T Nation

stuck in the bench

I have been stuck in the bench at 315-320 for the last year and 1/2. The method that I am currently doing is WSB. Although I have made gains in the other 2 power lifts my bench has been going nowhere. My bodyweight has even gone!! Any advice would be greatly appreciated

I would say find your weak link.This is almost always the problem.Evaluate all the muscles involved,and be honest about your strengths and weaknesses.Louie and Dave ALWAYS stress the triceps,but I believe the upper back muscles(external rotators) are a close second.Check out Poliquin’s structural balance article in issue # 52!Read Dave Tate’s TNT articles,and his Big Bad bench,and Bench press 600lbs!.If you’re following the WSB method,you could be using to much weight on you speed day.Keep your bar speed in check

How long have you been using WSB method. You should be able to look at your ME lifts and find out your weak link. As the other poster mentioned, triceps are first priority. But having used WSB, and trained with people who have also used, the biggest weakness I have seen is lats/upper back. For example, where do you fail on 2-board press? If you are getting stuck right off the board, then its definitaly your back. I train back 3 of the 4 days of WSB workouts. Take a look at your volume also. Step up your back and tricep work and you will see your bench go up.
Chad T

Focus on your weak link. For many benchers, it’s the rotator cuff. Make sure you perform external shoulder rotations at every bench workout. There is an excellent old Poliquin article on form and execution of a dumbbell external shoulder rotation. Next, make sure you perform heavy bent-over rows with good form. And, naturally, keep at the triceps training. Good luck.

Check out www.dragondoor.com
and look for the Muscle Media bench program written by Pavel.
Basically start at your current 6-7 RM. Do 5
add 5lbs do 4 add 5 again do 3 add 5 again do 2 add 5 again do 1. Rest 3-5 minutes in between sets. Done for day one ie MON. Then wed add start at 5 lbs more than your previous 5rm and go up again. Then on friday same thing. Rest the weekend. Then monday start back on weds weights.
do this till you plateau. Then do ladders with your new 5RM.
Check it out. It works.
Greg Gonzales

I have been on the WSB for about 6-7 months. I really do stress the triceps pretty hard. As far as upper back I train it a least out of the 4 WSB workout days. The only thing is I have been more chest supported rows and pulldowns thean barbell rows

not to sound harsh, but you need to quit being scared of weight… you might think you’re not, but you are. go in the gym, be an animal, and have no fear. your bench will go up. if you’re stuck on 320, maybe concentrate on doing 2-3 reps of 290, and build up those reps until you get 5. then max out the next time. you got to build up confidence in yourself with heavy weight.