This article is not for Powerlifters, nor anyone else whose primary emphasis is the “amount” of weight lifted. You see, the pectoral muscle originates at the center of the rigcage – the sternum – and crosses the front of the shoulder, and connects to the upper part of the upper arm (the humerus). Building Muscle With the Vertical Chest Press, The Muscles Worked on a Lateral Bench Press. The close grip bench press is a superior movement when we’re talking about exercises that will pack mass onto your triceps. The decline bench press can be an effective exercise to improve the development of your lower pecs. You’ve probably spoken to someone who “swears” by the bench press – in terms of his pectoral development (… even if that person happens to have a “mysterious” shoulder pain). These pressing exercises also involve your deltoids (shoulder) and trapezius (base of neck) to stabilize your body and the weight during your lift. Think about it. Actually, the pectoral muscle brings the arm slightly past the mid-line of the body (where your nose points when looking straight ahead), crossing over to the opposite side by a few inches. Let’s assume – for just a moment – that the bench press really is the “King of chest exercises” – as it has been called. Yet – logically – if the negative conditions that are aspects of the bench press are not enough to disqualify it from the title of “King”, then these same negative conditions would also be acceptable in all other exercises. Also, the position of the muscle should be directly opposite the resistance (i.e., if the resistance pulls from below, the muscle must be positioned opposite the downward resistance – therefore directly above, so as to be able to pull upwards, directly opposite the downward pull). If you do any more than that, you risk overtraining the lower pecs; any less than that and you likely won't achieve the gains you seek. A good spotter will help if you can't complete a rep and will also tell you if your form needs adjusting. The decline bench press is one of the best exercises for the lower pecs, but you might want to switch up your chest day here and there. The below rating is an average estimation, at best. You don't need a declined angle on the bench to engage the lower portion of the pecs. Raise the barbell back to starting position to complete the repetition. Kilograms (kg) Pounds (lb) Age Range. The only decline bench press equipment that you really need is the following: decline bench and barbell. In other words, the bench presses misses the point of contraction by long-shot ! Basically, any chest exercise that brings both hands together at the center of the body, is good from the perspective of a full contraction of the pectorals. Some people would argue that the triceps involvement in the bench press is a good thing. It satisfies our egos, and – mistakenly – causes us to believe that it must be more beneficial for our pectoral muscles, as compared with using dumbbells, because we are able to use a heavier weight. German Volume Training. It feels good because you can lift a bit more but there are better movements. The movement will also indirectly target the muscles of the chest and shoulders. First of all, let’s establish that this article is specifically FOR those whose primary goal is to work the chest – or pectoral – muscles. The excessive stretch would be outside the “safe” range of motion, referenced above. What we (the weight lifting community – personally, I was not around yet) discovered in the early 1900s, was that we were able to lift a fairly heavy weight when using a bar, as compared with using individual, hand-held weights. Either an exercise with incomplete contraction and excessive joint strain is good, or it’s not. $57.00. Doing it this way would magnify the force of the muscle pulling the humerus forward, and could easily damage shoulder cartilage, if not fully dislocate the shoulder. I’m sure you get the point. actually … Ironically, we not only accept the bench press, despite those two negative factors. Would we accept these conditions with other exercises, for other body parts? Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 27-Jan-2017, 10:10 AM #3. stevesmi . The reason you are able to use a heavier weight is NOT because your pecs are working harder. Flat benches tend to activate the whole pectoral, decline benches the lower pectorals and incline benches the upper pectorals. Serious Strength Training; Tudor O. Bompa, et al. It just emphasizes that area. If you oiled up a pair of dumbbells, you would still be able to perform your chest press without any sliding, because that movement involves very little (if any) triceps (… especially if you keep your forearm perpendicular throughout the movement). Decline Barbell Bench Press. Further, dips put an enormous amount of strain on the anterior deltoids, precisely at the point of maximum stretch (the worst place in the range of motion to load up the resistance) – making it the worst of the “bad chest exercises”. His work has been published by the Santa Fe Writers Project, "DASH Literary Journal," the "Inland Valley Daily Bulletin" and WiseGEEK. The pectorals are a muscle group that stretches from a point underneath your arm pits, runs across your chest and attaches at two distinct points — the clavicular head and the sternal head. Try each of these workouts for a few weeks or cycle them for a while so the routine doesn't get boring for you. Gender ♂ Male ♀ Female . So, the contraction of the muscle occurs somewhere near the center, or past the center, of the body. Let’s first examine the Path of the bench press. Ending Jan 27 at 10:08PM PST 5d 23h. You must be logged in to post a comment In other words, it’s bad enough to bring the bar so low, while lowering a heavy weight slowly; it is much worse if you just let the weight fall quickly to your chest, and then suddenly reverse that downward inertia with an explosion out of the bottom. Don’t believe me? The novice can benefit from the triceps stimulation, without risking a shoulder injury, because the weight he or she would be using is relatively light. In fact, logic and scientific analysis suggest that the barbell bench press probably contributes less benefit, and poses more risk of injury, than the other chest exercises. Now that we have covered form, why to do declines, and safety, let's work them into your chest workout. 