Dumbbell Bench Press Warm-Up Sets?

The 8 -Min Bench Press Heat-Up You Want

The common particular person loves benching, however hates warming up. And that’s why they’re common.

They strut into the fitness center, do a number of half-ass arm swings earlier than slapping 135lbs onto the bar and pumping out some questionable reps.

Lack of preparation breeds an absence of outcomes.And in case you’re trying to bench larger and really feel higher whereas doing so, a correct warm-up is non-negotiable.

Why it is advisable to warm-up earlier than benching:

Maximize your power potential. Warming up enhances your means to show your strength by priming the central nervous system (CNS). Reduce your threat of harm. As you transfer by your warm-up, synovial fluid builds up between your joints and acts as a lubricant. Thus, decreasing undesirable joint friction and “stiffness” whereas vastly minimizing your threat of injury. Improve muscle fibre recruitment. As famous, your warm-up is a chance to prime the CNS, which in the end results in higher muscle fibre recruitment. Your means to push by the concentric part of the bench press with maximal effort is a results of a primed nervous system. This may solely be achieved by an optimum warm-up. Plus, warming up will increase your joints’ vary of movement. A higher vary of movement means higher time below stress and a better diploma of muscle fibres at work. Improve core temperature and blood circulation. Warming up enhances blood circulation and will increase core physique temperature. It additionallyimproves total core operate and stability, which will increase your loading potential for the bench press. A stronger core means a stronger bench.

The 8-Min Bench Press Heat-Up (4 Steps)

Step 1: Foam Rolling/SMR ( 2 min)

Self-myofascial launch (SMR) is a warm-up method involving utilized stress to particular muscle tissues and can be utilized with a wide range of instruments together with (however not restricted to) the froth curler.

Foam rolling will increase blood circulation to the working muscle tissue concerned in your coaching session and, in the end, will get you transferring. This, in impact, raises your core temperature and primes your muscle tissue for loading.

As Mike Boyle places it, “When finished repeatedly, foam rolling unties the knots in your muscle tissue by breaking down the adhesions and serving to to heal the tissues.”

Seize a foam curler and carry out 10 gradual rolls per facet to the next areas:

Decrease again: Make sure you lay in your facet so the curler is not positioned instantly in your backbone. Slightly, you wish to roll out the muscle tissue alongside the facet of your decrease again. Triceps: Maintain your arm pretty straight and roll alongside the triceps, between your elbow and armpit.

Make sure you exhale as you apply stress to these areas and deal with respiration all through your units.

Step 2: Mobility ( 2 min)

Mobility is your joints’ means to actively transfer by their meant ranges of movement. Merely put, it’s flexibility in movement.

The bench press locations excessive demand from a mobility-perspective on the thoracic backbone (higher again) and shoulders. That stated, mobilizing these areas must be an space of excessive precedence throughout your warm-up.

Carry out 10-15 reps per facet for every of the next:

Aspect Mendacity Windmill: The target right here is to maintain your hips straight whereas rotating on the higher again and shoulders. Time beyond regulation, work to the touch the ground as you attain overhead whereas conserving your arm straight. Banded Shoulder Dislocates: This acts as a mobility drill whereas additionally aiding in activation of the muscle tissue surrounding the shoulders and higher again. Many Olympic lifters will carry out this with a dowel, however the resistance band affords higher flexibility and added stress all through the motion, making it a fantastic precursor to the bench press.

Step 3: Activation ( 2 min)

Now it’s time to get the first muscle tissue concerned within the bench press (triceps, higher again, core) activated and primed for loading.

Carry out 2-3 units of every of the next:

Band Pull Aside: Holding a resistance band at shoulder-height together with your arms straight, pull the band aside and deal with contracting your higher again muscle tissue. Slowly bring your arms again to the heart whereas conserving stress within the band all through the whole set and repeat for 15-20 reps. Triceps Extension with Resistance Band: That is meant to extend blood flow to the first movers of the bench press (the triceps) whereas getting ready the elbows for loading. Do 15-20 reps. RKC Plank: The RKC or “hard-style” plank is among the best workout routines you are able to do to strengthen the deep, underlying muscle tissue of the core. It entails maximally contracting each muscle in your physique for 5-10 sec at a time whereas holding the usual plank place. After 5 sec, you “calm down” your muscle tissue and proceed to carry the plank for 10 sec. Repeat this course of 2-3 instances for a complete of 30-45 sec.

