man lifting heavy in the bench press

Important errors of the bench press to avoid

Let’s look at the main errors that arise most frequently when the bench press is performed.

1. Violation of the range of motion

The essence of the bench press is to observe the full extent of the movement of the bar. It is much better to lift lighter weights and exercise gently, bending and fully stretching your arms, than trying to impress others by lifting large weights and just bending your arms.

The bar should go all the way: touching the chest slightly in the lower position, then rises with the arms fully extended (for better activation of the triceps), or with the arms slightly bent at the elbows (for better activation of the chest), and then come back slowly. Otherwise, the chest muscles that should work during this exercise, on the contrary, will work less.

2. Incorrect shoulder position

A common mistake of beginners is the incorrect position of the shoulders when doing the bench press. During the exercise, the shoulders should move backward, slightly downwards, and be fixed in a position such that the main load falls on the chest and arms.

However, many people, on the other hand, put their shoulders forward, so that the burden, in the end, falls mainly on them. In this case, not only can it cause injuries to the shoulder joints, but it also does not get any results in a set of chest muscles.

3. Lift the body of the bank

When lifting the bar, you should not lift your hips or the back of the bench. In this case, all the tension that the chest must receive to develop effectively will be received by the lower and middle back.

Simply put: the chest does not develop in any way, and the back and shoulders receive unnecessary tension, which can cause injuries. When the back and hips are pressed firmly against the bench, the weight is distributed evenly and the chest can train effectively.

4. Push with the chest

Beginner athletes in bench press sometimes say that they do not touch the chest with the bar, but push the bar with the pectoral muscles. It turns out that the bar literally hits the chest, which makes it a little easier for the athlete.

This is not so difficult to do with light weights, but the heavier the bar, the greater the risk of sternum fracture. And this is a very serious obstacle for a person who decides to practice power sports. The bar should be held only by the palms of the hands and raised only due to the tension of the pectoral muscles and the muscles of the hands. You should lower it slowly, completely controlling this process.

5. Overweight

Sometimes, beginners and even advanced athletes go for unnecessary “feats.” In order to impress the gym partners, many violate their usual training regime and lift an unbearable weight for them, mostly with help. But the need for help, in fact, does not bring any useful results. As a result, lifting a heavy bar looks spectacular only from the side. In fact, most of the work is done by the helpers and the chest is not trained properly.

6. Wrong legs

The bench press is a seemingly simple exercise that is not so easy to perform because only the muscles of the chest and arms should participate. Beginners, more frequently, seek to squeeze the bar, exerting efforts on the part of all the muscles of the body, including legs.

The legs must be pressed firmly against the floor, which will allow the load to be distributed correctly throughout the body. You don’t need to lift your feet off the floor. This will give a negative charge on the spine. If it is not possible to keep your feet firm on the floor, it is better to remove excess weight from the bar and lift the weight as possible.

woman performing the bench press
Chest bench press

7. Wrong headrest

Complaints of pain in the wrists after the bench press are a popular problem for many bodybuilders and power athletes. It is important to find the optimal position of the arms so that they are aligned with the hands, that is so that there are no deviations. The press should be made due to the tension of the pectoral, biceps, and triceps muscles, and not due to the movement of the palms.

These are the main mistakes of the chest bench press. I hope I have been able to help you not to commit them so that you can perform the exercise in its best form.

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