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Tavis G

Yes Planche does increase bench! My results.

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Brian Li

Thanks for pointing that out Coach! I can actually do it the way you described it, but I injured or strained my biceps tendon about two months ago by being stupid by doing planche push-ups cold without warming up in the long term and there is still some pain to this day if I do planche holds or lock out. So I'm doing planche push-ups this way so I don't aggravate my tendons until they fully recover. They're close to fully healed I think.

 

I still have to say though that I highly doubt being able to full planche push-ups the correct way would bring me close to 2xBW bench press. Even Gregor said it wasn't anywhere close for him. Was the full planche push-up = 2xBW bench press based on your personal experience or from speculation?

 

@Tavis G: You might be right. Did you personally feel it a lot in your chests when you do PL or PLPU? Please do tell us how much you can bench when you achieve straddle or full planche push-up.

 

@Hari_Seldon: Thanks for telling me the correct technique! When I was doing them I was retracted, but my lower back was flat or had a normal lumbar curve on the bench. Do I have to maximally arch my back and wouldn't that sort of be cheating by reducing the ROM or does that activate the right muscles? Should we protract the scapulae during the concentric or should they be fully retracted for the whole ROM? Thanks!

 

For the PLPU, I know what you mean when you say legs rising before chests. I am always conscious about that and try to minimize it. Honestly though, my legs didn't rise that much and that fast to give much momentum for the push on most of the ones in my video. They also don't shorten the lever length, but instead lengthen it when you are piked unless you start arching and that's when they shorten it. It's also partly because I knew I was a bit piked at the bottom and I tried to straighten it out by lifting my legs which ends up with higher hips. I say my biggest flaw is the piking with hips higher than shoulders and I need to learn to unpike the torso rather than lift the legs to straighten out with leveled hips.

 

Also, what are your thoughts on carryover from full planche push-up to 2xBW bench press? What was your experience with PL and PLPU to bench press strength?

 

@alex87: Thanks for the tips! Is it the best to bench that way or is it just to get more numbers on the bar in powerlifting? Did you have a background and lot of experience with bench press before achieving straddle planche push-up?

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Joshua Naterman

That is the best way to bench, but I'm not sure that this is the best place to discuss specific bench press techniques in high detail.

 

The 5/3/1 forums are probably the best place to learn bench press form, since they exist specifically for powerlifting support. The only difference between them and Westside, as far as I know, is whether you bend the knees more than 90 degrees or not.

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Daniel Jorgensen

in addition to that you have to:

-maintain the butt on the bench (usually the strongest powerlifter do a great bridge to decrease the distance between bar and chest)

-depress the scapula so that the cervical is free and you can freely move your hed on left side up down

-push with the heels on the floor

-try to squeeze the scapula together making the space between them as little as possible

-in the average of the cases the right hands position let to the elbows to be at 90° at about the half of the descent

 

the judges at the first contest i did, weren't so rigid, but as you progress to elite level....they are so bastard!

the technique by the way has very different approach. actually i'm doing technique since 2 months with low weights, is very difficult erase you motor pattern derived from planche hold and planche push up and work in a complete different way!

And further in addition:

-when pressing, squeeze knees out -> more glutes -> more lats -> more stability -> more weight :)

 

SOunds weird, but it will add 10-20 lbs to your output

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Sinom

This is a dangerous post!

 

Please be careful about going to the gym and test your max bench press after doing planch work. It is very easy to injure yourself! I just did it two months ago, and I’m still kicking myself for it.

 

After staying away from the gym for years I started doing gymnastics about 8 months ago, and I was challenged by my brother to test my max bench to see if the planch work did any good. And there is no question about it. My old personal best in bench was 80 kg(176 lbs) at 62 ( 136 lbs) kg bw, and it had increased to 100 kg(220 lbs) at 64 kg (141 lbs)bw, so a decent 1.5*bw without being near a bench in years… But it also came with a rotator cuff injury and more or less two month full stop in my planch and shoulder training….

