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View Full Version : Why do people use bench shirts?



The Thing
01-07-2009, 10:48 PM
I have never used a bench shirt. I was just wondering what the real purpose of them was. When I watch videos of people benching like 700 or 800 lbs in a shirt, the only thing that I think about is how much they could bench without one. What kind of results do they produce? and if some people wouldn't mind posting their max WITH a shirt and their max WITHOUT a shirt I would appreciate it.

Ben Moore
01-07-2009, 10:54 PM
Nice...great first impression!

WillNoble
01-07-2009, 11:02 PM
someone is not long for this site...

The Thing
01-07-2009, 11:13 PM
No, No, No............I am just trying to find out what the translation from RAW bench to benching with a bench shirt is? Mainly because I was wondering what I could be able to do with a shirt. Just to put things in perspective and see where I stack up. I want to know if they are used to actually increase muscle mass or strength or are they only used to max in competitions? Why would you think that a question like that is a bad impression?

RHarris
01-07-2009, 11:25 PM
OK.. give the guy a break. Like he said, he's never used one and I'm guessing never really trained around anyone who has. An honest question let's try and give him a couple of honest answers.

Some people really do need the extra support to train at a decent level due to injuries, etc. Shirts initial started out as basic supportive gear such as knee wraps and such and can still be used as such. Like your basic single ply blast shirt..

Of course shirts have radically evolved as has equipped competition as a whole. Personally I got into shirted benching because I got tired of training half the year to go to a raw meet and then being the only one in my division. Improving on your personal best is great, but that's the whole idea of a meet, right? COMPETITION! While raw only meets and divisions seem to be making some headway recently, overall to get any depth of field you have to go to an equipped meet. While there are some exceptions, generally lifting raw in an equipped meet is taking a knife to a gun fight. There are lots of single ply feds with reasonable equipment rules out there.

Of course there is the other end of the spectrum of the extreme multi-ply shirts. Not my area, but don't be so quick to judge..
The skill and strength level required to handle a shirted press takes years of work and discipline.

Why do people were bench shirts? Because they are there!

Not trying to influence your style of training or competition, but spend some time with some good shirted benchers if you can. That will be the best way to get a better understanding and appreciation for that aspect of the sport.

Good Lifting
Robert Harris
Las Vegas, NV

50 y.o.
Best competition lifts at 220#
Raw Bench 385
Shirted Bench 501 (475 within last year)
Squat 555
DL 538 (..and climbing again!!)

RHarris
01-07-2009, 11:30 PM
No, No, No............I am just trying to find out what the translation from RAW bench to benching with a bench shirt is? Mainly because I was wondering what I could be able to do with a shirt. Just to put things in perspective and see where I stack up. I want to know if they are used to actually increase muscle mass or strength or are they only used to max in competitions? Why would you think that a question like that is a bad impression?

OK.. That's actually a harder question since carry over from raw to shirted is very individual. A lot factors such as body shape, muscle density, type of shirt and most importantly..experience in the shirt.. all greatly effect carry over.

Just starting out you may even experience some set-backs as you try to master the different technique. Again, find some experienced shirted benchers, get yourself a basic single ply (Inzer Rage or Titan Fury are good values) not too radically tight and find out.

Best of Luck,
Robert Harris,
Las Vegas

The Thing
01-07-2009, 11:30 PM
Thank You

RHarris
01-07-2009, 11:40 PM
Any time. Hope you can find some good training partners to help you along the path to the dark side..LOL
Don't be put off by a few gruff replies when you have questions, a lot of guys have taken a bunch of s**t about their lifting choices by people just trying to tear things down. It seems pretty clear to me that by your clarification, that's not what you intended at all.

Most of us are pretty decent guys, you just have to scrape through a lot o triple ply poly and canvas to get there some times!

RWH
Las Vegas

evilxxx
01-08-2009, 02:05 AM
7 years ago when I discover powerlifting I had the same questions...then I got one and after 2 weeks finally got 20 lbs over my max without shirt..then I switch to the other brand and first time with that shirt it felt like it was gonna crush my chest! then after a few workouts and lots of researching I got about 50lbs out of that one(single ply). I used to think "they can do that because of the shirt" then after I got into it, I realized all the hard work and training it takes to make it work with the shirt. Now I see videos of 700+ benching and I just cant imagine the pressure on the chest with all that weight.

smokinHawk
01-08-2009, 06:08 AM
best raw bench for me (in the gym) has been 405
best shirted bench (competition) has been 450
and it took allot of training to get to that 45lb carry over, for a long time i could raw bench more then shirted.
it defiantly isnt easy benching shirted, the pressure it puts on you as it squeezes you, blood vessels break, airway passages close up, i have broke vessels in my eyes, my face and chest get red dots after a hard session.
some guys bleed out their eyes when benching and others have passed out.