Step 4: CNS (2 min)

Your means to show power rapidly is a results of priming your nervous system withdynamic and explosive actions previous to lifting. As already talked about, doing so will improve your complete muscle fibre recruitment and lead to an explosive concentric part of the bench press.

You’re not restricted in terms of dynamic actions to carry out previous to benching. That stated, it’s usually a secure wager to make use of workout routines like explosive push-ups or ballistic throws since they carefully mimic the motion of the bench press in a dynamic setting.

Select one of many following and carry out 3-5 reps for 2-3 units (relaxation 30-45 sec between).

Possibility 1: Med Ball SlamPossibility 2: Explosive Push-Ups

Abstract: Placing It All Collectively

1. Foam roll decrease again x 10 gradual rolls per facet.2. Foam roll triceps x 10 gradual rolls per facet. 3. Aspect mendacity windmill x 10 per facet. 4. Banded shoulder dislocates x 10. 5. Band pull aside x 15-20 for 2-3 units. 6. Triceps extension x 15-20 for 2-3 units. 7. RKC plank x 30-45 sec (5 sec pull, 10 sec regular hold, repeat). 8. Med ball slam or explosive push-up x 3-5 for 2-3 units.

Prioritize your warm-up and make it a non-negotiable a part of coaching. You’ll really feel strongerand reap the rewards due to it.  


Is This The EXACT Method EVERYONE Ought to ALWAYS Heat Up?

Whereas the general structuring of this heat up sequence is fairly near best usually, there are some notes and exceptions.

Listed here are the principle ones that come to thoughts:

  • Energy Ranges. The heavier the burden being lifted for a given train, the extra heat up units you’ll usually want. The other is true as effectively (the lighter the burden, the much less warming up you’ll want). That means, somebody bench urgent 275lbs would wish extra heat up units than somebody bench urgent 135lbs. Or, if you wish to take a look at it from the opposite standpoint, the particular person bench urgent 135lbs simply doesn’t want as many heat up units to work as much as their lesser weight.
  • Expertise Ranges. This goes hand-in-hand with the primary merchandise on this record, nevertheless it’s price giving a separate point out. Freshmen are usually weaker than intermediate and superior trainees. Subsequently, learners wouldn’t want as lots of the heavier heat up units as somebody extra superior would. (So for instance, units #4 and/or #5 within the heat up sequence outlined above won’t be as crucial for a newbie.)
  • Rep Vary and Coaching Depth. Heat up units can also should be adjusted based mostly on the rep range and degree of weight training intensity getting used. That means, in case you’re bench urgent for 4 units of 6 reps, you’ll be utilizing a heavier weight than you’d in case you had been bench urgent for 3 units of 12 reps, and kind of warming up could also be wanted or most popular as compared.
  • Particular Workout routines. The kind of train being finished may additionally warrant modifications to the way you heat up. For instance, a tougher/extra technical train like barbell squats may require a extra thorough heat up sequence than one thing like leg presses.

Actually, heat up units will not be an actual science the place one technique is universally excellent for everybody on all weight coaching workout routines and at each degree of power and expertise.

Some individuals profit from extra units, some from much less. Some from heavier weight, some from lighter. Be at liberty to experiment (if wanted) to search out precisely what feels finest for you.

For almost all of the inhabitants nevertheless, one thing comparable to what I described above is what’s most best and most frequently advocate.

12.1 Vitamin

Eat well-balanced meals of lean proteins, complicated carbohydrates, and wholesome fat all through your day. Easy carbohydrates akin to white rice are okay instantly following a exercise.

The Targets Of Heat Up Units

Now, right here is the place individuals begin to screw issues up. They perceive the explanation for warming up, they only don’t perceive the targets… and that results in all kinds of dumb stuff being finished.

Particularly, the targets of heat up units are as follows:

  • To permit us to organize the goal muscle(s).
  • To permit us to organize the joints getting used.
  • To permit us to organize our central nervous system.
  • To permit us to organize mentally.
  • To perform the entire above WITHOUT creating pointless fatigue.

