TRX Workout Guide (Chest Edition)

Daniel Fredell Demonstrating the use of TRX Straps

The TRX Trainer is a great addition to any gym and very mobile for the vacation workouts. While A TRX Workout can be used for every goal, I love the unbalanced feel with these suspension trainers. It forces my clients to maintain their own stability while working through the full range of motion. For vacation workouts, they fold up great in a small bag and even come with a pillow door mount for a great TRX Workout even in the smallest hotel room. 

Best TRX Exercises for Your Chest

The function of the chest is to bring the elbows to the midline and stabilize the shoulders. This is one reason that dumbbell exercises feel more intense than barbell exercises. The TRX Trainer will also force the lifter to stabilize. The big difference is that changing the resistance is as easy as stepping forward or backward. Using the TRX for Chest day will be just as brutal with these exercises.

TRX Push Up / TRX Chest Press

The TRX Push Up (or TRX Chest Press) is a mixture between a push up and a fly. Start out by facing away from the anchor with a handle in each hand. I like to have the straps up near my neck so that I don’t drag my arm down the straps during the rep. Once I begin to lower my shoulders to my hands, I open my hands up to allow my shoulders to go in between the straps.


As I press back to the top position, I bring my hands back together returning to the top position. Take a few steps back to make the exercise more difficult or step forward to make it easier. Another way to increase tension on the core is to bring the feet closer together and force the hips to stabilize on a narrow base.

TRX Chest Fly

The TRX Chest Fly is a similar movement to Cable Fly. I start in the same position as the TRX Push Up and turn my palms in to face each other. As I open my hands away from each other my shoulders lower to a comfortable depth. Once at the bottom position, I pull my hands back together to return to the top position.


While the standing version of the TRX Chest Fly is an advanced modification, I can begin on my knees to reduce the resistance and off-balancing. One important detail is to keep your body in a plank position even when on the knees. If you begin to bend at the hip, then the resistance will be applied to the shoulders instead of the chest.

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TRX Single Arm Push Up

This TRX Exercise is an advanced version of the TRX Push Up. Beginning in the same position as the TRX Push Up, raise one arm straight out in front. Lower the chest to the hand performing the press and use the raised arm for stability only. From here, press through the hand to return to the top position and repeat for the next rep.


I suggest completing all reps on one arm, then switching to the other instead of alternating back and forth. The time it takes to switch back and forth will take focus from the muscle contraction and result in an extended break. The muscular balance will be easy as long as the same number of reps are completed on each side.

TRX Atomic Push Up

The TRX Atomic Push Up is a compound movement that incorporates the entire core into a single exercise. It fires up everything from the traps to the calves and quickly gets the heart and breath rate up. With the feet floating on an unbalanced surface, the abdomen will be under tension from the beginning of the first rep. It’s easily one of my favorite TRX exercises.


To get started, I like to adjust the TRX Trainer to mid-shin height to give plenty of room for the knee tuck without risk of hitting my knees on the ground. The hardest part of the set up is getting the feet in the straps, but this can be made easier by putting the hands and knees on the floor and finding the straps with one foot at a time. (See video below for the full breakdown of this.) Once set up, lower the chest to the ground (remember the elbows should move back at a 45 degree angle of the ribs) with legs extended and perform a push up. At the top of the push up, raise the hips to the ceiling and tuck the knees into the chest for a short pause at the top and slowly lower back to the ground for the next rep.

Bonus: TRX Tricep Extension / TRX Skullcrusher

While this is not a chest focused exercise, chest and tris go together like chicken and biscuits. This is not only my favorite triceps exercise, but the barbell modification (Barbell Duck Under) was also one of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s favorites from the early 90s. The extension of the rear deltoid during the elbow extension adds a “fun factor” to the pump of the triceps.


Begin with the TRX Trainer out in front of the chest with straight arms. One of the verbal cues that I use with my clients is to, “keep your hands even with your eye line.” This keeps the TRX Trainer from dragging your hair/head and still allows for a safe and effective range of motion. From the top position, lower the forehead to the knuckles and extend the elbow to raise the head back to the top position. 

Train Online With Daniel Fredell

If you enjoyed this blog, please share with your friends. I take pride in my writing as well as my Certified Personal Training. If you would like more direction or a personalized program with the TRX Trainer, I also offer online training to clients worldwide. With a simple app on your phone, you can receive the same level of content and coaching to help you reach your goals.

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