T Nation

Getting a Bench Lift Off


Has anyone ever switched from not using lift offs to using them?

I hate them, I like to feel the weight as I move it into position, but as the weight gets heavier it's starting to hurt my shoulder to take it off the rack. Only problem is when I get a lift off I feel the weight out of the blue and it feels like wholly shit this is heavy. Then I feel like I don't attack the lift the same way.

If you've ever switched about what weight did you switch from no lift off to Lift off? and was there a noticable difference psychologically in how you attacked it?


Maybe the spotter isn't easing the barbell into your hands and just kinda dropping it. It's happened to me before a couple times and that's when I feel like it's a lot of weight. If you gripthe barbell very tightly and tell tell the spotter to ease the barbeell into your hands as he is letting go then you should be fine.


This is another reason why a consistent workout partner that knows what they are doing helps so much. I agree that the spotter when lifting off should ease the bar into your hands, but he should also let you count off 3,2,1 so you both are lifting when YOU are ready. This will keep you more in synch.

Also, make sure your spotter isn't hercules that is going to upright row your weight and then let it smash you. a good lift off helps the lifter the most. Your shoulder blades should not come up as they hand it to you


I think getting lift off's is essential. I have my scapulea scrunched up behind me and when I lift off by myself they flare and I lose my base. Lift offs everytime for me.


i don't worry about it. if i can't unrack the bar and guide it into position, it's probably more than i should be working out with in the first place


I never need a lift off ... EVER!

It helps that I can't bench more than 255 lbs.

Also when I get stuck on the bench I never need help, I just roll the bar down to my waist, sit up, stand then re-rack it. As easy as 1-2-3.


Sounds like an ab exercise.


Advanced form of ab exercise my friends. I used to liken it to rolling the dough (my stomach) to make a pizza or something.


I need a liftoff from someone who knows what they're doing or 1) my shoulders hurt, and 2) I get pulled out of position. The liftoff is just barely enough to get the bar over the hooks. I never try max effort without a liftoff, and prefer it for anything above 155 or so (shirted PR is 225).




You know you'd be stronger if you got liftoffs, which allow you to keep your shoulders and back tight instead of reaching to unrack the bar?


I think they're nice. You could always look at Dave Tate's benching article (I THINK that's what it was) for more info on a smoother self-lift off.

Personally, I suck at them. That's why most of the time I preffer just to use the Smith.



I totally lose my base and stability if I have to try to unrack the weight while maintaining my arch and pulling my shoulder blades together and into the bench. The fact that I'm too short for the average commercial bench doesn't help matters either.


I had a real tough time transitioning from regular lifting partners to no partners . un-racking without altering your set-up is difficult at best . and it's hard to cue someone else how to lift-off the way you want it . I can un-rack up to about a 3RM without a spot , but I guess that it costs me a rep .

this one trainer got it right the first time . then the second time he pulled way up , lifting my shoulders up , and then dropped the bar quite early . I asked him once more after that and the same thing happened . I dont ask him any more.


Always get a spot on my bench when doin my max set and always take a lift off.

I always have to tell the spotter only touch that bar if its falling back on top of me, i fuckin hate when people start putting their fingers on the bar!!! fuck off, i want to get a new rep pr on my own cunt!!!! :slight_smile:


I just switched to using lift offs 6 mnths ago. Man, WHAT A DIFFERENCE! With my scapulare back. I instantly went up 20 lbs on my bench. Huge difference. Wont bench without a lift off again


I hear ya on the being short thing....5'6".

thats what I tried to explain the trainer dude ,whose about 5'10". he wasnt gettin' it.

the decline bench by me is next to useless for a short guy. I need a lift after 135 .


No Liftoff sucks.
I've been benching for the last month and a bit without one and I lost my tightness also..With a lighter weight I'm fine but once I start reaching 315 for some reps not the same.
I get my dad to spot for me so he's gettin older, he's strong but to him that weight is just massive haha so I feel like I lift quite a bit of it off, but he lifts JUST ENOUGH so that I don't lose tightness. We have a good sync too, best spotter I ever had.


i can do either way. lately i've been getting liftoffs, but sometimes like people have said the way the spotter drops it off does more harm than good and kind of negates the point of the liftoff in the first place.