T Nation

Bench Sticking Point/Weakness?


I recently maxed on bench and was weak about 5" inches above my chest, higher than ever before. What weaknesses does this point to? I'm 5'6", pinkie on rings.

thanks for your help!


probably you need to work on your tricep strength. Assuming that you're not bouncing the weight off your chest.


2 Board Press, competition grip.


Its interesting you say that because since I am powerlifting "raw", i put little emphasis on triceps and was under the impression that they would never be a weakness when benching raw?

It would make sense though, considering I havent been doing any close grip or tri isolation stuff. Btw I do not bounce the weight off my chest. I do use DE bench to help speed.





The lower the weight sticks, the more you need to work the chest. The higher the weight sticks, the more you need to work the tri's. Do you do dips?

I lift raw, and I was doing dips, and had trouble about like you are with the weight sticking about half way through the lift. What I did was to place a bench in the squat rack, and do rack lockouts from a dead stop with the weight sitting about 4 inches from my chest when I started the lift. Also pause 3 seconds btwn reps. If that wasn't feasable though I would go with the board presses.


Triceps are still EXTREMELY IMPORTANT, raw or not.


I don't do any dips as they hurt my shoulders with any decent ROM, even going to parallel. Aside from board/pin presses, which I plan to use as my next ME exercise, what could I be doing for assistance work to help with this?

Maybe 1 of these?
close grips (my elbows tend to flare too much though)
palms facing db press
decline bench?

Thanks for the help!


Or shoulders, or lats or stretch reflex (speed.)

But tris can definitely be a weakness when raw benching. I get stuck off my chest, my bro gets stuck right about where you are.

A 3 board is about 4.5" so use either that or a 2 bd. And if you are training for competition you might want to widen your grip, that will help with locking out the big weights.


Thanks man, I guess you learn something every day :slightly_smiling:

I dont widen my grip out more for the sake of shoulder health. Constantly maxing out with index finger on rings seems like a bad idea at my height.


How much are you benching?

You are describing a fairly common sticking point. I would guess you could alter this sticking point by changing your grip - going closer would move the sticking point up, going wider would move the sticking point down.

Without knowing what you're benching, I would stick with getting everything stronger. Lots of tricep work (extensions are fairly useless for most people, stick to close grip work), shoulder pressing, heavy lat work, etc. Everyone has a weak point if you put enough weight on the bar, but unless you're lifting at a very high level, too much focus on weak point training might be a waste of time.


Some of the old powerlifters used to use dumbells and hammer curls.When you get strong with dumbells benching with a straight bar is cake.


Rick James - Im currently benching 250 for a max at 165. not great, but not beginner level either.

ron33- thanks for the tip, db bench is always a good idea :slight_smile: