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JSully
12-31-2009, 08:36 AM
I bench raw. My triceps are my weakest link

I'm thinking of doing my speedwork with a close grip for a few weeks. Would this be beneficial with a good carryover?

Right now I get stuck right around the area of where a 2-3 board would touch.

I try to do alot of close gripping and floor presses, however, by the time I'm finished with my regular benching, my triceps are floored and I can't put eveything I have into them.

Thoughts?

IronDiggy
12-31-2009, 08:48 AM
I do 3 bench days a week. One regular/boards, one close grip, one speed day. I've found the close grip has really helped my tri's alot.

chris mason
12-31-2009, 09:07 AM
Close grip speed work isn't going to do much of anything for your lockout with heavy loads. Close grip ME style work will help, or close grip with the repetition method. Another thing that will help is proper JM presses.

Travis Bell
12-31-2009, 09:22 AM
At Westside, we do the majority our speed bench with close grip variations. We start with thumb length from the smooth, then pinkies on the ring and do a couple sets with comp grip at the end.

JSully
12-31-2009, 09:40 AM
I do 3 bench days a week. One regular/boards, one close grip, one speed day. I've found the close grip has really helped my tri's alot.
I'm not sure I could recover well from benching 3 days a week. I benched monday and my pecs are still sore as ****..


Close grip speed work isn't going to do much of anything for your lockout with heavy loads. Close grip ME style work will help, or close grip with the repetition method. Another thing that will help is proper JM presses.
JM presses are solid, I keep forgetting about them. I'll make them part of my weekly ritual.. thanks!


At Westside, we do the majority our speed bench with close grip variations. We start with thumb length from the smooth, then pinkies on the ring and do a couple sets with comp grip at the end.
Thanks travis... hmm, one thing that I do a bit different, is that my competition grip IS pinkies on the rings. I used to bench much wider, but have had a few pec injuries. They're fully healed now, but I find it easier to tuck with pinkies on the rings and I just feel safer. I'm right at a 400lb raw press and even though my grip is closer, I'm still perfectly fine off the chest, its just around that 2-3 board area (4-5" above my chest)..

Typically, my close grip is thumbnuckle on the smooth, so I'm assuming since you mix your grips constantly, this would be beneficial. I've gone closer, but too close hurts my wrists and shoulders, I feel I still get a wickid tricep pump at this area.

So, maybe I should swap everything (all my chest work aside from dumbells) over to closer grip for a month or so to help bring up my sticking point. I'm thinking as long as I keep up with dumbbells, I shouldn't lose strength off the chest.. Think this would help?

IronDiggy
12-31-2009, 09:45 AM
I'm not sure I could recover well from benching 3 days a week. I benched monday and my pecs are still sore as ****..


Yea I'm not sure why but my chest never really gasses out. It's always my tri's and my shoulders.

AdamBAG
12-31-2009, 10:10 AM
I think that closer grips for speed work would be beneficial.

Something that has helped me is doing 3-5 sets of 5 off the 4 or 5 booard (closish grip) after my speed bench. I use the same contrast method as I used for the speed bench. So yesterday I used minibands for speed work and followed that with 4 boards against minibands with pinky on the ring grip.

I too usually miss at the 2-3 board level and this type of work has helped me.

mastermonster
12-31-2009, 03:19 PM
Close grip speed work isn't going to do much of anything for your lockout with heavy loads. Close grip ME style work will help, or close grip with the repetition method. Another thing that will help is proper JM presses.

I agree. Also, if you are missing at 2-3 board height I doubt tris are the biggest problem. If you were missing near the top I'd agree. The problem may be delt/pec weakness and/or lats. A lot of bencher don't put enough time and effort on lats. If you're set up is right, lats are probably 1/2 of you potential for blast out of the hole. If you don't get that blast you'd fail at about 2-3 board height; before your tris get a good chance to fully engage.

JSully
12-31-2009, 04:02 PM
I agree. Also, if you are missing at 2-3 board height I doubt tris are the biggest problem. If you were missing near the top I'd agree. The problem may be delt/pec weakness and/or lats. A lot of bencher don't put enough time and effort on lats. If you're set up is right, lats are probably 1/2 of you potential for blast out of the hole. If you don't get that blast you'd fail at about 2-3 board height; before your tris get a good chance to fully engage.

my delts are definately not my strongest point but my lats aren't too shabby. I can manage 180lb db rows for sets of 8 so I suppose I just really need to focus on bringing up the weakest link as well as the triceps which would be delts..

once this lateral delt strain gets healed up, time to blast some millies..

thanks for all the help fellas

Travis Bell
12-31-2009, 04:05 PM
Don't forget to pound your upper back

I'd hit your upper back harder than I'd hit your lats.

To be terribly honest, I've always felt that lats look super cool and do add an element of stability, but the upper back is the forgotten weapon in a big bench. Much moreso than lats

JSully
12-31-2009, 05:19 PM
Don't forget to pound your upper back

I'd hit your upper back harder than I'd hit your lats.

To be terribly honest, I've always felt that lats look super cool and do add an element of stability, but the upper back is the forgotten weapon in a big bench. Much moreso than lats

upper back such as traps and rear delts?

Unfortunately, I feel you are correct. Though I train my rear delts pretty well, I place minimal emphasis on my traps. I really hate doing shrugs. Just don't like the movement at all. It twinges my neck after a car accident I was in last year but I can work up to the mid 4s without issues, I suppose I'll just start rocking out the reppage with that.

Aside from ****loads of shrugwork, face pulls and band pull aparts.. anything you can think of to really smash that upper back?

robchris
12-31-2009, 07:20 PM
Jsully,
Reference to the upper back movements... If you're doin' #180 DB's then you've definitely got a strong back!

In addition to them, stick w/ the basics like bent-over rows or low-cable rows and really focus on pinching the shoulder blades together. I also do a lot of pull-ups w/ weight, pull-downs and hammer-rows for variety, albeit they involves more lats...
BTW, are you primarily a raw bencher or geared?

JSully
01-04-2010, 10:04 AM
Jsully,
Reference to the upper back movements... If you're doin' #180 DB's then you've definitely got a strong back!

In addition to them, stick w/ the basics like bent-over rows or low-cable rows and really focus on pinching the shoulder blades together. I also do a lot of pull-ups w/ weight, pull-downs and hammer-rows for variety, albeit they involves more lats...
BTW, are you primarily a raw bencher or geared?

I did a bunch of avg band low rows yesterday and they smoked my back. I focused on punching the shoulder blades as suggested, great stuff.

Thanks for your help, and to answer your question, at this time I am a raw bencher. I'm looking to get into a shirt later this year.

ScottYard
01-04-2010, 12:22 PM
Yea I'm not sure why but my chest never really gasses out. It's always my tri's and my shoulders.


Thats what I was going to say, Up the volume on the 5 board. Sets of 5-10 with heavy weight get your lock out in shape fast

BloodandThunder
01-04-2010, 01:23 PM
Assuming you roll with a Westside system and you lift raw try this:
ME day - 1RM with either floor press, 1 brd, foam press, or incline with varying grips or accomadating resistance (chains, bands). even reverse band bench may give you some benefit.
Follow that up with mid range to lockout work for 3rm - rack press, 2 brd, 3 brd, 4brd, floor press rack lockouts (good for taking your legs out of the equation)
Add in pushdowns for high reps.

DE/RE day - follow your main lift with some type of close grip work or punch style dumbbell work and then something like db or barbell extension work (throat press, jm press, db ext, rolling ext)

add in 100 pushdowns with a band twice a week on days after you do upper to up your training volume. remember any lift you lockout (even overhead pressing) your triceps are getting called into play. understand your volume and how to wave in and out. also work on your setup and technique (sometimes failing at lockout isn't a tricep issue).

aside from what everyone else said about upper back work, if you have access to a sled, do face pulls and rows with light weight twice a week on off days. great way to up your training volume (along with doing band pull aparts at home) without killing your workouts with the added volume.

if all else fails, try the tricep death exercise (joe defranco has some good vids of this) at the end of a workout every other week.

a great thing about the triceps is that they can withstand a good amount of volume at a higher frequency than the pecs/chest

NickAus
01-04-2010, 02:09 PM
Don't forget to pound your upper back

I'd hit your upper back harder than I'd hit your lats.

To be terribly honest, I've always felt that lats look super cool and do add an element of stability, but the upper back is the forgotten weapon in a big bench. Much moreso than lats

I agree with this 100%.

stik
01-05-2010, 02:55 PM
I use close grip bench on light bench days: shoulder width. The "Starting Out" column in "PL USA" recommends this.

On light day, I tend to handle the weights as if they are heavy though they are 80% of what I do on heavy day, using the weights to hone technique by lifting as I would in a meet.

This, I feel, allows me to work bench from a different angle, pay more attention to form rather than getting the weight up, and still add to a strength increase by staying slower and tight.

This is what I do. Would be interested in seeing what others type about this.