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Benching With Feet Up = Faster Chest Growth? (NEW ST...

ScottHermanFitness Follow
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  • 12 months ago
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So your chest isn’t growing and you want to try something new. But you KNOW that the bench press is the best exercise to overload and create more growth! So what do you do? Double plate press like a moron… or read this article to get some advice that could help you bust through your muscle building plateau.

Today we are going to discuss the PROS and CONS of benching with your feet in the air and determine FINALLY whether or not this is the best way to pack on more muscle because some new research has recently surfaced that may change your chest day forever!

So, I think that before we jump into the new research that has recently surfaced we should first quickly recap the basic mechanics and anatomy of the chest.

Guys, the chest, or pecs, are a pretty straightforward muscle group. They includes the large Pectoralis Major and the smaller, yet still important, Pectoralis Minor. Now the pectoralis minor is not visible because it lies beneath the pec major and mainly functions to move the scapula both forward and downward. So what we mostly focus on when training is the pec major and its not uncommon for people to misidentify the clavicular head for the pec minor and the sternocostal head for the pec major.

But now you know this ENTIRE area is in fact the pec major and your chest is mainly responsible for arm adduction, or bringing your hands closer together, as well as arm flexion which is what happens when you press or throw something away from.

This is why most chest exercises involve at least one of these two functions; chest presses, dips, pushups, they’re all based on humerous flexion whereas cable flys or dumbbell flys work the chest through arm adduction.

So… what do your feet and their relative position in space have to do with chest activation? Well, first of all, benching with your feet up is not the same as benching with your feet down. When your feet are down, you’re able PLANT your feet on the ground and arch your lower back to create more “driving force” into the barbell during each rep.

But when your feet are up your back will be FLAT on the bench which actually creates more tension in your abs for stability. This is because your ABS main function is to flex or straighten your spine. So, the key difference between the two variations so far seems to only be the activation of the abdominal muscles during the lift right? So how does this create more chest activation?

The Study

Well let’s take a look at the recent study to find out. So it looks like this study took 20 men with some prior benching experience and monitored them while they performed sets of 8 reps with 60% of their 1RM bench press with their feet on the ground, and then with their feet in the air.

Then, to make a determination of what was going on inside the pecs, they measured the EMG amplitudes of the primary movers (or pecs, triceps and delts) to determine the degree of activation of each muscle group. What they found was that benching with the feet up led to higher EMG readings in not only the primary movers but also the forearms, rectus femoris and core muscles!

Why You Cannot Read Too Much Into Studies

But does this mean MORE GROWTH and that we should all be benching with our legs in the air? Well, no. Guys, you have to understand that when you set out to prove something like this, it’s very easy to design a study around the outcome you wish to prove.

Continue reading here: https://muscularstrength.com/article/Benching-With-Feet-Up-Faster-Chest-Growth

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