20 bids. And you’ve probably also read articles endorsing and encouraging use of the bench press. Use heavy, progressive sets on the flat bench to work out all segments of your pectorals. Decline Dumbbell Bench Press End. Weighted dips. The bench press tends to be more of a linear movement, pushing the hands forward and OUTWARD. Now imagine doing this type of joint distortion with a very heavy weight, and with a sudden reversal of the downward inertia. decline bench press definition in the English Cobuild dictionary for learners, decline bench press meaning explained, see also 'into decline',in decline/on the decline',deadline',decibel', English vocabulary To target the lower chest, which gives you a distinct cut of the lower border of the pectorals, one of the best exercises is the decline press. Typically, we are expected to bring the bar down until it touches our chest. Are You Including Incline and Decline Bench Press Into Your Lower Chest Workout Routine. 3. In no other circumstance, would we “happily” start a movement with joint strain, and then avoid contraction of the muscle. Our decline bench press standards are based on 97,000 lifts by Strength Level users. Additionally, the decline is equal, or perhaps a tad superior (when you take into consideration the greater stimulation on the eccentric part of the movement) to building the upper part of the pec. This would be considered a severe mechanical disadvantage. Dec 16, 2015 Men's Health. Thus, even the clavicular or upper fibers of the pecs contract to push the bar up from a decline position. Let’s look at the other end of the range of motion – the point of muscle elongation. Step 4: Once you have assumed a deep and stretched position in the bottom of the decline bench press, press the … Gender ♂ Male ♀ Female . – and then only coming up half-way. The pectoral muscle, at that point, would be pulling the upper arm in a forward direction, rather than an inward direction. The lower pecs can also be engaged with specific exercise. Although you may “feel” strong, it is unrelated to the actual stimulation that your pectoral muscle is experiencing. Therefore, there is no alignment problem with the bench press. One of the best exercises that can help develop the lower pecs is the chest dip. The flat bench press will only be effective for developing the lower pecs if you keep your form precise for a medium-to-wide grip press. ADJUSTABLE WEIGHT BENCH PRESS BARBELL RACK EXERCISE STRENGTH TRAINING WORKOUT. Shall I go on? I recently heard that you can lift more doing decline bench press than flat bench press. Re: Why some say decline bench press is useless? The risk of injury could be dramatically reduced, simply by stopping short of having the bar touch your chest (stopping when your arms are parallel to the ground) – but then the range of motion would be even shorter, and the exercise would come no closer to achieving a pectoral contraction. Hit the floor to press bigger numbers and build a bigger upper body . To a degree, the bench press conforms with the correct path of the pectoral muscle. Because that is the direction that your triceps are pushing. The additional weight you are able to lift on the barbell bench press is due entirely to the added stability of the bar, and the help of the triceps. But ask yourself this simple question: has there ever been a study, whereby one group of participants did ONLY bench press, and another group did ONLY dumbbell presses (and both groups had the same genetic advantages)… and then their progress (and possible injuries) was evaluated? First, the ego has no relationship with physiology. Many people neglect the Decline Bench Press because the regular Bench Press built their chest to an extent that they are proud of. Imagine doing a heavy preacher barbell curl, starting at the point where your arms are fully straight (at the bottom) – essentially hyper-extending your elbow (ouch!) In fact, typically we can barbell bench press between a third, and twice as much, as the aggregate amount of two separate dumbbells. No Back Stress: A common mistake of the flat barbell bench press that we have all seen and witnessed in almost any gym is arching the back in order to shift more weight. What Are the Benefits of "Decline Fly" Exercises? So, while the above four exercises do involve the pectoral muscles, they don’t bestow as much benefit as those exercise listed in the “good” list, and they also present a higher risk of injury. One of the most common ways to work the lower strip of the pectoral muscles, which are tough to work, involves using a declined weight bench and performing decline bench presses … Slowly bend your elbows and lower yourself as far as possible. Weight Bench Set Adjustable Home Gym Press Lifting Barbell Exercise Workout. Alignment: the concentric movement should be in direct opposition to the resistance (for example… pushing upward as gravity pulls downward… or pulling horizontally to the left, as the resistance pulls horizontally to the right). The reason for this is something known as “mechanical advantage” and “mechanical disadvantage”. This assumes the overall goal of either “bodybuilding” or “fitness”. The Decline Bench Press differs from the traditional Bench Press in that the bench has been lowered—or "declined"—to a lower angle, typically between 15 and 30 degrees. The decline bench is a device that will be used by the user while they are seated most of the time. It offers stability – like training wheels – which allows the user to begin gaining some strength, as well as a sense of coordination. And, here are the ones that would not qualify as “good” for the chest, given the above criteria: As you can see, the above four exercises are the ones that fail to bring the hands together, which would allow full contraction of the pectoral muscles. Millions of people have done it, world-wide, for the past 50+ years. About Jess Billitz. It’s been called the “King of Chest Exercises”. Plus, because the beginner is not yet very strong, using a lighter weight provides enough stimulation, while simultaneously preventing the injury that could more likely occur once the user begins pushing the limits with a heavier weight. Others swear by it, and we’re talking world class body builders and strong men. Today, we’ll be covering the... Get to Know Creatine Supplements What is Creatine? 