Bench Press Critique

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by KidAlchemy, Feb 22, 2016.

  1. KidAlchemy

    KidAlchemy Purple Belt

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    Hullo Lads!

    Throwing a wild one here and hoping for some kind of feedback either negative or positive.

    Here you have my today 102½kg bench AMRAP and it is supposed to be paused but I can see that they might look a little questionable.

    My problem is - as you can see the 4th and 5th rep - that bar comes high on my body and I loose most of the control. I'm not if this happens because "stronger muscles" take over (I don't know what those might be) or if it's really a technical issue.

    So thank you in advance, and have at it!

    EDIT: Video fixed.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016
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  2. SteveX

    SteveX Nobody F*cks Wit Da Jesus

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    If you have the option, get a lift off. If not then I would start with the bar a bit closer to you to start and set the pins just high enough that you need only a tiny bit of elbow extension to clear the uprights. You're bringing the bar a long way and you're losing a lot of your tightness before the first rep even starts. You're also losing your scapula position.

    Can't tell how your elbow position looks from that angle, but I can tell you're not really engaging your lats enough. Think about bending the bar and firing your lats hard and get super tight before you start to lower the bar to your chest. That should help keep you in the groove a bit better.

    I would bring your feet a bit further back. If you prefer to keep the heels on the ground then go as far back as you can without the heels coming up. You want to think about driving your heels through the floor and squeezing your ass as tight as you can to make sure you're getting your leg drive and keeping your ass on the bench (not saying your's did from what I can tell, but I didn't see much leg drive going on either).

    I think the best bench press technique advice I ever got was that a solid bench set-up should be uncomfortable. You should be extremely tight the entire time and it isn't a fun experience.
     
  3. Thunderhead

    Thunderhead Assman Extraordinaire

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    It looks pretty decent to me, Kid. You've got a nice arch, your ass firmly planted on the bench, and your feet firmly planted on the ground.

    My bench is only 355, so I can't really give you any other useful insights here. Perhaps @JimRussel could lend some help?

    I like your sig, dude. "Are we the Hunted? No, we are the Hunters!" Jawohl!
     
  4. JimRussel

    JimRussel Purple Belt

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    You're setting up pretty far forward on the bench. That makes unracking the bar a struggle, as yours appeared to be in the video.

    You basically lost all your tightness when you unracked the bar and, once that happens, it's hard to get it back.

    You should essentially pulling the bar straight out horizontally. In the video, you press it up and back, and then pull it out with difficulty.

    How wide is your grip? It definitely looks like your slow point is off the chest. As you fatigue, the bar is probably drifting back and your elbows flaring as a way to get your triceps more involved.

    But, for you, I think a lot of it is nailing your setup so that you can maintain tightness throughout the set.
     
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  5. KidAlchemy

    KidAlchemy Purple Belt

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    I think this is something that I'm trying to do but failing in doing so. Also I just recently switched gyms so I'm still trying to get used to these racks.

    Now I know for a fact this is something that I usually forget to do so it's no surprise that you don't see it.

    That almost is as back as my mobility allows me to go and my lower body is pretty tight as I have to engage my hamstrings when I don't have the weight of the on top of me.

    The reason I have my heels on the ground is because I'm not sure if Finnish federations judge the bench (if it's heels down or what) so I'm just preparing myself. And I feel more leg drive with heels down anyway.

    Thanks, man! I'll make a list of what you said and bring it to my next bench session.
     
  6. KidAlchemy

    KidAlchemy Purple Belt

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    Thanks for lightning the J signal. He gave some really solid advice. And thanks in general man!
     
  7. KidAlchemy

    KidAlchemy Purple Belt

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    Thanks for pointing that out also. As I said I thought I was doing what you prescribed but fail to do so. Will find a sweet spot for this.

    Middle finger on the ring. You think it's too wide? Used to be pinkies on the rings.

    My slow/weak point is definitely off the chest and what you're saying makes a lot of sense.

    Thanks man! Really good stuff. As with Steve I'll make a list and bring it with me.
     
  8. JimRussel

    JimRussel Purple Belt

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    Honestly, just watch this. His first point is your big issue.

     
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  9. KidAlchemy

    KidAlchemy Purple Belt

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    Watched the video at the gym and tried it out. Helped out a lot and felt more in control.

    Thanks, man! Really do appreciate it.
     
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  10. JauntyAngle

    JauntyAngle International man of mystery

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    I suppose if you want to get "stronger" then you should listen to all these "experienced lifters" with their "knowledge of correct technique".

    But if you really want to perfect the fine art of benching you need look no further than the Swolediers Benching and Curling FAQ;

     
  11. PUO3

    PUO3 You are a can. Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    This was great. Well done.
     
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