How To Squat And Bench With Chains

Squat With Chains:

Bench Press With Chains:

Explode Your Squat, Bench & Deadlift – Special Offer

I’ve put together a special offer that
will give you all the tools you need to
significantly improve your Squat, Bench
and Deadlift.

Check it out here:

Explode your squat bench and deadlift

The offer expires on Friday July 22nd
at midnight. So check it out now:

Explode your squat bench and deadlift

5 Ways To Build A Bigger Bench

I’ve written a new Bench Press article for you…

Check it out by clicking the link below:

5 ways to a bigger benchpress

If you want a BIGGER Bench Press, it’s a must
read (there’s a video too):

 

Bench Press Power – part 3

In parts 1 and 2 of this “Bench Press Power” series
we looked at Bench Press technique and variations
of the Bench Press that you can use to bring up
weaknesses and prevent you from getting bored
in your training.

Today, we’re going to look at assistance
exercises for the Bench Press.

To Bench big you need strong Triceps, Lats,
Delts and Pecs.

Depending on your genetics you may develop
some of those muscle groups to a high level
just by Bench Pressing. However, you will
probably find some muscle groups don’t get strong
enough in relation to other muscle groups.

For instance, my back is very very strong, but
my triceps were never up to par. It was only
when I hammered my triceps with appropriate
assistance work that my Bench went through
the roof…

You must do the same.

Identify your weaknesses and bring them up.

————————————————

Tricep/Lockout Power

————————————————

The Triceps can be trained with CLOSE GRIP
pressing movements and extensions. With that
said, here’s a list of assistance movements to
bring up your triceps:

– 3, 4 or 5 Board Bench Presses

– Reverse Band Bench Presses

– Close Grip Press Ups (add chains draped over
the neck or use bands for more resistance)

– Lying, Straight or Ez Bar Extensions. Lower the
bar to the forehead

– Standing Overhead Straight or Ez Bar Extensions

– Lying Elbows Out Extensions

– Lying Elbows In Extensions

————————————————–

Lat/ Upper Back Exercises

————————————————–

A strong back is required not only for a big Bench
Press but also for a big Squat, Deadlift and any other
compound exercise that you can perform in the weight
room.

Here are some great choices for training your back:

– Pull Ups/Chins

– Pull Downs (various grips)

– One arm DB Rows

– Low Pulley Rows (various grips)

– Machine Hammer Grip Rows

– Shrugs (use a Bar or DB’s)

Your back is a complex area. Switch up the exercises
you use to train it every 4 to 6 weeks (or when boredom
sets in).

—————————————————–

Assistance Exercises For The Delts

—————————————————–

Ignore any assistance movements for the front delts.
If you are doing a lot of pressing it is unlikely that
the front delts need any more stimulation and this
could in fact cause over-training and/or lead to injury.

The side and in particular the rear delts need a lot
of attention in most lifters.

Here’s some simple ways to train those areas:

– DB Side Delt Raises (seated or standing)

– Bent Over DB Raises (seated or standing)

– Single Arm Behind The Back Low Pulley Raises

—————————————————

Assistance Exercises For The Pecs

—————————————————

I am not a fan of DB Flies. They stress the Pecs for
sure but they also stress the delts and can lead to
irratation.

To bring up weak Pecs focus on Wide Grip
movements and keep the reps to 6 or more. Two
movements that can easily be performed with a
wide grip are:

– The regular Bench Press

– Press Ups

In the past 3 days I have shared with you some
valuable information on how to improve your
Bench Press technique, various Bench Press variations
and some great assistance exercises.

As a lifter/strength athlete, it is your job to
figure out how to use this information in a
way that gets your Bench stronger. You have
to find your strategy. I’ve given you the tools to
do it.

For more help with your Bench, click below:

Explode your bench

Talk soon,

Andy Bolton

Bench Press Power – part 2

Andy-Bolton-Bench-Press-300x200In part 1 of this Bench Press newsletter
series I talked about the most important thing
that you must work on if you want a big Bench.

And that was TECHNIQUE.

Today I’m going to talk about the Bench Press
and variations of the Bench Press and how you can
incorporate these into your training.

Remember that all the variations I’m going to share
with you today train the same muscles as the regular
Bench Press. (Triceps, Lats, Front Delts, Pecs).

However, some variations do tax certain muscles
groups harder than others. For example, Incline
Bench Presses will make the Front Delts work a
little a harder than regular Bench Presses.

