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how the hell are you meant to keep your scapula retracted when benching? Watch

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    i just cant keep them retracted once i start to push the bar up, when i expolde up, my shoulders come apart, its only natural isnt it?

    how the hell are you meant to do a pulling movement whilst pressing?
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    Seems easy for me tbh. Never had any issues.
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    (Original post by illusionz)
    Seems easy for me tbh. Never had any issues.
    if i try it, it makes me bench weaker because im resisting the pushing motion by the pulling of my shoulder blades back, apparently its meant to make it stronger though?
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    (Original post by Doob)
    if i try it, it makes me bench weaker because im resisting the pushing motion by the pulling of my shoulder blades back, apparently its meant to make it stronger though?
    I find the bar pushes my shoulders into the bench enough that there isn't any chance of them slipping out or anything
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    I squeeze my upper back, then push the earth/bench rather than the bar. Keeps me nice and tight. Your upper back is your base and if you get a feel for that then keeping your back tense whilst pushing with your chest isn't that hard. Bracing takes practice.
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    My first guess would be your doing it wrong because it's not a common thing to struggle with. You want to be pulling your shoulders back and down, like if there was strings pulling the bottom inner corner of your shoulder blade towards the top of your ass crack.
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    Are you raising your shoulders at the same time almost as a shrugging movement?
    You may not intentionally but as you lift off youre most likely raising your neck/head and shoulders (insert shampoo pun.)

    Its a matter of maintaining tightness imo, you could probably benefit from stretches and practise with an unloaded bar.

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    you may well have seen it already but watch it again. He goes through it all very well.

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    Dave Tate is useful on retracting shoulders there but generally I'd advise a little bit of caution in listening to him because he teaches like he benches and he benches equipped so he does that typical westside thing of giving equipped advice to raw lifters. Obviously he knows what he is talking about, I don't doubt that, but he isn't always clear on applicability.
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    It's easy for me while benching with a barbell but really difficult with heavy dumbbells


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    Is there really any need/benefit in doing so? Scapula retraction seems only necessary for actual pulling movements (many people don't actually retract their scapula when doing rows and such)
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    (Original post by bertstare)
    Is there really any need/benefit in doing so? Scapula retraction seems only necessary for actual pulling movements (many people don't actually retract their scapula when doing rows and such)
    I guess it makes you more stable, especially shoulders, and stronger. You definitely won't be shrugging your shoulders or allow them to move about too much. I think it's the key to make it a full upper body movement, rather than just a chest exercise.

    My two pennies
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    (Original post by bertstare)
    Is there really any need/benefit in doing so? Scapula retraction seems only necessary for actual pulling movements (many people don't actually retract their scapula when doing rows and such)
    To me it's primarily about tightness. If your whole body isn't tight on any lift then you're not lifting well and shoulders back created upper body tightness. If your not tight then force doesn't transfer effectively through your body. It's especially true if you want leg drive to be able to reach the bar but even if you don't use leg drive it's not effective to have your shoulders moving around under you

    Also stability like Ninja said which is safer on your shoulders.
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    You need to strengthen your back muscles to be able to retract your scapula and keep a tight upper/mid back in the bench press. This is why many powerlifters says that you should be able to barbell row as much as you bench and do 1 weighted pull up with your bench 1rm.

    Omar Isuf has a great Youtube video demostrating the Pendlay Row, which is one of the best rowing exercises to build that scapular retraction strength.
 
 
 
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