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

Itís 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
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Help with Bench Press (I feel like a noob :-|

    G'day and cheers for reading,

    I feel like a noob (admittedly I am pretty new to the whole lifting thing, but this just seems silly) and i'm having great difficulty with bench press at the moment!

    This is simply flat bench, incline i don't have any major problems with. Everytime i go to do flat bench, i get going but i always feel my front delts tire waaaaaay before my chest. I'll do 3 sets of 10, without my chest even stinging when my shoulders are killing me!

    I'm trying to maintain good form, i bring it down slow, pushing back up pretty evenly as well, i bring it down to about nipple height on my chest but i still just don't feel it. The problem is, i can't do anymore weight either =\ i'm stuck at 40kg and whenever i try bump it up, i literally just feel like i don't have the strength.

    Any advice guys or gals, are my shoulders just lagging reeeeally badly in strength? This is killin me over here, cos i see bench as a really important excercise and also a good test or PR to set

    Cheers Tomv
    My Journal

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  3. #2

  4. #3
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Ummm... i honestly can't remember to be honest =S. Should I be doing that?

    *note* wow Built, teh ubar jeenyus of the forums.
    My Journal

    Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  5. #4
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
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    Okay, that made me giggle! LOL!

    Yes, try it that way and see how it feels to you. Another techinque that gets bantered about is "ripping the bar apart".

  6. #5
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Thanks very much built, a million ... ummm... things that you like in your direction? (I normally say a million jelly beans in your direction, but i figure you're probably trying to avoid the sugars lol).

    I'm going to the gym on thursday... i think that's wednesday for you guy so i will report back then. Basically i'm just meant to squeeze my shoulder blades together whilst trying to push up? What's this ripping the bar apart thingy you speak of? =S?

    I never realised there was so much to bench, i thought you just... moved heavy objects up and down lol, i have much to learn.
    My Journal

    Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  7. #6
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
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    Yes, well, you'll be working your form for the heavy compounds for the rest of your life. There's a REASON why most people don't do 'em - they're HARD!

    Squeeze your wingbones together, arch your back a bit, and try to tear the bar apart as you push up. You should see a big improvement in your bench. I started paying attention to this recently and I can't BELIEVE what a difference it makes to my (really wimpy-assed girly) pressing.

  8. #7

  9. #8
    Hulk Smash! LouPac's Avatar
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    in addition to Built's advice, bring the bar preferably under the nipples if possible, don't flare your elbows out, squeeze your butt cheeks, stick your feet back to help your butt stay down and grip the bar as tight as possible, as if you're squeezing through the bar.

  10. #9
    Bodybuilding Mythbuster
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomv
    G'day and cheers for reading,

    I feel like a noob (admittedly I am pretty new to the whole lifting thing, but this just seems silly) and i'm having great difficulty with bench press at the moment!

    (1) This is simply flat bench, incline i don't have any major problems with. Everytime i go to do flat bench, i get going but i always feel my front delts tire waaaaaay before my chest. I'll do 3 sets of 10, without my chest even stinging when my shoulders are killing me!

    I'm trying to maintain good form, i bring it down slow, pushing back up pretty evenly as well, i bring it down to about nipple height on my chest but i still just don't feel it. The problem is, i can't do anymore weight either =\ i'm stuck at 40kg and whenever i try bump it up, i literally just feel like i don't have the strength.

    (2) Any advice guys or gals, are my shoulders just lagging reeeeally badly in strength? This is killin me over here, cos i see bench as a really important excercise and also a good test or PR to set

    Cheers Tomv
    (numbers are mine)

    1. Try doing pec deck or DB flyes FIRST in your routine.


    2. Bench is not really an important exercise. Much more important (in terms of putting mass on your body and gaining overall strength are the deadlift and squat. Those are truer tests of strength.

  11. #10
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Much appreciated Built and Loupac, i'll try all this stuff next time i go to the gym, spanksamillion .
    My Journal

    Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  12. #11
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Oh, just missed your post songsangnim, i'll try that out too, any particular reason for doing flys first?

    lol i know it's not the best excercise but everyone likes to say they can bench lots ;-) and those big ass muscly man titties just look so cool .
    My Journal

    Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  13. #12
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    Don't go so slow, maybe that's getting your shoulders too do most of the work. Hold your chest high, wear a belt, hold a lot of air in your lungs, spread your pectoral muscles as you lower the bar. I had a similar problem with the bench when

  14. #13
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    I had a similar problem when I was younger, I felt my delts and triceps were doing all the work. The secret is, hold your chest as high as possible, force your chest to do the work, recieve the weight with your chest, lower the bar to your lower chest area, by the nipple area, press the bar fast, with power. Concentrate on getting progressively stronger. Avoid working your front delts directly, since it's obvious they are too strong, compared to your pecs, let your chest get bigger and stronger first, unless you wanna have the ''big shoulders no chest syndrome'' for the rest of your life. Do dips, dumbell flies, decline presses and push ups. Eventually you'll develop a huge, powerful chest. Good luck

  15. #14
    Hulk Smash! LouPac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomv
    Oh, just missed your post songsangnim, i'll try that out too, any particular reason for doing flys first?

    lol i know it's not the best excercise but everyone likes to say they can bench lots ;-) and those big ass muscly man titties just look so cool .
    Don't listen to songsangnim, his advice makes no sense whatsoever.
    Flat bench is a great exercise for building strength and mass.

