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big valsalva 09-17-2011 02:07 AM

Decline Bench...Bastard Press?
Decline Bench...Bastard Press?

What say you? I've been mulling over the merits of the decline press lately, and quite frankly, I can't see much use in it. I ran it very briefly a few years ago, but I don't have much to say about it either good or bad.

Should I train it? Will it help my flat bench and/or OHP? Am I getting just as much bang for my buck by doing dips? Is it a good strength exercise, or is it merely a "bodybuilding exercise" to target my lower pecs?

Where does the decline bench press rank in the pantheon of pressing movements? Does it belong, or is it just a bastard press?

Soldier 09-17-2011 08:20 AM

The only reason I see ANYONE do decline press is because the limited range of motion lets them lift more. These people don't realize that if they did a proper flat bench with a good setup then they'd be able to lift the same thing they can do on the decline bench.

I've even seen people use plates under the bench to INCREASE the decline. Idiots.

Carl1174 09-17-2011 08:27 AM

For me Dips are superior


Soldier 09-17-2011 08:51 AM


Originally Posted by Carl1174 (Post 171800)
For me Dips are superior


This is true for a lot more than decline presses! If people realized how beneficial dips can be, then the dip station would be just as popular as the squat rack is. . .for curls, of course.

Chillen 09-17-2011 09:01 AM


Originally Posted by Carl1174 (Post 171800)
For me Dips are superior


I love dips too, but my shoulder joints do not. My new dip exercise is the weighted elevated pushup, using a laptop nylon strap with metal ends for the belt to support the iron weight. My tris are a weird pair. They can take a beating, and they are very hard to get warmed up, but they have greatly improved the last 6 months or so with addition of this progressive exercise. I place the hands where the focus is more on the tri than the chest.

Never actually tried the decline press. I have tried the incline for a considerable amount of time, but have learned that all I really need is progressive flat bench program, and it has done me well for my personal goals I have set over time.

Off Road 09-17-2011 09:04 AM

Training the decline press might be good for some variety. Beyond that, I don't see what they offer over what that the flat variety does.

I don't buy into the whole thought that you can target certain parts of your chest with different angles of bench pressing. Certainly some exercises will target the chest as a whole more than others, but not certain areas.

I also agree that Dips are a great movement and target the chest, shoulders and triceps equally as well as the bench press. Dips can also give you a greater range of motion over the decline press.

Fazc 09-17-2011 09:09 AM

Also when you get bigger the ROM on a Decline is hardly anything.

Pretty useless, unless it's to get used to lockout out more weight. Even then there are better alternatives.

BendtheBar 09-17-2011 09:18 AM


Originally Posted by Fazc (Post 171809)
Also when you get bigger the ROM on a Decline is hardly anything.

This is my issue with declines. Decreased ROM.

I did use them occasionally back in the day when I hovered around 200. I remember being able to use a fair amount of weight. For this reason it could function as sort of an assistance work/tricep-heavy press.

Rich Knapp 09-17-2011 09:36 AM

1.) Unless your a competitive BBer or competitive P/L that allows the back arch, do your dips.

Declines hit the chest like a arched back B/P and hits the lower pecs for separation.

Allows you to press heavier weight (lower pec is the strongest area). Since I started them (in streaks) My flat press and Db presses went up, my separation cut between upper and lower has increased and deepened.

Its also easier on the shoulders, but see number 1.

glwanabe 09-17-2011 10:34 AM

Dips are a better move to perform.

If you're shoulders do not like dips, then I would cut your benching down, and work the shoulders to improve their strength, and flexability to allow dips.

This aspect of making sure you're shoulders are in good shape, and developed properly is something I have often talked about. Ler's not forget that banching is a compound move. A large part of a proper bench movement involves the front delt.

A lot of people are front delt heavy, and imbalanced in their delt work. Make sure you have good balance in your shoulder program.

This talks a bit about some aspects of pressing that are often overlooked

T NATION | Are You Ready to Overhead Press?

Upper back, delts, and chest all need to thought of together when thinking of upper body work.

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