Using Bench Press Chains

There are certain techniques you can use to gain strength on the bench press. These include forced reps, negative only reps, and training your weakest part of a bench press rep. There is another great technique you can try that involves using bench press chains.

For many weight trainers, the toughest part of a bench press rep is the point where they lift the bar off of their chests after lowering it. For most of us, the easiest part of a rep is the last few inches, also known as the lockout. If you’ve ever tried a partial bench press repetition (just performing the lockout portion of the lift), you could almost certainly use a lot more weight than you can for a full rep. Using bench press chains will allow the overall weight you are lifting to get lighter as you lower the barbell, and heavier as you lift it.

Bench press chains are basically heavy chains attached to collars that you can put on each side of a barbell after you’ve put weights on it. When the barbell is one the rack or at arm length, only a small portion of the chains are on the floor. As you lower the barbell to your chest, more of the chains pile on the floor – which decreases the overall amount of weight. As you lift the barbell the chains come up off of the floor – which increases the overall amount. This means that when you are using bench press chains you will be lifting less weight at your weakest part of a rep, and more weight at your strongest part of a rep.

You can take advantage of using bench press chains to get stronger on the bench. With the change in resistance through a rep, you’ll be challenged throughout the entire lift. Try a couple of sets with the chains added to the barbell and you will feel the difference.

Bench Pressing On A Smith Machine

While the classic free weight bench press is one of the top muscle builders, there may come a time where you decide to try doing them on the Smith machine. This could be for a multitude of reasons, including safety and lack of equipment. My gym doesn’t have an incline barbell bench and there isn’t always someone around to spot, so I started doing most of my benching on the Smith machine.

To bench press in a Smith machine you just need to put a flat or incline bench that you would use for dumbbell work under the bar in the machine. If you want to do flat and incline benching, you should use an adjustable bench. Proper bench placement in the Smith machine is important for an even grip and to lower the weight to the proper place, so do a low weight set or two to make sure you are in proper position. Smith machine bench pressing is also great for safety, as you can set stoppers to where you want to lower the weight to.

Bench pressing on a Smith machine will force you to push the weight up in a fixed straight up and down plane of motion. Small stabilizing muscles won’t have to work as hard because of this. I like to do some sets of dumbbell benching after working on the Smith machine to get some free weight work in.

Smith machine bench pressing workouts should be set up the same way as free weight bench workouts. Make sure to include exercises from multiple angles (flat, incline, decline) to hit the pecs hard.

Dumbbell Bench Presses

The barbell bench press is very likely the most popular exercise for weight trainers to perform. Dumbbell bench presses are usually saved for later in a chest workout. However, in certain circumstances, bench pressing with dumbbells has its advantages.

If you want to work out at home, but don’t have a barbell at this time, you can still get an excellent bench workout with a pair of dumbbells. It would be preferable to have adjustable dumbbells, but some heavy fixed ones will certainly do the job. As long as you have something to work with, you can get a good workout in.

One great thing about bench pressing with dumbbells is that you can get a deeper stretch at the bottom of each rep. When you bench with a barbell, you are limited in how deep you can go because the bar will hit your chest. With dumbbells, you can get a nice deep stretch on every rep. You can also move the dumbbells closer together as you lift them, which will help you get a strong contraction in the muscles. When you do dumbbell bench presses, you are certainly less limited and one side can’t overcompensate for the other.

A good dumbbell bench press routine can be set up by doing flat dumbbell bench presses, followed by inclines and dumbbell flyes. The amount of reps you should do depends on the amount of weight you have available. If you have enough weight, do some heavier sets of 8-12 reps. If you have lighter weights, do high reps. Either way you’ll get the benefits of weight training. Do enough sets to get a good workout without overdoing it, and make sure to be fully recovered before your next dumbbell bench press workout.

10 x 10 Bench Press Workout

When you want to get stronger on the bench press, you should train to failure and use heavy weights for the most part. However, there will come a time when your bench press workouts get stale. This could be a point where you hit a plateau and your same old, same old workouts get boring. This is a good time to try a different type of bench workout to give your body a new challenge. One great workout to try is the 10 X 10 bench press workout.

