So a nearly unanimous conclusion that my bracing is off/wrong/bad.
Honestly, I'm a little confused. As far as I know, I am doing everything I should be to be properly braced, but if you all say that's my problem, I believe you.
I get tight before I unrack, take a breath, and flex my abs and glutes through the whole lift. If you were to punch me in the gut, my abs would be the same. My breath is held through the whole lift. Every once in awhile, I end up getting a bit lightheaded because of the air pressure and have to kill a lift midway.
But obviously I'm doing something wrong. What is it, and how do I fix it?
I might be on the wrong path here entirely, but... If my hip and low back position is that far off when everything is tight, it seems like there's some sort of muscle strength/tightness imbalance in the area.
Basically that my low back is much stronger than my abs, and my hip flexors are much tighter/stronger than my glutes and upper hamstrings. Which would indicate I need some stretching, and some dedicated ab and glute/hamstring work.
Does that make any sense?
I'm just concerned that "getting my glutes tight", "tightening my core", "getting my lungs full", aren't really going to do much for me since I'm already doing those things. And so, paused reps would still be from the same starting position.
I do see how half-kneeling reps might help. Anything else?
I don't mean to sound ungracious, I just genuinely don't understand what I need to do to improve from here.
As far as "pressing the bar forward", thanks for all the ideas, between the Dick's presses, dumbbell presses, etc.