an ultimate guide about reverse grip barbell bench press(2022, updated)

A bench press is one of the best exercises for strengthening the chest and triceps.

The bench press is the basic and most commonly chosen exercise that exercises the pectorals. Variations in grip exist for the bench press and emphasize slightly different muscles than the standard bench press does. The reverse grip barbell bench press is a notable alternative to this traditional form of exercise.

This variation of the bench press hasn’t been studied as much by research studies. It offers an alternative exercise for those who want to target their triceps and chest muscles to produce more force and intensity on the bench press.

Bench pressing is a great strength and muscle building tool. By including the reverse grip barbell bench press into your routine, you can change up the type of muscle contraction you do as well as add variety to your workout for a further effective result. This article includes all of that information, so log in or sign up to read everything this article has to offer!

the reverse grip barbell bench press:

I recommend that aspiring and competing powerlifters are not performing this exercise when trying to improve their bench press. i would only advise it to powerlifters if they’re in a deload section of training, or they are getting better from an injury.

The reverse grip alters the grip – which causes changes in muscle use, joint angles, and muscle contraction sequencing – making it hard to transfer strength from other exercises to the bench press.

A much better option for bodybuilders would be the reverse grip barbell bench press. However, the Swiss bar bench press would be an excellent option for powerlifters who want to improve their activation of specific muscle groups.

You can also read my article on reverse-grip tricep pushdown

traditional bench press vs reverse grip barbell bench press:

The key difference between the standard bench press and the reverse grip barbell bench press is that in the standard bench press, the lifter opposes their grip by placing his or her fingers on the bottom of the bar while their palms face more outward than their feet.

In contrast to this, with a reverse grip barbell bench press, the lifter wraps their fingers around the upper portion of touching part of the bar and with their palms facing more inward than their feet.

The reverse grip barbell bench press can be considered a powerful variation of the traditional bench press. It requires increased wrist and forearm mobility, combined with strong upper body lifts in order to execute properly.

People who do the reverse grip bench are usually able to build a greater degree of wrist mobility and achieve lift variations that require more bicep strength.

incline barbell bench press vs reverse grip barbell bench press:

These two weightlifting exercises are highly debated. Although it is up to you to decide which bench press to use, the incline barbell bench press can be beneficial by training the muscles more intensively at a gradual, incline angle.

The reverse-grip bench press can help train the chest even more intently because of a greater range of motion and downward pressure. The incline barbell bench press is a type of bench press performed with the upper arms on an incline bench, holding the weight above the chest.

The reverse-grip bench press is a variant of a standard bench press performed by resting on one’s knuckles instead of palms while simultaneously pressing the weight away from the chest with arms fully extended and feet flat on the ground.

When performing a reverse-grip bench, strain is placed more directly on muscles involved in triceps contraction resulting in greater size and strength gains

credit goes to ScottHermanFitness

let’s talk about the benefits of the reverse grip barbell bench press:

in the previous paragraph, we discussed what is the reverse grip barbell bench press. let’s know about the benefits of it.

  • build strength in the upper body: If your goal is to build upper body strength with a bench press variation then the reverse grip barbell bench press might be just what you’re looking for. Reverse grips are low velocity, high load force production that targets the particular range of motion the exercise performs. The bench press is a common exercise that almost all gym-goers recognize so not many people will question what this type of Bench press is if you can do it.
  • Generate great upper chest hypertrophy: If you want to work out your upper chest muscles, the reverse grip barbell bench press is probably the best choice for you. It’s performed more frequently by bodybuilders, physique-oriented lifters and non-competitive strength athletes.
  • Introduce variety into the program: The bench press is often an exercise that provides ample stress. With the addition of a novel exercise variation, plateaus typically occur less frequently in pushing strength. This is good because progress can be made with the addition of new movements to avoid stagnation or a plateau.
  • Used during a deload: A deload is a period of training where a significant reduction in volume or intensity is intentionally implemented- and they can be scheduled ahead of time, or impromptu deloads can occur in the event of an injury. Regardless of when they happen, people should be cautious about lifting too much weight during any given workout.
  • Used to train around injury: Muscles being injured are often managed best by trying to find a position of your muscle group that causes pain-free movement without detraining. The reason why the reverse grip barbell bench press might be way more comfortable (especially when dealing with an elbow or shoulder issue) is due to the amount of external rotation present at the shoulder joint.\

muscle worked in the reverse grip barbell bench press:

Let’s discussed those muscles that work while doing reverse grip barbell bench press.

  • chest muscle( pectoralis major and minor): Reverse grip barbell bench presses are a type of bench press exercise that hits the upper pecs better than traditional bench press exercises. The only study (Lehman, 2005) to compare these two bench press forms found that reverse grip barbell bench presses were just a chance in terms of improving push-up ability.
  • shoulder muscles(front deltoid): One of the three heads that make up the shoulder muscle is active during the reverse grip barbell bench press. The front deltoid is the important one since it allows a lot of added shoulder flexion.
  • arm muscle(bicep, tricep, forearm): Researchers found that the reverse grip barbell bench press was almost two times more effective than traditional bench presses. And while biceps may not be the limiting muscle, they might hold a few powerlifters back who have huge bench presses and consistently neglect training their biceps.

how to perform reverse grip barbell bench press properly?

Reverse grip barbell bench presses are performed on barbells the same as traditional bench presses. You will need an Olympic barbell, weight plates, a flat bench with J-hooks on a rack, and ideally, safety pins. Reverse grip barbell bench presses are performed as you would typical ones.

With the reverse grip barbell bench press, sometimes you will see it referred to as a narrow grip. One of the major differences is that you usually have one arm resting on the bench rather than spread out.

