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.
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.
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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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.
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.
yeah i agree
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..
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.
if u get stuck dump the weights
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.
If u go to the gym why not just ask someone to spot u bro.
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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