T Nation

DB Bench or BB Bench?

I’m debating on which one to do. What are the differences of the two, as far as muscle building?

Why would you need to pick one? If you have access to bars and bells use both. Dumbbells generally require more stabilizer muscles and allow a greater range of motion (ROM). Barbells generally allow greater loads.

[quote]Kruiser wrote:
Why would you need to pick one? If you have access to bars and bells use both. Dumbbells generally require more stabilizer muscles and allow a greater range of motion (ROM). Barbells generally allow greater loads.[/quote]

Yes, use both! Where did this notion come from that you have to use one or the other. Both is best.

D

As previously stated, use both in flat, incline and decline.

Both are great. Like Kruiser said, the greater loads with barbell bench should mean greater muscle response for muscle building. However, many people don’t get much pec response with barbell bench using a medium grip (have to go wide which is bad for your shoulders), and the deeper ROM of the dumbells hits the pecs really nicely. Also, DB stuff will be healthier for your shoulders. Using a neutral grip is especially good on the shoulders.

In general, rotate your grips, angles (incline, decline, flat), and dumbell/barbell regularly. Also, if you are lifting for strength, raw benchers get a ton of carryover from dumbell benching to barbell bench.

Thanks guys. I got the “idea” of only using one, because a post I read, a guy said to not over-work your chest, so I didn’t want to make the “wrong” decision. Sounds dumb, but the T-Nation peers are correct, right?

[quote]flipHKD_6 wrote:
Thanks guys. I got the “idea” of only using one, because a post I read, a guy said to not over-work your chest, so I didn’t want to make the “wrong” decision. Sounds dumb, but the T-Nation peers are correct, right?[/quote]

I don’t know about that (over working the chest). I have one day where the primary focus is on chest and my philosophy is to bombard the chest on that day from every angle. You shouldn’t overwork chest by hitting it every day for a week straight, but rather, on your chest day blast the F#$k out of it. That is what stimulates growth if you are hitting your nutrition and recuperation correctly.

D

I like barbell for flat presses, but for incline I prefer dumbells, I feel more comfortable doing the lift.

dumbells are far superior than barbells.

it is true that you can lift more with a barbell than u can with dumbells. BUT the sport called bodybuilding, not weightlifting. with dumbells you get a better range of motion, and you can focus on the contraction much more than with a barbell. you can flex and squeeze the pec more so during your rep than with a barbell.

i dont do flat-bench barbell anymore, i only use dumbells for flat bench, and im still growing a LOT.

Thanks all, that helps a lot actually. On a different lift… anyone know where I can find the “perfect” form for one-armed DB rows at?

[quote]animalmj wrote:
As previously stated, use both in flat, incline and decline.[/quote]

Don’t give him that idea. He might do 3x10 6 times for chest only. If he gets to hold kettlebells and cables, he might do 12.

[quote]youngguns516 wrote:
dumbells are far superior than barbells.

it is true that you can lift more with a barbell than u can with dumbells. BUT the sport called bodybuilding, not weightlifting. with dumbells you get a better range of motion, and you can focus on the contraction much more than with a barbell. you can flex and squeeze the pec more so during your rep than with a barbell.

i dont do flat-bench barbell anymore, i only use dumbells for flat bench, and im still growing a LOT.[/quote]

BB bench still has its place in bodybuilding. You’ll need it when you stagnate and wanna go stronger so that the next time you use DBs, you can use more weight. But yeah, dumbells are a lot more flexible and you can do all sorts of bench presses with them.

[quote]flipHKD_6 wrote:
Thanks all, that helps a lot actually. On a different lift… anyone know where I can find the “perfect” form for one-armed DB rows at?[/quote]

I remember reading a long time ago when I first learned to do those to start at full extension and then imagine you are trying to bring your elbow to the middle of your back. Also, imagine pulling a lawn mower start cord. It’s a very similar motion. Many people do this with the other free hand on the bench as well as one knee on the bench.

D

http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/BackGeneral/DBBentOverRow.html

[quote]Dedicated wrote:
flipHKD_6 wrote:
Thanks guys. I got the “idea” of only using one, because a post I read, a guy said to not over-work your chest, so I didn’t want to make the “wrong” decision. Sounds dumb, but the T-Nation peers are correct, right?

I don’t know about that (over working the chest). I have one day where the primary focus is on chest and my philosophy is to bombard the chest on that day from every angle. You shouldn’t overwork chest by hitting it every day for a week straight, but rather, on your chest day blast the F#$k out of it. That is what stimulates growth if you are hitting your nutrition and recuperation correctly.

D[/quote]

I wholeheartedly agree. As long as you’re eating and resting adequately, read recovery, I believe in pulverizing the muscles on their designated days whether with volume or ferocious post failure pummeling. At least most of the time. A periodic backoff or off day notwithstanding. Some will undoubtedly disagree, but I can live with that.