I've heard there are several approaches used when training bench in a shirt.. especially say for someone who hasn't used one previously... or a lesser skilled shirted bencher perhaps.....
With that said....what are some thoughts on training for a beginner to intermediate shirted lifter?..
Should they focus more on working to get the shirt to touch? more so say than doing 3x or 2x board work?...
no board work, lighter weight reps. get in it every week for atleast 6
If its a brand new shirt and actually fits rite you will have to board it down. I wouldnt try and touch till atleast the 3-4 time...but after that if your a beginner you need to focus on touching.
If you have a few years under your belt, then you can still remember what I call the ďFat-Free 80ís.Ē Think back to a time when dietary fat was the enemy. Ah, yes... A time when fat-free products lined the outer shelves of the supermarket. A time when it was not a bad thing to get a box of Entemannís cinnamon rolls, as long as they were the FAT-FREE cinnamon rolls. Health Valley made some positively disgusting fat-free cookies, along with a host of other fat-free products that tasted like sugary cardboard. And we canít forget the 75% sugar weight gainer products, those were priceless. 1,000, 2000, 4,000 calories per serving, and all you had to do was mix about a cup of powder into your favourite drink. No worries though, these gainers were virtually fat-free! What we were led to believe was that fat-free products equated to fat-free physiques. Unfortunately, that was far from the truth.
I like to try to touch weights right off the back, others say use boards. All means work but one thing that is right is that you will have to put it on and leave it on for a while in the gym. 4-6 weeks minimum
Best Lifts unequipped
Best lifts Equipped
Thankfully Representing AtLarge Nutrition and EliteFTS
If you're new to using the shirt, boards are a bad idea. Just get in the shirt and start out light (your raw max or something in that neighborhood should be a good start) and work with it. It helps if you have experienced benchers to guide you but if not, just use your head and be smart. If you don't touch right away, keep working it. Make sure you are pushing your hips and your belly up as hard as you can, squeeze your glutes and drive your heels into the floor. Most importantly, be patient when the shirt locks up. Keep pushing the belly up and pull your elbows in hard. Make sure you have someone give you a press call and defintely have side spotters at all times.
Don't just keep piling weight on the bar to try and touch. Again, use your head. If your raw max doesn't touch but you press it like a joke, add some weight.
Stats: Age: 34 Weight: 205 Height: 5'6"
Gym PRs: Squat:635 Bench:560 Deadlift:495
Meet PRs: Squat:575 Bench:520 Deadlift:510 Total: 1605@220
Just because a shirt is tight and you can't touch does not mean you have to board it down. Boards just stop you from going lower. You need to go lower and not stop high on a board. Just go as low as possible each time you use it. Boards also let a lifter drop the weight way too low to touch the board. Do that without the boards and it's a dump. So in a way boards can teach bad form.
Use boards later once you know you can actually use and touch weight in the shirt.
I would consider myself an intermediate lifter and I've just been trying to break in a new Metal Ace.
I took advice from Scott and have been trying fairly light triples (I'm not a good bencher anyway!) and one things for sure my back has had the best workout ever trying to get the bar down further with each rep and set.
And the Ace is one hell of a shirt to get off your forearms
WFT's all that about fat free rolls?!?
Best lifts @ 226 lbs
Squat - 903
Bench - 573 / 617 @ 246
Dead - 727
Best Total - 2204 lbs @ 226 18/07/2010