The incline reverse-grip dumbbell bench press is a very effective compound exercise which targets the chest muscles for maximum muscle and strength gains. Now, it’s an unconventional movement compared to the regular dumbbell press with an overhand grip but it’s beneficial for emphasizing the upper chest muscles due to the reverse hand position.

Beginners should start very light and then work up to heavier dumbbells as strength progresses and form is ideal. But, intermediate to advanced lifters can really see the benefits by hitting the upper chest with a new grip angle. So, this exercise is a must for experiencing a different stimulus in the chest which will likely leave you with more gains!

In This Exercise:

  • Target Muscle Group: Pectoralis Major
  • Type: Strength
  • Mechanics: Compound
  • Equipment: Incline bench, dumbbells
  • Difficulty: Intermediate

Exercise Instructions

  1. Adjust the bench to a 30-45-degree incline angle.
  2. Sit on the end of the bench and place both dumbbells on your thighs in the starting position.
  3. Then, kick both dumbbells back and hold them in a neutral position on each side of your head.
  4. Now, press the dumbbells up and turn your wrists inward (Reverse grip) while contracting your chest muscles. Exhale during this portion of the exercise.
  5. Then, slowly lower the dumbbells back down and turn your wrists slightly back outward until the dumbbells are in a neutral position. Inhale during this portion of the exercise.
  6. Repeat for the desired number of reps.

Variations & Tips:

  • You can do a reverse barbell press as an alternative to using dumbbells.
  • You may find it more comfortable to use a neutral grip in the starting position of the press and then twist the dumbbells to a reverse grip during the concentric (Positive) phase of the movement.
  • Beginners should start light and practice good form before training heavy.
  • The incline reverse-grip dumbbell bench press places additional emphasis on the upper chest muscles.

How to do the incline reverse-grip dumbbell bench press