The dumbbell floor press is an extremely valuable, underused chest press variation that can help you get strong and healthy shoulders, chest muscles, and triceps!
If you’re looking for an effective chest press exercise that won’t aggravate your shoulders, the dumbbell floor press may be the perfect solution.
As someone who has dealt with shoulder issues for nearly a decade, I understand the importance of finding safe and effective shoulder exercises.
That’s why I’m excited to share with you the benefits of the dumbbell floor press!
Not only does the DB floor press work your chest muscles, but it also strengthens your shoulders and triceps, all while reducing the stress on your shoulders.
In this article, I’ll share the benefits of the dumbbell floor press, how to perform it correctly, and some variations to keep your workout routine fresh.
So, let’s get started and discover how the DB floor press exercise can help you maximize your strength and muscle gains!
What Muscles Does the Dumbbell Floor Press Work?
The dumbbell floor press is an excellent exercise for targeting multiple upper-body muscles, including the chest, triceps, and shoulders.
Here’s a breakdown of the specific muscles worked during the dumbbell floor press:
- Chest Muscles: The dumbbell floor press is primarily a chest exercise, targeting the pectoralis major and minor muscles. By pressing the dumbbells away from your chest horizontally, you engage these muscles and build chest strength and mass.
- Triceps: In addition to the chest muscles, the triceps are also heavily involved in the dumbbell floor press. As you press the dumbbells away from your body, your triceps contract and work to extend your elbows.
- Shoulders: Lastly, the shoulders are also activated during the dumbbell floor press. As you perform the exercise, your shoulders stabilize the weight and maintain proper form. This can help to improve shoulder stability and overall upper body strength.
How to Do the Dumbbell Floor Press
Performing the dumbbell floor press correctly is crucial for maximizing the benefits of this exercise and avoiding injuries.
The dumbbell floor press is performed by lying on the floor and performing a basic dumbbell chest press.
By lying on the floor, you reduce the range of motion and will not bring your elbows past a parallel position to your chest.
Here is a step-by-step guide for how to do the DB floor press:
- Lie on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand, with your palms facing each other.
- Bring the dumbbells to your chest so they’re resting on your ribcage.
- Press the dumbbells up toward the ceiling until your arms are fully extended.
- Lower the dumbbells back down to your chest and repeat.
More advanced versions of the dumbbell floor press involve changing the positioning of your legs and feet to require more core strength and control.
For example, you can do a dumbbell floor press while also doing a glute bridge.
Combining the DB floor press and the glute bridge allows you to train two body parts simultaneously for a more efficient workout.
Another way to challenge yourself is by doing a DB press on the floor with your legs positioned straight and hovering off the ground.
This floor press variation will challenge your core to a larger extent during the movement.
Here is a video of that variation:
There are certainly more DB floor press variations as well, but these are the floor chest press options I use.
However, it’s essential to start with the traditional dumbbell floor press and progress slowly over time to avoid injury.
By performing this exercise correctly, you’ll be able to build strength in your chest, shoulders, and triceps without putting unnecessary stress on your shoulders.
Dumbbell Floor Press Benefits
The dumbbell floor press truly is a great exercise.
It is also an underappreciated exercise because the DB floor chest press has more benefits than many people realize.
Here are a few of the main dumbbell floor press benefits:
Safe & Effective
Finding a safe and effective upper body pressing exercise can be challenging for individuals with a history of shoulder issues.
However, the dumbbell floor press is the ideal solution.
As someone who has dealt with shoulder problems, I can attest to the safety and benefits of this exercise.
One of the main reasons the dumbbell floor press is a safe exercise for people with shoulder issues is that it limits the range of motion.
With your elbows unable to go past a parallel position and your shoulders not going through a large range of motion, you can perform the exercise without placing excessive stress on your shoulders.
Another advantage of the dumbbell floor press is that it allows you to use a neutral grip, which mimics the natural motion of your shoulders.
This can be a significant improvement over other upper-body pressing exercises, such as the barbell bench press or the barbell floor press.
In addition, the dumbbell floor press can help improve shoulder health by decompressing the shoulder joint.
This can reduce strain and tension on the shoulder muscles and help to strengthen the joint over time.
The dumbbell floor press is a safe and effective exercise for individuals who want to build upper body strength without sacrificing shoulder health.
By incorporating this exercise into your workout routine, you can experience the benefits of a challenging upper-body workout while keeping your shoulders healthy and pain-free.
Develop Aesthetic Chest Muscles
The dumbbell floor press is excellent for developing a strong and aesthetic chest.
By targeting the pectoral muscles, the exercise can help to build mass and definition in the chest area, leading to a more aesthetically pleasing appearance.
Whether you want to achieve a more toned chest or build a more muscular upper body, incorporating the dumbbell floor press into your workout routine can help you achieve your aesthetic goals.
