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Trouble with DB Benching

Hey guys,

I am not a powerlifter but I suspect a lot of you may use Dumbell bench pressing in your routine as an assistance exercise. My problem is that I am having trouble stabilizing the weight in my left hand before the lift even starts. I am up to 60lbs x10 reps and since my main goal is strength, I want to use 65lbs for this exercise. The problem is, every time I try to get the 65’s in position to lift, I cannot hold the weight in my left hand so i end up dropping it. I think the problem is my left shoulder, but I am not sure what to do about it. My right arm can hold it just fine. Has anyone else had this problem or something similar? Has anyone had success fixing this issue or one similar? If so, what did you do? What do you guys think my problem is?

I don’t know. Does it hurt?

With any type of bench, you’ll need to have a strong upper back for stability. Also pinch your shoulder blades together really hard. Putting meat on all 3 of your shoulder heads, especially the middle and rear since they tend to get neglected will help with stabilization.

I hope that gets stabilized, What you don’t want to do is Do ‘Chest Flies’ with
Dumbells because the contraction on the Chest is nowhere near the effectiveness
and results you’ll achieve with doing Flies on a Cable crossover machine.
It blows my mind how sometimes how Dumbell Flies are still recommended in
magazines every now and then, you get NO meaningful Chest contraction in the last
third of the movement, and yes I get that CCM’s aren’t available for everyone,
but I still think the Dumbell Fly is just stupid IMO and mostly just a waste of precious energy.

[quote]Karado wrote:
I hope that gets stabilized, What you don’t want to do is Do ‘Chest Flies’ with
Dumbells because the contraction on the Chest is nowhere near the effectiveness
and results you’ll achieve with doing Flies on a Cable crossover machine.
It blows my mind how sometimes how Dumbell Flies are still recommended in
magazines every now and then, you get NO meaningful Chest contraction in the last
third of the movement, and yes I get that CCM’s aren’t available for everyone,
but I still think the Dumbell Fly is just stupid IMO and mostly just a waste of precious energy.
[/quote]

It’s really nice for stretching out the front delts and pecs. And you can always do flies with bands or chains.

@Fletch. It hurts a bit in my left shoulder in between my anterior delt and pec when I try to get the DB in the proper position. thats a good cue about pulling the shoulder blades back. I’ll try it. I have been doing a lot of upper back work lately (face pulls, inverted rows, 1 arm cable rows) after neglecting it for a while so maybe as my upper back gets stronger and bigger it will be easier to stabilize the DB. thanks for the advice!

@karado I am not currently doing chest flies in my routine. I’m not such a big fan of those either.

I would avoid db pressing for a while until you get things sorted out. Or if you’re going to do it, do it with a neutral grip. Don’t forget your middle and rear delts with all the back work.

Not that there’s anything wrong with db pressing, but why are you doing it in the first place?

I have/had pain in a similar area. doing these helped me:

I also added in more rear delt work which seemed to help.

@fletch I am doing Db pressing as my primary pushing upper body movements. I play baseball so I stay away from straight bar benching and overhead pressing.

@Andrew Watters Thanks for the video. I’ll give these exercises a try.

I had similar left should problem and I ditched the DB all together using only Barbell bench press with arch back and shoulders, seems to be working for me, the pain lessened for Bench but still persists on heavy Barbell Presses tho.