Gym Shorts: The Sling Shot Bench Press

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

The Sling Shot Bench Press

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

Follow these steps:

  • Sling Shot fit:
    • May vary
    • The bottom of the cuff should be at or near the elbow
    • The top of the Sling shot should touch the chest with arms extended
  • Safety
    • No collars
    • Properly set safeties
    • Spotter when possible
    • Rack & unrack the bar with straight arms
  • Set up
    • Thumbs around the bar
    • Feet flat, chest up, shoulders back
    • Bar starts directly over shoulders
    • Big breath
  • Movement
    • Touch chest at mid-sternum
    • Press the bar back to the starting position
    • Gaze at fixed point on the ceiling
    • Elbows in at the bottom
    • Bar path should be a straight line

The Sling Shot bench press is a variation that uses a piece of equipment that adds elasticity in the bottom portion of the movement. This deloads the bottom portion of the movement, adding greater stress to the top portion of the movement.

Using the Sling Shot not only greater stress the top portion of the movement and the triceps but also can enable people with shoulder issues to bench press with reduced or diminished pain. As the bar lowers, the Sling Shot stretches and the elastic energy stored in the Sling Shot helps contribute to the drive up (the concentric portion).

We tend to add this to advanced or intermediate lifters as a supplemental lift, though it can be added to novices with shoulder pain.

Program the slingshot bench press similarly to the normal bench press, so singles up to higher reps for volume (8-12).

A benefit to the Sling Shot is it doesn’t require bulky equipment, it can be thrown into a gym bag and used at a public gym. It also isn’t prohibitively expensive.

Consider throwing on a Sling Shot for some of your bench press reps if you struggle with shoulder pain in the bottom or want a different variation that stresses the top portion of the movement.

Click HERE to see our favorite bench press variations, and HERE to learn about the muscles worked in the bench press.




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