Narrow-Grip Bench Press
In our article on the narrow-grip bench press, we will consider the following aspects:
- Narrow-grip bench press technique;
- Typical mistakes of beginners;
- Recommendations for girls;
- The benefits of exercise
Bench press narrow-grip – is an excellent multi-joint exercises that increases the volume and strength of the triceps. I believe that without this exercises it is impossible to achieve really serious hypertrophy of the muscles of the hands, since in it the athlete can work with fairly serious weights, which is the main growth factor for our muscles, of course, subject to the correct technique for performing movement. This exercises has undeniable benefits both for men who want to gain muscle mass, and for women who want to keep their muscles in good shape and just look good.
Bench Press Narrow-grip VS from the Classic Bench press
Exercises is a great helper for a classic bench press. The load in the bench press with a bench press narrow-grip rests on the triceps, about half of the movement of the bar passes precisely due to the work of the triceps and chest, so need more intensely to workout the triceps in order to increase the maximum result in the bench press.
The correct approach in the bench press depends on: competent load distribution within the entire training process, the restoration of injured muscle fibers and the whole body.
The benefit of the exercises is obvious – the Bench press narrow-grip perfectly loads the medial head of the triceps, making it stronger and larger, due to which the visual volume of the arm is created, and triceps just creates about 60% of its total volume. In addition, in this exercises, part of the load falls on the front deltas and the inside of the pectoral muscles, the muscles of the press and upper back bear the static load.
Working bench press narrow-grip with decent weights, we also strengthen the ligaments of the elbow joints, which increases our record performance in the classic bench press. Having strong ligaments and tendons, it is easier for an athlete to control the barbell weight throughout the entire approach, since he does not spend energy on stabilizing the bar and keeping it in balance. In addition, strong triceps allows you to pass the last precious 20-30 cm of amplitude in the bench press with a wide grip, which, as practice shows, usually causes the greatest difficulty. Therefore, it will be useful for all athletes who are fond of powerlifting and bench press to pay special attention to this exercises.
Proper narrow-grip bench press technique
On how correctly you follow the technique of doing the bench press with a narrow grip and “feel” the reduction in the necessary muscle groups, your whole result depends on whether it is aimed at developing strength indicators or gaining muscle mass.
Let’s look at the most common option in the gyms for the correct execution of this exercises on a horizontal bench.
- Position yourself on the bench so that the barbell is approximately at eye level.
- We try to bring the shoulder blades together, the back of the head and pelvis are firmly pressed to the bench, for more control over the position of the body on the bench, statically tighten the buttocks;
- We press our feet firmly on the floor, it is advisable to do it with our whole foot;
- Grasp the bar tightly with your hands, use a narrow-grip;
- Grip width – a little narrower than shoulder width;
- The elbows should be slightly bent;
- Straighten your elbows and remove the bar from the racks due to the force of triceps. This moment is the most traumatic for our wrists;
- Now place the barbell over the lower part of the chest, slightly not reaching the solar plexus;
- Start gently lowering the bar down to touch the chest with the barbell, taking a deep breath;
- The elbows should move as close to the body as possible, while placing them to the sides or trying to lead them inside is fraught with injury;
- When you touch the barbell to the chest, begin to up the bar upward, making a powerful exhalation, pausing on the chest in the bench press narrow-grip;
- At this point, you will feel the contraction of the inside of the chest and the medial triceps bundle;
- Perform one repetition, straightening your elbows completely and fixing for a second at the highest point, then lower the bar again on your chest, trying to work in the same trajectory.
Common Beginner Mistakes in Bench Press Narrow-Grip
With the correct technique for doing the bench press narrow-grip, we disassembled but those who are just starting to train in the gym often make mistakes in the technique of performing the exercises. Let’s take a look at the most popular of them together.
-Wrong position of elbows
In inexperienced athletes, the elbows tend to “roll apart” while lowering the bar, which can lead to serious injuries of the elbow joints. To avoid this, try to mentally concentrate on the position of the hands, as if trying to press them against the ribs.
Many athletes perform bench press workout with an open grip bar, citing the fact that they feel better the contraction of the pectoral muscles. The statement is very controversial, I think if there is a difference, then it is mainly at the level of self-hypnosis. Be that as it may, while working with an open grip, even an experienced athlete runs the risk of dropping the barbell on his chest at any time, and the outcome can be disastrous.
Exercises should begin with warm-up approaches. No matter how strong you are, any bench press exercises should begin with warm-up approaches with minimal weights, for example, with an empty bar. So you will not only warm up all joints and ligaments well before performing work approaches, but also mentally better concentrate on hard work, which will make training even more productive.
Buttocks should be firmly pressed to the bench throughout the approach. By tearing them off, you create unwanted compression on the intervertebral discs of the lumbar spine and lose concentration on movement. The situation is similar with the back of the head – it should also not be torn off the bench.
Recommendations for girls
Weak triceps are the trouble of many girls who lead a sedentary lifestyle. If the muscles are not in good shape, and at the same time the girl is also overweight, the skin in these places becomes flabby, and her hands look ugly and not well-groomed. To visually minimize this effect, I advise girls to include a bench press narrow-grip in yourself training program. Work with small weights in a wide range of repetitions (from 12 and above), gradually increasing the load.
Don’t worry: you won’t pump up huge muscles for yourself, but your hands will quickly come into shape.