To do a 10 X 10 bench press workout you take the amount of weight that you can do 20 reps to failure on for a set and do 10 sets of 10 reps with it with one minute of rest between each set. The first few sets will be relatively easy and you’ll be ready for your next set after the one minute rest period. Once you get to the middle sets, you’ll start to really feel it, and those rest periods will seem to go by much quicker. By the last few sets, you may very well have a tough time getting all 10 reps per set and your pecs will be burning. The 10 sets of 10 bench press workout will certainly work your pecs hard and it won’t take very long to do. Expect deep soreness that will last a few days.

A 10 X 10 bench press workout can be done on either a flat or incline bench. It’s can also be done with either a barbell or a pair of dumbbells. This workout is especially great to do if you have some dumbbells because you won’t have to change the weight between sets.

The 10 sets of 10 bench press workout isn’t necessarily something you’ll want to do all of the time. It’s best used when you’ve grown bored with your normal workouts and want to try something different for a few weeks. You’ll be able to work your muscles in a different way and possibly get more fired up for your workouts again.

Incline Bench Press Workouts

While it’s obvious that the flat bench press is the most popular chest exercise there is, it’s not a good idea to neglect incline bench presses. If you are trying to improve your physique, you should build the upper pecs for proper proportions in your chest. This means performing intense incline bench press workouts.

While most weight trainers will perform incline bench press workouts after they do flat bench pressing, sometimes you should start with the inclines. This is especially true if you have overdeveloped your lower pecs in comparison to your upper pecs. When you start your chest workouts with incline work, you’ll give your upper pecs a chance to catch up for better proportions.

As far as strength training goes, you’ll need to perform incline bench workouts to help increase flat bench press strength. Every muscle in the chest area needs to be as strong as possible for a bigger bench press, and this includes the upper pecs.

The best incline bench press workouts will include both barbells and dumbbells. After you do some heavy barbell work, you can do some inclines with dumbbells to get a deeper stretch in the upper pecs.

Here is a sample incline press workout:

2 sets of incline bench presses for 6 to 8 reps

2 sets of incline dumbbell presses for 10 to 12 reps

Continue with the rest of your chest workout

As you become a more seasoned lifter, you should try making changes to your incline bench press workouts. This includes switching the amount of reps you do for your sets. You can mix it and train both fast and slow twitch muscle fibers by switching between high and low reps every other workout.

No matter how you set up your chest routine, incline bench press workouts should always be part of them.

How To Bench Press 300 Pounds

As you get stronger on the bench press, you’ll reach many milestones. 200 pounds is an achievable goal for just about anybody. After that, every 25 pounds is another big milestone. However, the bench press weight that really separates the men from the boys is 300 pounds. It is attainable for most of us, but it will take some intense strength training to get there. If you want to know how to bench press 300 pounds, there are some things you should do.

A big part of succeeding in your quest of how to bench 300 pounds is to make small gains regularly. When you train heavy, you need to always try to add a little weight or do an extra rep. You won’t get a strength increase during every single bench workout, but it will happen often enough if you train and rest properly. These small gains will add up over time to big ones.

When you want to know how to bench press 300 pounds, you also need to strengthen the muscles that assist the pecs while performing the exercise. If your front deltoids and triceps muscles are strong, you’ll be able to push more weight while benching. It’s a good idea to train the chest, shoulders, and triceps together as part of a “push-pull” strength training routine.

There are some great techniques you can use if you want to bench press 300 pounds. One of these techniques is to strengthen your weakest point on a bench press rep. To do this you can set up a bench in a squat rack to do just that part of a repetition. Whether you have the most trouble getting the bar off of your chest or at the lockout, you can use this technique.

Another technique to try if you want to learn how to bench press 300 pounds is to use a heavier weight for some partial reps or do negative only reps if possible. A reason that it seems so hard to reach 300 pounds on the bench for some of us is all in our heads. You may have gotten up to 290 or 295, but your mind could be forcing you to not hit 300 because it just seems like so much, even though it’s not much more than what you can do. Doing partials or negative reps (with a spotter on each side of the bar) allows you to use heavier weights than 300 and can help you wrap your mind around actually doing a full rep with that much weight. Also, the weight will seem lighter after getting a feel for heavier weights.

