The bench press is almost synonymous with weightlifting. It is one of the most common gym exercises no matter where you go. If you want to build your muscles in your upper body or lose weight, then you’ll never go wrong with the good old bench press.

However, are you sure that you are executing this weightlifting exercise the right way? Because if you are not, then there would be more pain and less gain. If you want to master the bench press in order to build more muscles and get stronger, here are 6 tips for you to follow.

Warm up

Just like in everything you do, preparations must be made. Warming up before doing bench press or whatever weightlifting routine for that matter is important. Before you start with your usual routine, you need to get your heart rate up and stretch your muscles. Bench press targets your upper body but your entire body is involved in the exercise.

Use the right muscles

When doing a bench press, all you have to do is lie flat on a weight bench, bring the barbell above your chest, lift, and repeat. Simple right? Actually, not that simple. When it comes to different weightlifting exercises, the muscles people use are different from each other. When bench pressing, you need to engage your pectoralis major, triceps, and anterior deltoid. Engaging the right muscles allows you to maintain the proper posture when lifting. Not to mention you are also keeping yourself safe from joint injuries. So, the next time you bench press, make sure that you are using the right muscles.

Improve your grip strength

Better and stronger grip strength allows you better control of the bar. With the right grip, you get more tension in your chest, upper back, and lower arms. There are many ways you can strengthen your grip. The most common exercises for this include dead hang, push-ups but fingers only, and pull ups.

Start light

Whether you are a beginner on an expert, starting light is always a good way to go. Think of it as the warm up after your warm up. Starting light allows your body to boost blood flow or circulation. That means when you start to add more load, your body is more engaged to take on more. If you want to balance everything, then you can lift a little heavier but lower your reps.

Do bench press variations

There is more to bench pressing that just the standard bench press. There are different variations including the dumbbell press, the hex press, the Spoto press, the Floor press, the Swiss bar bench press, and more. These variations engage different parts and muscles of your body allowing you to build your body entirely and not just particular parts.

Work with a spotter

bench press
Photo by Michael DeMoya on Unsplash

A spotter is not just someone who helps you lift. There are times when a spotter becomes a life savior. In rare instances, bench pressing can be very dangerous. Having a spotter helps you work out with more confidence. Also, working out is better if you have someone to share it with.

Here is another tip that you should always keep in mind, stay motivated. Maintaining a daily routine of weightlifting and working out is hard for many people. There will be times when you just want to stay at home or just enjoy yourself instead of going to the gym. Just keep at it, you got this.