Thursday, January 1, 2015

Bench Shirts and Excessive Gear has ruined the concept of Bench Pressing

Over the last few years, I have witnessed the glorious bench press competitions turn into a freakish event that looks more like a clip from a movie that features a cyborg version of an armored Frankenstein trying to pump iron. I mean, for the ones that don't know, the bench shirts are strapped on so tight and act as a spring of some sorts, that if you master the technique they can actually add a few hundred pounds to your bench press. Is that fair? Does it boil down to who has the best bench shirt wins?

The rules obviously don't apply in most of these competitions or claims or displays via YouTube, and I've seen people with their back arched so high that their butt doesn't even touch the bench. The last time I checked, bench pressing was about lifting weights, not about how close you can get your ass to your shoulder blades! Many of these people are so jacked up with equipment/excessive gear and upper body apparatuses (bench shirts), that they look like a freakish padded warrior that can't even put their arms down (due to the advantageous bench shirt) while walking to the damn bench. I just seen a person lift an enormous amount of weight without even bending his elbows. How does that count? The spotters lifted the weight down for him, then he lowered it a couple inches and rolled/squirmed it back to the spotters and they called that a bench press even though he never pressed anything!

At any feign rate of lifting, I just think this sport/competition has turned into a complete joke. Unless it is raw/natural with no equipment involved whatsoever and no spotters that help you lift it off the bench for you, it shouldn't count; period! If you need excessive gear, pads, supports, braces, tightly strapped upper body apparatuses and additional people just to perform YOUR bench press, you need to find another hobby or at the very least, quit claiming to lift several hundreds of pounds more than you can actually lift yourself!

Besides, the short-armed wide gripped tactic that involves the arched spring method is basically 80% technique and 20% strength. At one time, the bench press was one of the standard measures of strength, but now, going by what I've seen during the last few years, it means absolutely nothing!

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