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Real World Tips on How to Bench Press More Weight

Updated on July 11, 2014

Improve Your Bench Press

This website is all about bragging rights: how to increase the weight that you Bench Press.

That's right, these simple tips can help you to improve your bench press fast.

image credit: Bench Press by A. Blicht, on Flickr

Bench Press correct form
Bench Press correct form

Correct Bench Press Form

Using correct form is important whenever you're lifting weights as using incorrect form can lead to injury. The reason many are tempted to use poor form is because using incorrect form often allows for the use of more muscle groups that correct form allows. Therefore, you can lift heavier weights today, even though you sabotage your future growth potential. Using correct form when you Bench Press not only helps to prevent injury but, also helps you to Bench more. In other words, you can immediately increase your Bench Press weight just by using correct lifting form.

Correct Form: Lie on the bench as you normally would. Grab the bar and pull, lifting your shoulders barely off the bench. Squeeze your shoulder blades together so as to compress your latissimus dorsi toward your spine. Lie back down keeping that extra muscular bulk in the center of your back. Perform your bench press as usual.

Why it works: Long term, this form helps to isolate the pectorals, thereby better working the muscle that you're most interested in working with this exercise.

Short term, it works by raising the top of your chest higher off the bench. Think about the mechanics of a Bench Press. The bar is lowered until it touches the chest and then it's pressed upward again. Using the correct form presses your shoulders into the bench. It also positions the body on a couple of extra inches of back muscle. These two factors make for a shorter distance for the bar to travel. Shorter distance means more weight can be pressed.

If you doubt this strategy, I challenge you to closely watch anyone that Benches really heavy weights and see if they don't do this back-muscle tuck on every set of Bench Presses.

Bench Press Correct Technique

Strong Triceps are Needed for Strong Bench Presses
Strong Triceps are Needed for Strong Bench Presses

Strengthen Your Triceps

The Bench Press is the king of the chest exercises - so much so that we sometimes forget that other muscle groups are needed to perform a successful Bench Press, too.

Why it works: The triceps are the secondary muscle group needed to successfully perform a Bench Press. In fact, the triceps are used whenever a hand is pushed away from the body in any direction - Bench Press, push up, military press, tricep extension, throwing a punch, etc. If you've been neglecting your triceps, then stop. Start burning up your triceps and you can see improvement in your Bench in as little as two weeks.

Don't be that guy that works his chest and biceps and nothing else.

Work Your Whole Chest
Work Your Whole Chest

Build the Entire Muscle

The latest catch-word in exercise videos is "muscular confusion." Muscular confusion is just a new way of expressing the long known weight training concept of "Variety." Work your chest from a variety of angles.

Why it works: Simply put, because your pectorals are a large mass of muscle tissue - too large to easily work in one motion. Everyone does Flat Bench Presses and many do Incline Bench Presses but what about Decline Bench Presses? Why not do some incline and decline flies? Some consider chest dips to be the single most effective pectoral exercise there is - now that's definitely working from a different angle.

Change your routine at least every three weeks - muscular and neurological confusion. It's not about overworking the muscle; it's just about working the muscle completely.

Obligatory Waiver of Responsibility

I am neither a medical professional nor a fitness professional. I'm just a regular guy that wants to pass on tips that have helped me in the gym.

Consult appropriate professionals whenever starting/changing an exercise program. Be safe. Follow the rules of your gym. Listen to your body. Think. I assume no responsibility for the use or misuse of the information contained herein.

What Do You Think?

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    • Inkhand profile image

      Inkhand 5 years ago

      A interesting lens, but looks like very hard work.