August 28, 2023 3 min read
Barbell bench pressing is one of the best exercises for building strength and size in your chest, arms, and shoulders. It’s a classic exercise and should be part of any serious strength training program. But it can also be dangerous if not done correctly. That’s why it’s important to follow some simple tips when barbell bench pressing.Shop The Collection: Barbells
One of the most important tips for barbell bench pressing is to choose the right weight for your level of fitness. Beginners should start with an empty barbell to get the form down before gradually adding weight. A good rule of thumb is to increase the weight by no more than 10 percent each week. This gives the muscles time to adjust and prevents injury.Shop The Gear: CAP Barbell "THE BEAST" Olympic Bar, 1000-LB Capacity, 7-ft, $181.99 USD
Proper form is key to avoiding injury when bench pressing. Make sure your feet are flat on the floor, back is arched, and head is looking forward. Bring the elbows in close to your body and hold the bar with a slightly wider than shoulder-width grip. Lower the bar to your chest while maintaining control, then press it back up to the starting position.Shop The Collection: Weight Plates
It’s important to breathe correctly when barbell bench pressing. Exhale as you press the bar up and inhale as you lower it. This will help you maintain control and keep your core tight throughout the movement. Holding your breath can lead to dizziness or lightheadedness, so make sure to focus on proper breathing.Shop The Gear: CAP Barbell Olympic Solid Bar, 5-ft, from $108.99 USD
Always warm up before lifting. Start with dynamic stretches such as arm circles, bodyweight squats, and jumping jacks. This will prepare your muscles for the workout and reduce your risk of injury. You can also do a few practice sets with a lighter weight to get your body ready for the heavier weights.
Your technique is just as important as the amount of weight you are lifting. Make sure to keep your elbows tucked in close to your body, feet flat on the floor, and head looking forward. Focus on controlling the weight and maintaining proper form throughout the entire movement.
Take your time when bench pressing. Rushing through the movements can lead to sloppy form and potential injuries. Take a deep breath at the bottom of each rep and focus on controlling the weight up and down. Don't try to lift too much weight too soon; focus on perfecting your form first.
Using a spotter is a great way to ensure safety when bench pressing. Have them stand behind you and watch your form. If you get stuck at the bottom of the rep, they can help you lift the bar back up. Make sure the spotter knows what to do in case of an emergency.
Rest between sets to give your muscles time to recover and rebuild. Generally, 1-3 minutes of rest is recommended. This will also help you focus and prepare mentally for the next set. Remember, it’s not a race; take your time and focus on doing each set correctly.
Finally, always listen to your body when bench pressing. If something doesn’t feel right, stop and reassess your form. Don’t try to push through the pain; this can lead to serious injury. If you’re experiencing pain while bench pressing, stop and consult a doctor or physical therapist.
Barbell bench pressing is an effective exercise for building strength and size. But it must be done correctly to avoid injury. Following these tips will help you stay safe and get the most out of your workouts. With practice and consistency, you’ll be bench pressing with ease in no time.