7 Effective Landmine Press Alternatives

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Doing landmine presses can offer positive effects but you may want other options. Discover some alternatives to landmine presses with similar results.

Landmine presses are a compound chest exercise that also works your triceps and front deltoids (shoulder).

In turn, this means that landmine presses can help you build muscle mass, burn calories, and offer other typical exercise benefits.

A few of the more unique benefits of landmine presses are that you work out one side at a time and that they allow a neutral grip.

Whether you don’t enjoy landmine presses, you don’t have a landmine setup, or you want an alternative for any other reason, these alternatives to landmine presses can offer you some or all of the same benefits.

1. Incline dumbbell chest presses

The bench press is one of the most popular weight lifting compound exercises for bigger chest muscles. By using an incline weight bench instead of a flat one you focus more on your upper chest and shoulder muscles.

This makes this exercise more of a landmine press alternative. Take the following steps to do an incline bench press with dumbbells:

  1. Lie down with your back on an incline weight bench with a dumbbell in each hand.
  2. Keep your arms with the dumbbells slightly less than stretched and pointing up. Your hand palms should more or less face forward and your hands should be at about shoulder width.
  3. Slowly lower the dumbbells to your chest. Your upper arms should be at an angle of about 45 degrees to your sides.
  4. Push the dumbbells back up again in a controlled motion.

Even if you are for example at home and do not have a weight bench you can do the incline bench press.

To do this sit down on the ground in front of, for example, your couch. Lean with your upper body against and keep your back straight.

Using a bench for this exercise does allow a bigger range of motion and more retracting of your shoulder blades which can lead to reduced injury risk. Doing this exercise on a bench is also generally more comfortable than on the ground.

2. Decline pushups

Pushups are a popular bodyweight exercise to train chest muscles at home or in the gym. By changing the angle of a regular pushup you can change what parts of the chest muscle get engaged more.

By doing a decline pushup you focus more on your upper chest and shoulder muscles similar to the landmine press. To do one you need an elevated platform to put your feet on.

Once you have that, take the following steps to do a decline pushup:

  1. Sit in front of the object on your hands and knees with your face away from the object.
  2. Put your feet on the object one after the other. Keep your arms slightly less than stretched.
  3. Walk forward with your hands until your body is in a straight line from your head to your heels and your shoulders are right above your wrists.
  4. Slowly fold your arms at your elbows until your face is close to the ground. Your upper arms should be at an angle of about 45 degrees to your sides. Another way to put it is if someone is looking down at you from above your arms should make an arrow, not a T.
  5. Stretch your arms again until you are back in the position from step 3.
How to do a decline pushup

Decline pushups are harder to do than regular pushups since more of your body weight rests on your arms, wrists, and shoulders.

The more decline you go, the higher you place your feet, the harder the pushups become and the more you focus on your shoulders.

Other ways to make decline pushups harder include wearing a weighted vest or using resistance bands.

3. Incline chest press machine

The chest press machine is basically the popular bench press exercise in machine form.

Instead of using a barbell and lying down on a weight bench, the weights have a fixed motion and you are sitting down with your back against back support.

Some of these machine chest presses are even made to be more of an upward motion and thus closer to an alternative to landmine presses.

The trajectory of your hands is made so you have to push slightly upward which can be helpful for targeting your upper chest and shoulder muscles slightly more. Besides that, your triceps will have to work hard too.

Make sure you adjust the seat and handles to the right settings for you personally. Your upper arms should be at about a 45-degree angle to your upper body in starting position.

If your shoulders hurt during the motion, it may be a sign that the machine settings or your technique are suboptimal.

A potential upside or downside of this option is that you have to pay less attention to balancing the weights.

This can lead to more focus on training your chest, tricep, and shoulder muscles which can in turn lead to more and faster muscle gain.

4. Standing upward fly

For the next landmine press alternative your equipment depends on what muscles you want to focus more on. You can use a cable machine or sturdy resistance bands with an anchor at home to isolate your chest muscles more.

The other option is using one-handed free weights like dumbbells, kettlebells, separate weight plates, etc. This will focus on both the upper chest and shoulders.

