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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View Poll Results: Can you lift more weight on a decline or flat bench?

Voters
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  • Flat Bench

    32 72.73%
  • Decline Bench

    12 27.27%
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  1. #1
    Carnivore scission's Avatar
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    Decline vs flat bench

    Can you bench more on decline or flat bench? I ask because I can easily put 30 more lbs on decline and was wondering if this was because of my stronger lower pecs or just an easier lift in general.
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  3. #2
    GFH Lones Green's Avatar
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    there is no such muscle group as "lower pecs." the reason you can bench more decline is because you are touching lower.
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  4. #3
    mind/body zen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lonesXedge View Post
    there is no such muscle group as "lower pecs." the reason you can bench more decline is because you are touching lower.
    touching lower?

    I can decline quite a bit more than flat (even though I rarely ever do declines), but my theory that it's stronger because it employs lats as the secondary helper.
    'In order to alter the inertial mass of weights, you must become one with them, like a machine, the totality of your motion is as one'

  5. #4
    Squat Heavy, Squat Often Cards's Avatar
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    flat bench. never done decline
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  6. #5
    determined Cherrywaves's Avatar
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    rather do dips than declines.
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  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by zen View Post
    touching lower?

    I can decline quite a bit more than flat (even though I rarely ever do declines), but my theory that it's stronger because it employs lats as the secondary helper.


    As in the bar touches lower on your chest.

  8. #7
    Senior Member Klotz's Avatar
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    To be fair, I've never maxed out on decline, and haven't even done decline since before I was strong.

  9. #8
    Senior Member cphafner's Avatar
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    the decline bench at my gym has a short range of motion. I can do a good deal more than flat.
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  10. #9
    Baby Shins! krboyd7's Avatar
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    I think its because the ROM is less on a decline bench.

    I can decline more weight!
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  11. #10
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    what is a decline bench? is that the thing i do situps on?
    Last edited by smokinHawk; 07-07-2008 at 06:54 AM.

  12. #11
    Breaker of Skulls Guido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klotz View Post
    To be fair, I've never maxed out on decline, and haven't even done decline since before I was strong.


    Actually, if you use a good enough arch on flat bench, it practically IS like doing decline, at least as far as the angle of your chest in relation to your arms. In that repect, I should conceivably be able to decline as much as I can flat bench, though it might take some adjustment.
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  13. #12
    THE FRIDGE! thewicked's Avatar
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    most people put up more on decline because it's a shorter ROM than a flat bench is. Keep that in mind. Either way you're still working your pecs, just go with the one that you feel suits your body type teh best. Since I'm in it for hte money, flat bench it is.
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  14. #13
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    The range of motion is a bit shorter on a decline press.Thus,being able to handle more weight.The angle your body is in in conjunction with the bar shortens the distance between the two.Its not rocket science.

  15. #14
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    The combination of ROM and the slight use of lats is likely the answer to your perplexing question.

    As for me, I do heavy flat bench and heavy weighted dips and ignore the decline bench

  16. #15
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Flat bench is the only thing I do for my pecs. I'll do DB for recovery but other than that, its all barbell


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  17. #16
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    Flat bench and weighted dips, FTW. Sometimes I'll incorporate some DB Flies.

  18. #17
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    Yes, the ROM is shorter, but the more important factor is that the bar is pressed more closely in vertical alignment with the shoulder joint. This reduces the lever arm between the two, and thus improves efficiency.

  19. #18
    WannaBeBig Member mike42506's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    Flat bench is the only thing I do for my pecs. I'll do DB for recovery but other than that, its all barbell
    same

  20. #19
    Cross trainer & DL addict mikesbytes's Avatar
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    I find decline quite a bit easier, its not just because of the lower rom, more so to do with the engaging of the lats.

  21. #20
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    Isn't the reason why you can lift more with decline bench because the delts are not involved - delts tend to be the weakest link with bench pressing.

  22. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilles1975 View Post
    Isn't the reason why you can lift more with decline bench because the delts are not involved - delts tend to be the weakest link with bench pressing.
    That's akin to claiming that we can SLDL more than we DL because the quads are not involved. Removing a muscle's contribution only weakens the lift.

  23. #22
    mind/body zen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kastro View Post
    That's akin to claiming that we can SLDL more than we DL because the quads are not involved. Removing a muscle's contribution only weakens the lift.
    I don't think they are exactly equivalent. Quads are still employed directly in DLs no matter what. If you don't use quads then they aren't DLs at all. It's a primary mover in the DL like triceps are are a primary mover in Bench. Lats and Delt's are secondary in bench, and when you change the angle of resistence to decline, you reduce the support from delts and increase support from Lats.
    'In order to alter the inertial mass of weights, you must become one with them, like a machine, the totality of your motion is as one'

  24. #23
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    Very true, I forgot to add the part about bringing the lats into the equation. Lats are bigger and stronger than delts.

  25. #24
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    Where have we all got this absurd idea that lats help us bench? They do not contribute to the upward movement of the bar at all.

  26. #25
    Cross trainer & DL addict mikesbytes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kastro View Post
    Where have we all got this absurd idea that lats help us bench? They do not contribute to the upward movement of the bar at all.
    Why is that so?

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