You’ve probably done this exercise before, whether you realized it or not. The dumbbell floor press looks exactly like it sounds, with the athlete lying on the floor rather than on a bench, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Because of its limited range of motion, it may appear to be an easier form of the press, but it actually shifts the brunt of the effort rather than making a lift easier.

Is it a chest workout? Yes, it is. Take time to compare it with the bench press and you will likely see the fact that it is best used as a tricep isolation exercise.

Dumbbell floor press is also adaptable. Your overall workout should focus on the big picture and how each exercise complements the others. Combining the dumbbell floor press with a bench or fly exercise straight will result in a challenging session that will cause your chest to contract and your triceps to bear the brunt of the strain before you hit the bench.


Form for a dumbbell floor press

Lie down on the floor with two dumbbells on each side of your body. Maintain a bend in your knees and raise the weights by extending your arms until your elbows are locked out.

Reduce the weights until your upper arms are just touching the floor. Pause for a count of two as your elbows touch the floor, then push the weights up by extending your elbows. When lowering the dumbbells, make sure your upper arms are not resting on the ground.

Tuck your elbows into your sides to tailor the floor press to a more intense tricep workout. In order to strengthen your chest, keep your arms in an angular position to the sides.

Muscles worked by the dumbbell floor press

Because it is a pushing motion, the floor press works the same muscles as the bench press. The difference is in the emphasis. The triceps are the primary muscles worked here, with the chest coming in a close second. Your shoulders also play a role, but the emphasis here is on your triceps.

Dumbbell floor press advantages

i. Muscle development

You will notice a significant increase in triceps and pec hypertrophy. This is best accomplished with a higher rep range of 10 – 15 of a heavier weight.

ii. Increasing stamina

Because of the shorter range, the floor press is an excellent way to build upper body strength by allowing you to work with heavier loads, which will come ‘easier’ as a result of the weight not being moved as far. This is how it can help with full-body exercises. By isolating the muscles used in this partial range, you will notice that your strength will increase over this range in the long run, and this will help you when you are at that point in your bench press.

iii. Enhances your lockout

A weak lockout due to elbow tension can be one of the causes of a missed lift in competitive lifting and powerlifting. Floor presses are are the most suitable training for lockouts with heavy weights, because it can help you compete in snatch and jerks.

iv. Excellent for sore shoulders.

The floor press is gentler on the shoulders than the bench press. Good news for anyone recovering from a shoulder injury and looking for a low-stress exercise that works the triceps and chest. It also removes your back from the equation, implying that your force will come from your arms and chest rather than your back.




The dumbbell floor press is an upper body pressing exercise that helps to strengthen the chest, shoulders, and arms while being gentle on the shoulders. Using the floor reduces the amount of strain on the shoulder joint.


i. Take an overhand grip on the dumbbells and lie flat on your back.

ii. Bend your knees and place your feet firmly on the floor.

iii. Extend your elbows to 90 degrees, triceps resting on the floor, and hold dumbbells above your chest.

iv. Exhale and brace your core while extending dumbbells toward the ceiling. Pause, then go back to the staring position.

Trainer Suggestions

To power the press, drive the shoulder blades into the ground.

To avoid the stretch reflex, pause at the bottom of the lift.



The floor press is more than just a simplified version of the bench press for when there isn’t a bench available. It’s an exercise with several key differences that should be considered over its more famous counterpart, especially if you have a shoulder injury.

Because the range of motion in the exercise ends at the floor, the floor press puts less strain on your shoulders than the bench press. Because you are lying on the floor, you do not get the same assistance from your legs as you do with the bench press, making it more difficult on your upper body.

An added challenge comes from your arms touching the ground with each rep, which relieves muscle tension. This makes the start of each press more difficult because you have to get going again, whereas the muscles in the bench press remain loaded until you re-rack the bar.




i. Grab a pair of dumbbells and lie on your back on the floor, knees bent and feet flat.

ii. Begin with your arms straight and the weights over your chest. Now, slowly lower the weights. Do this until your upper arms rest on the floor. (This is to say that you are not allowed to slam your arms on the floor.)

iii. Pause, return to the starting position and repeat procedures.



The floor press is an excellent pressing variation for lifters of all levels looking to increase muscle mass, lockout strength, and bench press technique. It can even be a good variation for lifters who have sore shoulders. We’ll go over what the floor press is and how it should be done. Then we’ll go over the benefits of the lift and why you should incorporate it into your workout routine.

The Floor Press

The floor press is similar to the bench press, except that it is performed while lying on the floor rather than on a bench. If you don’t have a training partner, you can do these in the squat rack instead.

