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Thread: How to improve bottom end bench power..

  1. #1
    Big Swinging Dick dxiw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Chicago, IL

    How to improve bottom end bench power..

    I know we all like to use board presses, chains and bands to improve our speed and lockout. But what about if your problem is the bottom? I've been working on improving my RAW bench press, but whats holding me back is the point about 2-3 inches off the chest. From there until about 6-8 off is my sticking point, once I get midway I can lockout easy. I can rack lockout a lot more than my max and the lockout is never a problem for me. What PL exercise can I include to fix the bottom end of the bench? (Besides wear a shirt, which I also do train in, and get great results from). I was thinking maybe flies.. but I don't know how I feel about training like a powerlifter and doing flies.. sounds a little bodybuilder homo-eroticus =D

    225lb @ 17% bodyfat, currently cutting
    Current lifts while cutting (all raw): bench 275x4, squat 365x8
    Estimated current maxes: 300 bench / 450 dead / 450 squat
    Competition / Gym PRs (from March 08)
    Bench: 325 raw / 385 loose shirt
    Deadlift: 450 raw ADFPF 04/26/08
    Squat: 405 raw

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Cambered bar bench, dumbbell presses are two things that come to mind.

  3. #3
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Westside Barbell, OH
    cambered bar as Ben said, I use alot of band tension with these and it really helps. I'll normally go to a 1brd because if I go to the chest it's kinda hard on the shoulders.

    Also floor presses really help me alot

  4. #4
    Senior Member Klotz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Start from the bottom in a squat rack.
    *should take his own advice*

  5. #5
    Quote the Priest Nevermore PriestCometh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    I use bands full range(double banded).

    I also do DB Presses with a band in hand. You take 1 band put it through under the bench and put the ends in the palm of each hand, then put the dumbells in each hand on top of the band.

    Also, I hang hand grips(like you use on a cable crossover) attached to nylon straps(kinda like a gymnastic ring type of look to it) from the top of the squat rack and do push ups with my hands in the grips. The rings or hand grips must hang about a foot off the ground. to make this harder just put your feet up on a bench.

    Or DB presses with your shoulders/back on a exercise ball.

  6. #6
    WannabeStronger Scooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    CT, USA
    I'm having the same issue. After looking around I started doing WGBP. It really takes the tri's out of the equation. Also anything that will take the weight lower then 90 degrees like the before said Dumbbell Press and Cambered Bar Press. It will really focus on the chest and shoulders. You may want to look into your form as well. Getting a good leg push on liftoff will help a lot.
    I went to Rhodestown and all I got was this high cholesterol

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Piqua, OH
    if your sticky point is 2-3" from your chest you should do some 1 board pause benching, the one board would be right at your sticky point so attack it.

  8. #8
    Team Stocky Member. Killa Kurt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Neptune NJ
    I like your user title hawk.

    Before you go to train everyday, think about the less fortunate and what they would give to just have the opportunity to be training like a madman.

    "The squat rack is my church, the dead lift platform my temple."

    Team Stocky - "It's not a hobby, it's a lifestyle."
    The Rawmighty Team Stocky.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    University at Albany
    Military Presses
    Chest supported Rows
    DB Rows
    Seated Rows
    DB Benches

    ... in that order.

    Your back is weak. The back and shoulders are more important than the pecs when raw benching.

    Don't train in the shirt if you're trying to work on your bottom end. The shirt doesn't work the bottom end at all.

    Rack Presses from chest level are ok, but they are too tough on the pec/shoulder tie-ins.

  10. #10
    Fear No Weight BPM Osgood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    In The Gym, Maine
    1 Second Pause Speed benches really helped me increase my lower chest strength. I would do 5x5 with a 1-2 sec pause and explosed up as fast as i could. Also 1BRD Press help out a huge deal! Good Luck bro!
    Ain't Nothin 2 It But 2 Do It!
    BPM Osgood

  11. #11
    Super Moderator vdizenzo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Speed/DE bench, pause press, and bench with legs up (forces you to solely use your pressing muscles). These are the exercises I think helped me most with the bottom portion of a raw bench. Also, like Rhodes said, shoulder work and lat work are very important for raw pressing.

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