How to: Barbell bench press
The Barbell bench press should be the staple of your chest workouts. This compound movement engages a large proportion of the chest and is considered a benchmark for upper body strength. The movement has the Pectoral Major, Anterior Deltoid and Triceps Brachii all working in unison.
Main: Sternal (lower) Pectoralis Major
Synergists: Clavicular (upper) Pectoralis Major, Anterior Deltoid, Triceps Brachii
- Start off by laying down on a flat bench and positioning yourself under the bar. Make sure your legs are spread apart and your feet are firmly planted on the floor.
- Grip the bar slightly wider than shoulder width (NOTE: The wider you grip the more the chest will be engaged but it will put more pressure on your shoulders).
- De-rack the bar while keeping your wrists straight and your shoulders squeezed together.
- Bring the bar down so that it just touches your chest while inhaling and pause for a second.
- Return the bar to your starting position but don’t lock your arms out so you still keep tension on the muscle.
- I advise repeating the movement 4 times each time increasing the weight with a rep range of 8-12.
Interested in more chest exercises for the gym? Take a look at our workouts page.
VIDEO: How to Barbell bench press