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

Its 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
    Wannabebig Member Abzolut800's Avatar
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    Compare your DB and BB presses...

    8 months ago I injured my elbow in rugby and my bb bench became very weak and frustrating. I took a little time off and then decided to switch to dumbell pressing for a while. I was just wondering what kind of strength comparisons do most people have between their flat/incline bb and db presses?

    My max bb flat bench before the injury was 225
    Max bb incline was 165 x 6 (weak)

    On db bench after 7 months of training them (for the first time ever with db's) -
    Flat db: 75sx10
    Incline: 70sx12

    I start out with 4 sets of incline before doing 3 sets of flat. Maybe that is why my flat db press isn't much higher than my incline...

    Should I switch back to barbell? Will I expect to be stronger with bb now? Is my bb to db ratio "common," (225 max bb to 75s x 10 max db) or is that even measurable?

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  3. #2
    Push powerlifting heathj's Avatar
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    Your chest might be stronger...but that does not necessarily mean your bb bench will be stronger.

  4. #3
    Rory Parker Behemoth's Avatar
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    I max BB bench at 200 last time I tried, and workset around 170. But I use 75's for 6-8 currently with dumbells.
    accuflex - LOLZZZZ!!!11one1!! SOEM PPL WORK THRE ARMZ!!!!11!! LETS KILL THEM111

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  5. #4
    Banned The_Brick's Avatar
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    I maxed barbell bench (260lbs) last weekend.

    Flat DBs today = the first time i tried 90s i got 7 reps out. Im going back to 85s for about 2 weeks then trying again. Ive only been using DB presses for about 3 months.

  6. #5
    Toughest Man in the World Bruise Brubaker's Avatar
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    Monday I maxed on barbell bench at 250*1.

    I then did 5 sets of 5 reps with 75 pounds dumbells, the last set was the only one to faillure.

  7. #6
    back at it Beast's Avatar
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    DB presses are a LOT harder than BB presses in terms of poundages used, at least for me.
    Last summer all I did were DB presses for my wrists. When I started up BB presses again I couldn't do anything because I wasn't used to the movement. Didn't take me long to get back into it, though.

    D 435 / S 340 / B 305

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  8. #7
    Wounded Deadlifter ryan1117's Avatar
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    A good rule of thumb seems to be a 1.25:1 ratio. I'm usually right around that range regardless of reps.
    5-9 170

  9. #8
    Senior Member aka23's Avatar
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    I have about a 1.06 : 1 ratio. My can do approximatelly the same reps with 92lb dumbbells press and a 195lb bench press. Gains on my bench press have been slow in recent weeks, so I have been focusing on DB exercises.

  10. #9
    Senior Member geoffgarcia's Avatar
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    I'm considerably stronger on a bb than using db's and this is for incline, flat and military presses. Smith machine I can do tons more on...

    flat bb 275x10
    flat db 115x10

    incline bb 230x10
    incline db 100x10

    military bb 200x10
    military db 80x10

  11. #10
    Banned kazzy's Avatar
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    My max bb press is around 245lbs*1 rep. Normally I can do 185lbs*8 reps bb. db pressing is a bit harder for me tho... incline db I can only do about 160lbs*3 reps.

  12. #11
    Simply Devious Rastaman's Avatar
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    Interesting thread... I always wondered about how other people's bb and db weights correlated...

    80 x 7 for dbs.
    195 x 7 for barbell bench.

    I did dumbbells for about six months during the school year, progressed quite a bit, then went back to bench which actually went down a little from when I had stopped. Who knew?

    "The only sin which we never forgive in each other is difference of opinion."
    -Ralph Waldo Emerson


    Word.

  13. #12
    Simply Devious Rastaman's Avatar
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    Re: Compare your DB and BB presses...

    Originally posted by Abzolut800
    My max bb flat bench before the injury was 225
    Max bb incline was 165 x 6 (weak)


    How much were you doing for a full set?
    "The only sin which we never forgive in each other is difference of opinion."
    -Ralph Waldo Emerson


    Word.

