Reduce Injuries in the Bench Press
For Christmas, as a kid, I got my first Weider bench with 132 pounds of weights. The set came with a training poster. In those days, the interest was not a resource for getting advice on training or form. Flex Magazine was our internet. I taught myself how to bench, but it was incorrect. My elbows were flared out to a 90-degree angle, and this caused extra stress on my rotator cuff. Eventually, I strained my rotor cuff. I will go into more details of this injury in latter articles.
There are a lot of gurus, books, and other content that shows you how to develop your technique. I am not going to talk about that in this article. I am going to discuss the 5 key basic moves to reduce injury in the bench press.
- Clip Collars – Clips should only be used if you are lifting light, have a spotter, or a safety rack. If you are foolish enough to lift heavy weights without a spotter, don’t use clips, and make sure you develop an existing plan for missing you lift.
- Thumbless Grip (Bench False Grip) – Never use a thumbless grip. This type of grip will activate your chess more, but you will develop week forearms. This is one of the most dangerous grips that you can perform due to a person’s inability to control the weights. Many lifters have sustained serious injury’s using this method due to the bar slipping out of their hands
- Elbow Positioning- Your elbow should be positioned at about a 75-degree angle never a 90 degree. This will take the stress of the weights off your shoulders.
- Wrist Positioning – Wrist should be under the bar and never in front or behind.
- Warm Up – Warm up with a 15 to 20 rep set. Then next do progression sets to increase the bar weight gradually.
If you follow these basic steps, you will reduce your risk for injury in the bench.