 

It sucks so much!!! So use proper form, and find someone in the gym that knows their stuff to help you, or use a camera to check your technique!  Don’t be an idiot like me!  =)

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Brian Li

That is the best way to bench, but I'm not sure that this is the best place to discuss specific bench press techniques in high detail.

 

The 5/3/1 forums are probably the best place to learn bench press form, since they exist specifically for powerlifting support. The only difference between them and Westside, as far as I know, is whether you bend the knees more than 90 degrees or not.

Thanks! I didn't know it was that complex or technical to bench press properly.

 

 

 

This is a dangerous post!

 

Please be careful about going to the gym and test your max bench press after doing planch work. It is very easy to injure yourself! I just did it two months ago, and I’m still kicking myself for it.

 

After staying away from the gym for years I started doing gymnastics about 8 months ago, and I was challenged by my brother to test my max bench to see if the planch work did any good. And there is no question about it. My old personal best in bench was 80 kg(176 lbs) at 62 ( 136 lbs) kg bw, and it had increased to 100 kg(220 lbs) at 64 kg (141 lbs)bw, so a decent 1.5*bw without being near a bench in years… But it also came with a rotator cuff injury and more or less two month full stop in my planch and shoulder training….

 

It sucks so much!!! So use proper form, and find someone in the gym that knows their stuff to help you, or use a camera to check your technique!  Don’t be an idiot like me!  =)

I wish you a speedy recovery. How did you hurt yourself? Did you tear your pecs/shoulders or did the weight drop on you?

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Sinom

Thanx. I got a tear in my infraspinatus which causes a lot of restriction and pain in your shoulder. I think my problem was having the weight too close to my head and flaring the elbows out. I normally read a lot before I do any excersises to avoid doing stupid mistakes like that, but sadly not this time... Also I had taxed my shoulders a lot before this lift... maxing human flag, back lever and straddle planch to show off.... Actually I think my advice would be: Dont go training with your brothers! It makes you too competative and macho for your own good! =)

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Alessandro Mainente

today i've tried my 1RM after a long period...1 did 127 kg, and actually i can do 4 tuck planche push up in the form 2'' pl hold, full rom pl push up, then 2'' hold before the following reps...

not bad...gymnastic is awesome

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Brian Li

Very nice Alex! I don't think it was only because of the tuck planche push-ups that contributed to it since you were able to do a straddle planche push-up before and your bench press max was lower before. By the way, do you know your max weighted pull-up or 1RM barbell row?

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Alessandro Mainente

never did the barbell row, needs a lot of technique and correct posture. is very easy to get an injury on your back as the weight increase.

actually i'm not doing weighted pullup ,l never did them, i only did exercises with more difficult leverage until L-pullup with grip equals to 3 shoulders distance. then i moved into rope climbing that is something more similar to one arm pullup/chin up. actually i can climb 5 meters in straddle with 5kg added and with moderate speed..using  a very low rest in between the sets (20-30s)

i don't know how much weighted pullup is..

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Animus

This thread's a bit old but I want to chime in with some personal experience from the other side of things.

 

I have traditionally been a competitive powerlifter who dabbles in bodyweight training. A good friend is a retired competitive gymnast who has traditionally not lifted much weights in any serious manner.

 

We put him on bench press. The very first day, he benched 340lbs at ~175lbs of bodyweight. The weird thing was that he couldn't do it with proper form (he couldn't even get INTO proper form.. 3-4 month effort to teach him leg drive, elbow tuck, stabliziing through the scapula, etc).. so he was benching 340lbs using strict arm strength. we never took the time to get him benching properly (what would be the point?) but my guess is that with perfect technique, we could've increased his bench to 375-395 fairly quickly.

 

My point being: as unrelated as the movements here, planche / other bodyweight movements have a HUGE transfer toward the ability to bench. Now, here's the caveat:

 

With him as a resource, I could devote a ton more time to bodyweight training. He remarked how quickly I was moving through progressions and warned me that my connective tissue will take a lot longer. I can't say I listened very well, and I come to this forum with a host of joint problems, ready to accept some humility, start back at the beginning, and move through the progressions slowly.

