Best for raising Bench

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    Best for raising Bench


    I am working out at a Gym in a deployed location and I don't have a spotter all the time. I am trying to raise my bench 1 rp max to around 275 or so ( now at 245) but because of a lack of spotter, I think I psych myself out on a free weight bench press.


    Would it be better to use a restricted squat machine and bench with that? OR go to dumbbell press?

    haha my chest is growing but I stay at the same number.. I think I am worried about going up in weight or something.

    thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsypher View Post
    I am working out at a Gym in a deployed location and I don't have a spotter all the time. I am trying to raise my bench 1 rp max to around 275 or so ( now at 245) but because of a lack of spotter, I think I psych myself out on a free weight bench press.


    Would it be better to use a restricted squat machine and bench with that? OR go to dumbbell press?

    haha my chest is growing but I stay at the same number.. I think I am worried about going up in weight or something.

    thanks
    If you want to increase your strength on bench, then bench. If you don't have a spotter, try doing half to three-quarter reps with the heavier weight until you can do complete reps - this has personally helped me re strength when I have no one available to use as a spotter and want to lift heavier. Using dumbbells is NOT the same as using a barbell and that strength will not necessarily transfer to when you go to using a barbell, especially since it is a unilateral exercise. Try also using LOWER reps - like 1-5 reps, even 1-3 reps; and have longer recovery periods - 3-5 minutes between sets.

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    Some people bench under a squat rack if they don't have a spotter.

    I think someone called it "benching from the pins"? I think that's what they were talking about.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Killerkanadia View Post
    Some people bench under a squat rack if they don't have a spotter.
    ^^^Or you can do that. Lie on the floor and use the POWER rack, making sure you have the bars on either side set so that if you fail with a rep, then the barbell doesn't fall on you.

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    You could always start off on a smith. Your stabilizers aren't engaged but you can go heavy as hell, keep solid form and just work on raw power. Everything has its place IMO.

    I also think if you DO have a spotter to work with, someone who is on the same, if not on a higher level than you can help you do negatives.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosie Chee Scott View Post
    ^^^Or you can do that. Lie on the floor and use the POWER rack, making sure you have the bars on either side set so that if you fail with a rep, then the barbell doesn't fall on you.

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    AHH!! I might have to try this next chest day! Didn't even come to mind
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    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernCharm View Post
    AHH!! I might have to try this next chest day! Didn't even come to mind
    Doing bench this way also makes sure that you go down to technical "correct" height on the eccentric portion of the movement, since your elbow flexion cannot go further than 90 degrees (although going further is not a bad thing at all, and helps re increasing range of motion).

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    Just do a free weight bench press. You don't have to work to failure to get stronger. If you don't have a spotter on a particular day, leave a rep or two in the tank. If you are going to attempt an actual 1RM then make sure you have a spotter, but for most training sessions it's not absolutely necessary. If you can bench in a power rack set the pins so you can relax your arch and set the bar on the pins. I also used to bench with no collars on the bar when I was training by myself and could just dump the bar to one side and let the plates slide off. It's not pretty but it does keep you from killing yourself.
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    use a slow progression and favor a 5x5 or 3x3 type system on the bench and alternate every other week with heavy dumbell presses. In addition you need to add close grip bench and jm press into your routine to boost tricep strength thus increasing your bench.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MongoSS View Post
    use a slow progression and favor a 5x5 or 3x3 type system on the bench and alternate every other week with heavy dumbell presses. In addition you need to add close grip bench and jm press into your routine to boost tricep strength thus increasing your bench.
    5x5 is a good routine to help with bench but there's one problem. The 5x5 workout aims for failure and OP doesn't have a spotter.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosie Chee Scott View Post
    ^^^Or you can do that. Lie on the floor and use the POWER rack, making sure you have the bars on either side set so that if you fail with a rep, then the barbell doesn't fall on you.

    ~Team APPNUT
    Yeah or you could take one of the flat benches for db presses and slide that under the squat rack and raise the pins a little bit higher. Floor presses work too though.
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    yeah i agree
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    Rosie suggests exactly what I do. Floor presses in the power rack at different heights..

    Let me also suggest:

    1. Chains. I used to train with chains. Each link is 1lb, so easier at the bottom, progressively harder as you push.

    2. A starter 'blast' shirt. My shirt helped me start repping 315 because I started playing at higher levels with the shirt..1 rep at 315 turned into 4 then 6, etc...After training that way, not only are you more confident, but your CNS is ready to fire with that heavy weight..

    Good Luck!
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    If you want to get stronger for the bench, then you need to mostly stay away from machines such as the smith. It's true you can push real hard on it and grow some muscle, but it's a different exercise and may screw up your form, especially if you are an intermediate lifter.

    I bench in a squat rack all the time, with the safety pins set up such that failure would result in me getting crushed about 1/2 inch. Interestingly enough, some of my guys have trouble with not staying tight, and it's perfect b/c they'll actually hit the safety pins if they aren't setting up like I tell them to (tight, chest high, belly out, etc).

    I would never hesitate to ask for a spot from someone. I help guys at the gym all the time and expect the same should I need it.

