Home   |   Contact   |   Help

Get Our Newsletter
Sign up for our free newsletter to get training tips and stay up to date on Catalyst Athletics, and get a FREE issue of the Performance Menu journal.

Go Back   Catalyst Athletics Forums > Training > Olympic Weightlifting

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-26-2009, 11:20 AM   #1
Brian Stone
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Norwich, CT
Posts: 502
Default Bench Press Technique

Being tall and having long levers, I've always struggled with making gains in bench press. in reading on this recently, I read that a big problem is elbow flaring with tall guys. In doing some research on this I eventually stumbled upon the following:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DP3g-I9Sf9s

What he says makes a lot of sense. So, for those with knowledge in this area, is this mostly a gimmick for increasing numbers for weight moved, which would mainly be useful for competitive lifters? My interest is in increasing strength generally, not in having an impressive number on the bar. I have no competitive aspirations on the horizon.

If, OTOH, this is healthier on the elbows / shoulders, mechanically advantageous and conducive to hypertrophy then I will incorporate the technique into my current lifting. Also, it seem that it could get around the tall guy problem of fatiguing stabilizers before obtaining desired large muscle stimulus due to the huge ROM, which would be useful to me.

Thoughts?
Brian Stone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2009, 11:35 AM   #2
Brian Stone
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Norwich, CT
Posts: 502
Default

One other point that might be worth mentioning here is that I have somewhat naturally starting doing this in my press, at least the elbow portion. Rather than keeping my elbows out directly below the point where my hands contact the bar, I tuck my elbows in and point them forward, which is more comfortable for me and has lent some strength and stability to the movement. Not sure if that is relevant.
Brian Stone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2009, 01:04 PM   #3
Steven Low
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,091
Default

Do it this way (aka the way you are supposed to do it).

Full body tension will give you better neural activation and lead to better strength/mass gains.

It's not like the extra ROM is going to be beneficial, at least from a shoulder health point of view. There's other things that would be more beneficial for more ROM like pullups and dips anyway.
__________________
Posts NOT intended as professional medical, training or nutrition advice.
Site // Bodyweight Strength Training Article // Overcoming Gravity Bodyweight Book
Steven Low is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2009, 07:30 PM   #4
Brian Stone
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Norwich, CT
Posts: 502
Default

Stevec, thanks for the reply.


Did this tonight when I did bench and noticed a few things. May be things that just come with time, but a few questions/observations:

1) I didn't feel a great deal of direct chest involvement at all. I had to use a slightly closer grip to bring my shoulders and elbows in tight, so I recruited triceps more

2) I had difficulty maintaining the position through all 5 reps, especially heavy. Puts decent strain on the lower back

3) Glutes and hams felt almost more tired than upper body from the lifts.


I would imagine, like the press, that this form becomes more comfortable and sustainable with time?
Brian Stone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2009, 08:02 PM   #5
Steven Low
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,091
Default

Yeah. Bench should be a full body exercise.. so if you're not used to the tension you will adapt.
__________________
Posts NOT intended as professional medical, training or nutrition advice.
Site // Bodyweight Strength Training Article // Overcoming Gravity Bodyweight Book
Steven Low is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2009, 03:19 AM   #6
Allen Yeh
Senior Member
 
Allen Yeh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 4,246
Default

Brian check out the T-nation article/video that Dave Tate did.

http://www.tmuscle.com/free_online_a...nch_press_cure
__________________
"And for crying out loud. Don't go into the pain cave. I can't stress this enough. Your Totem Animal won't be in there to help you. You'll be on your own. The Pain Cave is for cowards.
Pain is your companion, don't go hide from it."
-Kelly Starrett
Allen Yeh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2009, 05:09 AM   #7
Martin Bonn
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 210
Default