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Joshua Naterman

I think my problem was having the weight too close to my head and flaring the elbows out. I normally read a lot before I do any excersises to avoid doing stupid mistakes like that, but sadly not this time... Also I had taxed my shoulders a lot before this lift... maxing human flag, back lever and straddle planch to show off....

Well, you definitely tried your hardest to hurt yourself... you maxed out with bad form in a fatigued state. A good bench press never has elbows flared out past 45 degrees, and the weight always hits the lowest part of the pecs.

 

To all readers: make sure you learn proper technique BEFORE you put heavy weight on the bar, and do not push a weight that does not allow you to maintain perfect form.... pretend that perfect form is everything (because it is).

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Brian Li

Well, you definitely tried your hardest to hurt yourself... you maxed out with bad form in a fatigued state. A good bench press never has elbows flared out past 45 degrees, and the weight always hits the lowest part of the pecs.

What about a wide grip bench press?

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Joshua Naterman

What about a wide grip bench press?

Like I said, a good bench press will never have the hands so wide that the elbows (upper arms) cannot have a 45 degree angle with the torso. In more technical terms, if you are benching in a manner that protects you from capsular injury, you will, by the very nature of the movement, not be using a form that requires your upper arm to be abducted more than 45-60 degrees, because at that point you start to put exponentially increasing forces on the labrum and rotator cuff musculature. 

 

A good bench press does not always mean the most weight on the bar. It means using proper form that protects you from ending your bench pressing career. If you pay attention to the best powerlifters, you will see that even the world record attempts are in the 50-60 degree area, though that is outside the true safety zone. 

 

All the powerlifters who don't want to get injured after they are done competing end up using a closer grip form for this reason. Yes, you will lift ~20% less weight, because you lose mechanical advantage, but you won't get hurt. And, strangely enough, the muscles work harder for the same reason. Less mechanical advantage = more muscular force required to move the same external load.

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Animus

What about a wide grip bench press?

Most individuals go too wide on the bench needlessly. All benching should be performed with elbows (more or less) tucked. 45-degrees, as noted above, sounds perfect, no matter how wide your grip. If those huge powerlifters can bench at the max legal width (88cm, I think.. need to check the rule book again) with elbows tucked, so can you.

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Brian Li

I always use a slightly wider than shoulder width grip and my arms are tucked about 45 degrees. I think that is called the narrow grip or medium grip. I've read that the normal grip for bench press is a wide grip where the elbows make a 90 degree angle when the upper arms are parallel to the floor (~ 2X shoulder width). I find the wide grip much harder and I think the leverage is lower too just like comparing wide grip pull-ups to shoulder width grip pull-ups and the arms will be flaring out to the side in the wide grip. The wider grip also works the chest more.

 

Edit: I'm not trying to say that a wide grip is the way to go. The info I read that a normal grip should be a wide grip is probably misleading. I do feel that it's another variation for the bench press just like super narrow grip bench press.

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Animus

I always use a slightly wider than shoulder width grip and my arms are tucked about 45 degrees.

 

Perfect.

 

I think that is called the narrow grip or medium grip.

 

No, it's called a bench press.

 

I've read that the normal grip for bench press is a wide grip where the elbows make a 90 degree angle when the upper arms are parallel to the floor (~ 2X shoulder width).

 

This is a very specific bodybuilding bench press. I hesitate to call this "normal." A standard non-competitive bench press form is outlined in Mark Rippetoe's Starting Strength.

 

I find the wide grip much harder and I think the leverage is lower too just like comparing wide grip pull-ups to shoulder width grip pull-ups and the arms will be flaring out to the side in the wide grip.

 

Right. Not that it doesn't have its uses, but it shouldn't be a core movement.

 

The wider grip also works the chest more.

 

Debatable.

