I had been workin out with bench press for 26 years since I was introduced to it when I was 11.
Had many shoulder problems. Bench press was the king of all exercises for me. Until I found out that my shoulder problems was created by it no matter what grip or propper position I was using.
Then I was introduced to hammer strength bench press. I found out that it was working better for me because;
- It was as effective as the best chest stimulator that is dumbell bench press. As effective as because I chould use heavier weights that I would not be able lift from the floor with dumbells.
- It was giving me the squeezing motion with a little upward angle providing the perfect movement angle.
- I simply felt better. Dont let anyone tell you otherwise. The best exercise is the one your body responds to. Everyone has a different physique. On the other hand try to read the EMG muscle activation studies as they will guide you correctly.
That being said. Bench Press is unfortunately the 4th or 5th best exercise when it comes to stimulating chest muscles. Sorry to give you the spoiler. Nevertheless I use it sometimes with light weights in order to have a variety of exercises. Especially Wide Grip Guillotine Press.
I found out that the best rouitine for me is:
5 to 7 min warm up with weights.
4 x 10 reps hammer strength bench press with the same weight. Usually 220 lbs.
4 x 12 reps Pec Deck holding the handles high for upper inner pec stimulation and pushing and squeezing the handles.
4 x 15 to 20 reps Dumbell Incline Press with 70 lbs each.
4 x max reps cable cross over with a medium heavy weight.
3 x max reps h.s. decline bench press with 220 lbs.
This workout is the best for me. Sometimes I switch the dumbell incline as a starter and do the H.S. Bench press as the third move providing a really well warmed up muscle which to my surprise makes me lift easier during HS movement.
As I said. This is what works for me and the science that backs it up. If you would like to give my routine a try please reply and give me a feedback on your experience and suggestions.