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Thread: bench press- arch back or not???

  1. #1
    the kid from oz
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    bench press- arch back or not???

    There is a teacher at my school who says if your feet cant touch the floor properly on the bench dont let them dangle cos you will wreck your back if its arched when you're pressing - he's an olympic weight lifter....

    BUT

    There is this guy at my gym who i train with sometimes, who says you should arch your back because it gives more emphisis on the chest rather than your shoulders doing all the work - he's also an olympic weight lifter and a former body builder, and he is a BIG man... He also has a different technique to most people for flyes, which is harder so im more inlcined to go with the first guy


    what do you guys reakon????

  2. #2
    Party of "No." Tryska's Avatar
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    don't arch your back. let is rest naturally on the bench. if your feet don't touch the floor, you can put them up on the bench.
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  3. #3
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    Uhm I say keep at least the balls of your feet on the floor, maybe a LITTLE arch when you explode... but sh*t, not too much or you'll kill yourself. Just try to keep the press at nipple level, or slightly below. That should isolate the chest well enough I would think.

    Or like Tryska said, if you're a midget feet on the bench. Don't let them dangle, that's a bad position for the back.
    Last edited by Kazuki; 09-20-2001 at 06:58 AM.

  4. #4
    Party of "No." Tryska's Avatar
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    I'm only 5'4", but i'm confused as to how your feet can dangle on the bench...I usually straddle it, so that my feet make full contact, as opposed to laying my legs along the full length of the bench. That way, when i need to really push, I can press my legs into the floor and bear down so I can push up, if that makes any sense.
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  5. #5
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    Sure does. 5'4 is a midget.

    Some people will just not bend their legs enough to touch the floor. Or they sprawl out and there is no way.

  6. #6
    the kid from oz
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    nah its cos at school we have a student made bench its higher than one you will find at the gym
    its also wider, so my whole back will fit on easy, wich i must say is a huuuuge difference to one at the gym i just joined..

  7. #7
    Party of "No." Tryska's Avatar
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    then you might want to try putting your feet up on it. Take care not to raise your hips while your pushing though.


    and kazuki - I am not a midget. and when i wear heels, I'm 5'8" so there.
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  8. #8
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    Originally posted by Tryska

    and kazuki - I am not a midget. and when i wear heels, I'm 5'8" so there.
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  9. #9
    Party of "No." Tryska's Avatar
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    I've got a spike heel waiting for you.:evillaugh
    A little learning is a dangerous thing...

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  10. #10
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    Errrrrrrrrrrrr

  11. #11
    MA's Bionic Creation syntekz's Avatar
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    I can't imagine putting my feet up on the bench. I don't know how people do it. I'd lose my balance soon as I started the lift.

  12. #12
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    If you want to produce maximum power in the lift you should arch your back. You should also make sure your glutes stay in contact with the bench at all times. Some people can arch more than others, so work within your capabilities.

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    Maximum power requires the recruiting of all the muscles involved... primary and helpers, no?

    So really, arching your back then would cause the deltoids to play more of a role? Sounds strange? - Or is it just a more explosive motion, therefore "exploding" more strength.

  14. #14
    MA's Bionic Creation syntekz's Avatar
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    I think it has a lot to do with leverage. I keep my back and my ass on the bench. I've seen guys who only have their backs on the bench and the rest of their body is an arch. What's up with that? tuttut

  15. #15
    Cardio bunny Alex.V's Avatar
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    Yeah. More advantageous angle for the pecs. Witness decline bench.
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  16. #16
    Cardio bunny Alex.V's Avatar
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    btw, I absolutely 100% respect Olympic Weightlifters, but.....hell, the day I see one of them really working their chest.....
    "Except Belial. He knows everything. This isn't a sarcastic attack, either. He really knows everything." -----Organichu
    "Alex is all knowing and perfect"-----Jane (loosely paraphrased)
    -515/745/700 bench/deadlift/squat
    Current mile time: 4:23
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  17. #17
    MA's Bionic Creation syntekz's Avatar
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    The BIG arch lifters are just ego lifters, eh?

  18. #18
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    I think this depends on your goals.

    Do you want to have a big bench in a PLing meet? Then arch according to the rules of the meet (ass and shoulders on bench, feet on floor.) The arch shortens the ROM, and puts most people in a stronger position.

    If you want to grow big muscles and stay safe, I'd suggest benching with no arch, feet on floor.

    YMMV.
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  19. #19
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    I just assumed his goals were bigger muscles... since he said he wanted to "Hit the chest"

  20. #20
    decease, RIP
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    well a guy at my gym just puts the bench real close to the dbl's and then puts his feet on all of the dbl's!! Strange, and you can't really tell how many reps he has done. Because he almost doesn't lower the weights at all. I guess you could count his grunts or something.

    Just to get back to the short person problem.

  21. #21
    Gaglione Strength Chris Rodgers's Avatar
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    Listen to what Paul said. Different goals for diffferent people.
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  22. #22
    MA's Bionic Creation syntekz's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Paul Stagg
    If you want to grow big muscles and stay safe, I'd suggest benching with no arch, feet on floor.
    I think the key word is "safe."

  23. #23
    Moderator Adam's Avatar
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    If you do decide to use a arch make sure your feet on the floor and ass stay on the bench. Main thing is keep the arch the same during the whole lift.
    Last edited by Adam; 09-20-2001 at 01:00 PM.
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  24. #24
    Wannabebig Member
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    when you break the weight put your elbows in on the way down and arch your back tightly straining the back muscles but not moving them when its on your chest and you are ready to lift unleash all your back and chest power by removing the arch from your back doing this will complete half the movement with no problem the rest is just delts and tri's.
    live to lift

  25. #25
    Lord Kel Masters Sayiajin Prince's Avatar
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    sure i use a small arch on my back, but that is b/c it is more comfy for me that way.

    you people are missinga very important aspect of the form

    you need to squeeze ur shoulder blades together

    doing so kinda streches ur pecs and puts more focus on it, also making the lift easier b/c (for me) it places ur muscles at a better mind connection.

    plz take wut i said into account.
    "The whole jedi thing was just not compatible with my lifestyle. My master was jelous he was always holding me back, -"be mindfull of the future, but live in the present"- what the hell does that mean? I even got my arm cut off...it just sucked. So i switched to the dark side and i havent looked back once...Now i am shooting lightning from my fingertips, choking people over the phone, i even get to wear a cape.....its just boss. My name is Anikin skywalker and i am a sith lord."

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    other: dips 3 and a quarter plates for 4 reps

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