The ultimate glamour movement in the gym for men has to be the Bench Press. It’s also a great movement for upper-body strength and size. I get the allure of being able to bench press heavier than anyone else in the gym, but that certainly doesn’t mean getting under a loaded bar and pushing it for all your worth.
The problem is that people measure their progress at the gym by benching as much weight as possible and neglecting the crucial step process, while downplaying the importance of proper form to perform the lift. This usually creates a lot of ex-benchers than strong ones.
This article will focus on three true-and-tried techniques by bodybuilding professionals. Let’s begin…
Technique No. 1: Build a Stronger Back
Upper back exercises are crucial for making your bench-press pain-free, stable and fluid. The bench press movement places stress on the shoulder blades and four rotator cuff muscles located on the scapula. Keeping your scapular muscle tight is key to stability in any pushing movement. Incorporate these back exercises on your ‘back day’ to build scapular stability and strength.
1. Bent-Over Barbell Row
2. Inverted Row
3. Single-Arm Dumbbell Row
4. Seated Rows
Technique No.2: Attack Your Weak Points
In most cases a lifter usually hits a wall in the middle of the rep, precisely when lifting the bar back up from the chest position. If that is you, then you lack lockout strength. Some great exercises to improve this sticking point are:
1. Floor Presses: Grab a pair of dumbbells, something lighter than your usual working set. Lay down on the floor and perform dumbbell presses with your elbows in the pressing position.
2. Pin Press: Set-up a bench inside a smith machine making a bench press station, set up the safety pins 4-6 inches above your chest and lay the bar on them. Assume the normal Bench position and drive the bar up to lockout and bring it back onto the pins.
Technique No. 3: Bench More!
As the saying goes, “practice makes perfect” and well, it does. Building a stronger bench press happens in part from benching frequently. Post workout burnout sets are money when it comes to adding volume to your bench press. At the end of every isolation workout do a couple quick bench press sets with 65% of your max weight, rep it out until failure.
Try these three fixes for a heavier and bigger bench press in your gym and enjoy the increased release of testosterone and adrenaline.