This topic has probably been worn out but......
As I work out very early and by myself, I find it easier and safer to dumbell press rather than bench. Are there any benefits to this or is bench allways better? just looking for some advice.
I usually workout alone too. I do kind of both. I find the DB press works my arms more and the BB press works out my chest more. When I'm alone and don't have a spotter I significantly reduce the weight of the BB to something I can handle by myself and do the press more for toning and warm up. I don't stretch the limit and replace the BB before I am too tired to repalce it myself.
This is a little off the subject, but Bryan's comment about DB's working his arms more got me to thinking about how it's a big problem with a lot of us that our front deltoids are taking a lot of the work during pressing movements.
It doesn't matter with some people because it seems like their chest grows no matter what they do. But this isn't the case for me, and I suspect I'm not alone here.
A lot of you may know this trick but I only learned it about six months ago. During pressing movements on both BB and DB I do "scapular retraction". It takes a lot of the work off your deltoids and transfers it the the chest.
You lower your shoulders (like a reverse shrug) and you bring your scapula together (pull your shoulders back) and try to hold this position during the entire course of the pressing set. It'll be like your sticking your chest in the air. (Don't start arching your back)
That's how I found out about it. I see these big guys who look like they're sticking their chest out when they press. I could even see that they were getting a better contraction of the chest than me.
If you do this right now and bring your arm out in front of you like a press you'll notice a much more significant engangement of the chest.
It is hard to get used to, especially at the top of the movement at the time of peak contraction but it has made a big difference for me. Try it out and let me know what you think.