One thing you have to keep in mind when you want to know how to bench press 300 is proper exercise form. You’ve likely seen guys at the gym bench press a lot of weight while using sloppy form. This can lead to injury and should be avoided. Keep using proper bench press form as you get stronger so you hit a 300 pound bench the right way.

If you do all of these things you will finally know how to bench press 300 lbs. Once you reach this goal, you can go ahead and set a new one.

Bench Press Drop Sets

At some point, your bench press workouts may become stale. Everybody hits a plateau where they don’t get strength and size gains at some. When this happens to you, you can try to make changes to your bench press routine. Using some intensity boosting techniques should help you break through your plateau and help you reach new highs on your bench. There are various things you can do to make your bench workouts more intense. One of the best is to do bench press drop sets.

In the simplest terms, to do bench press drop sets you do a set of bench until failure, then quickly drop the weight and continue to rep out until failure. This is easier said than done, since it takes a little time to take weights off each side of a barbell. This can be made easier by putting smaller weights on the barbell that equal the amount of weight you want to drop (if you’re going to drop the weight by 50 pounds, use 25 pound weights on each side). You can also have a spotter or two quickly take off weights for you so you can start lifting again.

A better option may be to use dumbbells while performing bench press drop sets. You can gather all of the weights you’ll use during a drop set and once you go to failure you easily go to the lighter dumbbells.

You can use bench press drop sets while benching on a flat, incline, or decline bench. Trying them on different exercises will allow you hammer the pecs from all angles.

If you want you can do more than one weight drop while doing bench press drop sets. If you do this you want need to do as many overall sets. In fact, if you decide to do drop sets on the bench press you have to try to avoid overtraining. Drop sets will take a lot of you, so be sure to get plenty of rest and recovery before the nest time you do them.

You may not to do bench press drop sets all of the time, but they are great if you want to give your intensity level a kick. They also make for great finishers to a chest workout.

Incline Bench Press Tips

The flat bench press is definitely the king of chest exercises. However, for overall strength and size in the pectoral muscles, you also need to make the incline bench press part of your exercise routine. This exercise will put the focus on your upper pecs, which is excellent for the muscularity of your upper body. To take advantage of this great exercise, you should check out these incline bench press tips.

If you’ve been lifting for a while, and do more sets of flat bench presses than you do of inclines, it’s possible that you have overdeveloped lower pecs as compared to the upper pecs. This can cause a droopy appearance in the chest, which certainly won’t enhance the look of your physique. If this is the case for you, one of the best incline bench press tips is to start your chest workouts with them rather than flat benches. Doing this will help your upper pecs catch up to the lower pecs. In fact, you may want to do incline work for your chest for the majority of your sets, with just 2 or 3 dedicated to the flat bench. Your upper body will look much better once you’ve developed the upper pecs to the proper proportions.

Another great incline bench press tip is to learn proper form on the exercise. The incline press is done much like the flat bench (pop your pecs out by pulling in your shoulder blades, don’t raise your butt off the bench, and avoid dropping the weight on your chest to bounce it up), but the angle does change the exercise. You will really need to stretch your upper pec/shoulder area before you do incline presses to avoid injury. The proper angle is also very important. Another thing about many incline benches is that the it can be tough to get the bar off the rack. Having a spotter aid you with this is the best option.

Training with high intensity is also one of the top incline press tips. To get those muscles bigger and stronger you need to go all out after you’ve warmed up. If possible, you can have a spotter help you get some forced reps. While you want to train hard, you do need to avoid overdoing it. With intense training, you can do less during each workout and still get as much out of it.

You will want to make changes to your workouts to continually build muscle and strength. This holds true for upper pectoral exercises as well. While you only have so many options as far as upper chest exercises go (incline presses with a barbell or dumbbells), there are other changes you can make. One of the best incline bench press tips is to switch the rep ranges you use from workout to workout.

Keep at it with these incline bench tips and you will get strength and size you’ve been looking for in the upper pecs.

Increasing Bench Press Max

There isn’t a weight training exercise that people will try to find out how much they can lift for one rep on as much as the bench press. For competitive powerlifters it’s a must to increase bench press max. However, even average weight trainers will test their strength for one rep on the bench press every now and then. The biggest reasons for this are that many people will ask how much you can bench if you look like you lift weights and it’s an easy exercise to max out on – all you need is a spotter watching you. Whatever the case, increasing bench press max is a major goal for many weight trainers.

