training Programs and ATHLEAN-Rx Supplements. He has a Masters in Physical Therapy (MSPT) and has worked as Head Physical Therapist for the New York Mets, as well as training many elite professional athletes in Major League Baseball, NFL, MMA and professional wrestling. His programs produce “next level” achievements in muscle size, strength and performance for professional athletes and anyone looking to build a muscular athletic physique.

Read more about Jeff Cavaliere by clicking here

Popular & Trending
stop doing face pulls like this facepull mistake
How To Do Face Pulls
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
September 9th, 2019
Face pulls are one of the best corrective exercises to help offset poor posture and shoulder dysfunction.  They help strengthen the chronically weak...
Body Fat Percentage Men
Body Fat Percentage Men
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
July 11th, 2023
There are many ways to measure body fat percentage; some wildly expensive and most inaccurate. It's time to give you an alternative method that...
2 reasons your biceps aren't growing and 3 ways to fix it
Why Your Biceps Aren’t Growing
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
August 22nd, 2019
Have you ever felt that no matter how much you trained your biceps you’re left saying… “My Biceps STILL Aren’t Growing?” I believe I know...
The Perfect Abs Workout
The Perfect Abs Workout
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
July 31st, 2019
We’ll be following my ‘Six Pack Progression’ sequence as we choose each of the beginner and advanced ab exercises for each abdominal movement...
incline bench press avoid mistakes for upper chest
How To Incline Bench Press Correctly
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
January 16th, 2024
The Incline Bench Press is one of the best upper chest exercises there is, but there's one major problem preventing us from getting the maximum...
best dumbbell exercises for chest
The Best Dumbbell Exercises for Chest
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
November 6th, 2023
Today I’m going to share my favorite chest exercises… but there’s a catch. We can only use dumbbells! I’ll show you what to do whether you...
long head triceps exercises
Long Head Tricep Exercises
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
December 19th, 2023
The triceps make up two-thirds of the size of your arm so the bigger your triceps, the bigger your arm muscles. But not all muscle heads of the...
cable chest workout
Cable Chest Workout
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
November 2nd, 2023
Today, we're diving deep into the most underrated piece of equipment in your workout arsenal for chest workouts – the cable machine. The constant...
Cable Back Workouts
Cable Back Workouts
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
December 12th, 2023
If you want a versatile back workout that hits every angle, challenges muscle recruitment patterns, and provides consistent tension, then you can’t...
cable shoulder exerciees
Cable Shoulder Exercises
By Jeff Cavaliere MSPT, CSCS
November 30th, 2023
Unlike barbell or dumbbell shoulder workouts, cables offer consistent tension throughout the exercise, a key factor that can lead to better...