Famous horror novelist Stephen King said, “The scariest moment is always just before you start.” And I know very well how that “scary moment” feels like. And I’m sure you will feel it too when you enter the gym for the first time and not knowing what gym equipment is for what.
I was in that same situation when I started going to the gym. I was alone and terrified about how not to make a fool of myself but more importantly, how I was going to step out of the gym in one piece, with my ego intact. Fortunately for you we have your back. This article will serve as your workout machines guide, covering the basic gym equipment that will help you get started in targeting your chest and triceps.
The Chest Press Machine
If you’re not comfortable doing barbells or dumbbell bench press, or if you want to lift heavier weights and you have no one to spot for you, the seated chest press machine is the go-to machine to enhance the strength for your chest, comfortable for your body while allowing you to lift heavier weight with more control. In this exercise, the movement comes from the shoulders and elbows, developing shoulder muscles and elbow strength as well.
- Start off sitting on a chest press machine, with your feet flat in front of you, holding the handles with a neutral hammer grip and keeping your back flat up against the padding.
- Once in position, slowly push out the handles using your arms but squeezing with your chest as the handles are extended out in front of you.
- Squeeze and hold for a count.
- Return back to the starting position.
- Repeat for as many reps and sets as desired.
Chest Fly Machine
A fly or flye is a strength training exercise in which the hand and arm move through an arc while the elbow is kept at a constant angle. Flies are used to work the muscles of the upper body, hence the chest fly machine focuses on the pec muscles (pectoralis major and minor). When you do a chest fly, you also use other muscles such as the deltoids to help stabilize the movement. It is a great move to shape and strengthen your chest area.
- Start off sitting on the fly machine with your back flat against the padding and forearms up against the pads.
- Slowly and concentrate of pushing the pads together and squeezing your chest muscles.
- Once you reach the middle position of the motion, hold for a count, squeezing your chest muscles, then return back to the starting position
- Make sure that you focus on using your chest for this exercise.
- Refrain from using your biceps or shoulders and focus on squeezing the inner part of your chest.
Triceps Extension Machine
The triceps is about two thirds of our arm size so it is as important to train them as much as we train our biceps. The triceps extension machine helps you to insure proper range of motion and targeting of the tricep muscle but also trains the shoulder, chest, lats, and forearms.
- Start off by adjusting the seat height of the machine so your upper arms and elbows lie flat on the pad.
- With your arms fully extended grasp the handles and pull them towards your body.
- Hold for a moment and then slowly return to the starting position.
- Repeat for as many reps and sets as desired
Lat Pull Down Machine
The pull down exercises is similar with pull up exercises but uses external weights instead of our body weight. This is good for beginners because the weights can be adjusted more or less than our body weight. The cable pull down machine is designed to train the lats specifically, but can also be used for targeting the triceps.
- Stand about a foot away from the bar.
- Stand up straight and push out chest for good posture.
- Hold the bar with your palms facing down and about shoulder-width apart.
- Then bend your elbows and have your arms tight against your sides.
- Breath out while pushing down on the bar until your arms are straight.
- Breath in as you return to the starting position.
The dip machine are good for training the triceps, chest and shoulders. This machine doesn’t require much attention to balance, it allows you to simply overload the target muscle with as much weight as possible. As you fatigue, the machine prevents form breaks – such as leaning forward – so you are certain that you are targeting the triceps during your entire session.
- To begin this exercise; start off sitting upon a dip machine and grabbing the handles. (Select the type of weight that you want to use)
- The most important aspect of this exercise is to keep your elbows close to the inside as you focus more upon the triceps.
- Push down upon the hands and squeeze tightly upon your triceps for a few seconds, then return back to the starting position.
- Repeat this exercise for as many repetitions as needed.