  16. #15
    Hulk Smash! LouPac's Avatar
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    You people have to stop recommending flyes, they're a worthless exercise that often do more damage to the shoulders than what they are worth.

  17. #16
    Banned Steele's Avatar
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    I read an article at one point that said a wider grip would primarily work your pecs and delts, and a narrower one would be focus on your bis/tris. If that's the case, then i'd go for the happy medium. Hope this helps =) Will see if i can find the link when i get back.

    -Steele
    Last edited by Steele; 08-08-2006 at 02:49 AM.

  18. #17
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    Not true, flies can be a good exercise for a bodybuilder, many great bodybuilders have used this exercise, and still do. You just gotta make sure you use proper form and don't hyper extend your arms, do the movement slowly, it helps stretching the pectoral muscles for added growth. It serves no purpose for a powerlifter though.

  19. #18
    Hulk Smash! LouPac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigwhitemale
    Not true, flies can be a good exercise for a bodybuilder, many great bodybuilders have used this exercise, and still do. You just gotta make sure you use proper form and don't hyper extend your arms, do the movement slowly, it helps stretching the pectoral muscles for added growth. It serves no purpose for a powerlifter though.
    If you want added growth, do compound movements, not isolation exercises. You can have the best form in the world but once you start moving up in weight flyes can be horribly bad for your shoulders.

  20. #19
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Hmmm, i'm not a big fan of flies but is there anything else to work the inner chest that i can do with free weights? No Pec Deck at my lil gym. Thanks again guys (and gal) for all of this info and help, i can't wait till thursday! I may even duck in tomorrow arvo just to test some of this out =D
    My Journal

    Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  21. #20
    Senior Member tomv's Avatar
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    Oh btw, what excercises for shoulders do Front delts? i'm currently doing side lateral raises and i think military press (dumbell in either hand, just press em straight up) for my shoulder workout, do either of these really work the front delt?
    My Journal

    Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

  22. #21
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    Ignore most of the posts after builts, lol.

    You guys are way overcomplicating this for him. He's just starting and he's benching 90lbs.

    Built was spot on and so was LouPac. You'll add extra kilos to your bench using those techniques. Try watching videos of people with big benches. They don't just lie flat and push outwards. You drive your feet into the ground, clench your arse cheeks, pinch your shoulder blades etc.

    Don't bother with flies - concentrate on flat barbell bench press. Maybe add incline dumbell press too. That really helped my bench.

    Also just for the record, there's no such thing as inner pecs. Your pectoralis major is one muscle and you can't target a particular part of it. When the muscle gets bigger, it gets bigger all over. Think of a piece of string. If you add 1cm to any part of it, no single piece has become any bigger - the whole thing has increased. Get it?

  23. #22
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    Davidelmo, I also have the problem of my delts giving in too soon. I'm interested in this "pinching your shoulders" technique, can this be done on a wide flat bench, or do you need to hang your shoulderblades off the end of the bench so that you can squeeze them together? I hope this isnt a dumb question, its just that on wiki it says you need a special type of bench to pinch your shoulderblads when bench pressing.
    Quote from Wikipedia "It is properly performed while lying on one's back with one's shoulder blades pinched together on a specially designed bench with a weighted barbell suspended on a rack"
    My bench is just a standard flat bench.
    Thanks.
    Last edited by JConrad; 08-08-2006 at 08:01 AM.

  24. #23
    Gunslinger bullethead74's Avatar
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    Try adding just tiny amounts of weight like 1kg total to what you currently bench, doesnt sound much, but you do this every other week building back up to to the same number of reps each time, and in a few months you will have seriously increased your bench without noticing it. Its easy to get lost in the desire to add big numbers quickly.

  25. #24
    Hulk Smash! LouPac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JConrad
    Davidelmo, I also have the problem of my delts giving in too soon. I'm interested in this "pinching your shoulders" technique, can this be done on a wide flat bench, or do you need to hang your shoulderblades off the end of the bench so that you can squeeze them together? I hope this isnt a dumb question, its just that on wiki it says you need a special type of bench to pinch your shoulderblads when bench pressing.
    Quote from Wikipedia "It is properly performed while lying on one's back with one's shoulder blades pinched together on a specially designed bench with a weighted barbell suspended on a rack"
    My bench is just a standard flat bench.
    Thanks.
    You don't need any special kind of bench, just pinch your shoulder blades all the way back, it should feel uncomfortable.

  26. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigwhitemale
    Don't go so slow, maybe that's getting your shoulders too do most of the work. Hold your chest high, wear a belt, hold a lot of air in your lungs, spread your pectoral muscles as you lower the bar. I had a similar problem with the bench when

    wait, wear a belt? Am I the only one that things that is completely unnecessary for bench? I mean ....
    Last edited by UnknownSoldier; 08-08-2006 at 10:11 PM.

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