In contrast, Decline Bench Presses will make the
Pecs work harder than they do during regular
Bench Presses.

The trick with your own training is to work out
which variations will bring up your weak points.

Remember, have the guts and the courage to do
the stuff you SUCK at and over time this will pay
off big time for you and reward you with a bigger
Press.

For example, I compete equipped (in a Bench Shirt)
and over the years I have always struggled with
lockout power.

My current training reflects this. I use regular
Raw Bench Presses to warm up and then do
some practice in my Bench shirt and then do two
exercises for the lockout.

The pay-off has been obvious… I put over 50kg
on my Bench in 6 months, having been stuck for
years at my previous PR.

If you are competing Raw you may choose totally
different variations of the Bench in your training than
I use in mine because you may have totally different
weaknesses than me.

———————————————-

Bench Variations

———————————————-

Regarding Grip width:

You have 4 options on all Raw exercises:

1. Close Grip (index fingers touching the smooth
part of the bar)

2. Medium Grip (a thumbs length from the smooth)

3. Pinky on the ring

4. Wide Grip (middle finger on the ring or wider)

Tips:

– I would stick to your competition width grip
when using the Bench Shirt. There is enough to think
about when using a shirt without complicating matters
further by changing grip width

– Due to the extra stress that a WIDE GRIP places
on the Pecs and Front Delts I would perform 6 reps
or more when using this grip.

– The closer your grip the more you make the Triceps
work

———————————————–

Bench Press Exercise List

———————————————-

This list is by no means every possible variation of
Bench Pressing that you can include in your training.

But, it should make you realise that no matter what your
weakness; there is a way to train it.

Here we go:

Bench Press

Incline Bench Press (various angles, ranging from shallow
to very steep. Can be performed on a specific Incline
Bench OR in a Power Rack with an adjustable bench)

Decline Bench Press

Swiss Bar Bench Press (this will give you different width
NEUTRAL grips. A great choice if you have beat up
shoulders as the neutral grip is a lot easier on the
shoulders for most people)

Swiss Bar Incline Bench Press

Swiss Bar Decline Bench Press

Floor Press (performed in a power rack. Just lay on the
floor and perform your presses from there)

Cambered Bar Bench Press (this increases the range of
motion and develops great starting strength off the chest.
Only use it if you have the flexibility/mobility to do so).

***

You can use the 4 different grips on any of the Bench Press
variations above.

You could also use any of the exercises above with Bands
or Chains.

Remember, you can move against Chains, against Bands,
or have the bands assist you… as in the Reverse Band
Method (a personal favourite of mine and a great developer
of speed and lockout power/tricep strength).

As you can see, with a little imagination you can come
up with a never-ending list of exercises to help improve
your Bench.

You will note that I haven’t mentioned DB movements
here. You can use DB’s to press on a flat Bench, Incline
or Decline Bench.

However, because of the stress of getting the DB’s in
place, I am not a big fan of heavy DB work and prefer to
keep the reps to 10 or more when using DB’s for pressing
exercises.

(Just try and get the DB’s you need for a 3 rep max into
position and you will see why I don’t like DB work for
a main movement).

I am not however saying to never use DB’s. Just use them
for assistance work.

So there you have it; a massive amount of exercises to
help get you a bigger Bench.

To learn more about exactly how to increase your Bench,
click here:

Explode your bench

In the final part of this Bench Press series and I’ll show you
some great assistance exercises for helping your Bench.

Until then,

Andy Bolton

Ps. If you Bench is already on FIRE, but your Squat needs
work, check out this:

Explode your squat

Bench Press Power – part 1

I’ve put together a 3 part series for the Bench Press.

To Bench BIG; technique is first and foremost. It
was only once Bill Crawford, (of Metal Militia),
helped me with my technique, that my Bench
jumped from a terrible 280kg to a more
respectable 342.5kg/755lbs.

And this jump happened in just 6 months!

In fact, that was good enough for the British record.

To learn more about how Bill helped me improve
my Bench Press technique and to see how you can
get a bigger Bench very quickly, click the link below:

Explode your bench

I’m now going to share with you some key points
to improve your Bench Press Technique:

—————————————————

Bench Press Technique: The Most Important Stuff

—————————————————

Get Your Set-Up Right

– 1. Regardless of whether you Bench up on the balls of your
feet OR flat-footed… get your feet out wide. This will
create immense stability.

