What to look for:

  • Feet flat on ground – helps to point toes outward to activate glutes
  • Glutes on bench
  • Squeeze shoulder blades together and glide body up to get eyes under the bar
  • Hands are centered on the bar with neutral wrist position
  • Shoulders should not be protracted to reach the bar on the rack position
  • Full grip with thumbs wrapped around the bar

Set Up 

  • Eyes under bar
  • 4 points of contact on a surface (feet, butt, shoulder blades, head)
  • Neutral curve in low back
  • If hyperextension – curve from T-Spine
  • Knuckles to the sky
  • Bar at wrist (no protraction in SH blades)

It’s go time 

  • Top position
    • Push the feet down to the floor
    • Quick deep breath for full body tension
  • Eccentric
    • Row the bar down
    • Bend the bar (to find the lats)
    • Hold breath in for tension
  • Concentric
    • Push your body into the bench
    • Forced exhale when it gets hard

Common Errors and Corrections

  • Exaggerated curve in lumbar – cue to curve from T-Spine
    • T-spine mobilization on bench
    • T-spine extension on foam roller
  • Pain in low back
    • Elevate feet on plates
  • Not enough pressure on shoulder blades
    • Retract and slide shoulders up on the bench for stability and to open chest
  • Chicken wing arms
    • Focus on ‘pulling’ with back instead of the bar to find the lats
    • Practice movement without bar on bench to find straight forearms
  • 1 of 4 points come off bench
    • Push feet and body into the ground/bench
  • pain/internal shoulder rotation
    • Glide shoulders up on bench
  • Feet coming off ground when it gets hard
    • Bring heels in closer – quads should be engaged and glutes on fire, cue push the floor down with your feet

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