Fighter_15
01-08-2009, 06:22 AM
Personally I've never used bench shirts but I'm not a big fan of them because they aid you in lifting the weight. It adds 50-100 pounds to your bench which is kind of cheating if you ask me. But then again I am just a novice weightlifter who doesn't know much and I will probably use one someday so I can compete in power lifting competitions.

drew
01-08-2009, 06:22 AM
People use bench shirts in order to bench more weight.

My best raw bench in the gym is 300, my best shirted in the gym is 445 (425 in a meet).

There is no direct formula. Some people are better in the shirt and get more out of it. Some people don't know what they're doing and end up getting weaker instead of stronger. Everyone is different and the only way to know what a shirt will do for you is to get one, work with it and find out.

Pete22
01-08-2009, 07:07 AM
I use a bench shirt to fill a void in my life, but mainly just to bench more weight.

Travis Bell
01-08-2009, 08:29 AM
Robert explained it the best. There really isn't a set amount of poundage that guys get out of their shirts.

I get about 200lbs out of my shirt.

Some of the top guys are getting 300+ out of their shirts

Each form of lifting deserves its own respect. Equipped lifting is much much more technical and requires spot on form to be able to have the best lift. The progress once one learns the shirt is normally much faster as well.

Raw lifting is less technical in nature, but technique never hurts either. Progress is slower and in the long run, my experience has been its much more abusive to the shoulders and pecs. Shirts take a ton of the pressure off your shoulders and pecs.

I really enjoy both. At the end of the day, I just enjoy benching.

Reko
01-08-2009, 08:33 AM
I use a bench shirt to fill a void in my life, but mainly just to bench more weight.

Lol!
I bench 365 raw and have done 405 in the shirt.

MPB
01-08-2009, 08:36 AM
Personally I've never used bench shirts but I'm not a big fan of them because they aid you in lifting the weight. It adds 50-100 pounds to your bench which is kind of cheating if you ask me. But then again I am just a novice weightlifter who doesn't know much and I will probably use one someday so I can compete in power lifting competitions.
How is it cheating? If you don't know much, then you shouldn't really be talking about it.

Barbaccio
01-08-2009, 09:06 AM
I go about 525 raw, 800 shirted.
I get about +/-300lbs out of my Inzer Super Duper Phenom.
People use shirts to compete. NOT to lift more weight.
If they were used to lift more weight, you'd see every wanna be in the gym using them. They are techincal pieces of equipment used to compete in the "equipped" division of the sport of Powerlifting. If you like lifting raw, more power to you. I respect raw guys just as much as the geared guys.

You can't "get an idea" of how much you'd get out of shirt. I know guys who get 300+ lbs, I know a few who actually bench LESS because they can't figure out the technique necessary to bench in a shirt. The only way you can tell is to try one out and see.

NASAKYCHAIRMAN
01-08-2009, 09:13 AM
Why bring a pen to a sword fight? Lifters use bench press shirts to be competitive against other lifters.

How much you get out of a shirt will depend on your experience, type of bp shirt and the rules of that federation.

Travis Bell
01-08-2009, 09:19 AM
To the OP, please use the search function in the future as well

http://www.wannabebigforums.com/showthread.php?t=112623&highlight=bench+shirts
http://www.wannabebigforums.com/showthread.php?t=105121&highlight=bench+shirts
http://www.wannabebigforums.com/showthread.php?t=100644&highlight=bench+shirts
http://www.wannabebigforums.com/showthread.php?t=118034&highlight=Gear+debate
http://www.wannabebigforums.com/showthread.php?t=107043&highlight=Gear+debate

just to name a few. Should this thread turn towards another useless debate on gear, it'll be locked so just try and stay on topic as it has for the most part

NASAKYCHAIRMAN
01-08-2009, 11:44 AM
But then again I am just a novice weightlifter who doesn't know much and I will probably use one someday so I can compete in power lifting competitions.

Well, if you ever decide to compete in a bench press, try the Inzer Rage first. Then, step up to a more advance Inzer Rage X.