If you’re struggling with building a bigger and stronger upper body with traditional press exercises, then you might want to consider adding barbell close grip bench press to your workout routine. It’s a common problem to have when you hit a plateau in your training, especially if you’re already focusing on exercises like the traditional bench press. Don’t worry though, this issue isn’t uncommon and is usually due to the lack of variation in your training. In this blog post, we’ll give you some tips and tricks on how to properly execute the barbell close grip bench press to help you bust through this plateau and achieve the gains you’ve been seeking.
Barbell Close Grip Bench Press Summary
- Primary Muscles: Triceps Brachii
- Secondary Muscles: Deltoid – Anterior, Pectoralis Major – Clavicular, and Sternal
- Equipment: Barbell and Bench
- Mechanics Type: Compound
- Force: Push
- Utility: Basic
Barbell Close Grip Bench Press Instructions
- To start, lie on the bench with your feet directly under your knees to brace yourself.
- Un-rack the barbell with a narrow overhand grip.
- Next, bring the barbell over your chest with your arms straight.
- Then, lower the bar down to your chest, bringing your elbows down close to your side.
- Always moving the bar in a vertical line to minimize any horizontal movements.
- Finish by pressing the barbell up fully extending your arms.
- Repeat your narrow grip bench press until you have complete your first set.
Barbell Close Grip Bench Press Muscles
- Triceps Brachii
- Deltoid – Anterior
- Pectoralis Major – Clavicular
- Pectoralis Major, Sternal
- Biceps Brachii – Short Head
- Pectoralis Minor
- Serratus Anterior
Benefits of Barbell Close Grip Bench Press
The Barbell Close Grip Bench Press is an excellent exercise for targeting and strengthening the triceps brachii. This muscle, which is located at the back of the upper arm, consists of three heads that originate from different areas of the humerus and inserts at the olecranon of the ulna. Performing this exercise will help to increase the strength of the triceps brachii, which in turn will help to improve overall upper body strength and stability. Additionally, because this exercise works on the triceps, it can help to improve overall posture and reduce the risk of injury.
Tips for Performing Barbell Close Grip Bench Press
The barbell close grip bench press is a great exercise for building strength and muscle in your upper body. To get the most out of this exercise, it’s important to keep a few things in mind. Below are some tips to help you maximize your performance when doing the barbell close grip bench press.
- Do A Appropriate Warm-Up Prior To You Begin To Add Your Heavy Weight. Not appropriately warming up performing a proper warm up is the most likely cause of injuries.
- Alternate Your Training Sets Every Few Weeks With Varied Weight And Repetition Mixtures. Like sets of 5 of 5 for a week or two, then 3 sets of 8-20 reps for a few weeks.
- Slow All Movement To Just Under 6 Seconds Each Contraction And Just Under 6 Seconds For The Extension, To Boost Your Workout. To generate mas you want to raise the amount of time under stress of your primary muscle tissue. Going slower your repetition will increase time under strain. Frequent studies have proven that just under 6 seconds of contraction and extension is the ideal time to provide optimum benefit for creating muscle mass. You should add this approach occasionally, but not whenever you workout.
Benefits and Tips Video
Frequent Mistakes To Avoid
It is important to practice proper form when doing the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press in order to maximize the benefits and minimize the risk of injury. To ensure you are performing the exercise correctly, there are some common mistakes to avoid.
- Try Not To Rush Your Exercise Session. Whenever you rush your work out you more likely to use poor technique and accidents.
- You’ll Do Better To Not Pass-Up Your Cooldown. You will likely reduce your healing time frame and reduce soreness when you do a good cool-down.
- You’ll Do Better To Not Make It To Easy. Your main way to obtain gains will be to challenge yourself.
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Variations and Complementary Exercises
If you are looking for variations, complementary, or alternative exercises for the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press, there are many options available. These exercises will help build strength in similar muscle groups as the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. Below is a list of exercises that can be used to supplement or replace the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press.
Barbell Incline Close Grip Bench Press
The Barbell Incline Close Grip Bench Press is a great complementary or alternative exercise for the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. This variation allows for a more intense workout and recruits more muscles, as the incline angle targets the upper chest more than the flat bench press does. The close grip also puts more emphasis on the triceps, as well as the upper chest and shoulders. This exercise can be done with either a barbell or dumbbells, depending on what equipment is available. It is a great way to increase strength and muscle mass in the upper body.
