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  • Hammer Strength/Unilateral Chest Press Machines

    So yesterday I decided to go to the gym and get a chest pump. I went to the decline hammer press as the gym was pretty busy and it was the only machine open. I added bands to it to get a better contraction throughout the entire ROM. However, while I was warming up, I just had the hardest time feeling my chest contract effectively. I ALWAYS have a problem with this damn decline hammer press. I can never get the seat or hand placement to my liking.

    Anyway, I must have been warming up for 10 minutes when this IFBB Pro, Debi Laszewski, came over and suggested I alternated while doing a decline hammer press. I am not sure why I have never thought of this as I usually do alternating hammer strength back machines but when its chest, well its just something I have always done bilaterally.

    I am looking for feedback for those that have done alternating hammer or machine chest press (Unilateral so weight is not fixed to both sides) please post below about your experience and any tips! My chest seems to be a stubborn SOB! Thanks
    Petros
    TEAM SKIP Approved Trainer
    Last edited by Petros; 12-04-2015, 10:56 PM.

  • #2
    My gym has the Cybex stuff, I just cant do it effectively either. My decline is so tricep dominated that i hardly do it. I can get the chest going with a dumb grip and some tricep pre exhaust but then I dont know when my chest is going to check out and I usually have to much weight on there.
    I get great chest reaction when doing weighted dips after a tricep blast. I prefer this.

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    • #3
      Hm I may have to play with dips again.

      Where from florida are you from?

      Originally posted by Colokrom View Post
      My gym has the Cybex stuff, I just cant do it effectively either. My decline is so tricep dominated that i hardly do it. I can get the chest going with a dumb grip and some tricep pre exhaust but then I dont know when my chest is going to check out and I usually have to much weight on there.
      I get great chest reaction when doing weighted dips after a tricep blast. I prefer this.

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      • #4
        Is it the decline wide hammer? I find adding a plate first, then red micro bands or orange mini bands from elitefts, then whatever weight aftwr, i can get a huggggeee contraction at the top. Ill take a pic of it tomorrow. I almost arch like a bench press to do it.

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        • #5
          I'm the same way on decline, I can feel it hitting the lower chest but I feel my tri's are doing most of the work. Not that there is anything wrong with that. I actually started doing flat bench on the smith occasionally at the end of my workout. But I only do 1/2 - 3/4 ROM to keep the tension on my chest, always get a nice pump after that. Nothing real heavy, a couple plates on each side for 3 sets of 10-15. I like it, but also my arms are long as fuck LoL

          I'm gonna try the unilateral on the hammer next week, sounds interesting!
          Back in the Game

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Hercules View Post
            Hm I may have to play with dips again.

            Where from florida are you from?
            Just watch the depth on weighted dips, can stress the shoulder a bit.

            Im originally from Nebraska, but I currently live the Fort Myers area.

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            • #7
              Uni seems like it would create a stability issue. It's great on hammer rows due to being able to brace yourself, however, pressing seems like an issue

              Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G870A using Tapatalk

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              • #8
                I really dislike the decline hammer strength machine. I very rarely will even mess with it.

                A big flex at the top of movements when getting warmed up helps me feel my chest and pump a bit better on most chest exercises.
                Owner of 316FIT and Team Skip Approved Trainer


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                • #9
                  Decline HS is not necessarily my favorite, but I have used it in the past (and it's been a while now). In any case, one thing that I have done, and I swear I learned it here at IM (Dante or Scott), is to put the seat all the way down placing one of those pads (kneeling type pads you would use to do abs--http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/...ingCrunch.html) between the seat and the back rest...with your hands as wide as they go, hitting a set for 20-30, slow/controlled/brutal reps.

                  Always seemed to get a good stretch there.

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                  • #10
                    I used bands in the decline hammer a week or two ago. Wasn't bad and I felt it more than normal.

                    I also dislike the decline hammer. I think it's a poor machine. I think it's only effective at the top of the range of motion where the pecs go into their shortest position. So I usually squeeze the living hell out of that short muscle.

                    As far as alternating, I've never done it with the decline. I move around too much in the bench. With the flat or incline I will sit off centered on the back pad and allow for full scapula motion when pressing with one arm.

                    Also on the flat or incline I will lay sideways and press with one arm, bringing my elbow across the midline of my body. This actually makes a decent widowmaker.

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                    • #11
                      I think it's one of those machines that works differently for some people. For me the hammer decline works well, even better with bands, but I hate the living hell out of the regular flat one, dont feel shit.

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                      • #12
                        Very good feedback here and I agree with most.
                        It seems to be a weird machine and I don't like it as well, and rarely mess with it. However it is the only one at the golds gym I go to.

                        Slide- I think did something similar when training with skip minus the mat. He had suggested dropping the seat all the way down. Thanks for the reminder.

                        So set aside the decline hammer strength, has anyone used alternating presses on hammer strength? Any feed back on that?

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                        • #13
                          Click image for larger version

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                          This is the one im talking about. I just add weight after the band. This is the only way i can get a chest contraction on this, otherwise it just feels like im pushing with my tri's and shoulders at a heavier weight

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                          • #14
                            So that's how you do it when the hammer strength doesn't have the damn thing where you put weight on the side. Thank!

                            Thanks for this gonna try this for incline. I'll give the decline with seat all the way down a go tomorrow, but knowing me, I probably won't like it and will move to another exercise.

                            Originally posted by teelily88 View Post
                            [ATTACH]50801[/ATTACH]
                            This is the one im talking about. I just add weight after the band. This is the only way i can get a chest contraction on this, otherwise it just feels like im pushing with my tri's and shoulders at a heavier weight

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