The bench press works exceptionally for strength building and is also a popular upper body exercise. Besides, it helps restore body balance for sports like football, athletes, and sprinting. However, it involves some complex movements that can cause disastrous results if done wrong.
It may seem quite challenging for a beginner, but you should get better with constant training. If you feel like you don’t get more out of this exercise, it might be time to improve your techniques. Here is a definitive guide to getting you started.
How Often Should I Bench Press?
The question of how much is enough in strength and coordination exercises is very prevalent. It’s due to people’s need to do just what is enough to facilitate muscle growth without overly working out or wasting energy. There is no definite answer to how frequently you should do it, but it should be more than once in a week, especially if you are looking forward to improving.
Note that the bench presses will respond higher in more frequencies, certainly more than once weekly. Increasing the frequency will result in the improved practice of the skill, which translates to better results and greater comfort under the barbell. If you do it, let’s say once and another individual thrice in a week, the later experience a greater degree of improvement.
However, beware that everyone responds differently to training volumes, intensities, and frequencies. You can bench press from two to three times a week at a standard rate, which will give you good practice on the technique.
Nonetheless, stick to your current training frequency if your body has sufficient stress-adaption response, so you are consistently making progress. Yet, if you have injuries that may negatively affect your bench presses, you may need to maintain the frequency or even reduce it slightly. If you participate in a powerlifting competition, as the tournament gets closer, you need to minimize the training volume or keep it static. However, if you don’t fall into either of the categories, consider adding your bench press frequencies.
Can You Bench Press Everyday?
Its human nature that when we fail to see gains in exercises, we think that the best solution is to try it harder. Remember that you have various bench press movements, and for better recovery, it would be wise to train a single body part once a week. As much as it won’t hurt you, doing bench presses every day is a sign of poor gym time management. Eventually, you will begin to experience some joint pains in the long run.
Note that the training should shock, overextend, and grow your muscles. If you do the same exercise every day, your body gets used to it, and after a few months, you will achieve no gains. Besides, you may experience some muscle imbalance around your shoulders. Note that more isn’t always better, and you need to be real with yourself. If you plan to workout thrice in a week and that’s all you can handle, don’t force more on yourself.
How Many Minutes Should I Bench Press?
Your level of experience and training needs affects the bench press session time. Still, the best way to ascertain the appropriate number of minutes is by determining the work-rest ratio based on your goals. One person may decide to rest around one minute between sets while another with different objectives will rest three minutes.
For instance, if you wish to gain muscle mass, you can rest two to three minutes, but you may want to reduce the time to a minute based on your routine to avoid forcing your muscles to work harder. Your objectives, therefore, leads to a vast disparity between the lengths of the workout session.
It’s OK to work out hard, but you can’t work out long and hard to avoid overtraining. You can do around five to twenty reps sets in a cycle since you shouldn’t have a particular number of repetitions every day. For a beginner, kick off with a 40 minutes session then upgrade gradually.
However, a session shouldn’t last for more than 60 minutes. Provided that you have a correctly designed workout program based on your specific needs and goals, your bench press should take as long as necessary.
How Much Can I Improve My Bench Press In A Month?
Noticeably, a substantial gain in muscles may take several months, but you will still achieve some changes within a month. Your results will vary based on training intensity, genetic makeup, frequency, and hormonal levels. With all conditions considered, beginners, on average, can gain a 10 to 20 pounds increase in a month with an average one-rep max.
A newbie is more likely to achieve faster results than advanced benchers. It’s because you already have muscle strength that you don’t know how to utilize. In the first month, you aren’t building any strength but using the existing one. With constant benching, your muscles get used to balancing the barbell during lifting and become more accustomed to the press movement. With each workout, your techniques improve, and you can lift heavier weights.
If you experience a constant gain of above 10 pounds regularly, your body may react. It refuses to go steps further, no matter how hard you try, especially by the third or fourth month. It’s because your muscles have now fully adapted to the bench movements causing a slowdown in progress.
Nevertheless, there is always a way out. Try out various bench exercises to keep your muscles challenged in different ways, which will help achieve a one-rep max near the 10 pounds monthly rate. Besides, change your reps count and sets number so your body won’t adapt to the same workout daily.
Is Bench Press Enough For Chest?
A bench press is the best lift for anyone looking forward to achieving powerful chests. It involves workouts in a wide range of motions resulting in massive growth stimulus in the lower and mid-chest. However, you need to bench correctly for maximum results.
