bench grip width

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by #1can, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. #1can

    #1can Blue Belt

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    Here is a question that is probably nearly impossible for anyone to answer as it cannot really be quantified, but do your worst.

    How wide should hand be when doing standard bench press?

    I'm about 6'2", kinda lanky. I realized i've been benching with my hands probably too wide for a long time after reading the stickied bench article on t-nation. It says tuck your elbows within 45 degrees of your sides. So the question is, how narrow should my grip be?

    Lets say relative to shoulder width, and by shoulder width i mean actual shoulder width, like vertical arms at the peak of the motion, not the bastardized "shoulder width" that is thrown at every exercise in the gym.
     
  2. anvar

    anvar Guest

    Narrow grip = more triceps
    Shoulder Wide (standard) grip = equal tricsp/pectoral
    Wide grip = more pectoral

    Then you can get into bar placement (i.e. high bar, medium bar, low bar)

    I personally use all of them in my workouts depending on the goal at the time...
     
  3. #1can

    #1can Blue Belt

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    Ya I know that much.

    I guess my question is more specific.
    What grip is used by lifters who post the biggest numbers? Essentially, what is the optimum grip?

    An answer like "it depends on the person" doesn't really help, i know that much also. I realize that optimum grip depends on someones tricep/pec strength ratio, but that takes it one step further...what is the best tricep/pec stength ratio and therefore what is the optimum grip.

    Hopefully that clarifies.
     
  4. Urban

    Urban Savage Mystic

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    most PLers bench wide from what I understand. that shortens the range of motion. By wide, I think that most feds will only allow pinkies on the rings at the most. That's the grip I use too. Honestly though, it's one of those things you need to experiment with yourself. Try some narrow grip presses, some wide grip presses, see which ones weakest, and work on that for a while, then re-assess. That's what I've been doing with my overhead pressing, and really the wide grip work has been helping a lot.
     
  5. BAS_FAN

    BAS_FAN Purple Belt

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    Index fingers on the outside power rings
    Easy
     
  6. Lusst

    Lusst Red Belt

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    I put my index fingers where the smooth meets the jagged part on the barbell. Yeah, it's pretty close, but it doesnt hurt my shoulders any and my bench actually went up.

    It all depends on how you feel comfortable.
     
  7. #1can

    #1can Blue Belt

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    Um that's how I close grip.
     
  8. Fedorable

    Fedorable 1/1024th Mod

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    my close grip has my hands about 2.5' apart.
     
  9. True2KungFu

    True2KungFu King Of No Pants

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    i bench with a narrower grip than most as my triceps are the strongpoint of my bench. Ive had good success with it.
     
  10. #1can

    #1can Blue Belt

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    Ya i know lots of people do this, but it hurts my wrists so i close grip with my hands directly in front of my shoulders...which ends up being index fingers on the edge of the smooth.
     
  11. smiff n wessun

    smiff n wessun feirmeoir láibe

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    Pick up the latest issue of mens health and on page 192 they have a little article about a study that had 12 men use 5 different grips and the effects they had on thier chest, bis and tris.
     
  12. Madmick

    Madmick Cerebrage Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Did they have anything in there on strength? Cause I really could give two shits about toning.
     
  13. smiff n wessun

    smiff n wessun feirmeoir láibe

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    its really short so i'll just type it out myself.

    Canadian researchers recently had 12 men perform barbell bench presses using five different grips and studied the effect each position had on the chest, biceps and triceps. Use thier findings to gain more from your bench-press routine.
    Wide,overhand: Hands twice shoulder-width apart, palms facing forward. Stresses the lower portion of the chest more than the other grips.
    Medium, overhand: Hands just beyond shoulder width, palms facing forward. Places more emphasis on the triceps than a wide grip does.
    Narrow, overhand: Hands shoulder-width apart, palms facing forward. Recruits the triceps more than the other grips do.
    Medium, underhand: Hands just beyond shoulder width, palms toward you. Involves the biceps the most
    Wide, underhand: Hands twice shoulder-width apart, palms towards you. Works the upper portion of the chest best.
     
  14. Sean S

    Sean S Brown Belt

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    Wow its sad that:

    1) You refer to Men's Health as a guide to anything strength related
    2) You took the time to quote something out of it.

    Side note/discussion: "Hands twice shoulder-width apart, palms facing forward. Stresses the lower portion of the chest more than the other grips."

    I remember a physical education guy telling me about how its not really possible to get at the lower area using conventional presses since the muscle is more verticle then horizontal. Not really interested in the body building uses, just curious about how valid that statement is. Though I wonder if it's more like, "Well it uses .0001% of the lower area which is 200% more then any other type of bench press, so therefore..."
     
  15. #1can

    #1can Blue Belt

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    ^
    more vertical than horizontal? so, say, pullovers would be predominantly a lower chest exercise?

    This i acutally a question, i know nothing about pullovers or lowers chests.
     
  16. Urban

    Urban Savage Mystic

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    SHUT UP AND PUT SOME WEIGHT OVERHEAD!!!

    Buncha fuckin nancies in here... here's what grips are good for: find your weak grip, work on it, go back to your stronger grip and it's going to be even better. Reassess your grips. Who the fuck cares what part of the pec is being worked, this isn't a BBing forum. Somebody have a good reason for wanting to know this shit, or I'm going to close this thread.

    Here's what I mean: I do lots of singles on overheads with my weakest grip (wide grip). oddly enough, over the weeks, as that grip has gotten better (15 x 1 has turned into 15 x2) my ohp has gotten better with my strongest grip. Reassessing reveals that wide grip is probably still my weakest link, so I'll probably continue to hammer it once a week. Now, does anything I said not make sense? Does it matter that a wider grip is going to hit my shoulders more? No, not in the fucking least. Practice the shit you suck at and you'll get stronger I promise.

    and men's health is a shitty source of information on pretty much anything.
     
  17. Sean S

    Sean S Brown Belt

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    Hold on there Captain Amazing:

    I never said I cared about the body building side of it. I was putting the validity of Men's Health on the line here.
     
  18. smiff n wessun

    smiff n wessun feirmeoir láibe

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    I only posted it because mad mick followed up with a question about the content of the article, but flame on douchebag and thanks for the constructive critisim. all i know is a mens health book helped me go from 174 to 205 in 4 months with no change in bodyfat.
     
  19. Noskill

    Noskill Created Monkey

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    I don't know about all you guys, but I'm really glad now I know I can work my sexy biceps by doing presses. That's what I call a breakthrough.

    NOT MUSCLES GUYS, LIFTS.
     
  20. Noskill

    Noskill Created Monkey

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    DAMN, how many of them did you have to eat?
     

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