Aside from the obvious differences, there is less range of motion (ROM) and less assistance from the lower body. Because of the reduced range of motion, the movement focuses more on the triceps and less on the chest.

It is up to you whether to do floor pressing with your feet on the floor or with your legs extended. Try both the floor press and the bench press and then choose the one that best suits you.

3 Different Types of Floor Presses

A barbell, kettlebell, dumbbell, or trap bar is used to perform the floor press.

There are 3 alternatives provided below that you can pick from.

Floor Press with a Barbell

Because it is simple to set up and allows for heavier lifts, this is most likely the most popular method of floor pressing. Because of the lack of lower body involvement, it has a high carryover to the standard bench press, which can help improve lockout strength.

Floor Press with a Trap Bar

The trap bar floor press is gentler on the shoulders because the floor prevents them from rotating too far outward. It is also easier on the wrists when combined with the neutral grip because of the clean alignment of the elbow to the wrist for the duration of the movement.

Because you won’t have to worry about stabilizing each weight individually, the trap bar can provide more manageable heavy loads than the dumbbell floor press. Of course, heavier weight is ideal for those looking to gain mass and strength.

Floor Press with Dumbbells

Using dumbbells allows you to change the angle of your shoulder and wrist. This is useful if you have shoulder issues when pressing the barbell, or if you find a certain angle more comfortable. The barbell locks your wrists and shoulders into a single position for the duration of the ROM, which is not comfortable for all lifters.

Dumbbells can help to balance out strength imbalances on both sides. Because dumbbells are more difficult to stabilize than barbells, they may slow down the lift, allowing for more time under tension.

Here are four advantages of the floor press, regardless of the variation. Don’t let a lack of bench prevent you from increasing upper body strength and mass.

Chest and Triceps Exerciser

When the floor press is performed for 3-5 sets and 6-15 reps,it helps to add mass to the chest, shoulders, and triceps without putting too much strain on the shoulders as a result of the range of motion.

Upper Body Power

The floor press helps to target specific parts of the lift. You can handle heavy loads in the top half of the floor press, as it helps to strengthen your triceps, chest, and anterior shoulders.

Lockout Power

When it comes to bench and overhead pressing, Olympic lifts, and even strongman events, lockout strength is frequently a weakness. It frequently leads to missed lifts and unstable lockout positions. The floor press is one of the most recommended exercise for addressing this weakness. This is so because it allows you to handle heavier loads without putting undue strain on the other parts of your body.

Excellent Exercise for Beginners or Those Recovering From An Injury

Because the floor reduces shoulder external rotation, this variation is ideal for those who have injured their shoulders. When performing a standard bench press, the shoulders are sometimes vulnerable in abduction and external rotation.


The dumbbell floor press is a type of press that helps to strengthen the triceps and chest muscles.

The dumbbell floor press primarily targets the triceps muscles. Because of the limited range of motion, the chest is effectively removed from the equation of the press.

When using the floor press, the chest can still be indirectly targeted. Simply squeezing the pecs at the top of the movement will suffice.

Floor presses, in general, are especially beneficial for those looking to strengthen their triceps in order to lock out more compound press variations. They can also help bodybuilders who want to bulk up their triceps.

Instructions for the Dumbbell Floor Press

i. Begin by sitting upright on the floor and putting your legs straight and the dumbbells vertically balanced on the floor.

ii. Pick up each dumbbell and place it high in your hip crease with a tight grip.

iii. Slowly lie back, keeping the dumbbells close to your chest, and bend your knees to about 45 degrees, slightly raising your feet.

iv. By contracting your triceps and chest, bring the weights to full extension.

v. Lower the weight gradually until both elbows touch the floor, then press both dumbbells back to the starting position.

vi. Repeat until the desired number of repetitions has been reached.

To finish the exercise, simply lower the weights to the ground. It should be very smooth and it must not require too much effort or anything that can put the shoulder at risk.

Dumbbell Floor Press Techniques

By not completely locking out the elbows, you can keep more tension in the pecs.

Keep the weights slightly tilted at a 45-degree angle to keep the elbows in a neutral position.

Let the dumbbells collide at the top of each rep

Note that you are not to bounce them together as this may cause you to lose stability in your shoulder and this might cause injury.

Squeeze the dumbbells as tightly as possible to promote greater shoulder stability.

At the bottom of the rep, don’t bounce the elbows off the floor. As a result of the compressive forces generated between the weight and the floor, this may result in injury.

Maintain some tension in your abs and avoid arching your lower back excessively.


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