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What muscle groups does this exercise affect. How can it be dangerous. How to do it correctly so as not to get injured.
The problem with most athletes in the gym is predictability. Of course, in the perseverance and endeavor of many not to reproach – all exercises are performed with special enthusiasm. The problem is the uniformity of the training process. Many useful exercises that work out one or another muscle group perfectly are simply forgotten. For example, the bench press from behind the head is becoming an increasingly rare occurrence. But is there any need for this exercise? What are its benefits? What are the features?
We delve into the topic
You probably know about a group of dangerous exercises in bodybuilding that are better not to do at all. So the bench press from behind the head belongs to such a group. The reason for this “injustice” is the unnaturalness of movement when bending the arm, as well as the negative impact on the shoulder joint. In fact, such statements are nothing more than regular reinsurance. With the right technique, a bench press such as standing or sitting is an ordinary exercise that does not stand out among its “brothers”.
If we study the statistics, the number of injuries when performing such a bench press is minimal. The main cause of damage in training was and remains a violation of the technique of exercises. What is the outcome? On the one hand, be careful during the training process and strictly follow the technique. On the other hand, always correlate existing risks and analyze the sensations of your body when doing the exercise.
What muscles work?
Now let’s figure out what the bench press can give you from behind the head while sitting or standing (which is more convenient for anyone). This exercise is an excellent option for working out the shoulders, namely the middle and front deltas. It is believed that the back of the delta should receive a large load when pressing the head. But no. The main “burden” lies on the front of the head.
Thus, the total load includes the following muscle groups:
- Targeted – two types of deltoid muscle (anterior and middle);
- synergists – two more deltas (lateral and lateral). In addition, triceps, the middle and lower part of the trapezium, the front dentate, and also supraspinatus muscles are connected;
- stabilizers. Here the main load is borne by the upper part of the trapezoid, as well as the scapular levator;
- dynamic stabilizing muscles. This category includes the long head of the triceps muscles.
What do you need to remember?
As already mentioned, standing bench is a taboo for many athletes precisely because of its danger. And many coaches are often insured, not including their wards such an effective exercise in the program. But there is another group of specialists. They argue that such reinsurance is not warranted, and the exercise itself is inherently safe. How is perception of danger rooted? One athlete was injured while doing a bench press from behind his head, and then word of mouth does his job.
In general, in bodybuilding there are only two exercises that imply a “headline” performance – traction in the upper block and the bench we are considering. Both options are very similar and are based on the frontal abduction (reduction) of the shoulder part. It may seem that the exercises are of the same type, but there are serious differences in the mechanics of execution. So, during the lifting of the bar from behind the head, the deltoid muscle is in the greatest risk zone, because the head of the bone of the shoulder joint is slightly displaced and abuts against the coraco-acromial arch. As a result, muscle tendons get a big load. From the standpoint of biomechanics, a whole series of efforts appears on the fact of delta stress:
- total effort of muscle groups-rotators;
- effort pressing the head to the muscular cavity;
- force components in various planes (longitudinal and transverse);
- the power that the delta develops and so on.
How can we conclude? With pressure from the side of the deltoid muscles, a large load appears, literally pressing the head of the shoulder to the joint cavity or scapular acromion. Such alignment can lead to serious injuries when moving the load from the bottom up. The situation is different when executing the top block. Here, the muscular efforts are directed downward, so the head of the humerus is not pressed against the scapular part.
That is why professionals who do not like traction from behind their heads, preferring a safer block. In fact, even such an exercise can provide an excellent effect. The main thing is to approach the exercise wisely and strictly follow the technique.
What and how to do?
After assessing all the risks, you can go directly to the technique. To complete the exercise, you will need racks and a barbell with a load. We will carry out a bench standing.
The sequence of actions is as follows:
- place the bar on vertical racks and load it with the necessary weight. After sitting down under the neck and move it slightly below the cervical region. Now lift the barbell and move a little from the racks (1-2 meters). After that, take a stable position and straighten your back. This position is the source;
- projectile lifting should be performed exclusively on expiration. Therefore, gain full chest of air, gradually release it and lift the load. At the top, stop and wait 1-2 seconds. After that, begin to slowly lower the shell behind the head, while taking a breath;
- repeat the exercise as many times as necessary.
What are the options?
In practice, you can do such a bench press not only while standing, but also sitting on a bench. In the latter case, the load on the spine is reduced. In addition, you can work while sitting without a “safety net” or on Smith’s simulator.
Secrets of doing the exercise
Due to the high risk of injury, such an exercise should be performed as carefully as possible, clearly observing the technique and taking into account the recommendations in the article. Do not forget a few more secrets:
- when doing the exercise, control the position of your back – it should be as straight as possible. Deviations are fraught with “fly-out” of the vertebrae or other serious problems;
- try to “squeeze” the chest a little forward;
- Keep your elbows in the plane of the neck and do not extend them in front of the projectile. In this case, the risk of getting injured increases and the overall effectiveness of the exercise decreases;
- lower the bar not below eye level;
- before doing the exercise, warm up the deltoid muscles. Pay special attention to rotators of the shoulder joint;
- carefully monitor the pace of the exercise and do not allow excessive acceleration (jerking);
- during execution, look around the angle of the forearms – it should be about 90 degrees;
- Do not lower your head and always look forward;
- start doing the exercise with small weights, gradually adding load;
- if the weight is too large, then work sitting and with a partner (as an option – Smith’s simulator);
- do the exercise no more than once a week for a couple of months.
If you do a head press with a clear implementation of the technique, a good workout and with optimal weight, then you are not afraid of problems.