One key to increasing your bench press one rep max is to use proper form on the exercise. This doesn’t mean that you should keep your back perfectly flat when you bench. Of course, it also doesn’t mean that you should raise your hips up off of the bench to greatly decrease the distance you have to lift the weight. You can decrease the distance you have to lift the weight by pulling your shoulder blades inward and contracting the upper back muscles. You can also keep a natural arch in your back while keeping your rear end on the bench. This is actually the most efficient way to bench press as you’ll focus more of the resistance on the pecs. Doing this will certainly help you at increasing bench press max.

One technique you can use to increase bench press max is to identify which part of a rep you are weakest on and do some sets focusing on just that area. Do you have trouble when you first start lifting the weight off of your chest? Do you have a problem locking out the weight at the top? You can remedy either of these problems by doing bench press sets in a squat rack with stoppers set up that force you to only do partial reps that focus on your weakest point. Strengthening your weak point on a rep will certainly help you succeed at increasing your bench press maximum.

There is a mental aspect to increasing bench press max. Say your goal is to bench 300 pounds. You have been able to bench 295 for a while, but just can’t seem to get 300 whenever you try it. One day, you do your usual 295, but when you look at the weight you realize that you actually had 300 or 305 on the bar. You just broke 300 without knowing it. Your mind couldn’t get around the number 300 – it was all in your head. This happens to many lifters when they get to those ‘milestone’ weights. You may even find that your max weight starts going up again when you finally break one of these milestones.

Another way to increase bench press max is to get your body used to heavier weights. You can put on a weight that’s 10 pounds more than your max and have a spotter assist you for a rep. If you have a spotter to watch each side of the bar you can even try some negative only reps. To do these you slowly lower a very heavy weight to your chest and have the spotters lift it off of you. This will allow your body to ‘feel’ super heavy weight and could make it easier for you when you try increasing bench press one rep max.

Work on your benching techniques and always try to do just a little bit more weight. With some hard work, you’ll be able to reach your goal of increasing bench press max. If you want to increase your bench press max by as much as 50 lbs. you should check out Critical Bench.

How To Gain Bench Press Strength

The vast majority of men who weight train want to know how to gain bench press strength. It’s certainly the most popular exercise to do, so most of us want be able to push up a big weight on it. Also, people are bound to ask you how much you can bench if they know you lift weights. when you consider these things, you should realize that it’s about time to learn how to gain bench press strength.

The first step to gaining bench press strength is to learn how to properly perform the exercise. You don’t just lie on a bench and push a weight up. You also shouldn’t use too much weight and end up cheating. To perform the bench press properly you should pull your shoulder blades when you lie on the bench to pop your pecs out so the weights resistance is more focused on them. Then, as you lower the weight you should lower it slowly and under control. Dropping the weight too quickly can lead to injury.

When you want to know how to gain bench press strength you also need to set up a routine that will allow you to train hard and get enough rest to build muscle size and strength. Gaining mass and strength requires intense training and enough rest between workouts no matter what muscle you’re talking about. When it comes to increasing bench press strength this also holds true. Train hard when you bench, and then make sure to get plenty of rest so you are ready to rock the next time you do a bench workout. This means you should take a few days between bench workouts, depending on how much work you do during each workout.

There are some techniques that can help you if you’re learning how to gain bench pressing strength. One is to strengthen the area where you are at your weakest on the bench press. This means that if you have trouble getting the bar off of your chest, you should try do partial reps focusing only on that part of a rep. You can do this in rack to stop the weight a few inches above your chest. You can do the same type of thing if you have trouble locking out.

Making regular changes in your bench workouts is a good idea when you want to know how to increase bench press strength. You can change the order of the exercises you do, like doing incline bench presses before flat benches. You can try different rep ranges. Anything that can keep your pectoral muscles guessing will help you avoid a plateau in your benching strength.

As you can see there are plenty of things you can do to answer the question of how to gain bench press strength. Keep at it, and your chances of success will be that much better.