 

Edit: I'm not trying to say that a wide grip is the way to go. The info I read that a normal grip should be a wide grip is probably misleading. I do feel that it's another variation for the bench press just like super narrow grip bench press

Yes, a little mislead, but no worse for the wear. Wide-grip should be considered an accessory variation to increase your bench, but it shouldn't be considered the bench itself.

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James Coppola
On 10/05/2013 at 1:03 AM, Brian Li said:

Here's a video of my first recorded planche push-ups from weeks ago to show you that I can do full planche push-ups. The form is decent and I actually thought I was completely leveled and less piked when I was doing them before getting recorded and seeing what was really going on. I can do them with better form now and a more leveled body after making some corrections.

 

 

By the way, what is the correct technique to bench press?

It's no surprise that you didn't do as well as you thought you would on the bench press, in the video you uploaded you didn't perform a single planche push up.

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Ronnicky Roy
15 hours ago, James Coppola said:

It's no surprise that you didn't do as well as you thought you would on the bench press, in the video you uploaded you didn't perform a single planche push up.

This post was 3 years ago.

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Brian Li
20 hours ago, James Coppola said:

It's no surprise that you didn't do as well as you thought you would on the bench press, in the video you uploaded you didn't perform a single planche push up.

Since you revived this thread, here's my response:

This video I just uploaded was from 2 years ago and during that same week I tested my bench press and was only able to do 4 reps of 135lbs at a body weight of 120lbs. 

Being able to do 1 rep of a full planche push-up does not guarantee a 2x BW bench press. Transfer between the two exercises can be different for everyone.

 

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James Coppola
11 minutes ago, Brian Li said:

Since you revived this thread, here's my response:

This video I just uploaded was from 2 years ago and during that same week I tested my bench press and was only able to do 4 reps of 135lbs at a body weight of 120lbs. 

Being able to do 1 rep of a full planche push-up does not guarantee a 2x BW bench press. Transfer between the two exercises can be different for everyone.

 

I apologise, my comment was based only on the previous video that I saw. I also understand that things aren't black and white so not everybody is going to get a 2X bench from planche push ups. I never claimed that you would get a 2x bench from doing planche push ups by the way as you can see by my comment:  It's no surprise that you didn't do as well as you thought you would on the bench press, in the video you uploaded you didn't perform a single planche push up.

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Alessandro Mainente

Be able to do a full planche push up has a very good carryover on the ability of benchpressing 2XBW. basically the weak point of the benchpress are triceps and shoulders and not chest, and this exactly what we are training in planche push up.

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Brian Li
39 minutes ago, Alessandro Mainente said:

Be able to do a full planche push up has a very good carryover on the ability of benchpressing 2XBW. basically the weak point of the benchpress are triceps and shoulders and not chest, and this exactly what we are training in planche push up.

Not for me apparently. I think my chest is my weak point in bench press. I remember feeling soreness in the chest for days after testing my bench press in the week of that video. And I only did 4 reps in bench pressing that day.

I don't think triceps is worked very hard in planche push-ups. I never really feel it being a limiting factor compared to my shoulders and maybe chests. I think HSPU works triceps harder than planche push-ups.

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Alessandro Mainente

The fact that you are not feeling the triceps does not mean that they are not training in the movement.

As to make a simple example: i've never, really never felt my lats on front lever work but they are the dominant factor.

After many years teaching powerlifting i can say that people stop improving their maximal 1RM due to poor triceps and shoulders strength rather then chest strength , not a case their proficiency on push up and dips where so bad that for me it was necessary only to insert a complementary BW exercise to improve their performance.

On the other side chest strength it is never maximized from beginner because they cannot assume and maintain the correct body activation and with beginner I mean every people who train benchpress since 1.5/2 years.

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Ronnicky Roy

When you trained planche, your arms were likely much closer to shoulder width than outside shoulder width. Chest is worked more the farther apart your hand width gets. Atleast that's how it is for pressing in my experience. Smaller width always = Tricep and "Inner" Pec focus, while Wider width = Pec Major, Pec Minor focus. The shoulders suffer equally : )

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