6 Best Unilateral Chest Exercises for Perfect Pecs

Having an uneven chest is common among lifters. Even I feel my left side is not as strong as the right one, and that’s why I constantly perform unilateral exercises for every muscle group, from chest, shoulder, and triceps to back, biceps, and legs.

Unilateral exercises allow you to train your chest using one arm at a time, focus more on the weaker side, and help even strength and muscle imbalance.

In this article, I’ve shared the six best single-arm chest exercises that I often perform on my push day to train each side of my pecs individually and effectively.

So, if you also want to build jacked, strong, and symmetrical pecs, you can incorporate these unilateral chest exercises in your strength training.

6 Best Unilateral Chest Exercises to Shape Your Pecs

  1. Single-arm Seated Pec Deck Fly
  2. Unilateral Cable Fly
  3. Single-arm Dumbbell Press
  4. Archer Push-up
  5. One-arm Landmine Press
  6. Unilateral Hammer Strength Press

1. Single-arm Seated Pec Deck Fly

Unilateral chest workout
  • Equipment Required: Pec Deck Machine
  • Exercise Difficulty Level: Suitable for All
  • Mechanics: Isolation

The seated machine chest fly is an isolation exercise that helps engage chest muscles and improve upper body muscular appearance.

The pec deck machine also allows you to perform chest flies using one arm at a time so you can do more reps and sets on the underdeveloped side.

How to Set up:

  • Adjust the seat and handles of the machine.
  • Sit on the bench with your back resting on the pad and grasp the handles firmly.
  • Softly bend your elbows with your arms just below the shoulder’s height.
  • Pull the handles together until your arms are straight against your chest.

How-to Execute:

  • Keeping your one arm in the same position, return the opposite arm to the start and perform as many reps as possible.
  • Once you complete all repetitions, switch your arm and repeat on the opposite side.

2. Unilateral Cable Fly

  • Equipment Required: Cable Pulley
  • Exercise Difficulty Level: Intermediate
  • Mechanics: Isolation

The cable fly provides a good stretch to pectoral muscles and helps build a defined chest and aesthetic upper body.

You can perform multiple cable fly variations, such as high-to-low, low-to-high, and horizontal cable fly.

Let’s see how to perform the two important variations.


  • Adjust the pulley to a higher section for high-to-low chest fly and in the lower section for low-to-high chest fly.
  • Grab the handles, take a step forward, and stand in the split stance.
  • Slightly lean your torso forward, brace your core, and maintain a neutral spine position.
  • Pull the weight downward for H2L and upward for L2H until your arms are together.


  • Keeping your one arm in the same position, perform flies with the opposite arm.
  • Once you are done, switch your arm and repeat.

3. Single-arm Dumbbell Press

One arm dumbbell chest exercises
  • Equipment Required: Dumbbell
  • Exercise Difficulty Level: Suitable for All
  • Mechanics: Isolation

The dumbbell press is a free-weight exercise that provides a better range of motion and allows you to hit your pecs efficiently.

You can perform the incline, decline, and flat dumbbell presses to hit the upper, lower, and middle pecs.

Let’s see how to perform each variation:


  • Set the bench at a 30-degree angle for the incline press, 15 degrees down for the decline bench press, and horizontal for the flat bench press.
  • Grab one dumbbell in each hand and lie on the bench.
  • Press the dumbbells over your chest until your arms are straight.


  • Keeping your right arm straight, perform as many reps as possible with your left arm.
  • Once you complete all reps, keep your left arm straight and perform flies with the right one.

4. Archer Push-up

  • Equipment Required: No (Body Weight)
  • Exercise Difficulty Level: Need some basic strength
  • Mechanics: Compound

Archer push-ups are a bodyweight unilateral exercise that targets the pectoral and shoulder muscles and helps build a muscular and flexible upper body.

If you train at home, you can do archer push-ups to work on each side of the chest individually without equipment.

Here’s how you can do it.


  • Place your hands on the floor, wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Get into a straight arm plank position with your body straight from top to bottom. That’s the start.


  • Lower your torso to the right until your left arm is fully straight.
  • Pause for a moment, then return to the start.
  • Repeat with your opposite and do more reps on the inferior side.

5. One-arm Landmine Press

Single arm landmine chest exercises
  • Equipment Required: Barbell/Landmine Machine
  • Exercise Difficulty Level: Easy to Moderate
  • Mechanics: Compound

The one-arm landmine press is an excellent push exercise that bolsters the chest, triceps, and shoulder simultaneously. It works on the upper pecs and you can use this exercise to improve your chest muscle appearance.


  • Place one end of the bar in the corner of the wall and insert the weight plates into another.
  • Grab the bar with your right hand, take a step back, and hold it at your chest level.
  • Slightly bend your knees and lean forward, as well as maintain an upright torso. That’s the start.


  • Engaging your pecs, press the bar up until your arm is straight.
  • Do as many reps and sets as possible on each side.

6. Unilateral Hammer Strength Chest Press

  • Equipment Required: Hammer Strength Machine
  • Exercise Difficulty Level: Suitable for All
  • Mechanics: Isolation

The hammer machine chest press is an excellent way to strike the upper pecs unilaterally. This machine provides you stability during movement so you can focus only on the muscles you want to target.


  • Lie on the bench with your feet firmly on the floor.
  • Hold the handles firmly with your wrist straight. That’s the start.


  • Press the weight forward, alternating your arms for the desired times.

Final Thoughts

Unilateral chest workouts can be extremely helpful for those whose one side of the pectoral muscle appears larger or stronger than the other and want to fix this issue.

The symmetrical pecs improve the upper body appearance and help you push more during the bench press.

Whether you’re a beginner or working out for a while, try some of the above exercises on your chest day.

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Murshid Akram
I'm an online personal trainer, fitness blogger, and fitness enthusiast. I love researching and writing about exercise and nutrition. I share science-based, practical, and logical information that can help you achieve your desired fitness goal.
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