Although this will be new for most people, start with lower weights and simple exercises so you can learn how to do it properly and safely. There are several reasons why this is different from the traditional.

The key differences in form are the following:

alternating grips from pronated to palms facing each other,

thumbs turned outward your grip will be wider,

and your shoulders will only provide external rotation at the shoulder joint the barbell will travel more horizontally than a traditional bench press.

perform the steps that describe below to execute a proper reverse grip barbell bench press.

  1. Adjusting the hook to the correct height: Many people ask, “Which rack should I use?” If you have a bench press station set up at home, a squat/power rack or competition combo rack would be best. You can adjust the hooks so that your elbows are slightly bent when you grab the bar. Allowing for more efficiency and better safety.
  2. Setting up the body on the bench: Your hands should be layered on your chest with forearms pointed towards your shoulder blades. Bring your shoulder blades together while staying lifted through your lats, glutes, and quads.
  3. Unrack the bar: Without lifting the barbell off the ground, roll it to the edge of the hooks. This should put the bar slightly closer to you. Establish your grip on the bar by putting it in the middle of your palm with your wrists cocked back. You’ll discover this grip greater at ease if you angle your wrists barely outwards.
  4. Settle the bar: Pushed the barbell upwards and gently brought it forward so that it could settle in the starting position.
  5. Perform the rep: Once ready, breathe in deeply and brace your core. Lower the barbell towards the base of your chest by tucking your elbows in towards your sides. Once the bar makes contact against your chest, explosively push it up and back towards your face.
  6. Rack the barbell after performing: When you reach the required number of reps, perform a pause at the bar. The bar will be motionless before you can rack it.
credit goes to Jim stoppani

for precautions that should be taken during reverse grip barbell bench press:

Too much grip is not always a good thing when it comes to the reverse grip barbell bench press because there are a few “safety considerations worth noting.” The biggest issue is that they are less mechanically sound than the traditional ones. This can increase the risk of dropping the weight of having it slip from your hands.

An experienced spotter or safety pins largely negate this risk. Your spotter can help you if the bar begins to slip, and the safety pins will catch the bar and prevent it from crushing you.

You can also reduce slip risk by practising the movement with light weights or just the bar until you master the range of motion and grip dynamics. In general, this is good advice when performing new exercises

If your gym allows, using chalk during weightlifting can improve your grip on the bar. As a result of this, it is important to know that a greater execution capability exists for specific movements or movements requiring control or accuracy.

For example, powerlifting requires benching with a standard, pronated grip but within the sport itself, there are other types of benches and grip variations.

Since powerlifters would benefit more from focusing on their competitive bench press, they should only do the reverse grip barbell bench as a warmup or rehabilitation protocol.

People will want to use resistance weight training to develop their muscles. A lot of coaches don’t just start with this type of exercise because they think it’s not working for other sports.

Coaches should carefully consider the dynamics of the sport before coaches design a workout routine. Payments have been on the rise in recent years, and there are now quiet.

variation of reverse grip barbell bench press:

There are many different variations of the reverse grip barbell bench press. The exercise primarily focuses on developing the chest muscles and arms.

  • Reverse grip dumbell press: It’s easy to use dumbbells for horizontal presses. You’ll be able to perform them with a reverse grip while utilizing equal load on each arm, and it will ensure natural movement patterns throughout the motion. Start light as you would with any new or infrequently used exercise due to the instability associated with using dumbbells.
credit goes to jim stoppani
  • Incline revere grip bench press: This exercise is performed by benching with an incline of 30-45 degrees. This exercise results in a different pressing angle relative to the flat bench. Otherwise, the general form needs to be similar – use a reverse grip and have spotter or safety pins. Ensure that the bar starts above your upper chest and lowers toward your sternum, to achieve an angled bar path with some vertical lift.
credit goes to Howcast
  • Reverse grip machine chest press: Chest press machines at commercial gyms provide a fixed range of motion for training your chest. Some advanced models might have additional grinders to increase their complexity. They are excellent for older adults or improving rehabilitation patients or adding volume to your workout without extra weights. They may be seated upright with a horizontal pressing motion or fixed to a standard flat or incline bench setup.


There is a unique benefit to the reverse grip barbell bench press. It becomes more difficult on parts of your body, including your shoulders and chest muscles, which can help prevent injuries and strengthen your body over the long term.

Athletes such as powerlifters who need to perform traditional grip bench pressing should consider limiting the use of reverse grip barbell bench pressing for safety reasons. Safety equipment is used to prevent injury including lip straps, spotters, and chalk.

Start with light weights while mastering the movement. There are a number of variations to reverse grip barbell bench pressing including horizontal pressing movements, such as those that use the supinated reverse grip. Experiment with the reverse grip barbell bench press in your next chest workout and reap the benefits of an excellent variation of this classic chest exercise.

people also ask:

what does the reverse grip bench press work?

The reverse grip bench press primarily targets the muscles on your chest including the pectoralis (chest muscles), front delts (shoulder muscles), triceps, biceps, and wrist extensor muscles.

what is called a landmine chest press?

This exercise uses both hands to press an angled barbell. One alternative is a chest-dependent exercise with only one arm that uses the other arm to press from the front of the body. The other alternative could be referred to as the single-arm landmine press, which recruits more muscle groups (shoulders, scapula stabilizer muscles, triceps) than just the chest.

what is the Z press

The Z or Zydrunas press is an overhead press variation that can be done while seated. Its aim is to put all of the pressure on the core and pressing muscles. It is also considered an advanced exercise because of its hip mobility and core strength required.

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