First, use a moderate rep range of about eight and above since a lower one may favor shoulder and triceps growth over the chest. Besides, use a moderately wide grip and get a deep stretch from the bench press’s bottom to facilitate muscle growth. However, if you have tried it out and nothing seems to work, you might need to combine it with a variation for a bigger and stronger chest.
Are Floor Presses Harder Than Bench Press?
The floor press is a fantastic way to improve your bench movements. The main difference between the two is that you perform floor presses while lying on the ground rather than on a bench. As a result, you rest your arms on the floor at the base of the movement, eliminating tension and elastic energy from the muscles. Consequently, you will experience some brief pauses, which makes the lift a little bit harder.
Further, the lack of support from a lower-body drive aggravates the movement’s intensity. You perform the floor presses with your legs against the floor. Hence, it excludes the driving force generated with your leg on the floor compared to the advantage of additional power you can achieve in the bench press. With the bench press, you can lift more weight by utilizing the slight impact caused when the bar hits your chest as momentum for an upward lift.
Does Deadlift Increase Bench Press?
Pairing together bench press and deadlift will help you pack on more muscle. The combination keeps your shoulders in a state of retraction and depression, ideal for thoracic expansion. As a result, the movements place your shoulders in a sufficiently rotated spot and activates your back’s musculature. Your chest is, therefore, in a better position to stabilize the barbell over your body.
Additionally, the external shoulder rotation helps alleviate any joint pains and discomfort during the bench press. The deadlift will help achieve a better thoracic spine and scapula positioning, resulting in comfortable and better bench presses. Besides, it will help build your butt, back, and legs muscles to keep you tight in your bench press. You will have a more substantial base to do the pressing for, and it also improves your grip strength. Since it strengthens your anterior deltoids, it helps you lift a little more weight while on the bench.
Is Chest Press Easier Than Bench Press?
The mechanics involved in the chest press makes it a more effortless and safer option for a beginner. You perform it on a machine rather than a bench with multiple angled handles so you can choose one that best suits you. One main advantage is that you can always load a comfortable weight, and you can even lift more than the bench press.
With the chest press, you don’t require a learning curve. Even a beginner can easily sit on the machine and start working out. The chest press machine also makes it relatively easy to use compared to the bench’s free weights. It contains guided motion in the machine, it weighs less, set in a range of motion, and gravity doesn’t affect it, making it naturally easy.
On the other hand, bench press requires coordination of various muscle groups, including your shoulders, arms, and core. You complete the exercise on an inclined or a flat bench, and you need to coordinate the movements of your dumbbells or barbell as you bench press. You also hold the weights over your head, and you require a spotter to minimize the chances of injury, in case you lose control.
Nonetheless, the chest press uses pulleys and cables on a fixed-line movement, making it safer. You can also use the machine for a single-arm pressing, allowing you to push strength to higher levels unattainable with the bench press. Still, it’s a time-efficient alternative since you don’t need to keep adding or removing weights like in the bench movement. You only need to shift the pin from one value to the next as you work out.
What Is Better Than Bench Press?
There are several exercises with superior effects compared to the bench pressing. If you wish to develop chest muscles and a healthy upper functioning body, you need to integrate more workouts to achieve more significant gains. The low inclined dumbbell press gives you a more excellent range of motions to better work on your chest than a standard bench press.
You may also want to try out pushups to train your muscles to work together and build functional strength necessary for groundwork. Start or end your workout sessions with three to five reps of pushups to engage your shoulders and other core muscles.
Additionally, high incline press can help you better if your main focus is the upper chest. Compared to entirely horizontal press, the workout allows your shoulders to move in a range of motions, which creates a healthy change.
The decline dumbbell fly minimizes the rate of shoulder movements in your chest exercises, which helps to work exclusively on the pectoral muscle. If you want to achieve a healthy shoulder capsule and a powerful chest, you may also want to consider your upper back strength. Inverted rows can help double up your back movement to build a better posture and prevent imbalances, reducing the chances of injuries during workouts.
Bench pressing has gained vast popularity over time. Walk to any gym, both small and large, and you will find a considerable number of people in a bench position. Once you master the technique, you will see rapid progress in strength and size gain in your chests, triceps, and front shoulder regions.
Hopefully, the above piece addresses most of your concerns about bench pressing. You can use a few of the tips discussed above to increase your bench press. For most people, the bench press appears effective enough, but you can also try out other movements discussed to enjoy the benefits of variability.