Barbell Bench Press
The barbell bench press is a classic strength exercise that targets the chest, shoulders, and triceps muscles. It is a great complement or alternative to the barbell close grip bench press, as it focuses more on the chest and shoulders than the triceps. With the barbell bench press, you can use a wide variety of grip widths, from narrow to wide, to target different parts of the chest and shoulders. This exercise can also be done with a variety of rep ranges, from low to high reps, which allows for more flexibility in your strength training program.
Barbell Incline Bench Press
The Barbell Incline Bench Press is a great complementary exercise to the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. This exercise works the same muscles as the Close Grip Bench Press but is performed at an incline angle, which helps to target the upper chest muscles more effectively. Additionally, the Incline Bench Press helps to improve shoulder stability and can help to reduce shoulder impingement. This exercise can be used as an alternative to the Close Grip Bench Press if you are looking for a way to switch up your routine and target different muscles.
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Barbell Lying Triceps Extension
Barbell Lying Triceps Extension is an excellent complementary exercise to the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. It works the same muscles as the Bench Press, specifically targeting the triceps, but in a slightly different way. By lying down and extending your arms, you are able to put greater emphasis on the triceps than when you are pressing with a close grip. This is an ideal alternative exercise if you’re looking to mix up your routine or if you’re looking to give your triceps a more intense workout.
Barbell Standing Overhead Triceps Extension
Barbell Standing Overhead Triceps Extension is a complementary or alternative exercise for Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. This exercise helps to develop the triceps muscles in the back of the arm. It involves standing with a barbell in both hands, arms fully extended and palms facing inward. The elbows are then bent to lower the bar behind the head, and then straightened to raise it back up to the starting position. This exercise can be used to increase the workload of the triceps without having to use additional weight. It is also beneficial for those who have shoulder issues and can’t perform the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press.
Cable Concentration Extensions
Cable Concentration Extensions can be a great complementary or alternative exercise to the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. This exercise focuses on the triceps muscle, which is the main target muscle for the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. It works all three heads of the triceps muscle in a slightly different way, allowing you to target the muscle from different angles. The exercise can be done either with a cable machine or with a resistance band and can be done either seated or standing. The cable version allows you to control the weight more easily and also helps to keep your form in check. It’s also a great way to add variety to your triceps workout routine.
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Opposing Complementary Exercises
To ensure your body is balanced and properly worked, it is important to pair the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press with exercises that work the opposing muscles. Doing this will help you achieve your fitness goals faster. Below are exercises that work the opposite muscle groups of the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press.
Alternating Dumbbell Hammer Preacher Curl
The Alternating Dumbbell Hammer Preacher Curl is a great complementary exercise to the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. It works the biceps muscles of the upper arms, which are the opposing muscle group to the triceps muscles that are targeted when doing the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. By alternating arms during the hammer preacher curl, you can also engage more stabilizing muscles and improve your balance. Additionally, this exercise helps to build strength in the biceps muscles, which will help to further develop your arms when paired with the bench press.
Alternating Dumbbell Preacher Curl
The Alternating Dumbbell Preacher Curl is an ideal exercise to complement the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press. This exercise works the biceps in a way that utilizes the eccentric and concentric muscle contractions. By curling the dumbbells up to the chest and then slowly lowering them down, the biceps are engaged in a more controlled manner than with a regular curl. This exercise complements the Barbell Close Grip Bench Press by utilizing the opposing muscle group. The Barbell Close Grip Bench Press works the triceps and chest muscles, while the Alternating Dumbbell Preacher Curl works the biceps. Together, these exercises provide a balanced workout that can help increase strength and muscle size.
Alternating Resistance Band Curl
Alternating Resistance Band Curl is a great complementary exercise to Barbell Close Grip Bench Press as it works the opposing muscle group. This exercise targets the biceps, which are the muscles on the front of the upper arms and are used to flex the elbow joint. The Barbell Close Grip Bench Press works the triceps, which are located on the back of the upper arm and are used to extend the elbow joint. By performing both exercises together, you will effectively target all of the muscles in the upper arm to help develop strength and muscle mass.
Stronger Triceps, Stronger You!
Stronger triceps can enhance your overall strength and improve your performance in various exercises. That’s why incorporating exercises that target your triceps, like the barbell close-grip bench press, into your workout routine is essential. By doing so, you can increase your pushing power, reduce your risk of injury, and even improve your posture. Strong triceps have both aesthetic and functional benefits. So, make sure to pay attention to this muscle group if you want to make the most out of your workouts.
References: Wikipedia | ExRx.net | PubMed.gov | Comprehensive List of Arms Barbell Exercises