Tip: Alternating Dumbbell Press, From Bottom

Tension builds muscle and this variation provides a lot of tension on the pecs. Be sure the dumbbell held at the bottom doesn't rest against the body.

Keeping the non-pressing arm at the bottom keeps a lot of tension on the pecs, while holding and starting each rep from the bottom makes each press a paused rep. (The eccentric loading phase is removed.)

Beginning each rep with a concentric contraction means less weight will be used compared to a bilateral dumbbell press.

The pressing arm will track toward the midline of the body, which also offsets the positioning of the load in respect to the body’s midline. This means you'll have to resist a little bit of rotation.

How To Do It

  1. Press one dumbbell up as the opposite arm supports the other dumbbell in the bottom position.
  2. To maintain muscular tension, make sure the dumbbell held by the bottom arm doesn't rest against the body.
  3. Alternate between arms until all reps are completed.

This exercise can be performed at any pressing angle, from decline to overhead.

Drew Murphy is a gym owner and personal trainer located in Tiffin, Iowa. Out of his facility, he trains clients using a wide range of strength and conditioning methods.  Follow Drew Murphy on Instagram