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How Do I Fix a Saggy Chest?

Doing push-ups can help strengthen the chest.
An anatomical illustration showing many muscles in the upper body, including the pectoral muscles.
Men may experience gynecomastia, or swelling of breast tissue, as a result of a hormonal imbalance.
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  • Written By: C.J. Wells
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 09 April 2014
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A man’s chest can appear to be saggy or flabby for a variety of reasons, and before any plan for fixing it can be effectively implemented, the specific reason behind an individual’s sagging chest needs to be determined. The cause will suggest the best course of treatment. Various ways to fix a saggy chest can include chest-focused weightlifting, a general exercise and fitness program, a weight-loss and nutritional regimen and, as a last resort, surgery.

One reason for a drooping or flabby chest is age. A sagging male chest is a normal part of the aging process. Muscles lose mass, and skin loses elasticity as men age, and the result of this loss is perhaps most noticeable in the chest area. Men who have lost a great deal of weight, too, often have a saggy chest because the skin had been stretched over a heavier frame, and the underlying muscles might have not been developed to their full potential. Chest-specific weightlifting exercises are one of the best solutions for these kinds of flabby chests.

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There are four common exercises that specifically target the chest area. Bench presses are an excellent weightlifting exercise for firming and building the pectoral muscles, which are the muscles of the chest. Dumbbell flys are a great counterpoint to the muscle-building bench press because they serve to stretch out the pectoral muscles, or to elasticize them. Lateral rows work not only the chest muscles but also the upper and lower back. Finally, the basic push-up is tremendously effective for firming up a saggy chest.

Flabby chests also can be the result of obesity — not only in men but in women as well. A body that is heavy with excess fat is prone to sagging and, in turn, an overweight person is less likely to work to firm and tone hir or her underlying muscles. The four main chest-firming exercises will benefit overweight individuals, but sustained aerobic exercise and a healthy nutritional program must be combined with resistance exercises to ultimately achieve a firm and toned chest. A program of resistance training, aerobic exercise and a new nutritional regimen is best undertaken under a physician’s supervision and, ideally, under the guidance of a certified fitness instructor.

Normal male chest ptosis, or drooping, seldom needs male breast lift surgery to be corrected; a nutritional and exercise program is the recommended solution. There are cases, however, when a saggy chest might not be a fitness issue but a medical issue. Gynecomastia is a medical condition that is manifested by the swelling or enlargement of breast tissue in men or boys. It is caused by an imbalance of the hormones estrogen and testosterone, particularly in young males who are going through puberty or in older men who are going through the natural hormonal changes of aging.

Gynecomastia often disappears on its own, but occasionally, medical intervention is required. Sometimes, a doctor will prescribe medications that are used in the treatment of breast cancer, such as raloxifene or tamoxifen. Only in extreme cases is it necessary to surgically remove excess breast tissue in men. Two types of surgery are used to treat persistent gynecomastia: liposuction and mastectomy. In liposuction, the breast fat is removed, and in mastectomy, the tissue of the breast gland is removed.

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Discuss this Article

lluviaporos
Post 3

@clintflint - Well, some people would just prefer to look a little bit like the people in the magazines and they should be able to attempt it if they want. It's not that unreasonable for a man to want to have a firm chest.

And I actually think it is a rare person who wouldn't strongly prefer for their partner to have a firm chest rather than a saggy one.

clintflint
Post 2

@pastanaga - In my opinion the best thing men and women can do if they are ashamed of any body part is to look at a whole bunch of pictures of normal bodies. More often than not they have developed their idea of what they should look like from the airbrushed, impossible images that we are bombarded with every day.

They might think, how could anyone want to be with a freak like me? I don't look anything like those people in the magazines. But even the people in the magazines don't really look like that. We are all a little bit saggy and a little bit unproportional. If you are willing to have an open mind and accept that in others, then there's no reason they wouldn't accept that in you.

I just think we spend a lot of time and money worrying about things that are simply natural and don't really need to be fixed.

pastanaga
Post 1

If you're a woman who is worried about a sagging chest, unfortunately there isn't all that much you can do about it. You can try to work the same muscles that are suggested here for the men and it might help a little bit, but breast tissue is made up of skin and fat and ligaments and at the moment there isn't really a way to tighten them up without surgery.

Men or women shouldn't fall for those creams that are often sold with the promise that they will tighten up that area, because they won't be very effective and can only work on the skin anyway.

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