One of the Best Tricep Exercises
The dumbbell floor press is a highly effective exercise for building strength and muscle in multiple upper body muscles, including the triceps.
In fact, it is widely considered to be one of the best tricep exercises available.
One of the primary reasons for this is that the exercise allows for a decreased range of motion, which places greater emphasis on the triceps muscles.
Additionally, the positioning of the exercise helps to isolate the triceps and reduce the involvement of other muscle groups.
While isolation exercises such as pushdowns can be effective for building tricep strength, incorporating the dumbbell floor press into your workout routine can provide even greater benefits.
This exercise allows you to train multiple muscle groups simultaneously while targeting the triceps.
As a result, you can achieve stronger, bigger triceps in less time.
Improve Your Bench Press Strength
Although the dumbbell floor press is an excellent exercise for people with shoulder issues, it is not limited to that group of individuals.
The dumbbell floor press is considered one of the best assistance exercises for helping you bench press more weight.
In fact, incorporating the dumbbell floor press into your workout routine can help you improve your bench press program regardless of your fitness level.
By doing the floor press, you can improve your bench press form and technique, leading to increased strength and power.
One of the benefits of the floor press is that it eliminates the ability to cheat the movement or use momentum, forcing your chest, triceps, and shoulders to work harder.
This increased workload can lead to quick improvements in your bench press strength and performance.
Incorporating the dumbbell floor press into your workout routine allows you to challenge your muscles in new ways and develop the strength and control necessary to increase your bench press weight.
When you return to traditional bench pressing, you’ll likely find that your old weights feel easier, allowing you to continue progressing in your fitness journey.
Reduced Back Strain
The dumbbell floor press is an excellent exercise for reducing back strain, particularly when compared to heavy barbell bench pressing.
When attempting to lift a maximal weight, it’s common for individuals to use their entire body to complete the movement, leading to potential injury and minimal gains.
Fortunately, the dumbbell floor press requires your back to remain in contact with the floor throughout the exercise, eliminating the risk of lumbar hyperextension and reducing the risk of injury.
Additionally, the exercise doesn’t allow you to cheat or use momentum to complete the movement, ensuring you use the proper form and engage the correct muscle groups.
Compared to other pressing exercises, such as the barbell bench press, the dumbbell floor press is a much safer option for individuals who want to reduce back strain and prevent injury.
Incorporating this exercise into your workout routine allows you to gain upper body strength without putting your back at risk.
DB Floor Press Variations
Several variations of the dumbbell floor press can be incorporated into your workout routine.
Each variation of the dumbbell floor press provides unique benefits.
By incorporating these variations into your workout routine, you can target different muscle groups and achieve greater strength and stability.
Here’s an explanation of how to perform different variations and the benefits of each.
Single-Arm Dumbbell Floor Press
This variation involves performing the dumbbell floor press one arm at a time.
To perform this exercise, lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
Hold a dumbbell in one hand and extend your arm straight toward the ceiling.
Lower the weight down to your chest and press it back up, then switch to the other arm.
The single-arm dumbbell floor press is great for improving unilateral upper body strength and stability, as well as targeting each arm separately.
Glute Bridge Dumbbell Floor Press
This variation involves performing the dumbbell floor press while also doing a glute bridge.
To perform this exercise, lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
Raise your hips into a glute bridge position and hold the dumbbells at your chest.
Press the dumbbells up toward the ceiling, then lower them back down while keeping your hips in a glute bridge position.
Continue for the desired number of reps.
The glute bridge dumbbell floor press is great for targeting the glutes and hamstrings while building upper body strength.
Straight Leg Dumbbell Floor Press
This variation involves performing the dumbbell floor press with your legs straight and hovering off the ground.
To perform this exercise, lie on your back with your legs straight and hovering off the ground.
Hold a dumbbell in each hand and press them up toward the ceiling, then lower them back down to your chest.
The straight leg dumbbell floor press is great for targeting the core muscles, as well as the upper body muscles.
Concluding Thoughts – Is the DB Floor Press Effective?
The dumbbell floor press is my favorite upper body pressing exercise because it is safe, makes you stronger, and makes your joints healthier.
The dumbbell floor press is an excellent exercise with numerous benefits, from building upper body strength and mass to improving shoulder and triceps health.
Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced weightlifter, incorporating the dumbbell floor press into your workout routine can help you achieve your fitness goals.
Not only is the dumbbell floor press a safe exercise that reduces stress on the shoulders and limits the range of motion, but it is also an effective way to build aesthetic chest muscles and strong triceps.
By following the proper technique and incorporating variations into your routine, you can challenge yourself and continue to see progress over time.
If you want to improve your upper body strength and health, the dumbbell floor press is an excellent exercise to add to your fitness routine.
Give it a try and see the benefits for yourself!
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