  14. #13
    Wannabebig Member Abzolut800's Avatar
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    Rastaman - I don't know what you mean by a full set, but my workout usually consisted of...(before the injury) In this order

    Flat BB bench -
    135 x 12
    155 x 8-10
    175 x 6-8
    185 x 4-6
    205 x 1-3

    Incline BB bench -
    135 x 10
    145 x 8
    155 x 6-8
    165 x 4-7

    DB Flyes -
    20s x 12
    25s x 10
    30s x 10
    30s x 10

    In the past few months using dumbells I have done...(numbers are recent)

    Incline DB bench -
    65s x 10
    70s x 10
    70s x 10
    70s x 6-8

    Flat DB bench -
    65s x 10
    70s x 8-10
    75s x 6-8
    75s x 6-8

    DB Flyes -
    30s x 12
    35s x 10
    35s x 10

    Bodyweight dips x 12-16
    Pushups to failure (now 45-50)

  15. #14
    Gymaholic Workhorse's Avatar
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    Flat bench:
    DB: 120'sx7
    BB: 275x7
    Last edited by Workhorse; 06-02-2003 at 08:43 AM.
    Check out my Training Journal HERE

    105kg Open IPF Classic Provincial record holder in the squat, bench, deadlift, and total.

  16. #15
    Senior Member Fenbay's Avatar
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    My weak link with dumb bells is getting them into position for the lift. Especially inclined db's. I missed the other day twice with 90's even trying to use the knee kick-up method to get into position.

    Once I get the weight where it belongs the reps are easy. This is probably why I rarely do heavy press type exercises with db's. I'd like to do more, but it doesn't work too well at heavy weights for me. I can do 315 for a few reps on inclined barbell.

  17. #16
    Rollin Dubs HORNEDFROGS07's Avatar
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    Well, I think its a pretty big difference, because I max at 310 bb flat bench, but I can only press the 110's db flat bench.
    Vincere aut mori

    "The best inspiration is not to outdo others, but to outdo ourselves."

    "From the inside looking out, you can't explain it; from the outside looking in, you can't understand it."

  18. #17
    Simply Devious Rastaman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Abzolut800
    Rastaman - I don't know what you mean by a full set, but my workout usually consisted of...(before the injury) In this order

    Flat BB bench -
    135 x 12
    155 x 8-10
    175 x 6-8
    185 x 4-6
    205 x 1-3


    Flat DB bench -
    65s x 10
    70s x 8-10
    75s x 6-8
    75s x 6-8

    That looks about right... your DB press do look a bit better than your BB bench though considering you do incline dbs before doing flat dbs.

    My only basis of comparison is to myself though. *shrugs* If you want a bigger benchpress, then you have to hit bb bench consistently. I got some great results from doing DBs but my benchpress did not increase.
    Last edited by Rastaman; 06-02-2003 at 03:47 PM.
    "The only sin which we never forgive in each other is difference of opinion."
    -Ralph Waldo Emerson


    Word.

  19. #18
    Wannabebig New Member
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    Hmm..I don't do DB bench. If I wanted to start, what would be the suggested weight I use?

    Right now this is my bench workout:

    135 x 10
    155 x 8-10
    185 x 6-8
    195 x 4-6
    205 x 2

  20. #19
    Wannabebig Member Abzolut800's Avatar
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    dafatha00 - Start out safe to get the feel of it and nail the form...maybe 55s for incline and 60s for flat? I bet you could do more for sure but if you've never done them before, try it out less than max effort first.

    Rastaman - damn...I thought my bb bench would increase if I did DB and got stronger consistently. Oh well it doesn't really matter as long as I've made strength + size gains. I like the feel of db's better anyway.

  21. #20
    Simply Devious Rastaman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Abzolut800
    Rastaman - damn...I thought my bb bench would increase if I did DB and got stronger consistently. Oh well it doesn't really matter as long as I've made strength + size gains. I like the feel of db's better anyway.

    Word.
    "The only sin which we never forgive in each other is difference of opinion."
    -Ralph Waldo Emerson


    Word.

  22. #21
    Overtrainer.
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    My gym dumbells only go to 100lbs. Farken.

  23. #22
    Wannabebig Member
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    Originally posted by ryan1117
    A good rule of thumb seems to be a 1.25:1 ratio. I'm usually right around that range regardless of reps.
    That is exactly my ratio. I BB Bench Press 112kg (248 lbs) and DB Bench Press with 45kg Dumbbells. 2 x 45kg = 90kg (198 lbs).

    112/90=1.25
    Last edited by Beleriand_K; 06-03-2003 at 11:39 AM.

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