– 2. Squeeze your Glutes as hard as possible

-3. Force your Shoulders back and down and get your
upper back tight.

Un-Racking The Bar

– 4. Take a deep breath of air before you un-rack the
bar.

– 5. To save your shoulders and to keep the set-up
position you have created before un-racking the bar…
Get your training partner to give you a good lift-off

Lowering The Bar

– 6. Hold your breath and lower the bar down to your
lower chest/sternum area.

– 7. ‘Break the bar apart’ to activate the Triceps as much
as possible

– 8. Keep your forearms perpendicular to the floor

Pressing The Bar

– 9. Drive with the legs as well as the upper body

– 10. Keep holding your breath all the way to lockout,
or at least until you get past your sticking point

– 11. Push the bar in a straight line or slightly back
towards your head

– 12. Rack the bar or repeat for reps

Work on these points each and every time you Bench,
both on your heaviest sets and on your lightest warm-up
sets.

Science has proved that it takes most people around 500
reps to groove a technique and make it run on auto-pilot.

However, it takes a staggering 3000 reps to break an old
technique and re-groove a new one. The take home message
is clear: NEVER take any sets for granted and try to do
every rep right, with every weight. Heavy or Light.

To discover even more about exactly how to Bench Big,
check out my book by clicking HERE:

Talk soon,

Andy Bolton

VIDEO – Bench Press Technique Part 2

In this Bench Press technique video you will see me
talking about how to get a good set up and a good
lift off.

The lift off can make or break your Bench Press.

A good lift off will allow you to transition from having
the bar in the racks to having the bar over your chest,
without losing your initial set up position.

In contrast, a bad lift off will cause you to lose your
set up position, have a weaker press and invite injury.

Choose who you get to lift the bar off for you VERY
CAREFULLY.

To learn more about this and everything you need to
know to build awesome Bench technique and add pounds
to your press, check out my book, “Explode Your Bench”
by clicking HERE.

VIDEO – Bench Press Technique Part 1

For more information on how to improve your
Bench Press technique and build a bigger press…
check out “Explode Your Bench” by clicking HERE.

Bench Press Mini Series – Part 1

I’ve put together a 3 part  series on the Bench Press.

(this is part 1)

To Bench BIG; technique is first and foremost. It
was only once Bill Crawford, (of Metal Militia),
helped me with my technique, that my Bench
jumped from a terrible 280kg to a more
respectable 342.5kg/755lbs.

And this jump happened in just 6 months!

In fact, that was good enough for the British record.

To learn more about how Bill helped me improve
my Bench Press technique and to see how you can
get a bigger Bench very quickly, click the link below:

Explode your bench

I’m now going to share with you some key points
to improve your Bench Press Technique:

—————————————————

Bench Press Technique: The Most Important Stuff

—————————————————

Get Your Set-Up Right

– 1. Regardless of whether you Bench up on the balls of your
feet OR flat-footed… get your feet out wide. This will
create immense stability.

– 2. Squeeze your Glutes as hard as possible

-3. Force your Shoulders back and down and get your
upper back tight.

Un-Racking The Bar

– 4. Take a deep breath of air before you un-rack the
bar.

– 5. To save your shoulders and to keep the set-up
position you have created before un-racking the bar…
Get your training partner to give you a good lift-off

Lowering The Bar

– 6. Hold your breath and lower the bar down to your
lower chest/sternum area.

– 7. ‘Break the bar apart’ to activate the Triceps as much
as possible

– 8. Keep your forearms perpendicular to the floor

Pressing The Bar

– 9. Drive with the legs as well as the upper body

– 10. Keep holding your breath all the way to lockout,
or at least until you get past your sticking point

– 11. Push the bar in a straight line or slightly back
towards your head

– 12. Rack the bar or repeat for reps

Work on these points each and every time you Bench,
both on your heaviest sets and on your lightest warm-up
sets.

Science has proved that it takes most people around 500
reps to groove a technique and make it run on auto-pilot.

However, it takes a staggering 3000 reps to break an old
technique and re-groove a new one. The take home message
is clear: NEVER take any sets for granted and try to do
every rep right, with every weight. Heavy or Light.

To discover even more about exactly how to Bench Big,
check out my book by clicking HERE:

Explode your bench

 

(leave your comments/questions in the comments box)

Andy B