    Finally, you're interested enough in lifting to set some goals and join a forum and ask questions. Find a training partner, it will make a big difference if you get the right person. Stay positive.
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    if u get stuck dump the weights
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    Thanks for all the responses. I try to find lifting partners but they all want to do biceps 4 times a weeks and leg extensions over squats LOL. I have gained 10 lbs since may and plan to keep it going. I just said screw it and will continue to use the smith machine and load up the weight. alternating with Flat bench from time to time to work the stabilizers with a bit less weight.
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    If u go to the gym why not just ask someone to spot u bro.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hog928 View Post
    If u go to the gym why not just ask someone to spot u bro.
    I dont trust many people at my gym to spot me. I stick with db and hammer strength bench except for 1-2x a month when I bring a friend in with my guest pass and let them spot me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NCAA68 View Post
    I dont trust many people at my gym to spot me. I stick with db and hammer strength bench except for 1-2x a month when I bring a friend in with my guest pass and let them spot me.
    This is exactly what I do. If you've been in the gym for any length of time, you should know what the "I need a spot" face looks like. Man at my gym people just avoid you when they see that face.
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    hahahahaha yeah, the spot face.

    Yeah, and it sucks to ask for a spot then pull the " thanks bro..I only have 4 more sets! LOL

    I am hitting up the smith machine and dumbbell press
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    **** the smith machine its garbage, if you get stuck just dump the plates like brown said its not that hard


    so dont use clips
    Bench - 355
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    Listen to CJPopovich. He knows what he is talking about. Also, lift heavier back. It will increase your bench also.
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    Just don't do what I see countless guys do in the gym and thats benchpress every dang day. Everyone before me has made excellent points. In order to raise your bench you have to hit the free weights and assualt your chest with a variety of routines.

    Remember Benchpress is not only chest but also shoulders and triceps so you want to gain strength in those areas as well.

    **Flat barbell bench press, standing or seated barbell military press, close grip bench, are all great exersices for jacking up your bench max.

    Also as mentioned heavy back routines and also squats will be a staple in increasing. Its just all part of having a solid plan and executing.
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    Personally, I assaulted the auxilliary machines and different free weights. I benched once at the beginning of the summer to see where I was at and I was below my body weight. I just did a lot of auxillary work and by the end of the summer, arms had grown about half of an inch and my bench had went up from 235 to 285. I only benched twice. Right now I do 225 at 5 sets of 5 for my bench workout every other arms day. I lift off by myself.
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    Bench is more than chest work and strength; it's technique. - Additionally, you're going to need to work your triceps, shoulders, and back.

    Pin Presses
    Tate Presses
    Floor Presses and Board Presses
    Rolling Tricep Extentions
    Rear Delt Flies
    T-Bar Row

    You should really find yourself a good spotter. If I bench without a spotter, all I'm doing is speed-work (with or without chains).
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    UPDATE:

    I moved over to simple Flat bench and dropped the smith machine all together. I have been moving up roughly 2.5-5 lbs a workout.
    @Pharoe, no I hit Bench Press on my B workout. Week 1 would have bench only once, week two would have Bench twice.

    I just completed 235 for 3x5 with only a finger assistance on the last two reps.
    I'm trying to reach 275 as a 1 rep PR.
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    What also helps me a lot is that when I would do the chest press machine and different free weights, instead of the full motion of the lift, extend out completely with the weight and do short bursts with it for explosiveness.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsypher View Post
    UPDATE:

    I moved over to simple Flat bench and dropped the smith machine all together. I have been moving up roughly 2.5-5 lbs a workout.
    @Pharoe, no I hit Bench Press on my B workout. Week 1 would have bench only once, week two would have Bench twice.

    I just completed 235 for 3x5 with only a finger assistance on the last two reps.
    I'm trying to reach 275 as a 1 rep PR.
    Awesome man. My thing is as long as you are seeing improvement then whatever you are doing is working. Its all about finding whats best for you.

    I remember DREAMING of bench pressing 225 lbs for at least 3 reps, now I feel like **** if I don't bank 225 lbs out for 30 reps. You will see growth and as you grow make standards for yourself. Good luck man!
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    if your benching less then 300lbs it very easy to dump the weights in an emergency for strength you generally dont train tell failure any ways when you have a spotter do heavy doubles and triples when not hold back a little on sets of 4 to 6. The main reason to have a spotter is not so much getting stuck but in case of injury or cramp. I have been stuck once in the last 5 yrs under 315 it scared the **** out of me but I dumped it no prob didnt even scrap my chest. dont roll it down your stomach throw it to the side but honestly when I hold back a rep or 2 I make way better strength gains
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    I bench more for technique speed work once a week but it helps my technque because I can tell when the bar travels faster. and bench heavy once honest I use close grip benchs and dumbell benches to build most of my strenght the benchpressing its self is mostly used to improve technque and gauge strenght. search dave tate bench technque on youtube. theres a chance you might be strong enought ot bench 275 now if your bench pressed good I see guys all time way stronger then me but have sucky form. that lose anywhere from 25 to 70lbs from shotty benching technque. I look at the bar to my chest as once I press I look up and leg drive in one hard motion.
  

  
 

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