Q: Are dips on a roman chair better than dips done on machines or with a plate on your stomach between two benches?
A: It’s really personal preference and I recommend doing at least two of those because you hit different areas of the chest and shoulder and triceps. Dips with a plate on your belly, with hands on one bench and heels on another, really works the triceps alone, whereas Roman chair (depending upon whether you face the wall or face out) will work shoulders – at least – if not upper chest (facing inward) much more. Dips on a machine are certainly safest in terms of avoiding injuries. Remember, you greatly compromise your shoulders doing dips both other ways so you must be careful. I recommend dips highly, however, I think you really need a lesson on proper form from someone who does them all the time and can provide tips. It’s the one exercise that I see done improperly all the time. Few people do it correctly to optimize results and minimize injury. In my book, I think Roman chair and machine dips are the best combination because the one between benches overarches the rotator cuff and it’s easy to fall between benches and tear super-spinaetus tendons in the rear delt.
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