There is not a shadow of a doubt that bench press is the most popular weight exercise among guys of all fitness level in any sport. And football players are no exception. But are bench press workouts really an integral part of football weight training, or is it just an overrated hype?
Bench press is one of the three major exercises that are used to exercise number of muscles at the time. The other two being squat and dead lift. Because of this unique impact on literally dozens of muscles at the same time, bench press is an ideal strength exercise.
The primary muscles impacted by benching are shoulders, tricepses and chest. However, in order to do bench press, especially when using heavy weights, also back muscles are impacted as they are used to stabilize the weight on the way down to the chest.
Of course, it goes without saying that upper body strength is essential to any football player, regardless of what position he plays. For that reason, football weight training always paid a lot of attention to strength and fitness of upper body. And, simply put, there is no other exercise that can match bench press when it comes to building upper body strength.
The problem with bench is, that it can get addictive and ego driven. Many players spend countless of hours bench pressing when they should be in fact concentrating on weaker parts of the body. If upper body is not a problem, then placing too much attention on bench press will indeed increase the chest strength further, however it will also increase the gap between the strongest link – your chest, and the weakest link of your body.
Effective football weight training must concentrate on balancing out the strength, speed and endurance of the whole body. You are only as strong as the weakest link. So if you lack in speed, emphasize speed exercises rather than falling a victim of your ego and doing bench press workouts.
On the other hand, if you need to build your upper body strength, bench press is your best friend. The trick is not to make it your master, making your football abilities suffer. Football is a complex game, and bench press is not the goal of your football weight training. It is only a small part of it.
About the Author:
Does your upper body strength need improvement? Don’t be stuck in the rut. Try the amazing, hard-core Blast Your Bench program, or the time-tested Critical Bench program. Not Sure which one to choose? Read my side-by-side review of both these great raw bench press workouts.