10 Keys to a World Record Bench Press
By Ben Tatar
During the past 15 years, I have interviewed thousands of the best bench pressers in the world. I also have locked out 755 lbs in the bench press. How would you like to bench press well over 1000 lbs?
Whether your goal is to set consistent personal records in the bench press or world records, follow these 10 tips for the biggest bench press possible.
If you want to hold a world record in the bench press, you can’t be bench pressing flat on your back like a gym rat. For example, when you bench press, squeeze your shoulder blades together.
That diminishes the stroke 3 inches. If you fill yourself with air which shortens the stroke, you’ll bench more weight.
Arching your back while keeping your butt on the bench and squeezing your thighs into the bench shortens the distance the bar must travel. Use leg drive, and push off the floor to activate the legs.
Widen your grip. Tuck your elbows in, bench to your lower chest and press the bar up in a straight line.
You’re then benching an insane weight less than 6 inches. If you want to bench press a world record, you’re going to want to move the weight as few inches as possible.
2) TRAINING FOR PERSONAL RECORDS
If the bencher wants a personal or a world record, the bencher shouldn’t look for a bench shirt right away. The bencher should do 1-2 heavy bench sets with low reps on chest day instead of 10-20 sets with average intensity. The bencher should get their back, triceps, shoulders, traps and everything else scary strong first.
This means have a chest/triceps day, a legs day, a speed bench and shoulders day and a back and traps day. Also, stop doing casual assistance bench exercises like regular dips with body weight and start doing drop set dips with 4, 25 lbs plates on your lap.
Do this exercise between 2 benches (with good form,) as a spotter removes the weight each time you fail. (More and heavier plates can be applied when strength increases.) The bencher should have everything strong to avoid injury before even thinking about using a bench press shirt.
3) THE SLINGSHOT
Before getting a bench shirt, get the SLINGSHOT by Mark Bell. It lets people get their first taste of simple gear, and anybody can easily use it.
4) BENCH PRESS SHIRT
The heaviest weights ever benched were with a bench press shirt. Most advanced lifters would advise the bencher to have a solid foundation of strength and have their technique down before using a shirt. If you’re just starting with a shirt, you should get the Rage from Inzer.
You will see fast gains immediately when using proper technique. Another shirt option for the beginner would be a single ply shirt from OVERKILL. The more advanced bencher, who has a great arch and benches off their abs in a shirt, should get the Rage X from Inzer, the F6 from Titan or either the double ply or triple ply shirt from OVERKILL.
Double ply is more forgiving for staying in the groove of the shirt. You will bench more with a triple ply if you can keep flawless technique (hard to do without years of practice.) Ryan Kennelly has the biggest world record bench press to date, and he used a Phenom shirt.
Rage shirt can be purchased- http://www.inzernet.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=rage
Advanced Rage X shirt can be purchased: http://www.inzernet.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=ragex
Phenom Shirts can be purchased: http://www.inzernet.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=05_PHENOM<
5) TRAINING FOR WORLD RECORDS
Bench press world record holders do exercises like: bench presses off boards, bench press lockouts inside a power rack, benching with bands or chains and bench pressing off the floor. The bench press world record holders spend hours doing heavy low rep work with such exercises.
Boards can be bought:
Bands can be bought:
6) USE ASSISTANCE BENCH PRESS EXERCISES BEYOND THE WORLD RECORD
Back in 2006, I was talking to bench press world record holder, Jay Fry. I said, “Jay you benched 650, would you try stepping under 900 lbs?” Jay replied, “I might get killed.” I suggested he try the bands, boards and a bench press shirt at the same time. Jay was brave enough to try my suggestion.
He benched 935 lbs with the shirt/bands/and boards. His confidence went through the roof, and when he tried 710 lbs at his body weight 181, it no longer felt heavy. He set a bench press world record.
Then in 2009, he continued to practice my suggestion. He then benched 750 lbs at 181 lbs. Nobody has even come close to benching his world record.
If you want to be a bench press world record holder, make sure you are bench pressing with a shirt, board and bands hooked to the top of a squat rack to achieve extra overload. Everything will then feel light when it’s actually time to set the world record.
7) PEAKING AND DELOADING
The top world record bench pressers (with and without a shirt,) will spend 3 straight weeks training pedal to the metal, then they will make the 4th week easy. This is to avoid overtraining and plateaus. Finally, make sure you train your shoulders with active stretching, light band work and different rotator cuff movements throughout the week for shoulder maintenance work.
8) SPEED DAYS
During shoulder days, bench a weight 40% of your bench max for 8 sets of 2-3 reps fast. Use 30 second rests between sets. If a bencher can move the light and middle weights fast, he/she will have the explosion to blast through much heavier weights.
9) TEAM MATES/ENVIRONMENT
If you want to get on the fast track to a powerful bench press, you need to go to a bench press seminar or train with the best. The best bench pressers love helping others. If you need help finding hardcore gyms or the best lifters, email me at moc.liamgnull@retsnoMrataT
10) GETTING THE WORLD RECORD
If you want a world record, you’re going to need as much attitude and diligence as possible to get through the most menacing workouts. Getting a bench press world record is going to take time, so always keep a warrior mindset of no limits, but be patient and play it smart.
The world record holders are consistently attacking the weight and their goals with fury. The path to the ultimate bench press has been paved. How far you go now is all in your bench press warrior mind.