The bench press is an effective compound exercise that builds and strengthens the entire upper body. This includes the lower, middle and upper chest, shoulders, back and core. The triceps also gets a good workout when performing the bench press.
It's widely thought to be easy to perform, but can lead to shoulder problems if not performed properly.
Below are 8 mistakes and how to avoid/correct them.
- Going to heavy: If you seek to build a breast-plate like chest, the best way is to press weight that you can press with the right form and stability. Ego lifting will leave you struggling to do more than 2 reps with bad and unstable form. This can easily lead to shoulder problems. Avoid this by exercising with moderate weight.
- Lowering the bar too high up the chest: when the bar gets too high, it isolates the shoulders puts so much on them. Avoid this by lowering the bar slightly above the base of the chest.
- Grip; Grabbing the bar too wide or with thumbs tucked is not suitable for a full range of motion and safety respectively. With your thumbs tucked, the bar can easily slip out of your palms and injure you. Avoid this by using a shoulder width grip and with thumbs around the bar firmly.
- Feet not firm enough; Your feet should be firmly planted and moved a little backwards. Feet left loose will place much burden on the shoulders and can easily cause shoulder injury.
- Raising the butt; When the butt is raised off the bench, it leaves you with only three contact points instead of four. Pressure will be placed on the back and shoulders. It is an injury prone move. Avoid this by only arching your back and pushing your chest out.
- Bouncing the weight off the chest; in order to squeeze more reps out of a heavy weight, most people tend to bounce the weight off the chest in order to keep momentum. This will not only work your pecs poorly but also leaves you with a high risk of injuring yourself. Avoid this by controlling the weight going up and down.
In all, the bench press is an effective and prominent exercise that enhances overall power and strength. Do it properly lads
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