Bench press

Bench press is one of the three great lifts with squat and deadlift, and how much you bench is probably one of the first questions you get asked, when you tell you are lifting.

However, bench press is not just bench press as there are quite a few variations, and bench press can by performed with barbell and dumbbell as well as in a smith rack.

No matter how you do it, bench press is a lift for the pectorals and secondary your triceps and shoulders (delts) at least if you do it right.

Which part of your muscle you hit the most depends on your grip, as a narrower grip for instance works your triceps and forearms more than a wider grip.

No matter if you are an advanced lifter or a newbie always lift with a spotter and/or safety bars as you risk severely injurie if you lose the bar, and it falls on you. Just look at the Internet, there are many, many videos showing just how dangerous this is.

The traditional bench presses variations are.

  • Flat bench / Traditional bench press. This is the traditional bench press, and it is done while lying on a flat bench and pressing a barbell or dumbbells up and down at chest height. This Variation works the pectoral muscles, shoulders, and arms. To get most of the exercise lower the bar slowly and not just hammer it down.
  • Incline bench press. This variation is done on a bench which is normally angled between 45 and 60 degrees. While lying on the bench you are leaning backwards you are declined according to the angle you have chosen. This exercise targets muscles of the upper chest and shoulders and as with the regular bench press lower the bar slowly.
  • Decline bench press. This variation is the opposite of the incline bench press above, so you are lying down with the feet in a higher position than your head. This exercise primarily works the lower chest muscles and shoulders.
  • Narrow grip bench press. This differs from the traditional bench press in the way that your hands are narrower together on the barbell. It primarily works the triceps and forearms.

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You might also want to try bench press with dumbbels:

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