T Nation

Comparison Strength-Upper Body


Hi everyone,

I've read that your rowing power should be anywhere from 90 to 100% in comparison to your bench numbers for shoulder health and stability.

However, I've seen very little in terms of vertical numbers. Does anyone know what is generally acceptable as far as strength comparisons go between your pullups and overhead press? Thanks in advance for anyone that can help.



It's kinda wierd because I can pullup more 50% more weight than I can overhead press.


Pronated pullups? I personally don't think its too easy on the shoulders to go heavy with them, but anyway, I think if you are (standing) military pressing your bodyweight, then you should probably be able to pull(pronated) at least BW+30-40%.

I've seen coaches recommend a supinated chinup to bench press ratio of more than one.

My total chinup weight BW+130lbs, and my bench is only about 230 at a bodyweight of 187-190lbs (just started benching 2 weeks ago). I'm more about back than front, however.


Where did you read this? My training partner benches over 400 raw, and I don't ever remember him doing even 3 plates on a bent over row, or anything close to 400 on t-bar rows, which to my knowledge are the two heaviest types of rows you can do. Hell, he would have to do at least 365 to have "shoulder health and stability."


Honestly, I would say who cares? These kind of things are generalizations and rarely work in the real world.


How much weight on both? Not percentages, but actual weight, if you don't mind me asking?


Oh man if that's true my shoulders are going to come flying out of their sockets any second.

I bench much more than I shoulder press, but I do weighted pullups with more weight (if including body weight) than I bent over row. I don't know if you can compare the planes of motion so directly.


I've read for maximum shoulder health, you should be able to do a 1RM pull-up with the same weight as your 1RM bench. For example: if you weigh 200lbs and bench 400lbs, you should be able to do one pull-up with an extra 200lbs attached to yourself!!!!


you read this from a credible source?

Im not saying your wrong I just dont know of anyone other than beginers who can do this.


I believe Mike Boyle said that


Boyle's recommendation isn't ridiculous in the least. If you keep up with your pulling strength, and aren't obese, it should be pretty easy, even for guys who are over 200 lbs.

In my own observations, guys who do pullups and bench press on an equal basis often can do a pullup with relatively more weight than their bench press.