How to improve your bench press performance. 10 tips from a coach
Even the leg muscles should be included in the work.
Egor Fukalov, physical trainer
How to improve bench press results?
The bench press is a popular exercise that pumps your upper body. Train the muscles of the chest, triceps and shoulders. By the number of kilograms you press on the chest, it is easy to assess your strength indicators.
Bench press lying on a horizontal bench
- We lie down so that the barbell is on the supports above the eyes.
- We press the shoulder blades against the bench, the shoulders are fixed.
- We put our feet on the floor, pressing firmly on the foot.
- We take the bar a little wider than the shoulders, the projectile is above the collarbones.
- Slowly, while inhaling, we lower the bar below the nipples, bringing the shoulder blades together. The shoulder blades and the head are pressed against the bench.
- Exhale forcefully as you climb to the top. The movement of the bar goes diagonally from the nipples to the full extension of the arms.
We perform three sets of 8-12 times. Rest between sets is one to two minutes.
Scientists conducted a study to determine how the angle of the bench affects pectoral muscle development. They took 30 people and placed the sensors on three parts of the pectoralis major muscle, the anterior delta and the arms. It turned out that lower and middle chests worked best on a horizontal bench. For the upper chest, the ideal angle was 30 degrees. If the angle is greater than 30 degrees, the load is transferred to the shoulders. For the triceps, the angle of the bench didn’t matter.
How to maximize the bench press?
Be sure to do a 10-minute warm-up. Dynamic arm warm-ups will increase strength and performance, and reduce the risk of injury. Before strength training, you should not stretch, as muscle strength will decrease. It is recommended to work the bench press with less intensity and light weight.
Include shoulder exercises in your workout plan. Bench lovers often have inflamed ligaments and tendons, and any injury, however minor, limits their personal maximum. The rotator cuff needs to be strengthened to keep the joint strong and healthy. This is the only way to reach record levels.
Eliminate unnecessary movements. Analyze how much effort is spent on small interceptions, barrel rolls, unnecessary moves. Have a partner remove the bar to save energy for the press. It is very important to think through every action from A to Z. From the moment you sit down on the bench until the placement of the projectile on the racks at the end of the exercise. This will allow you to do a few more reps.
Include the leg muscles in the exercise. When the movement begins with a kick from the ground, an impulse of force is transmitted through the body to the bar. All the muscles of the body begin to participate in the exercise, resulting in tremendous power and maximum results.
Learn to rest your shoulder blades on the bench. And bring them together as you lower the bar to your chest. The blades included in the work help push the bar from the lowest point. You will be able to work with more weight. Pay attention to the trapezoid formation. A strong mid-back will stabilize the bar as you lower and raise it quickly. This will give guaranteed results.
Pump powerful forearms. A solid grip will allow you to throw a few pounds on the bar. By squeezing the bar firmly, you include the forearm in the work. As a result, the pressing movement will be better.
Train your triceps. The triceps is considered a large muscle and represents 2/3 of the shoulder muscles. It is he who is responsible for extending the elbows in the bench press. Weak triceps – weak bench press.
Use the dumbbell bench press exercise on a horizontal bench. Effectively strengthens stabilizing muscles. You will feel more confident holding a heavy barbell without swinging.
Experiment with the position of the elbows. If you want to push more weight, you have to engage the triceps more. To do this, lightly press your elbows against your body. The optimal angle is 45 degrees to the body.
Set a goal to achieve a short range of motion. The longer the movement, the more force you will need to press. A short amplitude is created due to the wide placement of the hands on the bar and the flexible lower back.
These recommendations will help protect yourself from injury and achieve high power results in the bench press.