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Floor Press for Improving Bench

Am looking at the doing the deathbench program and it has some floor pressing as assistance for sets of 5 with the program aiming to accumulate volume with main lifts, assistance and lots of accessories.

Bench wise I fail at or just off the chest from not being strong enough in the relevant muscles, insufficient tightness and misgrooving/inefficient bar path.

So I’m wondering what are the benefits of floor press as a bench press assistance movement in general and for specific situations?

If it’s probably not the best thing for me specifically it seems easy enough to sub out for 5x5 @8 of another movement. Already have incline, close grip, spoto and long pause in the program at some point.

If you take a program and replace, skip, change reps/weights on an exercise in that program, it is (unless stated that said modification is okay) no longer the same program. Whoever wrote the program picked and planned things for specific reasons, and a big not insignificant part of a program’s success is the lifter’s belief/trust that the program is effective. Trust that the things in the program are there for a reason and execute it to the best of your abilities.

On a more technical note, building strength in a reduced/stronger range of motion can definitely have carry-over in weaker positions of the main movement. So yes floor presses could still be a good movement for building bench even if you typically miss off the chest. Also, a good program will balance weekly load efficiently. In the bench, shoulders are most taxed and vulnerable at the bottom of the movement, so doing more at-the-chest work might just overwork this area and lead to injury. Reduced ROM movements like floor presses can be a great way to get more pressing volume in without adding to potentially detrimental volume to the shoulders.

As you mentioned, if your issue with missing off the chest is technical, I would recommend being more diligent about your setup and technique when performing the competition movement. Getting stronger where your technique breaks down is a poor substitute for fixing your technique.


Floor press can teach tightness ( sure you can pause on the ground and relax but you know if you’re doing that )

It builds up a lot of middle to top end strength but that is without leg drive. Generally if your floor press goes up your bench goes up.

The only reason to fail at the chest is just because you’re not strong enough. Getting stronger overall helps accomplish that, but perhaps you need some at chest level pin presses instead of floor press, i’d probably just do the floor press though.


I’m guessing floor press is more of a top-end movement for you, I have shorter arms and a thicker torso so the bar actually touches my chest.

Training the top end of the bench can pay off too, it will build your triceps and allow you to handle some heavier weight than normal. At one time I used to fail a couple inches off my chest and I thought that top-end work was a waste of time and I already had big triceps so I neglected that stuff completely. Eventually I started failing a few inches short of lockout. You need to train weak points, but neglecting strong points can eventually make them become weak points as well.


Best things that increased my power off the chest are Incline bench and heavy dumbell flys. I would also through in seated military presses.

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So in terms of execution the elbows aren’t meant to be sinking or resting on the ground much?

I do it like a paused bench, but on bench I let the bar sink into my chest a bit as opposed to some people who barely touch their chest and are still holding the full weight with their arms. And no, on floor press it’s not sinking into my chest, just barely grazing it. But the main idea is to maintain tension throughout our upper body, not relax and get loose, and the fact that your forearms are supporting the weight rather than it sitting on your chest means that letting yourself get loose will instantly show you that you have fucked up.

I have long arms (there’s a fair bit of clearance from my chest) and my sticking point is the traditional just off the chest area. Floor press works great for me, no idea why but it does.

I was watching a Mike T clip where he said he gets really good carryover from banded work, he had some ideas as to why but didn’t have an explanation.

Give it a try, you may be pleased with the results.

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You should touch the ground, pause at the ground but fire back up, the elbows shouldn’t be touching and relaxing on the ground.


So like a high-er Spoto Press then

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