T Nation

My Incline Bench = My Flat Bench


During my last flat bench session, I was working out with 235, and during my last incline bench session, I used 225. Not really saying this is a bad thing, but I'm just curious as to why. Is it because I have strong shoulders? As a point of reference I currently do sets of 185 lbs on the seated military press, and I use the 10 x 3 method for all my heavy compound lifts. You'll probably want to know more about me, so here is some more background info -

195 lbs
Around 10.5%-11% BF

Another postulate might be that my flat bench might be underdeveloped, which I find also find feasible, mainly because I was having problems with my left rotator cuff for months on end that wouldn't allow me to workout with anything heavier than like 210-215 without my left side giving out on me. Then, a few weeks ago, I discovered the MIRACLES of stretching, and my rotator cuff problem is now practically non existent (I can literally feel the discomfort fading away little by little as time progresses). However, my rotator cuff only gave me problems
in the flat bench, allowing me to work on my incline bench hindrance free. Although I'd think that if my flat bench is underdeveloped, so should my incline bench, no? Unless of course, my shoulders are making up for it.

What do you guys think?

Also, since I don't feel like making a totally separate thread to ask a simple question, I was wondering...

If someone who is 6'4" has the same body fat percentage as someone who is 5'6", the taller guy would be leaner, correct? The reason I ask is because I have a friend who is about 6'3" or so, and he would tell me he's around 10% body fat, yet had more visible abs than I did when I was around 8% body fat.

Sorry for the long post guys, although I'm sure at least some of you will read it and help me out. Thanks!


To the first part answer is probably Yes (or stronger triceps, or that you're not using you pecs much, check your form)

On the second point - lots of factors play into whether you can see abs or not including ab development, various physical characteristics like skin thickness, shape of abs etc, and then the way fat cells are spread over the body.


First, are you sure you're 10-11% bodyfat? Has it been tested (by calipers) or do you just "think" you're that lean?

Second, how high is your bench inclined? Are you using a low incline (15-30 degrees) or is it a higher incline (40-60 degrees). The lower the incline, the closer you should be able to bench near your flat bench.


I'm around 10.5% according to calipers, and I think it's fairly accurate, because I have a flat stomach with faint upper abdominal definition, and I've been checking my body fat weekly for months now (first when I was cutting, and now that I'm bulking), and I get consistent readings. Why do you ask?

And I believe the bench is inclined the standard 45 degrees. The incline benches I use at the gym aren't adjustable, so I assume they are all fixed to a standard angle. I'm almost positive they are at least 45 degrees incline.