T Nation

ME Day - Bench

I workout alone and often during off hours where finding a spotter is difficult. Besides flat pressing off pins and DB presses, what alternative exerciese can be used without a spotter?

By off pins, I assume you have a power rack. So you can set the pins at the correct level in case you miss the lift - the pins catch the bar - so you’ve got board presses, regular bench, decline bench, floor presses, db floor presses, etc…

I second the pin protection in the power rack.

I set the pins where I can drop the bar to my chest and unarch/deflate and it’ll sit on the pins.

If the pins aren’t quite low enough put some plates under the feet of the bench.

And if you set up just right on the bench you can unhook the bar from the J hooks without straining your shoulders.

It takes some practice though. I have to reset a couple of times to keep from hitting the hooks when I press.

offroadbiker,

In the cases that you mention - board presses, regular bench, decline bench, floor presses - the pins (in the rack) would need to be lower than the surface of contact; board, chest, carpet or whatever. If failure is hit, I’d be pinned by the weights. Similar situation for BB floor press. I do see that the DB floor press could be an alternative; however, I’d be starting out having to initially perform the concenric motion.

[quote]T-Bone2 wrote:
offroadbiker,

In the cases that you mention - board presses, regular bench, decline bench, floor presses - the pins (in the rack) would need to be lower than the surface of contact; board, chest, carpet or whatever. If failure is hit, I’d be pinned by the weights. Similar situation for BB floor press. I do see that the DB floor press could be an alternative; however, I’d be starting out having to initially perform the concenric motion.[/quote]

Not true!! If you are doing board presses, set the pins at the height of your second highest board(ie: 2inches for a three inch board) and bench. If you miss the weight you can either drop it above or below the boards, or set it on the board and de-arch so to speak. You wont be stuck there either because you can roll the bar along the pins. For floor presses inside the power cage. set the pins at about wrist level (if your arms were resting on the floor) and press. If you miss, let the weight drop either towards your head or your crotch and the pins should catch it. If you need any help with others either give me a pm or ask away on this thread.

[quote]T-Bone2 wrote:
offroadbiker,

In the cases that you mention - board presses, regular bench, decline bench, floor presses - the pins (in the rack) would need to be lower than the surface of contact; board, chest, carpet or whatever. If failure is hit, I’d be pinned by the weights. Similar situation for BB floor press. [/quote]

Not true if there is any arch at all in your back (And everyone I’ve seen has SOME arch). Set the pins just below the point where the bar touches your chest. If you can’t get the weight up, let the bar sink into your chest and flatten out your arch and the pins will catch the bar.

Sorry to highjack, but this question goes along with the topic methinks.

What is the best way to set up a board press without a spotter? Im not so worried about dropping the weight, but I dont know how to get the boards on me to do it.

If there isnt a good way, whats a good movement that can mimic the benefits of a board press?

Thanks for the input. Unfortunatley, the hole spacing on the squat racks are 5-6" apart, so I guess I’ll need to jack up the bench several inches.

Board press without an assistant can be accomplished by using bands to sandwich the board to the chest. This is detailed with a picture in the Exercise Index section over at elifts.com.

for the board press, I just wear a somewhat loose t-shirt, and stick the boards underneath - I’ll then take the end of the shirt and tuck it under the boards. Works good up to 4 boards!