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Thread: Trouble setting up on lower competition benches with very long femurs.

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    Trouble setting up on lower competition benches with very long femurs.

    Ever since I switched gyms, I cannot setup properly on the lower benches. I used to be able to get both tight and tremendous leg drive because my old gym's bench was higher off the ground.

    I can either tuck my legs back which results in zero leg drive, but I am very tight or I can go feet way out and to the side and get better leg drive, but less support from being less tight.

    Anyone here have long femurs that can give me any advice?


    This is a video of how I used to be able to setup. Notice the angle of my thigh and the opposing angle of my shin. This allowed me to support a good chunk of the weight with my legs. I got that awesome feeling when I unracked that the weight felt supported by my upper back and legs, not my arms.

    However, on the shorter bench, if I attempt that setup, my thigh angle gets closer to 90 degrees and I just get zero leg drive or support. It has been over 2 years now and I still haven't figured out how to get that feeling of support on the shorter benches.


    Higher bench = good support and drive


    Lower bench = no support and no leg drive, notice the angle of my thigh. USAPL is my fed, so that is why I don't go on my toes to try to increase that angle. Is there any other foot placement that would help me?

    Last edited by FearFactory; 04-25-2013 at 12:26 PM.

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    First vid my legs clearly tense up a ton as I am pressing it. 2nd vid = pretty much no flexing coming out of my quads and it appears to be all upper body.

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    illinois fattest lifter theBarzeen's Avatar
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    I've got long legs as well.... the best thing I've found ( thanks to one of Rob Luyando's bench seminars years ago) was for me to set up with my legs out in front of me, not tucked under or back at all.
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    Quote Originally Posted by theBarzeen View Post
    I've got long legs as well.... the best thing I've found ( thanks to one of Rob Luyando's bench seminars years ago) was for me to set up with my legs out in front of me, not tucked under or back at all.
    Thanks.

    Do you have a video? That is what I have been experimenting with the last few sessions, but I can't get the hang of it and I just feel like I am flat back benching.

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    Anyone got vids of feet out benching?

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    Dave Tate shows this style in a few of his video tutorials.

    Best to just look through some IPF bench vids since they use the ER Racks although you may not find such long-limbed femurs in there. It would also be useful for you to mimic this height in training if it's such a big deal with regards to your setup.
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    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Watch videos of Ryan Kennelly. He uses a nice wide stance


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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    Watch videos of Ryan Kennelly. He uses a nice wide stance
    Oh wow that looks like it might just work for me. Thanks!

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    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    That's the same way I set up. Works better in my opinion than feet tucked under


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    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Bell View Post
    That's the same way I set up. Works better in my opinion than feet tucked under
    Thanks. Couple of questions.

    1) Flat soled shoes, or do you think a heel lifted shoe would benefit?
    2) How do you know the exact place to put your feet? What are you feeling for?

  11. #11
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    I use just regular athletic shoes. I prefer more closer to a flat sole or even sole I guess.

    You want to really push your knees out. So move your feet out until your feeling some tension in your hips. Then as you press keep driving the knees out and squeeze your butt together. It provides a much much more stable platform to bench off of.


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    Travis, that advice worked very well today. Thanks!

    I didn't necessarily feel stronger, but I felt very stable and unracking the weight felt very good. It felt supported by my legs instead of my arms, which is a good first step. I will continue working on it. The tensing of the glute cue helped the most.

  13. #13
    illinois fattest lifter theBarzeen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FearFactory View Post
    Anyone got vids of feet out benching?
    Man, it was tough to find any videos that showed my whole set up.... this video is old, and I've pushed my feet forward some ( away from my head) since then... but it shows a few of the guys I train with and myself using this set up.

    http://youtu.be/7Fzrx5EDMHM
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