With all of that in thoughts, the most typical suggestion for optimally conducting all the pieces on that record is to:

Carry out a collection of progressively heavier units that can get fairly near our precise working weight, whereas utilizing fewer and fewer reps as we go to keep away from fatiguing ourselves earlier than we even start.

Most individuals grasp the “progressively heavier units” a part of that, however they miss the second half about avoiding fatigue.

That’s why one of the frequent silly issues individuals do when warming up is carry out a bunch of units of anyplace from 10-20 reps per set.

What they’re primarily doing right here is simply tiring themselves out with heat up units and making a ton of pointless fatigue (which is why conventional pyramid units suck for most individuals) whereas on the similar time doing little to truly accomplish what we hope to perform by warming up.

I’ve personally been there and finished that myself again within the day, the place I mainly turned my heat up sequence right into a full on exercise by doing a bunch of units of 10-12.

By the point I acquired to my very first work set, I used to be (unknowingly) considerably fatigued and my efficiency (unknowingly) suffered for it.

11.2 Entrance Deltoids

This stabilizing muscle can take a hell of a beating after an aggressive chest day exercise. Whilst you can dedicate a number of units of entrance dumbbell raises to this muscle, your predominant focus must be on stretching and restoration. A tear of the entrance deltoid means no extra benching for months.


One other programming technique is the concurrent fashion of coaching — the place a number of targets are pursued throughout the similar session. The place in strength-orientated programming, you might practice the bench press utilizing heavier weights nearly solely, concurrent coaching strategies would see you practice the bench press for power earlier than coaching the chest itself by a spread of muscle-building workout routines. These are additionally among the guiding ideas discovered in lots of power-building routines.

The Exercise

To create a concurrent-style of program, first, select a periodization technique to information your bench press routine. From there, add in further workout routines prioritizing chest size and strength to enhance the bench press, akin to dumbbell presses or pec flyes. 

Oftentimes, these exercises start with heavier weights earlier than stacking many extra units, repetitions, and reasonable coaching masses to completely practice the chest throughout a spectrum of challenges throughout the similar day. 

  • Bench Press: 3 units of 5 repetitions with 85% of 1RM (block periodization fashion).
  • Incline Dumbbell Bench Press: 3 units of 10 repetitions.
  • Cable or Machine Flye: 3 units of 12 repetitions.
  • Push-ups: 2 units of as many repetitions as doable.

Word: If this appears just like a bodybuilder’s chest day, that’s as a result of it’s. Concurrent coaching is among the guiding ideas discovered throughout the assorted disciplines of resistance coaching. 

2. Mobility Drills For Bench Press

By doing mobility drills you improve the blood circulation to your muscle tissue and restore movement.

Mobility drills are carried out by utilizing self-massage remedy methods, akin to utilizing a foam curler or lacrosse ball to use stress to the muscle.

When a muscle is tight it limits the mobility on the degree of the joint. Each train within the fitness center would require a sure degree of mobility to carry out. Within the bench press, you’ll must have requisite mobility by your shoulders and thoracic backbone to carry the bar by a full vary of movement.

It’s essential to know that performing mobility drills by the usage of self-massage remedy methods will solely restore movement momentary. This implies that you could improve vary of movement for the precise exercise, however the advantages of froth rolling doesn’t final (from a spread of movement perspective). Subsequently, you’ll want further interventions to make long-term progress in your mobility following your exercise (akin to static stretching) (Peacock et al., 2014).

Lots of people really overdo this stage of the warm-up, and spend far too lengthy doing mobility drills. My suggestion is to select 1-3 workout routines listed beneath, apply stress to the muscle, and carry out 5-10 strokes for 60-90-seconds. Be at liberty to decide on totally different mobility drills over time.


Lie sideways on the froth curler and apply stress on the lat muscle. Roll areas that you simply really feel tight whether or not that’s increased or decrease.

Pec Major

Pec Main

The pec main is a much bigger muscle group. Areas of the higher pec, nearer to the shoulder, will probably be tighter, so begin there and roll inwards to the midline of the physique.

Pec Minor

The pec minor sits beneath the arm pit. It could be tougher to use stress on the pec minor towards a wall, so do that one on the ground and apply acceptable stress.