Hey,

first, Tate is excellent with powerlifting and he really knows his stuff! if i was a powerlifter/interested in having the biggest weight possible on the bar, i would go his way!
I'm also tall with long levers and i feel your pain!
let's also be clear that being strong and lifting the heaviest weight possible are not necessarily the same thing. you said you are after being strong.
i also agree with SL that you should have full bodytension whichever way you are doing the exercise.
BUT, i think that the powerlifting way is geared to lifting as much as possible (obviously) and you mentioned that you didn t feel as much chest involvement: well that s the case, because it uses your triceps heavily to cope with the large load.
i would prefer the way rippetoe teaches the bench if you are just after getting strong, i ve used it for a while and never had any shoulder problems. and you won t get them if your shoulder and elbow are aligned correctly.
but this is just my opinion, in the end you ve got to do what you feel gets you the most benefit, so if you want to try Tate’s way, go ahead! jut do what SL said and give it a proper go for a while so you can get used to the different positions!

best of luck!
__________________
Stats: 26yrs, 6'1'', 98.0kg
Snatch: 103kg
Clean & Jerk: 124kg
TOTAL: 227kg

__________________________________________
Log

Youtube
Martin Bonn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2009, 05:47 AM   #8
Brian Stone
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Norwich, CT
Posts: 502
Default

What Martin brings up is sort of my point in starting this. Steven mentioned that Dave's way is the "correct" way, and yet it's definitely a much different technique than that taught by Rippetoe (closer to the "standard" BP that Tate hates). As I'm interested in overall strength, I'm not concerned with looking more impressive at the gym or making a better PL total, as Tate seems to be suggesting is the primary motivation in the article.

It's noteworthy as well that the form Tate teaches in the video I linked and the one in Allen's article from him are not the same, which just adds to the confusion. I'm definitely concerned with keeping my shoulders healthy. Overall, I really just feel like Tate's technique is so different that it's practically a different exercise; it's closer to a decline BP than a flat BP.
__________________
"Use what talents you possess: the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." —Henry Van Dyke

log
Brian Stone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2009, 09:42 AM   #9
Gavin Harrison
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 263
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Stone View Post
I would imagine, like the press, that this form becomes more comfortable and sustainable with time?
I've heard high level powerlifters say that if you're comfortable at all while bench pressing, that you're doing it wrong.
Gavin Harrison is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2009, 12:53 PM   #10
Charles Bean
New Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 2
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Stone View Post
What Martin brings up is sort of my point in starting this. Steven mentioned that Dave's way is the "correct" way, and yet it's definitely a much different technique than that taught by Rippetoe (closer to the "standard" BP that Tate hates). As I'm interested in overall strength, I'm not concerned with looking more impressive at the gym or making a better PL total, as Tate seems to be suggesting is the primary motivation in the article.

It's noteworthy as well that the form Tate teaches in the video I linked and the one in Allen's article from him are not the same, which just adds to the confusion. I'm definitely concerned with keeping my shoulders healthy. Overall, I really just feel like Tate's technique is so different that it's practically a different exercise; it's closer to a decline BP than a flat BP.
This is kind of the point. We're stronger in a decline bp both because of reduced ROM and because of better leverages. The better leverages part is the one you should be concerned with. Taking advantage of those better leverages to allow heavier and heavier pounds (once your form adapts and you feel more comfortable) will keep putting progressive overload on not only the big primary movers but also the RC, ant. serrratus, and other stabilizers. Also, by adopting that setup you'll be strengthening and developing better control over some muscles that are often weakened in most people like the lower traps and rhomboids.

And, as has already been said, benching that way should serve to keep your shoulders relatively healthy long-term and allow you to do more work, which is after all the goal.
Charles Bean is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:41 AM.

Powered by vBulletin Version 3.6.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Subscribe to our Newsletter


Receive emails with training tips, news updates, events info, sale notifications and more.
ASK GREG

Submit your question to be answered by Greg Everett in the Performance Menu or on the website

Submit Your Question
WEIGHTLIFTING TEAM

Catalyst Athletics is a USA Weightlifting team of competitive Olympic-style weightlifters with multiple national team medals.

Read More
Olympic Weightlifting Book
Catalyst Athletics
Contact Us
About
Help
Newsletter
Products & Services
Gym
Store
Seminars
Weightlifting Team
Performance Menu
Magazine Home
Subscriber Login
Issues
Articles
Workouts
About the Program
Workout Archives
Exercise Demos
Text Only
Instructional Content
Exercise Demos
Video Gallery
Free Articles
Free Recipes
Resources
Recommended Books & DVDs
Olympic Weightlifting Guide
Discussion Forum
Weight Conversion Calculator