Thursday, October 07, 2010

Which bench press is better – flat or incline?

The king of all chest exercises – the bench press. But which bench press is better – flat or incline? A recent study from Fraser Valley University in Canada looked at both the incline and flat bench press to examine how much muscle activation occurs. Using an EMG, they examined two areas of the pec major, the clavicular head and sternocostal, along with the front deltoid.

What they found was the flat bench press used more of the larger portion of the pec, the sternocostal. The incline press triggered the use of more of the anterior deltoid and the pec’s clavicular head.

So here’s your FUSION FACTOID: To get a large powerful chest, you can’t just stick to flat bench press. You need to incorporate other bench variations, including the incline bench press, and dips are a good idea too! Doing so will help bring up your chest musculature showing the world that yes, you truly are a bodybuilder.

Source: Trebs A, Brandenburg J, and Pitney W. An electromyography analysis of 3 muscles surrounding the shoulder joint during the performance of a chest press exercise at several angles. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. 2010. 24(7) pg. 1925.1930.


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