Take the following steps to do an upward cable fly:

  1. Put the cable pulleys at about hip height and attach the D-grip handles. You can also use other handles.
  2. Grab 1 handle, walk towards the other handle and grab it with the other hand. Stand in the middle between the two cables.
  3. Put one foot a small distance backward and the other foot forward for balance. Keep the rest of your body straight and your arms slightly less than extended throughout the exercise.
  4. Slowly bring your hands to the center and upward until your hands meet in the middle.
  5. Slowly go back to the position in step 3.

A possible advantage or disadvantage depending on your training goals is that the low pulley cable crossover is more of an isolation exercise. Your triceps will have to work a lot less compared to a landmine press.

5. Shoulder presses

The shoulder press with a barbell is one of the most popular compound exercises for growing shoulder muscles. You preferably want a barbell rack at chest height for this exercise.

Take the following steps to do a shoulder press with a barbell:

  1. Find a barbell rack and place the barbell at about chest height. Add the desired number of weight plates. If there are any safety bars you can adjust them to the right height.
  2. Grab the barbell with your hands at about shoulder width with your hand palms facing forward.
  3. Unrack the barbell and take a few steps back so that you have room to do the exercise. Stand up straight with your feet at more or less shoulder width. Hold the barbell at about shoulder height. Your elbows can point slightly more forward than just a horizontal line with your shoulders.
  4. Slowly move the barbell up until your arms are slightly less than stretched.
  5. Lower the barbell back into the position of step 3 in a controlled motion.

If you like the unilateral (working out one side at a time) aspect of landmine presses you can also use dumbbells, kettlebells, certain weight plates, etc. to do shoulder presses.

Shoulder presses are more of a kneeling landmine press alternative. This exercise focuses more on your shoulders and less on your chest muscles compared to a standing landmine press.

6. Wall ball toss exercise

The wall ball toss is a wall ball exercise. Wall balls are a type of medium-sized, weighted balls, made for certain throwing exercises.

Besides a good wall ball, you will also need a sturdy wall. Take the following steps to do a wall ball toss:

  1. Stand at about an arm’s distance or slightly more away from a sturdy wall with your face towards that wall. Hold a wall ball right in front of your chest with your hands on the sides of the ball. Put your feet about shoulder-width apart.
  2. Slowly lower your hips by bending your knees. How far depends on different factors like knee health but at your lowest point you ideally want your hips to be at or lower than your knee height.
  3. Push yourself up with your legs in an explosive way. At the same time push the wall ball upward and slightly forward away from your body.
  4. Let go of the wall ball at the top of the movement so that it flies in the air against the wall.
  5. Catch the ball with slightly less than stretched arms.

The upper body press movement of the wall ball toss is very similar to the landmine press. On top of that, you train leg muscles like the glutes, quadriceps, and calves during the squat.

All of these muscles are trained in an explosive way so you focus more on muscle power instead of strength or endurance.

7. Low pulley cable crossover

The regular crossover is a cable exercise done with the pulleys at shoulder level or higher. This makes the exercise focus on the lower chest muscles.

By changing the setting of the pulley and the movement you can also make the exercise focus on your upper chest muscles and make it more of a landmine press alternative.

For the low pulley cable crossover exercise, you will need to attach single-grip handles to each side of the machine. After that, take the following steps to do a low pulley cable crossover:

  1. Put the cable pulleys at about hip height and attach the D-grip handles. You can also use other handles.
  2. Grab 1 handle, walk towards the other handle and grab it with the other hand. Stand in the middle between the two cables.
  3. Put one foot a small distance backward and the other foot forward for balance. Keep the rest of your body straight and your arms slightly less than extended throughout the exercise.
  4. Slowly bring your hands to the center and upward. Instead of stopping when right before your hands touch each other, you let one arm go above the other to go a little further.
  5. Slowly go back to the position in step 3.
  6. When doing multiple repetitions switch between which arm goes above.

This low pulley cable crossover looks and is very similar to the upward cable fly. The difference is that the upward cable fly stops in the middle while the crossover continues farther than that.

In general, a larger range of motion is beneficial for muscle growth.

The low pulley cable crossover is a landmine press alternative to isolate your chest muscles, more specifically the upper part.

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Author:

Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.