T Nation

Can't Bench, Need Exercises

What are some good exercises I can do instead of benching. I’ve messed up my shoulder and I’m trying to find something that will help me out.

I’ve done floor press w/ dumbbells, and that seems not to bother it too much. Any suggestions would be great. Thank You

I am in the same boat. For me, weighted dips work well. And as much as people will bitch for me saying this…cable crossovers! No shoulder pain, direct pec stimulation. I do them with little rest and 4-5 sets. I was trying to just keep my mass, but my pecs actually look bigger. One of my friends from the gym even noticed today. It won’t help keep your BP numbers up, but short of pressing nothing will.

[quote]roc wrote:
What are some good exercises I can do instead of benching. I’ve messed up my shoulder and I’m trying to find something that will help me out.

I’ve done floor press w/ dumbbells, and that seems not to bother it too much. Any suggestions would be great. Thank You [/quote]

Does it hurt if you use dumbells for benching? I know that when my shoulders were bothering me, using dumbbells helped with the pain. Also, stay away from flyes, that seemed to aggrevate it. Pec Dec was alright, no pain there. So, you can try that. What about a Hammer Strength machine for chest press?

I’ll probably get flamed for even suggesting this but try benching in the smith machine. That really helped me when I was having shoulder problems. It’s not ideal but it might help get you through until you shoulder feels better.

Also, one last thing. Try keeping your elbows in while you do any benching movement. That has saved my shoulders. I can now bench pain free.

Check out Eric Cressey’s shoulder saver series, there’s a whole bunch of different exercises to try there that will help to alleviate your shoulder pain.

Also, if you’re not doing so already get some physio, after weeks of avoiding heavy benching (and seieng little improvement in my shoulder)I went to a physio and worked on tackling the problem as opposed to working my way AROUND it. Needless to say, it was the physio that fixed me in the end.

Thanks everyone, I will try the cable crossovers and see what happens. I’m just looking for exercises that will not bother my shoulder.

As I said before I’ve done floor presses with no problems but I feel they are not hitting my chest enough. I’ve done floor presses wide grip before and they seem to hit my chest a little bit. I know machines are not a good thing but I will look into them when I get a chance. Thanks everyone

Honestly as long as your looking just muscle growth there’s nothing wrong with machine use mix with some freeweights. I think if you can use dumbbells they are the best for pec size.