The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

It’s no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Senior Member PatheticJoe's Avatar
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    Bench Press and Wrist Angle

    I've spent the last half hour searching the forum and can't quite find what I'm looking for. Although I found some other cool stuff on the way. I'm not a strong guy but my bench press is really rocketing up and with the weight as heavy as it is my wrists and hands are giving me trouble. I normally let my wrists bend back but I think this is bad and although it doesn't hurt now I have a feeling it will later. But my problem is when I straighten out my wrists the whole weight shifts from my palms to the bases of my thumbs and I can't bear the thumb pain so I bend my wrists back. So what should I do? Do you guys all take the weight on the bases of you thumbs or bend your wrists?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Klotz's Avatar
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    1. Start making your wrists stronger.
    2. Get some wrist wraps.

  4. #3
    Senior Member PatheticJoe's Avatar
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    I've been considering the wrist wraps but that and stronger wrists don't seem to be the answer to my thumb pain issue. Maybe my hands are shaped funny?

  5. #4
    Wannabebig Member
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    Pick a barbell off the floor, i.e. deadlift and roll a stick with a rope tied to some plates. It will stretch and strengthen your forearms and wrists.

  6. #5
    Gotta Lose Fat azma's Avatar
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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but, the way I'm understanding you, it's not that you don't have the muscle strength to straighten your wrist, just that it hurts really bad, to where it's very uncomfortable.

    I don't fully straighten my wrist, either, but I don't bend it back too much, and it doesn't hurt because I squeeze the bar. You may want to try that.
    Last edited by azma; 02-24-2008 at 03:53 AM.

  7. #6
    Moderator joey54's Avatar
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    are you training the bench press specifically for a powerlifting meet? Do you encounter this problem with other pressing movements or just with flat barbell bench press?


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  8. #7
    Skinny is an Insult Brad263's Avatar
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    I notice this when I am doing dips. It just kills my palms and is so painful I have to stop from the pain before I was ever fatiged from the lift. I could give you a solution if I had one but I just don't do dips that often and that's how I get around it. But bench press is much more important.
    Last edited by Brad263; 02-24-2008 at 08:18 AM.
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  9. #8
    Senior Member PatheticJoe's Avatar
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    Thanks for all feedback. I'm not training for a PL thing, just for fundamental strength and size. I only have the problem on flat barbell press. I do have the strength to straighten my wrists but once they are straight the pain in my thumbs is unbearable. On dumbbell bench presses I can actually feel the strain in my forearms and its harder to keep the wrists straight but when I do I don't feel any thumb pain. I'll try the squeezing the bar suggestion. I'll be benching on Tuesday with the highest weight I've ever done sets with so I'll know for sure if its helping.

  10. #9
    Fear No Weight BPM Osgood's Avatar
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    You want your wrist almost straight, just a light bend. Make Sure your wrist and forarm stay straight together, this will give you more power and cause less strain on your wrists. Also Check out APT Wrist Straps, get yourself a Pair of 20" Wraps and then it will be game on! Good Luck Bro
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  11. #10
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    When I bench I position my thumb on the same side of the bar as my other fingers. A personal trainer at my gym told me to do this and it helps so that you dont squeeze the bar (apparently a source of parkinsons in the wrist). Try it out, it helped me

  12. #11
    Look ma, I deadlifted. el_Mariachi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BPM Osgood View Post
    You want your wrist almost straight, just a light bend. Make Sure your wrist and forarm stay straight together, this will give you more power and cause less strain on your wrists.
    Yes.

    I have a mark on my palm like the picture below after I bench, this seems to be the easiest on my wrists with a lot of the weight being just below my thumb level almost palm meets wrist. Definitely don't let your wrists bend back.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by el_Mariachi; 02-24-2008 at 06:58 PM.

  13. #12
    Fear No Weight BPM Osgood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by el_Mariachi View Post
    Yes.

    I have a mark on my palm like the picture below after I bench, this seems to be the easiest on my wrists with a lot of the weight being just below my thumb level almost palm meets wrist. Definitely don't let your wrists bend back.
    Only Problem with the pic is that the bar sits to low out the outside of your hand, this could cause it to slip...

    When you hold the bar it should be lined up with the center of your forarm!
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  14. #13
    Look ma, I deadlifted. el_Mariachi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BPM Osgood View Post
    Only Problem with the pic is that the bar sits to low out the outside of your hand, this could cause it to slip...
    Maybe the picture exaggerates how low it is by a little bit. It's definitely secure in the palm and I've never had it even start to slip. I'm just mostly making the point that you don't want it straight across your palm up near your fingers, because that's probably what's bending his wrist back instead of lining the weight up on his forearm.

  15. #14
    Senior Member PatheticJoe's Avatar
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    Thanks for the good info, I'll try moving my thumb to my finger side at a low weight but that seems really unsafe thinking about it. If that doesn't work I'll keep my wrist and forearm in line and focous on finding the right spot for that bar in my palm.

  16. #15
    romantic relations w/bacon Indifference's Avatar
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    There have been more than a few accidents of people benching without the thumb around the bar. There are a couple of videos on youtube of people losing the bar and it coming down and causing some serious damage. I would highly suggest you do as Osgood says and also NOT move your thumb to the finger side.
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  17. #16
    Senior Member PatheticJoe's Avatar
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    Thanks for that, I was not excited about trying it and certainly won't be now.

  18. #17
    SFW! drew's Avatar
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    Get some wraps, get stronger, don't bend your wrists back.

    Unless you want to shatter your forearm.

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  19. #18
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    I've been bending my wrists back, big time. I find it makes my injured shoulder hurt less, for some reason. Of course the weight is brutally light ... 115 for 10 reps, since my shoulder blows out for a whopping 120 x 0 if I go any heavier.
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  20. #19
    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corey170 View Post
    When I bench I position my thumb on the same side of the bar as my other fingers. A personal trainer at my gym told me to do this and it helps so that you dont squeeze the bar (apparently a source of parkinsons in the wrist). Try it out, it helped me
    What are you talking about? Parkinsons in the wrist?! Parkinsons is a disease that affects the entire body caused by a chemical imbalance (blockage of dopamine) in the brain!

    Also, you are advocating what is caused the "suicide grip". Not recommended unless you have very strong hands and good side spotters. Besides, squeezing the bar is a GOOD thing.

    Seriously, where did you here such rubbish?
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  21. #20
    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drew View Post
    Get some wraps, get stronger, don't bend your wrists back.

    Unless you want to shatter your forearm.
    ...or drop the weight back on your chest!

    Wear wrist wraps and strengthen your wrists. You always want to keep your wrists as straight as possible (in line with your forearms). Squeeze the bar TIGHT.
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  22. #21
    Senior Member PatheticJoe's Avatar
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    The verdict is in. I tried keeping the wrists straight or slightly bent with no aids and squeezing the bar and I just couldn't take the pain in my thumb. So I dug out a pair of lifting gloves I had long abandoned and they worked great. They really distributed the load over my palm better and allowed me to keep my wrists straight. So gloves for bench for the foreseeable future but I won't use them on anything else. I think I'll still look into wrist wraps but they won't be a priority.

    Guido, thanks for addressing that Parkinsons thing, that was a totally weird post, especially since my Grandmother died of it and she was no weightlifter.

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