Thoracis Backbone

Transfer your higher and mid-back by flexion and extension on the froth curler. You too can apply stress to the erector spinae, which sit on both facet of your backbone.

Take a look at my article on the highest bench press progressions to take your elevate from a newbie to superior degree.

#3: Don’t Stretch Earlier than You Raise

Stretching earlier than a exercise was thought of a must-do for a very long time however analysis now reveals that this isn’t optimum in your efficiency within the weights room.

One analysis research (1) reveals that static stretching earlier than weight lifting causes a big discount in power, even in stretches lasting as little as 45 seconds or much less.

One other research (2) discovered that static stretching earlier than understanding decreased power in decrease and higher physique workout routines in each skilled and untrained males.

Subsequent time you exercise forego the stretching till after you exercise if you wish to be at your strongest.

The Advantages of a Stronger Bench Press

As with most barbell workout routines, lots of the advantages of efficiently performing the bench press are literally achieved by the work you do to change into a great bencher within the first place. Advantages akin to improved mobility, joint stability, and higher physique dimension and power are all concerned in constructing the bench press, and bleed into different points of your health.

Improved Mobility

To carry out the bench press efficiently and for an extended sufficient time to see actual progress, you could first achieve the required hip, trunk, and shoulder mobility to carry out the best possible bench press technique. This typically requires the addition of hip flexor, pec and lat, thoracic spine, and shoulder warm-up drills to be concerned in bench press coaching and thus carries over to many different workout routines.

Elevated Joint Stability

Being sturdy is intimately tied to the flexibility to stabilize your body by just one vary of movement — that of the bench press. Having sufficient joint stability is important to stop plateaus within the bench press from elbows and wrists shedding place, or the legs wobbling round uncontrollably throughout arduous makes an attempt.

Improved Higher Physique Dimension and Energy

Everybody who has a robust bench press, and thus a robust chest, has in all probability realized that to maintain seeing progress, they should build more muscle. In the end, a much bigger torso (again, shoulders, arms, and chest) gained by constructing the higher physique musculature interprets into a much bigger bench by cushioning the joints and offering extra muscle to supply pressure. 

Different Issues and Publish-Novice Coaching

It’s uncommon {that a} lifter could have a mobility limitation that may’t be addressed by merely performing the barbell actions themselves, however an exception to this typically is shoulder flexibility for squatting. It may be useful to take a couple of minutes earlier than starting squats to stretch the shoulders. Taking your regular grip on the bar (or barely wider) and “pushing” the shoulders below the bar—holding that place for a number of seconds—may help make the start squat units extra manageable. Some lifters profit from utilizing a broomstick or comparable object to carry out the (inaccurately named) “shoulder dislocate” stretches for a similar impact.

Past the fundamentals above, a number of extra factors might be made as programming progresses. If deadlifts are carried out first in a session, a number of extra warm-ups are in all probability a good suggestion to verify the physique is mostly ready for exercise. In case you are on a four-day break up, the decrease physique gained’t have a lot demanded of it on an upper-body day, so merely performing the benching and urgent warm-ups will in all probability be enough on these days. When you discover it isn’t for you, begin these days with a few empty-bar units of squats—or you possibly can make the most of an train bike or rower earlier than the lifts. Simply ensure it’s gentle exercise for a couple of minutes, sufficient to barely elevate the guts price and warmth your physique up. This can be very useful for some older lifters that discover they want a little bit additional exercise to really feel ready earlier than lifting.

As a lifter will get stronger and begins lifting bigger absolute quantities of weight, extra warm-up units will probably be required. The identical guidelines apply, however extra steps should be taken to get to heavier working masses, and bigger preliminary jumps. For instance, a robust deadlifter with a working set of 1×3 @ 525 may need warm-ups that seem like this:

1×5 @ 135

1×5 @ 225

1×3 @ 315

1×2 @ 405

1×1 @ 455

1×1 @ 485

1×1 @ 505


Racinais S, Oksa J. 2010. “Temperature and neuromuscular operate.” Scand J Med Sci Sports activities. 20 Suppl 3:1-18 (Oct). https://doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0838.2010.01204.x.


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