Master the Bench Press with Full Steam CrossFit: Setting Up for Perfect Technique

The bench press is one of the most popular exercises in weight training. It’s important to dial in your technique to maximize your lifting efficiency and bench press more weight safely!

Before you begin, be sure to set up correctly on the bench by lying on your back with your eyes positioned under the barbell. A good starting position for your hands is slightly wider than shoulder-width apart when lifting the barbell from the rack. Your shoulder blades should be pulled back and down together against the surface of the bench. Lastly, your feet should be firmly planted about hip-width apart on the floor for stability during each repetition. Taking the time to set up each of these positions helps ensure that you are able to maintain proper form and avoid any unnecessary strain or injury due to incorrect posture or setup.

Once you are set up on the bench, begin the lift by un-racking the bar by yourself or with the assistance from a spotter. From the top or finish position of the lift, lower the barbell to your chest to the bottom position of the press and finish the lift by pressing the bar back up to the top position. On the decent, it’s helpful to think about pulling the bar down to your chest and breaking the bar in half. Both of those cues help keep your lats engaged throughout the lift. Visually, this looks like your elbows breaking forward and in toward your torso. As the elbow goes “in” on the way down, it will now go “out” on the way up. When finishing your rep, it’s helpful to visualize a punch! Once you finish the required number of repititions in your set, re-rack the barbell on the rack!

Check out Coach Jordan’s bench press tutorial video for more info! With instruction and support from Full Steam CrossFit’s experienced coaches, you can learn how to properly perform strength exercises including but not limited to squats, deadlifts, presses as well as mastering correct bench press technique! Our team provides personalized programming tailored towards individual goals while helping our members stay safe and motivated along their fitness journey. 

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Jonathan Prieto

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Coach Jonathan graduated with his B.S. in Exercise science from UTC in 2018. He’s been doing CrossFit since 2015 and coached over 5,000 hours. Helping members reach their fitness goals and discover new skills is why he loves coaching.


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Coach Kristin developed a strong love for exercise and fitness from an early age as an athlete. Her desire to coach and lead people is shown through her energy and passion that she brings to the table. Coach Kristin wants you to move, and move well.


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