As many of you may or may not know, I officially made it to the 100’s club on my bench press. It was tough but I feel so good knowing that I finally can bench 100 pounds! 😀 Hopefully within the next 3 to 6 months, I will be benching 10 or 15 pounds more. Nonetheless, I wanted to go over the proper form in performing a bench press. Many of you don’t think about form when doing it, but it is very important you perform this exercise correctly because you can injure yourself. I also recommend people have spotters, unlike myself in this video (which I should have used a spotter just in case) but I took a chance and it worked out but don’t take chances, because it could hurt you. Hopefully I will have the chance to hear all of you share your PR accomplishments in the bench press!
How to perform the bench press:
- Utilize a flat bench (lie back on it). Using a medium width grip on the barbell, lift the bar from the rack and hold it straight over you with arms locked (starting position)
- While breathing in , lower the bar slowly to your middle chest
- Take a brief pause, push the bar back to the starting position while breathing out. Use your chest muscles when pushing the bar up, lock the arms and contract the chest – hold the bar for a second at the top and then come down slowly again
- repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions
- When finished, place the bar back in the rack
What muscles are affected?
- Front shoulders
For beginners, I recommend using a spotter and even more intermediate and advanced athletes, it is good to have spotter when lifting a new PR or unsure amount of weight. There are many different variations of the bench press and the hand placement – which I will go over in a future post. The important thing is, to use your chest muscles when pushing up, put less strain on the arms and really contract those muscles. If you don’t have a spotter, using a smith machine for beginners is another good idea… until you are more comfortable on the barbell or until you have a proper spotter. Everyone knows this is a fundamental exercise, where it develops upper body strength. If you have experienced previous injuries or conditions – please consult your doctor before performing this exercise.
- What is your bench press max?
- How many reps are you lifting for your max?
Warm up: 2 – 3 minute skipping in place
- Bentover barbell row: 4 x 2-5. 95 lb. (1 minute skipping in place)
- Bentover DB Row: 3 x 2-5. 70 lb (1 minute goblet squat – 30 lb)
- seated cable row: 3 x 2-5. 120 lb (1 minute box jumps)
- Barbell shrugs: 4 x 2-5. 100 lb. (1 minute DB step up: 30 lb)
- Barbell curl: 3 x 2-5. 50 lb. (1 minute kettlebell swings – 8 kg)
- Barbell or EZ bar preacher curl: 3 x 4-5. 30 lb. (1 minute med ball slam – 10 lb)
- Reverse barbell curl: 3 x 4-5. 30 lb. ( 1 minute DB lunge – 20 lb)
Again this workout for today was focused on strength (so higher weights and lower reps) also, the 1 minute of cardio is between each set (no rest). I was not able to get to the battling ropes today so I missed out on one more exercise for the day but that is okay. Remember the exercise you are doing for 1 minute between sets is a low weight, do not use a high weight because the focus is being able to focus on endurance the whole time. I definitely felt some pain in my left knee during lunges and also, did a PR in bentover barbell rows and went up 10 lb 😀 also the seated cable rows I went up 20 lb 😀
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