Form Friday: Dumbbell Squeeze Press

chest press.jpg

by Devin Sarno, NSCA-CPT

Exercise: Dumbbell Squeeze Press

Muscle Groups:  Pectoralis Major, Pectoralis Minor, Triceps, Anterior Deltoids

Importance:  This Chest Press variation actively loads the chest with tension throughout the entire range of motion by utilizing an active squeeze of the dumbbells to keep those inner chest muscles constantly firing while also being easier on the shoulders.

Proper Form:

  1. Begin by lying on a flat bench with a pair of dumbbells (preferably hex dumbbells)

  2. With your back flat on the bench, press both dumbbells together right near your sternum (just below the chest line) with a neutral grip (palms facing one another)

  3. Keeping your shoulders relaxed and elbows in, begin to press the dumbbells straight up in the air by extending at the elbows while continuing to squeeze the dumbbells together

  4. Once you reach a point where your elbows are extended, take a brief pause at the top

  5. Slowly begin to re-bend your elbows and lower the dumbbells in a controlled manner

Progression/Regression: Dumbbell Bench Press, Dumbbell Single arm bench press


  • Keep your hips and low back pressed into the bench

  • Keep the dumbbells actively squeezed together throughout the entire movement

  • Keep your elbows in

Sample Workout, repeat the circuit decreasing reps each time:

  • Reps: 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

-DB Squeeze Press