4 Tips On How To Turn Yourself Into A Beast On The Bench Press


Every meathead knows the expression “How much ya bench?” and that poundage kind of dictates your progress in the weight room. Although it really makes no sense, it has become a calling card of sorts to gym junkies worldwide that rivals the size of their dicks. There are so many things that are more important than your max on the bench, but since it has so much braggadocio behind it, let’s go over some tips that will help you say the answer loud and proud the next time it is asked.

TECHNIQUE (LOWER BODY)

There are so many smaller details about benching properly that many people totally overlook the basic but obvious ones. Take your foot position, to begin with. You should have them flat on the floor and pointing straight ahead, with a slight angle out if that is more comfortable.

But when the going gets tough, there are many guys that move their legs and feet trying to get some hidden power to be unleashed. Try to be cognizant to keep them firmly flat and drive your heels through the floor as you push the bar up.

You legs provide a strong foundation for the bench press and taking advantage of this will help you perform each rep properly and it will eventually increase the weight you can do.

EXPLOSIVE REPS FOR STICKING POINTS

Everyone who has ever bench pressed has hit that annoying sticking point where you come to a halt and need your spotter to help you get passed it. It’s time to blow right through it and the way to do so is by practicing explosive bench presses once a week.

Start with a fairly light weight (135 pounds is a good number for many; one 45-pound plate on each side of an Olympic bar) and control it on the down portion of the rep and explode back up faster. Keep moving up in weight as your would normally do on chest day and when your ‘up’ begins to slow down, then you are using too much weight for this exercise. Lighten it up a little and just get the feeling of how to explode up.

ADDITIONAL RESISTANCE

The use of bands and chains will also help you work through the sticking point in your rep and that is because both increase the resistance at the top of the movement. The bands also make it harder to control the weight and the balancing also works your muscles. But for the goal of upping your bench press weight, the chains are a better option.

Once you begin to work your way towards the lockout, the chains come off the floor and make you have to work twice as hard. If you can push up at a steady pace and not get stuck, you are well on your way to a bigger bench.

TRICEPS STRENGTH

The lockout is, of course, the most difficult portion of the rep and when you are talking pressing exercises, your triceps are engaged as secondary muscles to get the job done. If you expect to be able to bench something significant, then you obviously need strong triceps.

Any triceps exercise will work them, but try to include close grip bench presses on arm day for it to really help you on the bench. This will prepare your tris for the work they will be doing on chest day and also be another test for you regarding the sticking points.