Quite a number of gym aficionados who are struggling to increase their number of bench presses don’t know that they could do so if they just simply observe proper, but effective bench press techniques. We shall discuss each of these techniques thoroughly.
Proper Body Positioning
The most basic technique for increasing your bench press is by observing proper body positioning. First and foremost is making sure that you have a firm base by keeping both feet firmly planted on the floor while doing this exercise.
Many benchers place their feet on the bench, so that they do not use their legs to assist in pushing off the barbell and to prevent their buttocks from lifting off the bench. Having your feet on the bench puts you in a very unstable position, so that you might fall off from the narrow surface. If you want to bench press more, it is acceptable to have the legs assist during the lifting of the weight.
There are contradictory advice on the position of the back during a bench press. Some trainers say that it is best to keep the back pressed to the bench while other advise to arch the back during the exercise. However, to prevent considerable strain on your back, it is best to arch your lower back slightly as you push the weight up.
Another important technique is the lifting of the weight itself. When you remove the weight from the rack, it should be lowered to chest height, just a few inches above the chest. As you push it up, make sure that your arms are locked in full extension. Never let the weight hover your neck, so you won’t break your neck or choke if you end up dropping the weight. Also, do not bounce the weight from your chest as you push up. You are putting yourself at risk of serious injuries to the sternum and in the vital organs contained inside the chest cavity.
The way you grip your weight works out different muscle groups in the upper body. If you want to build up your chest, use a wide grip (with the hands a few inches wider than shoulder width distance). However, because your range of motion is reduced with this grip, make sure that you are able to replace the barbell on the rack. Next, the neutral grip (hands shoulder width apart) stimulates both the chest and triceps muscles. This is the best grip to use if you want to increase your bench press. Third, you have the narrow grip (hands a few inches apart) which primarily stimulates the triceps. Because of the restricted grip, you can only do a few bench presses.
There are debates on whether one can do more bench presses if you push up the weight explosively or if you go for a slower, but more regular lifting. This is largely the preference of the exerciser. However, if you prefer explosive pumping of the weights, always make sure that you have a firm grip on the barbell or dumbbell and be in complete control of the rhythm.
Learn other techniques that will help to increase your bench press today!