Gym Shorts: The Board Bench Press

New to the board bench press or looking for a quick technique tutorial? Learn correct form in one short video.

The Board Bench Press

Gym Shorts videos provide short video demonstrations of correct form for various exercises.

Follow these steps:

  • Safety
    • Properly set safeties
    • Use a spotter when possible
    • Rack with straight arms
  • Set Up
    • Center board implement on bar (or have someone hold board on chest)
    • Thumbs around bar
    • Normal grip width
    • Bar starts directly over shoulders
    • Big breath
  • Movement
    • Lightly touch your shirt
    • 1 full second pause
    • Slow, controlled descent
    • Elbows slightly forward of wrists
    • Rack with straight arms

The board bench press is a bench press supplemental lift that requires an additional piece of equipment (and potentially another person) to shorten the distance the bar travels by artificially raising the touch point. Because of this, the board bench press stresses the top portion of the bench more than the bottom.

This lift requires a small attachment to place on the center of a barbell or (the old-fashioned way) for you to have someone else hold a board steady on your chest.

Because it eliminates the bottom portion of the movement, it’s better for people who struggle with locking out the bench. It also puts greater stress on the triceps.

We program this just as we would any other bench press, so generally in the 2-8 rep range. That being said, it’s one of those “intensity” supplemental lifts as opposed to a “volume” supplemental lift, so you’ll likely see it on the lower end of that range.

If you’re looking for a new bench press supplemental lift or want to strengthen your lockout, add the board bench press to your program.

Click HERE to read about the muscles trained in the bench press and HERE to learn more about different bench press variations to strengthen your bench press lockout.

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