2. By performing any combination of the exercises on this list, you can get more out of your chest day and build stronger lower pec muscles. But which chest press is the most effective: the incline or the flat bench chest press? The Decline Bench Press is an excellent exercise for your entire chest, not just your lower chest. However, as the user graduates to a more advanced level, incorporating a contraction into his/her chest exercises becomes more important. You may also work out all of the other upper-body muscles along with your chest, or you may focus on just a select few muscles, like the shoulders and triceps. Our decline bench press standards are based on 97,000 lifts by Strength Level users. $119.99 to $227.99. The contraction is an important part of that “effective/productive” range of motion. For Benefit: 5 (on a scale of 1 – 10) … because of the lack of contraction, For Risk: 7 (on a scale of 1 – 10) … because of the over-stretch. Imagine doing a heavy leg curl, starting at a point where your legs are completely straight, but still with a full load (weights not resting) – straining a backward bend of your knees (ouch!) Any “good” exercise – whether for the development of the pectorals, or biceps, or quadriceps – typically has the following characteristics, which are considered “essential”: Path: the exercise movement must follow the path specifically determined by the muscle’s function (i.e. Filed Under: Exercises. If I tried to do more flat or incline variations I wouldn't get the volume I want. $39.99 shipping. Of course, the other two categories mentioned in the second paragraph are still required – namely, that the movement follow the correct path, and that the alignment be correct. Yet, the bench press movement ends much short of that. For beginners, the bench press is fine. Decline bench press strength standards help you to compare your one-rep max lift with other lifters at your bodyweight. Assuming that most of the Iron Man Magazine readers are at least “semi-advanced”, this rating is more designed with that particular candidate in mind (… novice users would have a point or two higher benefit score, as well as two or three points lower on the risk score). This would imply that it’s the very best exercise for the pecs, despite the fact that it misses the point of full contraction (by over a foot), and despite the fact that it strains the joint at the bottom of the movement. Incline bench presses will develop the upper portion, while flat bench presses and chest flyes will develop the middle portion. Slowly raise yourself back to the starting position. Kilograms (kg) Pounds (lb) Age Range. Male Decline Bench Press … In a decline position, all fibers—including the clavicular fibers—are stretched at the bottom position of the decline chest press. Typically, people do both, possibly along with using cables and machines. Let’s take a closer look, and see what we find. Some say it’s not anywhere as good as the flat or incline alternatives. Bobby R. Goldsmith is a writer and editor with over 12 years of experience in journalism, marketing and academics. Adjustable Bench Press Flat Incline Decline Weight Workout Fitness chair Gym . As you can see, the above four exercises are the ones that fail to bring the hands together, which would allow full contraction of the pectoral muscles. In the second study, authors noted that 6-RM bench press strength decreased roughly 25% in an athlete’s incline press and around 18% in the decline. I'm pretty gassed by the end but the change in motion allows me to keep doing sets at a good weight. The development we see on someone is due to the combination of exercises (… and genetics is a factor as well). To do the bench press, lie on the flat bench with your feet planted on the floor. Dumbbell decline bench. With that in mind, let’s analyze what characterizes a “good” chest exercise, and see how the bench press rates. There’s really no right or wrong answer. Next, let’s look at Alignment. Unlike the flat bench press the decline does not allow you to rest the bar on your chest. The decline close grip bench press is a variation of the close grip bench press and an exercise used to build muscle and strength in the triceps. In fact, it stops about a foot short of that (assuming a standard width grip on the bar). But that is a false belief. Try putting some baby oil on the bar before doing a set of bench presses. This means that your upper arm bone is being pulled in a direction that is encouraging it to dislocate. Why do we so happily accept that dual condition with a bench press? Flat bench heavy. 5 Ways to Bench Press without a Bench. How to Increase Bench Press Weight by 20 Pounds Per Month. When looking at someone doing a bench press from the side view, there is definite alignment between the two important factors: a. Parallel Bar Dips. The fact is that when we hear endorsements of the bench press, they are usually based on the misguided belief that – since it’s the exercise that allows the heaviest weight to be lifted – it must be the “most important” of the chest exercises (so it is thought). 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