When it comes to strength training, one of the primary upper-body chest exercises is the bench press. The primary muscles that are worked include the triceps brachii and pectoralis major with the anterior (front) deltoids, traps & back as secondary
muscles. But, done improperly, the bench press can cause you pain. Here’s how to bench press safely.
Make Sure You Use Your Legs
What many people don’t realize is – you need to also use your legs when you bench press. The more work you do with your lower body, the less strain your shoulders will endure. Start by spreading your feet wide when you lay down on the bench. Then, push your feet down into the floor. Start each rep by pushing through your feet to help move the bar off your chest.
Lock Your Shoulder Blades Onto the Bench
Pull your shoulder blades together and down, as if you’re “hugging” the bench with your shoulders. Then, keep your shoulders in this position while you lift the bar and lower it for each rep. This helps you to provide yourself with a stable base and a powerful platform to press from.
Don’t Grip The Bar Too Wide
The wider your grip, the more stress you put on your shoulders. You want to make sure your grip is shoulder width. You may want to mark the bar with tape so as you do each set, if you let go of the bar, you always re-grip it for the next set in the same position.
You Want To Pull The Bar Before You Push
Don’t just the the bar drop to your chest. Instead, flex your upper back muscles. This raises your chest higher and limits your range of motion. Then push yourself away from the bar, driving your upper back into the bench.
If you’re looking for a good bench press, Fitness 4 Home Superstore offers a wide variety of benches from a number of the fitness industries top manufactures. Stop into any of our three Valley locations to learn more!
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